A deck of playing cards can provide hours of enjoyment, whether you’re alone or with at least one other player. There are classic card games that almost everyone knows, like:

  • Poker
  • Solitaire
  • Bridge
  • Gin Rummy
  • Hearts

However, there are also many other unique card games that people may not know about.

Unique Playing Card Games

You don’t need an opponent to play most of these card games because they are made for one person to play. While some of them may be simple, there are others that require logical or strategical thinking. Here are some of the games you can play by yourself.

Beehive Solitaire

This version of solitaire is not well-known, but it is a good game to play when you’re by yourself. All you need is a pack of 52 playing cards.

Shuffle the deck and deal the cards by counting out 10 cards and putting them face up on the board. This stack of 10 cards is the beehive.  Next, deal out six cards in two rows of three cards face up, which represents a garden. The remaining cards will be in your hand face down.

The object of the game is to build stacks of four cards of the same value. So, you will want four jacks, four aces, four 10s, etc. To play the card, try to match the first face-up card in the beehive to one in the garden. If a match is found, place the bee onto the card in the garden, and then turn up the next card in the beehive.

Two cards from the garden can be played if they have the same value. If this move creates space, then it should be filled by a card from the hive. If you do not have a play on a garden card, deal out three cards from those in your hand and turn them face up, with only the top card showing, and continue playing.

If you can use all the cards by creating sets of four for each of the card values, you’ve won the game.

Bowling Solitaire

Most solitaire games do not make use of the jokers, but this one does. However, the game only requires the Ace through 10 of two suits, plus the jokers, to play the game.

Start playing by shuffling the cards you’re using and deal them out in the shape of bowling pins, or a reverse pyramid. There will be four cards on the top row, three on the next, then two, and then one card on the bottom row for a total of 10 cards.

The bowling ball cards, the remaining 10 cards, should be dealt in three piles. The first pile will have five cards, the next one will have three cards, and the last pile should have two cards. Turn up the last card in each pile.

To play the game, attempt to remove, or knock down, pin cards by using the ball cards from the first pile. The pins can be removed by:

1) The bowl card and a pin card having the same value.

2) Two or more of the pin cards have the same value as the ball card.

3) The last digit of the pin cards equals the value of the ball card. So, if the ball card is a six and there are two or more cards equaling 16, then they can be removed because their last digit, a six, equals the ball card.

Each card is assigned a value, with the aces equaling one and the others will have the same face value as the card. So, 10 equals 10 for the game; the nine is nine, etc. However, a joker is a wild game and can have a value from one to 10.

Certain pin cards cannot be knocked down if there are other cards around it. For example, the middle card in the third row cannot be knocked down if either card on each side is still standing or it is knocked down with that card.

If the ball card in the first pile doesn’t make a strike, go to the second pile and try to remove cards with it. If the second card knocks down the remaining cards, then it would be a spare. Otherwise, the face-up card from the third pile needs to be played.

Score the game just as you would real bowling, play 10 frames, and total the frames to get your final score.

Unique Two-Player Card Games

If you have an opponent, such as a friend, your spouse, or you’re keeping your child entertained, there are several unique two-player card games.

Spit

This game for two players involves the players getting rid of their cards as fast as possible. The players do not take turns, inside they play at the same time.

A deck of 52 cards is shuffled and equally distributed to both players, so they each get 26 cards. Each player deals a row of five stock cards with the first pile having one card, the second pile two cards, and so on until the last pile has five cards. The last card in each pile is face up.

After the cards are dealt, both players call “Spit” and turn up one card and play it in the middle of each row of stock cards. Then, they try to remove cards from their piles as fast as they want from either spit pile by placing cards in sequence, up or down, on top of each other. The color or suit of the cards does not matter.

Once a stock pile is empty, place one of the face-up cards from another stock pile into the space and reveal the next face down card. If there are no plays using any of the available stock cards, turn up one from your draw pile and play it if possible. Otherwise, keep drawing until you have a play.

Either spit pile is eligible for the players to use to get rid of their cards. The first player to get rid of their cards wins the game.

Machiavelli

This Italian card game is played with two decks of 52 playing cards, minus the jokers. The person who is dealing gives each player 13 cards, dealing them face down one at a time. The remaining cards are put down in the middle of the table, face down because they are the draw cards.

The object of the game is for each player to get rid of their cards. They need to be in valid combinations, which are:

1) Sets of three or four cards of the same rank and different suits.

2) Sequences of three or more cards of the same suit. The aces can either be high or low, but now both. For instance, 2-A-K is invalid.

Each player takes a turn and can either take a card from the stock pile and add it to their hand, or play one or more cards from your hand onto the table, as long as you can put them in valid combinations.

If a player makes a move they cannot complete, such as removing cards from their hand to play on the table, they must take them back and draw three cards as a penalty. The first player to get rid of their cards wins, and the other players are accessed a penalty point for each card left in their hand.

Many of the two-player games can be played with three or more players, but you should read the rules to find out how to play the games with three or more people. Several of these games are unique strategic unique card games that are challenging, as well as entertaining.

Funny Unique Card Games

Many of the two or more player card games you find are fun to play and may have players laughing throughout the game. Some of these games include:

  • Snap
  • I Doubt It – which has both family and drinking versions.
  • Animal
  • KEMPS Game – it involves playing with two teams of two players.
  • Linger Longer
  • Ship Sails
  • Pig
  • Beggar My Neighbor

While many of these games are suitable for playing with children, there are often adult versions too. However, if you just want to have fun, you and your friends, or your spouse, can learn these games to play after dinner or while you have a few cocktails on the weekend.

Kids can use these games to learn spelling and math skills like addition, subtraction, and counting by putting cards in sequential order. Most of these funny games have few rules, and they are easy to learn how to play them, so the learning curve isn’t too steep for anyone.

Whether you want to play a game alone or with your spouse, there are many unique card games of which people have never heard. Search for them online, learn their rules, and how to play the games, then have fun. Card games can challenge you, make you laugh, or give you something to do on a rainy day.

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