Crazy Eights Card Game Rules and Tips

The game of Crazy Eights is played by adults and children and is a great card game for medium sized groups of two to ten people, though it works best with three to six. Crazy Eights is played by following the lead of the player before you and following either suit or card value. The game of UNO, by Mattel is based on the card game Crazy Eights and other versions of the card game include Bartok, Crates, and Last One.

The Deck and Deal for Crazy Eights

The game is played using a 52-card deck or with two decks if six or more people are playing. The cards should be dealt starting with the person on the dealer's left until five cards have been dealt to each person. Seven cards should be dealt if only two people are playing. The top card from that pile is turned over and placed next to the pickup pile to form the discard pile, and is the card that will start the game.

Crazy Eights Card Game Play

The person on the dealer's left starts the play by placing one of the cards from his hand on top of the discard pile. He must do this following one of these two rules: 1) the card must match the discard either by value or suit, 2) the card is an eight of any suit. If the card is an eight of any suit, the player can change the suit of play to any suit he wishes. So if the top card of the discard pile is a seven of clubs, the player must play a seven or a club, or if he chooses he can play an eight of any suit and announce what suit he would like the next card to be played in. If he announces spades, the next card played must be a spade or another eight, changing the suit again.

If the player doesn't have a matching valued card or a matching suit card and does not have or want to play an eight, he must them pick up a card from the pickup pile and continue picking up until he can play a card. It is possible for the player to pick up several cards in this manner. For this reason, there are some who put a maximum on the number of cards that must be picked up if the player does not have matching cards. So if the player does not have a card and must pick up, it can be determined before the start of play that he would only have to pick up three cards before passing his turn to the next player.

Ending the Crazy Eights Hand and Scoring

The play ends when one of the players has no more remaining cards to play. Scoring is done by adding up all the cards left in the other players' hands. This score is a penalty score. The cards 2 through 9 are valued at five points, the cards 10, J, Q, and K are valued at 10, the Aces are worth 15 and the 8 cards are worth 50 points each. The game ends when one of the players has a score that equals or exceeds a predetermined score such as 500.


Not everyone has heard of Whist. The game is not as well-known in the USA these days. A similar game, Bridge, is more popular in the USA and internationally. Yet at one time Whist was a game played at social clubs and coffee houses. Whist remains a popular game today in the UK. Serious players compete in local Whist tournaments. What is the long-lasting appeal of Whist?

History of Classic Whist

Members of the private gentlemen's club, Turf Club, developed the rules for the version of Whist most commonly played during the eighteenth and nineteen century. This version of Whist began as a private game offered only at the Turf Club. However, the game grew in popularity among the British upper class and the Turf Club members shared the card game with others. In 1864, the Portland Club officially sanctioned the new rules for Whist.

Classic Whist Rules and Dealing

Classic Whist is a four player take-trick game with two partnerships and popular in Canada sports betting gamblers. The four players are grouped into two fixed partnership and sit facing each other. No one can signal his partner.

Two card decks are often used to save time. After a card dealing, the dealer's partner shuffles the extra deck of cards and places it on the right. The dealer for the next hand can pick up the shuffled deck of cards and pass it to his right to be cut.

Use a standard 52 card deck. The cards in each suit are ranked from ace high to two low. The player on the dealer's left shuffles the cards and the one on the right cuts the cards. The person who deals provides one card at a time until each player has 13 cards. The entire deck is used. The final card is the dealer's card and becomes trump for the entire hand or trick. The trump beats all cards regardless of rank. Two points are also given for the honor cards – King, Queen, Ace and Jack of trumps.

Playing Classic Whist

The player can lead with any card. In a clockwise order, players each play a card to the trick. Players lay cards of the same suit as the lead card if possible. If a player runs out of a card in the designated suit, he can play any card. The player with the trick with the highest trump wins. If the trick has no trump, the highest card in the designated suit wins. The winner of a trick leads next with the card of his choice.

Memory is also important in Whist strategy. When a trick is completed, the cards are placed face down and kept in a pile near the player who won the trick. Before a new trick begins, a player may ask to see the cards from the last trick but not previous ones.

There are 13 tricks in classic Whist. When all 13 tricks are completed, the score is calculated. The partners with the most won tricks scores one point for each trick won in excess of six. The partners who reach five points first wins the game. If no one has enough points to win, another hand is played until a there is a winner.

Types of Whist

A large number of games are based upon classic Whist. Various types of Whist include:

Solo Whist: Players make bids to win in 5, 9 or 13 tricks or to lose all tricks.
Hearts: Hearts follows similar rules but players do not take tricks.
Bid Whist: Players follow classic Whist rules but also bid.
Israeli Whist: Players bid on the exact number of tricks taken.
Knock-out Whist: If a player does not win a trick, he is eliminated from the game.
Spades: Spades are always trump and players place bids.
Danish Whist or Call-Ace Whist: Bidders choose partners by calling an ace.
Minnesota Whist: The game has no trumps and can be played to win or lose tricks.

Whist remains a popular game for card players in some variation. In this way, classic Whist lives on.