Bored of Texas Hold ’em? Some Other Card Games to Play with the Guys

Texas Hold ‘em Poker has become a popular card game not just in the casinos, but in the world of online gambling too. However, there’s a lot more you can do with the 52 standard card deck, and here are some classic fun card games to try out with the guys in your man cave over a round of beer.

A favorite pastime that has been around for centuries, playing cards with a mix of modern and classic games invented over the years. With the crew huddled around the table, either for some big wins in gambling, or just for the fun of it, card games with the standard 52 deck has become a tradition of sorts. A common misconception among first-time card players is that you always need to put money on the table (aka gamble) to make the game more interesting. However, it is mostly games such as Texas Hold ‘em that have introduced the concept of chips to make the game of cards more rewarding.

Other Card Games to Play with the Guys

While Texas Hold ‘em may have become an infamous way of making (and losing) money in Las Vegas since the 1960s, you might not be toot excited to turn your man cave into a casino. Popping off a couple of cold ones for a game night can become a lot more fun when you’ve got a deck of cards and the mood to get the party started. Here’s our list of the best 52 deck card games that you can enjoy with the boys for hours at a stretch.

Palace – 2 to 4 players

Palace is considered a “shedding” card games where players race to be the first person with no cards left. All the players are dealt three cards facing down and a hand of 6 cards, and they must choose three cards to put face up on their three cards that are facing down. Everyone is then dealt with a draw pile.

All of the players take turns playing cards that are in their hands, to the center of the table. Each of the cards played should be equal or higher than the previous card in value, or you have to pick up the entire pile of cards. Once the draw pile is finished, you can start playing from your own three piles. The first player who empties all three piles wins.

Knockout Whist – 2 to 7 players 

A cards game that is fun to play with people of all ages, Knockout Whist is a traditional British card game where all you need is a single 52-card deck to play. In Knockout Whist, Ace is a high number, so to begin playing, start by dealing seven cards to each of the player, beginning with the person on the left. The card after the deal is turned face-up, making it the “trump” suit. 

The player on the dealer’s left places the first card, and the rest of the group must follow their lead if they can. The highest suit card (trump card) wins the “trick,” and if nobody plays the trump, then the highest card number (value) of the suit led by the first player will be the winner. After the group has played all seven cards, players that haven’t achieved any tricks are kicked out of the game, until just the winner remains.

Slapjack – 4 to 10 players

Slapjack has a simple concept and race-to-slap interaction that makes it fun for young and adults. The point of this card game is to collect all of the cards. The cards are dealt in clockwise direction until the 52-deck is over, and everyone holds the cards facing down, without looking at them. 

Each player picks one card from their own deck face-down, and places the picked up card in the center of the group. When a Jack court card is placed face-up, you must be the first person to “slap” it, or cover it with one hand. When you’re all out of cards, you’re out of the game – unless you can slap a Jack laid down by someone else. The game of Slapjack continues until one player wins all the cards. 

Spoons – 3 to 13 players

There are no turns played in Spoons since all players quickly pass cards to try to make a hand of four of one kind of cards. There are numerous spoons (or similar objects) at the center of the table, one fewer than the number of players. You may pass as quickly or slowly as you wish. 

If you move too slowly, you end up with a buildup of several cards next to you. Once you have four of a kind in your hand, grab a spoon from the center of the table. Once a player catches a spoon, any other player can grab another one. The player who fails in grabbing a spoon loses a life, and the play continues until you have a winner.

Hearts – 3 to 4 players

Hearts is a game designed for groups, with the purpose of the game to be the first one with the “lowest” score as the game ends. To have a chance to deal, players cut the cards exploring the lowest number, and the entire pack is then dealt to each member in a counter-clockwise circle. After the whole deck is dealt, each player will choose three cards to pass on to their opponents. The player to the dealer’s left side begins first in Hearts, and they will win a trick when playing the highest card of the suit.

The winner of the card trick leads the next, but you can’t begin with a heart until another heart has already been played or “broken.” Hearts are broken when a player lacks a card in the suit being used, so he or she adds a heart card to the pile instead. Hearts is traditionally played up to 100 points, and the person who scores the 100 ends up as the loser.

Crazy Eights – 2 to 8 Players

Crazy Eights is a game that brings the entire crew together and makes sure that everyone stays on their toes, to be the first one to get rid of all the cards. Begin by dealing five cards one by one, facing down, with the player left to the dealer. The rest of the 52 deck cards are placed face down the center of the table, and the first card is turned up and placed beside the face-down pile. If you turn an eight, you must bury it in the middle of the pack, and flip the next card.

Each player then places one card face-up on the starter pile, and it should match the deck card at the top of the starter pile in denomination or suit. If you are unable to play a card, you need to draw cards from the face-down cards until the next play is possible. If the face-down pile of cards runs out, you need to pass your turn to the next player in line. Then, save the card at the top of the starter pile, shuffle the cards beneath it, turn them face-down, and turn it into the new stockpile. The first player without cards left wins the game!

Final Words

Plenty of time to pass and the quest to make some money are just some of the reasons people have been able to come up with dozens of different card games over the years. If you ever thought that the 52 deck of cards is only good for the classics such as Blackjack, Texas Hold ‘em Poker, and Bridge, the list above should change your mind. We hope that your game night with the guys next time is going to be an interesting one, with the list of card games mentioned above.

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