Crazy Eights Variations

This page is part of the Invented Games section of the Card Games web site. It is a collection of variations of the card game Crazy Eights.


Contributed by Miles Dansereau (

This game branches off "Crazy 8 Countdown." Me and my buddy Jason call it "Bitch" cause every one bitches when they have to pick up 16 cards.

[Editor's note: a pick up card is one that requires the next player either to draw the specified number of cards from the stock or play another pick up card.]

  • K of hearts is pick-up 7
  • J of spades and hearts are pick-up 5
  • Jokers are blockers or wilds but not pick up cards.
  • A are miss a turn.
  • 2 are pick up 2 unless you are on 2's.

All 2's, J of H & S, K of H are pick ups.  Jokers block pick ups.  If a 2 of D is played, you can lay a K of H, and not pick up a single card, the player to your right has to pick up 9, etc,etc,etc. Suits are not relevant when you are facing a pick up card.  If you have to pick up, and you get a pick up card, you can lay it,but only at its original value.  Jokers stop any picking up, or can be added  to make a pair.

Strategy:  Only lay a pick up card if you have another one in your hand.  It could blow up in your face.

One Left

Contributed by Justin Huneke


One Left is a card game especially designed for 2 players and plays like the widely played card game Uno [or like Crazy Eights]. In fact, I created this card game one day after playing Uno with only one other person. We both found it boring. The Reverses and Skips were like an automatic discarded card. Uno just isn't a two player game. Fortunately for you (and me) I've created a 2 player game that’s much better than 2 player Uno. In One Left, there are no Skips. Instead there are Give Ones. There are also no Reverses. There are Pick Up Twos instead. Draws 2's are now draw 3's. There are no Wild Draw Fours You play with a standard deck of 52 cards. With this said, here’s how you play.


Like I've said, One Left plays mainly like Uno. [A standard 52-card pack without jokers is used.] You start by dealing 7 cards to both players. Place the remaining cards in the center, forming the draw pile. Flip the top card off the draw pile and place it beside it, forming the waste pile. Decide who goes first and start playing.

On your turn, you can either play a card from your hand or draw from the draw pile. To play a card, all you got to do is put one card from your hand onto the discard pile that matches either the suit or the number/face value. If you have a card that you can play, you must play it. If you don’t have a card you can play, you must draw.

Along with this, there are other cards that can change the fate of the game. They are as followed:

Give 1: These cards are Kings. You may play these only on matching suits or another King. When you play these cards, give your opponent one card from your hand. Unlike Uno, your opponent's turn is not skipped.

Wild: These cards are Aces. They can be played anytime on anything to change the suit.

Draw 3: These cards are Threes. You can only play these on the matching suit. Your opponent's turn is not skipped.

Pick up 2: These are Twos. You can only play these on the matching suit. When you play these cards, you can shuffle the waste pile! Put the Two you played to the side (do not shuffle the Two into the waste pile). Shuffle the waste pile, place it face down and have your opponent draw the top 2 cards. Then turn the discard pile face up again and replace the 2 on top. If somehow there is no face up card on the discard pile, flip the top one of the stock onto the discard. Your opponent's turn is not skipped.

When you only have one card left you must call "One Left". If your opponent calls it before you, you must draw 2 cards. You win when you deplete your hand.

One Left will keep the both of you busy for hours just like its much older brother Uno, but with a few different twists, One Left seems like a whole new card game!


Crazy Pairs

A variation of the Crazy Eights card game by Albert York

Crazy Pairs is a souped up version of Crazy Eights which adds some strategy to the game. It can be played by any number of players and multiple decks can be used if required.

The deal

The deal moves in a clockwise direction.

Each player receives 8 cards. The remaining cards are placed face down to for the stock. The top card from the stock is turned over to start the pile.

If the stock is depleted then top card of the pile is set aside and the pile is shuffled and turned over to form a new stock. The card that was set aside becomes the new pile.

Basic play

Each player plays in turn clockwise (except as noted below) and may choose to play or pass. If he chooses to play he is not required to draw any cards. However, before he can pass he must take one card (and only one card) from the stock and add it to his hand. After drawing a card he can still choose to pass or play. If he chooses to pass he says 'Pass' and play continues to the next player. A player is never required to play a card.

Basic play is exactly like Crazy Eights. A player may play a card which matches the suit or rank of the card on the top of the pile. Eights are considered wild and may be played regardless of the card on the pile. When an eight is played the player must call the suit for the next player.

When one player has discarded all of his cards then the game is over.

Kicker cards.

Kicker cards are cards which have special powers when played.

Play reverses direction. In order to keep track of the direction of the play the stock is rotated ninety degrees. When playing in a clockwise direction the stock will be parallel with the pile. When playing in a counter clockwise direction the stock will be at a ninety-degree angle with the pile.
The next player to play must take four cards unless he also plays a four, in which case the next player must take eight. This can continue as long as each subsequent player plays a four, adding four cards each time. After a player takes four cards he can still take an additional card if he chooses but he is not required to if he wants to pass.
The next player loses his turn.
Wild card. Player must call the suit.

Playing off pairs

The ability to play off pairs is what makes Crazy Pairs fun and challenging.

After a player plays a card, either by matching the suit or rank of the top card on the pile, if he has one or more cards of the same rank as the one he played he can play those cards as well. This is called a pair. Note that a "pair" in this game can therefore consist of two, three or four equal ranked cards! However, he must always cover his pair with a cover card. A cover card is a card of the same suit (but of a different rank) then the top card of the pair. If he does not have a cover card he cannot play the pair.

For example, if the 3 of spades is on the pile, the following play would be valid:

    9 spades
    9 diamonds
    7 diamonds

In addition, if the player can also pair the cover card he can continue to play. However, he must cover the new pair with another cover card. Another example, which could be played on the 3 of spades:

    3 hearts
    3 diamonds
    7 diamonds
    7 spades
    6 spades

The following would not be valid to play on the 3 of spades since there is no cover card:

    9 spades
    9 diamonds

This example would not be a valid play on the 3 of spades because the player did not play a pair:

    3 hearts
    5 hearts

The following would be a valid play on the three of spades - since a pair can consist of three cards:

    9 spades
    9 diamonds
    9 clubs
    6 clubs

A player can continue playing as long as he can link pairs and cover cards. It is therefore possible to win the game in one play, even if he has a handful of cards.

A pair is not limited to two cards. It is the player's option to play all of the cards of the same rank at one time or not. However, the cover card cannot be the same rank as the last card of the pair.

Note: since eights are wild they do not have a suit or a rank. Therefore they can never be played as a pair or a cover card. They must always be played by themselves.

Pairing kicker cards

If kicker cards are paired the effect is cumulative. For example, if two jacks are played then the next two players are skipped. If two fours are played and are covered with a jack, then the player following the next player has to take eight cards. If a player is not careful he can end up making himself take cards!

Kicker cards are applied in the following order: aces, then jacks, then fours. So if three jacks are played, followed by two fours, followed by an ace cover card, then the play changes direction, three players are skipped, then that player must take eight cards.

When fours are paired the player they apply to does not have a choice. He must take cards, even if he also has a four.


The winner of the round is the player who discards all of his cards first.

If points are not being kept then the winner of the round is the winner of the game.

Otherwise, the remaining players add up the points in their hands and all points are awarded to the player who won the round. The first player who reaches 300 points wins the game.

The cards are counted as follows:

  • Kicker cards (aces, fours, jacks, eights) : 20 points
  • Face cards and tens: 10 points
  • Two through nine - 5 points


It can be advantageous to build up pairs in your hand in order to catch your opponents off guard. However, this can backfire if you are playing for points, especially if you have a lot of kicker cards.

It is usually a good idea to keep an eight as your last card since it can be played at any time.

Playing pairs of jacks means you get to play again sooner.

Rose Mau

A variation of Mao (Mau) with some similarities to Bartok, by Guy Srinivasan

Best with 5 to 9.
One or two standard 52 card decks, with or without jokers.
The dealer gives each player seven cards, one at a time, and then gives herself an additional two cards. Finally, one card is turned face up as the beginning of the discard pile.
Player to the left of the dealer plays first. A play consists of placing one card from the hand face up on the discard pile, matching either value or suit. If this is not possible (or if chosen), player draws one card instead.
The player who first has zero cards in her hand is the winner and the dealer of the next round. Note: The two extra cards given to the dealer are intended to compensate for the dealer's natural advantage in this game. The handicap of beginning with nine cards rather than seven makes it more difficult for the dealer to win and keep the deal for the next round.
The Rules:
Before each round, the dealer makes up a rule and writes it down. He may also cross out any or all existing created rules. There are to be a maximum of three created rules in effect at once, so if three created rules are already in effect, to create a new rule, the dealer must cross out at least one rule. These rules are not shared with non-dealers.
Play under the Rules:
Players other than the dealer may not talk during a round other than to say "Mau" (or some agreed phrase), after which they may clarify the game state (or request a drink, etc.) If a player talks otherwise, or if a player attempts to play an illegal card, plays out of turn, fails to draw a card, takes too long, or otherwise breaks the rules, the dealer should give that player a card.
Examples of typical created Rules:
  1. Aces reverse order of play.
  2. Only even, non-face cards may be played after 5's.
  3. 6's skip two players.
  4. Playing a 7 gives the player another turn.
Examples of wacky created Rules:
  1. Apply all existing rules other than this. If a card is playable, it is now not, otherwise, it is.
  2. 2's may be played at any time, during any player's turn.
  3. After a king is played to some discard pile, that discard pile is shuffled and dealt face up one at a time into two discard piles.


Contributed by Chris Carter

Stalin is a card game based on the principle of "Uno, but better". It is also derived from the game Mao.

It can be played with 4 or more players, and cane use as many standard 52-card decks as needed (no jokers).

To start the game, the dealer deals 5 cards to each player, which they are not to look at, and places the deck in the middle of the playing space. Then, all the players are to pick up their hands, and they scramble to play any red card to the left of the deck, from the dealers point of view. Only the first card played is allowed, the rest are returned to their owners hands. This is the start of the rogue pile. Next, the top card of the draw pile is flipped over, to start the play pile.

If there is someone named Emily playing, Play will begin with her, and go away from the dealer, otherwise, normal card game rules are observed [i.e. play starts for the player to dealer's left and continues clockwise].

Play follows the Uno pattern [the same as in Crazy Eights], with cards being played of matching suit or rank on the play pile. If you cannot play on the play pile, you may attempt to play on the rogue pile, but only red cards may be played on the rogue pile. A card played on the rogue pile must also match the suit or rank of the top card of that pile.

Additions to valid plays are: if the previous two cards on a pile add or multiply to a card you have, that card may be played. Picture cards do not multiply, so this rule cannot be used to play a picture card, nor if either of the top two cards of a pile are picture cards.

In a turn, you may play up to 3 cards, or your entire hand (if valid) on the play pile. (For example if you hold 6 cards you can play 1, 2, 3 or 6 cards on this pile but not 4 or 5 cards.) Alternatively, you may play exactly one card on the rogue pile, and after that your turn must end.

At the end of your turn you must always draw one card, and if that card is then the only card you have, you must say "one in spanish".

If you violate any of the rules you receive a penalty card. Penalty cards can also be given out for things such as "disturbing the peace" or "questioning authority." A penalty cannot be challenged, but you can get a penalty for falsely penalizing someone.

To win the game you must play your last card(s) and draw a card off the draw pile. If you get your last card through a penalty, you have made a "false win", which causes the play pile to be turned into the draw pile, and you get a one card penalty.

Note that in this game, unlike Crazy Eights and Uno, there is no wild card that enables suit to be changed to whatever the player wants.

There are other optional rules such as:

  • Ace of Diamonds causing play order to reverse
  • If an Ace is played after a 2, the player must say "communism works!"

Advanced Switch

Contributed by David Walters

Deal and Play

Deal 5 cards each from a double deck (104 cards) and open one card from the pack, placing it face up beside the stock to start a play (discard) pile.

Each player in turn discards a card of the same suit or rank on the last card played.

If a player is unable to play to the card he or she must take a card from the pack and the turn passes to the player on the left.  The player taking a card from the pack cannot play it on that turn.

There are five special cards.

Aces: Wild cards that can be played at any time to the discard pack and a new suit may be selected. Aces cannot be played to a Jack or deuce.

Jacks: When a jack is played the next player must play a picture card but does not have to follow suit.

Eights: When an eight is played the next player misses a turn.

Fives:  When a five is played all players pass their hand to the person on their right.

Deuces: When a deuce is played the next player must play a deuce or take two cards from the pack.  If a second deuce is played the next player must play a deuce or take 4 cards from the pack - and so on.

Special cards only affect the next person to play.  Other players treat it as an ordinary card.  If a special card is turned up on the deal it must be played as above.

If a card is played identical to the last card played then all other players add a card to their hand in turn and the person who played the card goes again.  If the card is a special card then the player must play on it according to the above rules.

A player playing his or her penultimate card must announce "last card" to the other players.  If the player does not do so he or she must add a card to their hand from the pack.


When a player runs out of cards, the others each add the total value of cards remaining in their hands to their score.

250 (or more) points loses (but see below)

All ordinary cards count their face value; queens and kings count 10.

Special cards count twice their face value, i.e. aces count 22, jacks count 20, eights count 16 and fives count 10.

Deuces double the score of the entire hand.  If there is more than one deuce in the hand each deuce doubles the score.

If there are two identical cards in the hand the score is halved.  More than one set of identical cards halves the score for each set.

For three or more players it is optional to allow a player whose score has exceeded 250 to win by reaching 500 before all but one player exceeds the 250 score line.  Otherwise the player whose score is below 250 while all others are above 250 is the winner.

1 Zodiac

Contributed by Trevor Cuthbertson

How to Play

This game works best with 2-4 players.

During each hand, the first player to discard all their cards wins the hand and gets to add points (see scoring) to their score.

The Deal

  • Each player receives 7 cards. The dealer then places the remainder of the deck face down in the middle of the table and turns the first card face up and places it next to the deck. This card forms the beginning of the discard pile.
  • The deal rotates clockwise among the players.


  • Play begins with the player to the left of the dealer.
  • On each turn, a player may discard 1 or more cards. Players lay cards face-up on the discard pile. If a player cannot discard at least 1 card, then he must draw 1 card from the overturned deck, and play progresses to the next player on the left.
  • On each turn, the first card played onto the discard pile must match either the suit or face value of the card on top of the discard pile. After playing the first discard, you may continue to discard more cards in the same turn according to these rules:
    • After your first discard, each card you play after that must either match the face value of the card on top of the discard pile, or it must be the next higher card or lower card of the same suit.
    • Example:
      • You have these cards in your hand: spade2, spade3, club3, club4, heart7, heart8. When your turn comes the heart2 lies on top of the discard pile. You may start by playing either a 2 (matching value) or a heart (matching suit). In the same turn, you could then play heart7, heart8 on the discard pile, but a better play is spade2, spade3, club3, club4 -- which gets rid of four cards.
    • After a player has discarded all the cards they can play on that turn, play progresses to the next player on the left, unless the previous player has just discarded all their cards (see scoring below).

Special Cards


  • You can play an 8 at any time as a wild card to change the suit.
  • When played in this manner, you must play the 8 as the FIRST and ONLY card played on that turn. The player announces the new suit while discarding the 8. The next player must either discard another 8 or a card of the same suit as that announced by the previous player.
  • You can also play 8s "normally", like any other card. For example, you could discard the heart7, heart8, spade8, then the spade9, all in one turn. When played in this manner, 8s have no special power or meaning.


  • When a player discards an ace, the next player must either play an ace or draw two cards and forfeit their turn. If the next player can play an ace on top of the first one, then the next player must play an ace or draw FOUR cards. If that person plays an ace, the next player must play an ace or draw SIX cards, etc…
  • If players play all four aces in succession, then the next player must draw EIGHT cards.
  • You can also play Aces "normally", like any other card. For example, you could discard the diamondA, diamond2, spade2, then the spade3, all in one turn. When played in this manner as a low card starting a count-up, Aces have no special power or meaning.
  • Aces cannot be played as a "bicycle" (e.g. playing a K, A, 2 or 2, A, K).

The "Zodiac" Card

When a player discards this card, the next player must draw seven cards and must forfeit their turn. The Zodiac card is determined by the time of year, as follows:
CardTime of YearZodiac Association
clubJMarch 21 - April 20Aries
diamondKApril 21 - May 20Taurus
spadeQMay 21 - June 20Gemini
heartJJune 21 - July 22Cancer
clubKJuly 23 - August 22Leo
diamondQAugust 23 - September 22Virgo
spadeJSeptember 23 - October 22Libra
heartKOctober 23 - November 21Scorpio
clubQNovember 22 - December 21Sagittarius
diamondJDecember 22 - January 20Capricorn
spadeKJanuary 21 - February 20Aquarius
heartQFebruary 21 - March 20Pisces


NOTE: If the dealer turns over one of these "SPECIAL" cards to begin the discard pile, its special properties DO NOT APPLY. In that case, the person to the dealer’s left begins play according to the normal rules: They must begin their turn by discarding a card that matches the overturned card’s face value or suit. For example, if the dealer turns over the spadeA, then the first person must start by discarding an Ace, a Spade (spade), or an 8.


If a player "goes out", i.e. plays all their cards and ends their hand by playing either an Ace or the Zodiac card, the next player in turn has to pick up the 2, 4, 6, 7, or 8 cards. The winner counts them toward his total.

If players use all the cards from the "draw" pile during a hand, then the dealer must set aside the card currently laying face up on top of the discard pile, and reshuffle the other cards to form the new "draw" pile.


The first player to discard all their cards wins that hand. That player receives 1 point for each card his opponent(s) hold. The first player to reach 55 points wins the game.


Wild Instapik: The 8 can be assigned to any number card (2 to 10). Before play, remove all J, Q, K and A cards and shuffle the deck. The dealer must "burn" the top card in the deck by discarding it face-down. The next card dealt from the top of the deck is the assigned "wild card". Place all J, Q, K, and A cards back into the deck, reshuffle all cards and proceed with normal play.

Hints and Tips

  • If you play with only one opponent, don’t play an Ace if your opponent holds more than four cards, unless you have another Ace.
  • Aces can often prove more effective as DEFENSE against another Ace, rather than as offensive weapons. Holding them in reserve is also a good idea if the person to your left has very few cards remaining.
  • Remember that you can play a single 8 at any time, regardless of the card facing up on the discard pile (except for the Zodiac card). You can therefore hold an 8 until it becomes your last card and then go out fairly easily on your next turn.
  • Don’t play the Zodiac card too early in the game. The player who has to pick up seven cards as a result may combine them with the cards already in their hand and discard MANY cards on their next turn.

Sevens and Eights

Jonny Groves has contributed the rules of Sevens and Eights, a Crazy Eights variant he learned from his Uncle Butch, and Jokers and Nines, a variant of his own invention.

First, here are the rules for Sevens and Eights.

  1. Use a single deck of cards with no Jokers.  From two to about five players may play.
  2. Deal 5 cards to each player, and turn the top card of the remaining face down deck face up next to the deck to begin the waste pile.  As in Crazy Eights, when playing a card, players must match the top card of the waste pile by suit or rank. 
  3. If a player cannot play or does not want to play one of his cards, he may draw the top card of the deck.  If he cannot play or does not want to, then his turn ends, and it is the next player's turn to play.
  4. Jacks are wild and may be played at any turn.  The player must specify the suit to be played next.  If the first card turned over from the deck after the deal is a Jack, then the first player to play may play any card.
  5. Eights are skip cards.  A player who plays an Eight forces the next player to skip his turn.  If the first card turned over from the deck after the deal is an Eight, then the first player to play skips his first turn.
  6. A player who plays a Seven forces the next player to draw two cards and then end his turn.  If the first card turned over from the deck after the deal is a Seven, then the first player to play draws two cards and ends his turn. 
  7. Players may play two or more cards of the same rank at the same time (however, this rule does not apply to Jacks, Queens, or Kings).  The player must make sure one of these cards matches the top card of the waste pile by suit or rank, and he must make sure the final card he places on top is the card that he wants the next player to play on.  For example, suppose the top card of the waste pile is the Four of Hearts, and suppose a player holds the Six of Hearts and Six of Diamonds.  He must play with the Six of Diamonds on top since the Six of Hearts must play on the Four of Hearts before the Six of Diamonds can play.  For another example, assume he holds the Six of Clubs as well.  Then he may choose either the Six of Diamonds or Six of Clubs to be on top of the waste pile.  If he wants the next player to play on the Six of Clubs, he must put that card on top.  For yet another example, assume the top card of the waste pile is the Four of Hearts and he holds two or more Sixes but none of them are Hearts, then he cannot play any of those cards since none of them can play on the Four of Hearts.  Do note that players are not forced to play two or more cards at the same time if he can do so.
  8. If two or more Sevens are played at once, then the next player draws two cards for each Seven played and then ends his turn.  However, playing two or more Eights at once does nothing special: The next player still skips his turn just as if one Eight were played.
  9. If a player has only one card left at the end of his turn, he must say "card" to warn the others he has just one left.  If he fails to do so and any player catches him before the next player plays, then that player who failed to call must draw two cards.  However, if a player's cards are all the same rank (so that he has a chance to play all the cards remaining in his hand on his next turn), he is not required to say "card."  Furthermore, when it is his next turn and can play all these cards at once to end the hand, he is not required to say "card" since this warning is now useless. 
  10. If all four cards of the same rank are played consecutively, then the hand ends.  It does not matter how many players played these four cards, and it does not matter what the rank is.
  11. If a player plays his last card, then the hand ends. 
  12. If a player ends the hand by playing one or more Sevens, then the player after him draws two cards for each Seven played, and the hand ends.  If he ends by playing a Jack or one or more Eights, then nothing else happens.  It does not matter which of the two options stated in rules 10 and 11 he uses to end the hand. 
  13. If the deck runs out of cards and all players are holding cards, then all the cards in the waste pile, except the top card, are shuffled and a new draw pile is formed.  The old top card of the waste pile now forms the first card in the new waste pile.  Play then continues as normal until one player runs out of cards or all four cards of the same rank are played consecutively.
  14. When the hand ends, players count the total worth of their cards in their hands as follows:
    • Jacks - 50 points each
    • Kings - 40 points each
    • Queens - 30 points each
    • Sevens and Eights - 20 points each
    • Aces - 15 points each
    • Tens - 10 points each
    • All others - 5 points each
    Players then score these totals for the hand.  The one who ended the hand by playing his last card scores nothing for that hand (even if the last play was to complete a set of four cards of the same rank - in this case the cards remaining in the player's hand are not counted).
  15. The game continues till one or more players have scored 500 or more.  The player with the lowest score then wins.

Jokers and Nines

A variant of the above game Sevens and Eights, invented by Jonny Groves .

  1. Add the two Jokers to the deck.  They are the "wild/draw 2" cards; that is, a player who plays a Joker specifies any suit and forces the next player to draw two cards.  The one who draws ends his turn.  A Joker may be played at any time.  Only one Joker may be played at a time. 
  2. Nines are reverse cards.  If a Nine is played, the order of play is reversed.  If two or more Nines are played at once, then nothing new happens; the order of play is still reversed just as if one Nine were played.  However, if only two players are playing the game, then Nines are ordinary cards; that is, they are reverse cards only if at least three people play.
  3. If a player ends the hand by playing a Joker, then the player after him draws two cards, and the hand ends.  If a player who ends the hand plays one or more Nines, then nothing else happens.  Jokers count 50 points each, and Nines count 20 points each.  In the two-player version, since Nines are ordinary cards, they count 5 each.
  4. Rule 10 of Sevens and Eights (ending with four consecutive cards of one rank) applies in this version to any rank except Jokers - that is, both Jokers played consecutively does not end the hand.
  5. All other rules of Sevens and Eights apply.

One Card

Contributed by Severino Jose Arguelles IV of Iloilo City, Philippines, who says it is adapted from a Korean game.

  1. This game is for 2 or 3 players, using a standard pack with two jokers - 54 cards in all.
  2. The cards are shuffled any number of times, by any of the players, and/or a non-participant.
  3. Seven (or five) cards are dealt to each player, which they look at but keep secret from the others. The rest of the cards should be put face down to the side.
  4. Players take turns to play a card to a face up play pile in the centre. The first to lay out a card should be either the loser of the previous game or the non-participant who chooses among the players the one who will lay out his card right after him. The non-participant may also choose the initial direction of play (clockwise or counter-clockwise) if there are three players.
  5. The player whose turn it is to play should play a card of the same number (rank) or suit as the previously played card. For example, if someone plays 3 of hearts, then the next player should play any 3 or any heart card (including the ace of hearts) or a joker. In the event that the player has no available card to play, he must pick one card up from the deck and add it to his hand, and it will be the turn of the next player.
  6. A joker can be played on any card. After a joker is played, the next player must play a card of the same rank or suit as the card before the joker.
  7. A player is always allowed to draw a card instead of playing, even if he has a card that could legally be played.
  8. If a player plays an ace (attack card), the next player can play ONLY any 2, any 3 or any ACE (or the joker) as shield. If he doesn't have any of these, he must pick 5 cards from the deck as penalty. When one of the shield cards have been played or a penalty has been picked up, the next player should continue the game by playing a card of the same suit as the ace (or a joker).
  9. If a player throws a Queen, the sequence of play reverses (maybe with reference to the "Q") and therefore goes back to the previous player and will continue to be so until another Queen is played to reverse the sequence again. If there are only 2 players, the Queen has no reverse effect (the game will just stay as is).
  10. If a player plays a Jack, the next player loses a turn (as "J" stands for jump). If there are only two players, the same player who played the Jack can play another Jack or another card of the same suit. As long as he can play one Jack after another, his turn doesn't end. If he is very lucky he may be able to play all four jacks, plus another card of the same suit as the last Jack. Thus he plays 5 cards in one turn. However, if in a two-player game a player plays a Jack and doesn't have another Jack or another card of the same suit, then of course he must pick up one card from the deck.
  11. The King can be accompanied by another card of the same suit. If you are planning to throw in another King with your first chosen King, then the second King may still be accompanied by another card of the same suit (or yet another King if you are lucky). The luckiest guy can play 4 Kings and the last King can be accompanied by another card of the same suit. Thus he can throw 5 cards in a single turn. However, a King does not have to be accompanied by another card - it is possible to play a King by itself or end a turn by playing a King with no penalty.
  12. If a player plays any 7, which is the Kindness card, he must give another suit as an option for the next player. Thus the next player can throw any 7, any card of the same suit as the 7 that was played, or any card of the second suit that was offered as an option. For example if a player plays the 7 of spades and says "Clubs", the next player can play any 7, any spade or any club. The option, however, works only for the next player. The player after him must follow number or suit as usual.
  13. If the face down deck from which cards are drawn becomes empty, the played cards (except for the top card of the pile) must be shuffled and laid face down again, and the game goes on.
  14. The winner is the player who manages to play all his cards. If there are 3 players and there is a winner already, the two remaining players may continue the game for 2nd place. Usually the winner takes the whole bet, or the winner takes 75% and the 2nd placed player takes 25%.


  • Always do your best to have shields (any 2, any 3 or any ace) ready.
  • Avoid throwing Kindness cards (sevens) if possible.
  • Be careful when giving a suit option design if you really have to play a 7 Kindness card. If the next player has that suit and he has one card left, then he wins.
  • Be careful when throwing aces if the next player has only one card left. If he is holding a shield, then he wins. if not, then he picks up 5.


Variations can be agreed on, such as who will lay out a card first, how many cards will be given to each player, what the shield cards will be (some are strict and allow only 2 or 3 of the SAME suit as the ace), or other additions. For example traditionally, as soon as a player has one card left, he should say in a loud voice "One Card!" because if another player says "One card!" first, then the player with one card should pick another. A "Stupid Card" is an incorrect card which is thrown out by mistake and if you want, you may assign a penalty of picking up one card for this violation.


Contributed by John Ackerman

Number of players: 4-8

The deck: 4 regular 52-card decks, with 2 jokers each.

Game play: The cards are shuffled and 8 cards are dealt to each player. The top card is then turned, and the rest of the cards are placed face down into two stacks (two instead of one, just for the convenience of having stable piles within reach of all players). Basic game play is like Crazy Eights. (First player is to the left of the dealer. If the first card turned up is an eight or joker, the dealer calls the suit BEFORE looking at his hand. If any other special action card is the first turned up, it is treated as if the dealer played it. Play proceeds to the left, with each person either laying down a card of the same suit and/or number as the one that is face up, or, if he can't, drawing a card from either of the two draw stacks. The hand finishes when one of the players runs out of cards.)

38's differs from Crazy Eights in the following ways:

If you can't play, and have to draw, if you're able, you CAN play the card you just drew. (For example, there's a 4 of spades on the table. You don't have a four, or any spades, or an eight or Joker. You draw a card, and it is a spade. If you want to, you can immediately play it down, before the next person plays.)

You can only draw if you can't play anything in your hand. If you have something that you can play you MUST play it, even if you don't want to.

If a person has a card of the same suit AND number as the one that is on the top of "the stack" (face up) he can lay it down, regardless of whose turn it is. This is called a "speed-in". Play then precedes to the left of the player who "sped-in". (Although not required, it usually makes the game slightly less confusing if the player yells "SPEED-IN!" as he does so.) If a player "speeds-in" but the person who's turn it was plays a card first, then the person who "sped-in" must return his card to his hand, and play continues from the person who's turn it was. If multiple special cards are sped-in in a row, each person who sped-in, in the order that they sped-in, does the action of the special card. (For example: If someone plays a jack then two other people speed-in a jack, the first person chooses who's hand to switch with, then the next person to speed-in chooses, then the next. etc. If someone plays a spade queen and someone speeds in with a spade queen, then the next players in the direction of play from each of the spade queens must pick up 13 cards.)

"Double speed-ins" are also possible. Let's say a 6 of spades is played. If you have two sixes of spades in your hand, you can play one, and then immediately play the other. Thus speeding in with both cards. You can "double speed in" on anything except an Ace. The reason for this, is that after you play the first Ace the hand is no longer yours, because you pass hands (see below). The person who gets your hand can if he chooses, play the Ace.

Jokers and 2's are REQUIRED to speed in if possible. The reason for this is that because they add, someone might hold on to the card until after the person has drawn THEN speed in, making someone else draw cards as well.

If a player has one card in his hand (no matter how he got it), he must say "One Card!" before the next person plays. If he doesn't, someone can ask him "How many cards do you have?" and he must draw 4 cards. However if no one notices, he doesn't have to draw 4 cards. Also they must wait until one person has played since he got down to one card in his hand, before they can ask.

This is a list of all the cards, their points, and their actions:

  • Ace: When an Ace is played, everyone passes their entire hand to the next person in the direction of play. You CANNOT go out with an Ace. If it is the last card in your hand, you lay it down, all the hands are passed SKIPPING you. (For example: You lay down your last card, which is an Ace, and the direction of play is to your left. The person to your right would pass their hand to the person to YOUR left, thus skipping you. All other hands are passed to the person directly to their left.) You then draw a card, and play precedes as normal. Aces are 20 points.
  • King: Reverses the direction of play. Kings are 10 points.
  • Queen of Spades: The next person in the direction of play, must pick up the to 13 cards from the face-up play pile. They do not pick up the Queen however: it is laid face-up on top of the remaining cards of the play pile, if any. The Queens of Spades are 100 points each.
  • Queen of any other suit: No special action. 10 points.
  • Jacks: The person who lays down a Jack may choose to (although he is not required to) trade his hand with any one other player's hand. 10 points.
  • Tens: No special action. 10 points.
  • Nines: When a nine is played every player must cover the card (or other players' hands) with his physical hand. (Like in "Slap Jacks") The last person to "slap" draws a card. 10 points.
  • Eights: When an eight is played, the person who laid it down may choose to change the suit to one of his choice, or leave it the one that is already there. An eight does not have to follow suit. You cannot go out on an eight. If it is the last card in your hand, you lay it down, call the suit, THEN draw another card. 20 points.
  • Sevens: When a seven is played the person playing it asks the next person in the direction of play to play a card of a certain rank. (For example a jack) If the player who is asked has the card he plays it (regardless of suit) and play precedes as normal. If he doesn't have it, he draws a card. You cannot ask for a particular suit except in the case of a queen of spades. You can either specify spades or just say "a queen". You may ask for a Joker. 5 Points.
  • Sixes: No special action. 5 points.
  • Fives: No special action. 5 points.
  • Fours: If a four is played, the next person in the direction of play misses their turn. 5 points.
  • Threes: If a three is played, you must lay another card of the same suit on top of it. If you do not have another card of the same suit, you play the three then draw a card. You CAN stack multiple threes on top of each other (For example: A 3 of spades, then another 3 of spades, then a 6 of spades). A Joker can be played on a 3. An eight can be played IF it's the same suit as the 3. 5 points.
  • Deuces: If a deuce is played the next person in the direction of play must either draw 2 cards, or play another deuce. If he plays another deuce, the next person must draw 4 cards or play another deuce, if the third deuce is played the next player must pick up 6 cards or play another deuce, etc. 20 points.
  • Joker: If a joker is played the person who plays it, calls a suit (in the same way as when playing an eight) and then the next person must draw 4 cards in the same manner as a deuce. If several jokers are played in succession, the cards to be drawn accumulate in the same way as with deuces. 50 points.

When someone goes out, play stops immediately, no one can speed in, and the hand ends. The game can be to any number of points determined at the beginning, although 1,500 is a good game length.


Created by David Larby

This variant of Switch (the British equivalent of Crazy Eights) uses a standard 52 deck or can use multiple decks. Jokers can be included - or not.

Every player, up to a limit of 6, is dealt a hand of 5 cards. The basic aim is to get rid of all cards in the hand. After the deal, the remainder of the deck is placed in the middle of the table face down, and the top card removed and placed face up beside it to start the play pile.

The the dealer decides whether play will begin clockwise, starting with the player to dealer's left, or anticlockwise, starting with the player to dealer's right. Any special effect of the the first turned up card applies - for example if the turned up card is an Ace, the first player must pick up five cards or play another Ace.

At your turn you must match the rank or suit of the top card of the play pile. So for example on the 6 of clubs you can play any 6 or any club. Multiple cards of the same rank can be played - for example on the 6 of clubs you could play the 5's of clubs, hearts and diamonds, provided that the club was played first. If you can't (or choose not to) play a card you must pick up one card from the main deck.

Some cards played have various special effects. Note that picking up cards (except when a three is played) counts as your turn, and consumes the special effect, so the following player plays normally.

  • Ace (any suit): next player picks up 5 cards or plays an Ace. If a second Ace is played the next person picks up 5 cards, and so on.
  • Two (any suit): next player picks up 2 cards or plays a 2, in which case the next person picks up 4 etc. (2 more cards for each consecutive 2). Playing multiple twos causes the next player to pick up two cards for each 2.
  • Three (any suit): every player except person who played the 3 picks up one card. Playing multiple threes causes the other players to pick up as many cards as threes that were played.
  • Seven (any suit): the player may play any number of cards of the same suit from hand on top of the Seven. Only the last of these cards has a special effect. It's possible to play multiple Sevens followed by as many cards as you like of the same suit as the last Seven.
  • Eight (any suit): the next player's turn is skipped. If two 8's are played the next person and the person after miss their turns and so on.
  • Ten (any suit): reverses the direction of play from clockwise to counterclockwise or vice versa. Multiple 10's have the same effect as one 10.
  • Jack: can be played on any card (except a joker) and the player specifies which suit should be played next
  • Queen: when a Queen is played directly on an Ace, Two or Three, it mirrors the effect of special card, as follows:
    • When a Queen is played on an Ace, the direction of play is reversed, and the player of the Ace must pick up 5 cards or play an Ace (or another Queen).
    • When a Queen is played on a Two, the direction of play is reversed and the player of the Two must pick up as many cards as the Queen player would have picked up, or play another Two (or Queen).
    • When a Three is played, any other player may respond by playing a Queen. This causes the player of the Three to pick up as many cards as would have been picked up by the all the other players - for example 4 cards in a 5-player game, or 8 cards if two Threes were played at once. The direction of play is not reversed - play continues normally from the player after the one who played the three.
    • When a Queen is played as a mirror, the affected player can mirror the effect again by playing another Queen. In the case of an Ace or Two this reverses the direction again and places the duty to pick up back on the player of the previous Queen. In the case of a mirrored Three, the player of the previous Queen has to pick up cards on behalf of all players.
    • Playing multiple Queens together causes multiple mirroring - so an even number of Queens would direct the special effect to the player of the Queens, and an odd number of Queens act together like a single Queen.
    • Queens must obey the usual rules of following number or suit, so for example an Ace, Two or Three can only be mirrored by a Queen of the same suit, but a mirroring Queen can be mirrored by any other Queen.
    • When a Queen is played on a 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, Jack or King, a Queen acts as a normal card and has no special effect. A Queen cannot be played on a Joker.
  • King: the player immediately gets an extra turn, and must pick up if unable to play another card. Kings are effectively played only one at a time, but the extra trun can be used to play another King, yielding another extra turn, so it's possible to play several Kings in one turn, with one extra turn at the end.
  • Joker: can only be played on a King, and the next card played on the Joker must be another King. It's possible to play more than one Joker on the same King as a multiple play. Some decks have a coloured and black and white Joker. These can be played on any King, but the next card played on a B&W Joker must be a black King, and the next card played on a coloured joker must be a red King.

You must say "Last Card" if you have just one card left. If the next person has played or picked up before you have said it you must pick up a card.

5 Card Rule. If there are fewer than 5 cards in the pick up deck, every player chooses a hand of 5 cards to keep and adds the others to the pick up deck (players with fewer than 5 cards do nothing). If someone joins in late they must start with a hand of 5 cards.

Fat Buddah

Contributed by Peter Ipnar

My game is played by many of my friends. The game is called Fat Buddah. It is a variation of Uno but played with two decks of regular cards. Sevens are draw two, eights are reverses, jacks are wild, jokers are wild draw four, and aces are skips. When a player plays a five the player must say quigybo. When a spade is played you must say spade. When a diamond is played you must say houchyka. You are not allowed to insult gods or people in the game. You may not strike out in violence. You can stack the same card that was just played out of turn and you may stack sevens. When you play your next to last card you must say last card. When you go out of cards you must say Fat Buddah. If a rule is broken you may receive a penalty card. If you do not say thank you after getting the penalty card you may recieve other penalty cards. The winner of the game is allowed to add a rule to the game.