Rummy is still one of the best-known card games in the United States, though in many regions it has been superseded by Gin Rummy and Oklahoma Gin. Rummy works better than Gin Rummy when there are more than two players. A pleasing feature of the game is that it is so simple to play and has many variations.
The Objective Of Rummy
The objective of rummy card game is to arrange the 13 cards in valid sets and sequences. To win the game you need a compulsory pure sequence along with an impure sequence and sets. Without a pure sequence you cannot make a valid rummy declaration. This is one of the most important rummy rules.
How to Form Sequences?
In rummy, 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.
A pure sequence is a group of three or more cards of the same suit, placed in consecutive order. To form a pure sequence in rummy, a player cannot use any Joker or wild card.
Here are a few examples of pure sequence.
- 5♥ 6♥ 7♥ (Pure sequence with three cards and there is no Joker or wild card used)
- 3♠ 4♠ 5♠ 6♠ (Pure sequence with four cards. There is no use of Joker or wild cards here.)
An impure sequence is a group of three or more cards of the same suit with one or more Joker card used.
Here are some examples to show how an impure sequence is formed.
- 6♦ 7♦ Q♠ 9♦ (Here Q♠ has been used as a wild Joker replacing 8♦ to form an impure sequence.)
- 5♠ Q♥ 7♠ 8♠ PJ (Impure sequence with Q♥ as wild joker that is replacing 6♠ and the Printed Joker is replacing 9♠.)
How to Form Sets?
A set is a group of three or four cards of the same value but of different suits. When you are forming sets, you can use wild card and Jokers.
Examples of sets
- A♥ A♣ A♦ (In this set, all the Ace are of different suits, make a valid set.)
- 8♦ 8♣ 8♠ 8♥ (Rummy set is formed with four 8 cards of different suits.)
- 9♦ Q♠ 9♠ 9♥ (Here Q♠ has been used as wild joker replacing 9♣ to make set.)
- 5♦ 5♣ 5♠ PJ (Printed joker replacing 5♥ to make set.)
Note: The set is formed with same card of different suits. However, you can’t use two or more cards of the same suit. This is taken as an invalid declaration. Also, note that a set cannot have more than four cards. So, if you have a set of four cards and you are using an additional Joker, then in total it becomes a 5 cards group and will be an invalid set.
Examples of invalid set
- Q♥ Q♥ Q♦ (There are two Qs of the same suit ♥ making it an invalid set.)
- 7♠ 7♥ 7 ♦ 7♠ Q♥ (It has two 7 spades of the same suit. Also, it has a wild card Q♥ as the fifth card. Both these points make this set as invalid.)
How To Play Rummy Game?
Rummy game is played between 2 to 6 players with two decks of cards. The player has to draw and discard cards to form valid sets and sequences of the 13 cards in hand.
To start, each player is dealt with 13 cards. One random card is picked as the Wild Card or Joker card of the game. This card can then be used to form impure sequence and sets.
Once all the 13 cards are arranged in valid sequences and groups, he can make a declaration and win the game.
Types of Sequences
Now, you know that a sequence is a group of three or more consecutive cards of the same suit. You should also know that there are two types of sequences are used in 13 card rummy games. Learn how to play a rummy card game with pure and impure sequences:
Pure Sequence: A pure sequence is a group of three or more consecutive cards of the same suit formed without any joker. View the examples below to learn how to play rummy with pure sequences:
3♥ 4♥ 5♥
Here no joker (printed or wild) is used to form a pure sequence.
8♠ 7♠ 6♠ 5♠ 4♠
Similarly, no joker (printed or wild) is used to form a pure sequence.
Impure Sequence: An impure sequence is a group of three or more consecutive cards of the same suit formed with one or more jokers. Check out the examples to learn how to play rummy with impure sequences:4♦ 5♦ Q♠ 7♦
Q♠ is used as a wild joker to replace 6♦ to form a sequence of 4♦ 5♦ 6♦ 7♦
8♠ Q♥ 6♠ 5♠ PJ
Here Q♥ (wild joker) and Printed Joker are replacing 7♠ and 4♠ to form a sequence of 8♠ 7♠ 6♠ 5♠ 4♠
Note: Wild Jokers can be used to form pure sequences if they are arranged in the same suit
K♥ Q♥ J♥
Here, even if Q♥ is the wild joker, it can be used to form a pure sequence, as K♥, Q♥ and J♥ are of the same suit ♥
Quick Tips To Win The Rummy Game
Just as it’s important to know the rummy rules, it is also necessary to play carefully and with focus. Here are quick tips to win the rummy game and stay a step ahead of your competitors.
- Form the pure sequence at the very beginning of the game. Without a pure sequence, a player cannot make a declaration.
- Discard cards with high points like Ace, Jack, Queen and King. Replace these cards with Joker or Wild Cards. It reduces the point load, in case you lose the game.
- As much as possible, avoid picking from the discard pile. It gives away what hand you are trying to form.
- Look out for smart cards. For example, a 7 of any suit can work with 5 and 6 of the same suit and also 8 and 9 of the same suit.
- Jokers play an important role in rummy. Try using them to replace high value cards. Remember, Joker and wild cards cannot be used to form pure sequence.
- When you are ready to make a declaration, check and recheck your cards and then press the button. An invalid declaration can turn even a winning game into a complete loss.