Rummy is a popular draw-and-discard game played between 2 to 6 players with 2 or 3 decks of cards. Each player gets 13 cards, which have to be arranged in sequences, or sequences and sets. The remaining cards are placed on the table in two piles called open and closed decks.
In rummy, the cards in each suit rank low to high beginning with 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, Jack, Queen, King, and Ace. Ace, Jack, Queen, and King each have 10 points. The remaining cards have a value equal to their face value. For example, the 2nd card of any suit will have 2 points, the 7th card will have 7 points, and so on.
The essential goal of Rummy game is to make valid sequences and sets with the 13 cards. To win the game a player needs to make a minimum of 2 sequences, out of which one needs to be a Pure Sequence, and the rest can be any valid sequence or sets. Without a pure sequence, you cannot make a valid rummy declaration.
Remember: No joker(s) can be used to make a pure sequence.
What is a Sequence?
A sequence is a group of three or more consecutive cards of the same suit. There are two types of sequences that are formed; a pure sequence and an impure sequence. To win the game of rummy you need at least one pure sequence in your rummy hand.
1. Pure Sequence
A group of three or more cards of the same suit, placed in consecutive order. To form a pure sequence in a Rummy card game, a player cannot use any Joker or wild card.
2. Impure Sequence
A group of three or more cards of the same suit with one or more Joker cards used.
How to form Sets?
A group of three or more cards of the same value but of different suits. When you are forming sets, you can use wild cards and Jokers.
Note: A set is formed with the same value cards of different suits. However, you can’t use two or more cards of the same suit. This is taken as an invalid declaration.
Joker in Rummy
There are two types of Jokers used in a game of Rummy.
1. Wildcard Joker
At the start of each game, a wild joker card is randomly selected. This card can be used as a replacement to any required card after you meet the prerequisite of at least one pure sequence.
For e.g.: 4♣ 5♣ 6♦ 7♣. Here 6♦ has been used to form a sequence. This is an impure sequence because even though it’s a 6, it’s not a 6 of club. 6♦ is the wildcard Joker in this case.
2. Printed Joker (PJ)
Printed jokers also serve the same purpose since you can use them to replace any other card to form sets and sequences.
For e.g.: A♣ K♣ PJ J♣. Here PJ has been used to form a sequence by replacing it in the space of Q♣. This is an impure sequence using a printed joker.
Before the game starts, 2 deck of cards are shuffled and placed on a table. Then each player has to pick one card from the deck of cards randomly to decide who discards and picks the first card. This is known as toss. The player who picks the highest card gets to play the first card (open card) and the player with the lowest card deals out 13 cards to each player.
Now, after the dealer is decided, the selected person shuffles the cards well and shows the pack to the player to the immediate left. This player takes out a card from the shuffled pack and places it, ‘face up’. This card is fixed as the Joker for that game.
After each player is dealt 13 cards face down, the next card from the deck is placed ‘face up’ on the table, called the Discard Pile. The rest of the cards are placed ‘face down’ in the center of the table and are called the Stock Pile. Each player picks his/her 13 cards and views them and then sorts them according to his/her choice.
The first player picks a card, either the top card of the Discard Pile or the top card of the Stock Pile. Now the player has 14 cards. The player examines his/her 14 cards and decides the card that is least important for forming sequences and sets. The player takes the least important card and places it face up on the discard pile. This card becomes the top card of the discard pile. Now it is the turn of the next player to pick a card, either the top card of the discard pile or the top card of the Stock Pile.
Declaring the Game
When you have arranged all the cards in your hand in proper sequences and/or sets, including one pure sequence, you need to declare the game by discarding one of your cards to the declaring slot. After that, arrange your cards in proper sequences and/or sets to show them to your opponents and wait for them to show their hands. The player who is first to declare after using all the 13 cards to form sequences and sets wins the game.
1. What is a Valid Declaration?
A valid declaration requires 2 sequences, out of which one needs to be pure sequence i.e. sequence without joker and the other can be pure or impure sequence i.e. sequence with or without joker. Make sure all the 13 cards are arranged in a proper Sequence and Sets. At least one pure sequence is required for a valid declaration in this online rummy game.
2. What is an Invalid Declaration?
An invalid declaration is when a player declares the slot, but the cards are not invalid sequences and sets. Therefore, the player will lose the game and the competitor will automatically be declared as the winner
Dropping from the Game
If you feel your cards aren’t good enough, you can drop your hand any time to minimize your loss. When a player decides to leave the game table at the start or middle of the rummy game, it is called a Drop. If a player drops on their first turn or is automatically dropped from the game, they lose 20 points. If a player drops after their first turn, they lose 40 points.
The score in Rummy is the total value of all the cards that are not a part of a valid sequence or a set. The objective is to reduce your score to ‘0’ by forming valid sequences and sets. The lesser points you have, the better in Rummy!
When a player makes a valid declaration, he/she gets 0 points. The remaining players get points based on the cards in their hands that are not grouped in valid sequences and sets. A, K, Q, J have 10 points each, and the remaining cards have points based on their face value. Jokers have 0 points.
If a player makes an invalid declaration (declares without meeting the objective of the game), then the player gets 80 points.