Rummy

Online Rummy Guide

Rummy is a world-famous card game where the objective is to improve the hand a player is initially dealt. When it is a player’s turn to play they can draw cards from the pile – which is called a stock – or taking a discarded card from an opponent’s hand in order to make their own to improve their own. Rummy is generally played by two or more players. When a session is active with more than six players, the second deck of cards is required. Scores are traditionally taken on paper, but this is obviously not the case online.

The game has been consistently popular for a number of years and has never been bigger, since the advent of the internet. More and more people enjoy playing Rummy online, with an estimated 100 million interested in the popular card game. The peak of this classic game was in the 1920s when it became synonymous with the jazz-filled casinos and playrooms of the Speakeasies of prohibition-time USA.

The Rules

Many to prefer to play Rummy with a session involving two to four players, but six is the limit. You can decide to play using an agreed number of deals or to a target score. Both ways need to be agreed prior to playing and will be done so by using a standard deck of 52 cards in the order of:

Ace 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Jack Queen King

Typically, the first dealer is a random choice, which will rotate as the game goes on. With two players, both will receive ten cards, with seven for three or four players, and six for five or six players. Cards are dealt singularly. Following a deal, you will find the subsequent card face up on the table to initialise the discard pile. The rest of the deck will be placed face down adjacent to the discard pile which will become the stock. Players will then aim to sort their cards.

The aim of Rummy is to get rid of all the card you hold, either by:

  • Discarding
  • Melding
  • Laying off

Melding and Laying Off

Melding is when you remove cards from your hand only to put them face up on the table where they then remain. This is where sequences (runs) and groups (books). A sequence is when you have 3+ cards which are part of the same suit and run in consecutive order (Think 4,5,6,7 of diamonds).

A group, set or book will be three to four cards of the same value (2 of clubs, hearts, diamonds).

Laying off is when you introduce cards from your hand to an existing meld. The cards you add have to make another adequate meld. This means that things have to run in order. You cannot rearrange melds already made.

The Game

The game begins when a player takes a card from the top of the stock or discard pile and owns it. Discard cards are face up, which means everyone knows which card you have taken. Stock cards are face down, which means you, can conceal them from other players.

A valid group or sequence can be set down face up on the table. You can only meld one group at a time, but keep in mind that there is no obligation for you to meld. This is the same for laying off, although you are not limited in how many cards you lay off at one time. Following your go, you must discard a card your hand and pace on the discard pile face up. You can select a discard on one turn and discard the same card later on.

When the stockpile runs out and the following player doesn’t want a discard, the pile is turned over to form a new stockpile. There may different rules according to the operators of the game when it comes to how rules are adhered to, so be careful to ensure you have the full lowdown on rules before you commit to playing a game. Being on the wrong side of rules can be the difference between you finding success and losing your money.

Keeping Score

There are a number of rules and regulations involved when it comes to keeping score and ultimately winning the game.  These may seem broad and require a lot of studying in order to master, but they are, essentially, pretty straightforward when it comes down to things.

You might be surprised to learn that things are a lot more direct when it comes to scoring in Rummy. Essentially, what you need to remember is that the first player to transform all but one of the cards they hold into acceptable combinations on the table wins that hand. Under the game’s rules, you would refer to this particular practice as “going out.” You discard your final card as part of you exiting the game when you have turned the typical combination of four and one combinations of three, (in 7-card Rummy).

Another thing to keep in mind is that all of these plays do not necessarily have to make in one turn. Of course, as circumstances dictate, you might have already placed sets down prior to this move. As stated, the rules are far from complex, but as a traditional game, there are of course smart methods incorporated into how the game is played.

At the end of the game, the winning player takes points from all of the other participants. This then means that the points total is made up of their score and the remaining cards which sit in the others’ hands. There is no requirement for these scores to be based on combinations, either, so this is where the benefit of an understanding of melding will come in very handy (pun unintended).

The final act of the game is for (losing) players to face their cards up, with the scores then read out to the winner.