Rummy card game is a fairly simple strategy game. Two to six players sit around a table. For younger players, an adult may need to shuffle and deal the cards, and oversee the game.
Age: 8+ (although younger children could play with supervision and help)
No. of players: 2 to 6
Equipment: One standard deck of cards (remove the jokers)
Time: 10 minutes+
Aim: To be the first player to put down all their cards.
The first player (Player One) is chosen before the games begins when each player draws a card - the highest card starts the game. Gin Rummy is a similar game to normal Rummy card game but it is only for two players with a slight variation in how the game finishes.
1. The dealer shuffles the cards and deals them facedown, one at a time, beginning with the player on their left and continuing clockwise. The number of cards per player depends on the number of players:
4 to 5 players - seven cards each,
6 players - six cards each.
The remaining cards are then placed facedown as a pickup pile in the centre of the table. The top card of the pickup pile is turned face up, next to the pickup pile, as a discard pile.
2. Players look at their cards and attempt to make melds of all the cards in their hand. A meld can be either;
3. Player One can either pick up the top card from the discard pile (which they can see face up) or the top card from the pickup pile (which they cannot see since it is face down). They then choose any card from their hand (including the card they just picked up) to place on top of the discard pile face up, leaving them with their original number of cards.
4. Play continues with each player in turn (in a clockwise direction) choosing and discarding cards while trying to make melds of all the cards in their hand.
5. If all the cards in the pickup pile are used up, the top card of the discard pile is left in place while the remainder of the discard pile is shuffled and placed facedown as a new pickup pile.
6. The first player to make melds of all the cards in their hand is the winner of Rummy card game and places them face up on the table.
Variations to Rummy Card Game:
(a). Players can put down a meld as soon as they make one. Other players can then add to the meld, but only during their turn and after they have put a meld on the table themselves. TAKE CARE: If you end up with only two cards in your hand, you can never make a meld!
(b). Same as variation (a) but players can pick up more than one card at a time from the discard pile. They must use the bottom card they pick up in a meld and put it immediately on the table.
(c). Gin Rummy has similar rules to the main game above but is only for two players (ten cards each). Go to Gin Rummy for the rules.
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