During the game, four rows of cards are formed in the middle of the table . Two rows are in ascending order (numbers 1-99), and two rows are in descending order (numbers 100-2).
Everyone plays together in the same team and tries to lay as many cards as possible , all 98 if possible , in four rows of cards.
- 98 cards numbered 2-99
- 4 direction cards
Rules for Laying Cards
In an ascending row of cards the card number of each card laid must always be greater than the card laid before it. How much space left between the cards does not matter, e.g. 3, 11, 12, 13, 18, 20, 34, 35, 51. Or 2, 7, 19, 25, 28, 29, 49, etc.
The smaller the space left between cards the better, so that you can lay as many cards as possible.
Important: To keep things from getting out of hand, lay the number cards one on top of the other, rather than side by side. For this reason, beside each row card a pile is formed, and only the top card of each pile is visible.
Example: On this ascending pile of number cards, the 4 was laid first, then the 8, and then the 13.
In a descending row of cards it's exactly the opposite: each card laid must always be smaller than the card before it, e.g. 94, 90, 78, 61, 60, 57. Or 98, 97, 88, 83, 81, etc.
The four rows of cards are laid face up, one below the other, in the middle of the table (see illustration).
Thoroughly shuffle the 98 number cards. For a 3, 4 or 5-player game, each player is dealt 6 cards (7 cards for a 2-player game), which make up his hand. Form a draw pile with the remaining number cards and place it face down off to the side on the table.
1-player game: Deal yourself 8 cards, which make up your hand.
First, each player looks at his hand, then decide together who goes first. Begin play by taking turns in a clockwise direction. On your turn lay at least two cards from your hand to the right of any of the four row cards.
If possible, you can lay as many more cards as you like, even until you have no cards left in your hand. Lay the cards individually, one after the other.
You're free to choose which pile to lay your number cards on, as long as you follow the rules as described above of laying in a descending or ascending order on the respective pile. You can lay all your cards on the same pile, or on multiple piles in any sequence you like.
Example: It's Linus's turn. He lays a card on the first ascending pile, then two cards on the second ascending pile, then another card on the last descending pile.
Once you have finished your turn, pick up the same number of cards from the draw pile, that you laid in this round until you have six (for a 3, 4 or 5-player game) or seven cards (for a 2-player game) in your hand again (1-player game: 8 cards). The next player now takes his turn, lays his cards and picks up cards from the draw pile to complete his hand.
Example: Linus lays four cards and then draws four new cards from the draw pile at the end of his turn.
The piles are getting bigger: the backwards trick
As the game carries on, the four piles will increase in size as you add more and more cards to the piles. The general rules for laying cards as described above must be followed at all times.
However, there is one single exception that lets you play in the reverse order: whenever the value of the number card is exactly 10 higher or lower.
Here's how it works:
On your turn, you can lay a card on an ascending pile when the number card is exactly 10 less than the number showing on the pile.
Example: Normally a card that is greater than 47 would have to be laid on this ascending pile. It's Tim's turn. He has the number 37 in his hand and can play the card on the pile since it is exactly 10 less.
On your turn, you can lay a card on a descending pile when the number card is exactly 10 greater than the number showing on the pile.
Example: Normally a card that is less than 65 would have to be laid on this descending pile. It's Sarah's turn. She has the number 75 in her hand and can play the card on the pile since it is exactly 10 greater.
Note: You can use the backwards trick as often as you like and on different piles during your turn. For example, you can first play a card according to the normal rules, then use the backwards trick, then two more cards normally again, then the backwards trick again, and then yet another card normally, etc.
During the game players are never allowed to ask the others for the exact num- ber on their cards or reveal the numbers of their own cards. Relating concrete numbers in any way is strictly forbidden!
Other than that, all other communication is allowed. For example, you can say: "Don't lay on the last pile", or, "Don't make a big jump on this pile".
End of the Game
When the draw pile is empty, continue playing without drawing cards. Note: From this point on, each player only has to play a single card (or any number more).
If a player has no cards left to play, the others continue playing without him. The game is over as soon as a player cannot play the minimum number of cards during his turn (i.e. two cards if there are still cards left in the draw pile, or one card, if the draw pile is empty).
How good was the team? When the game is over, count how many cards were not laid in total; that means, the cards left in all the players' hands plus any remaining cards in the draw pile, if any.
Less than 10 cards is an excellent result. If all 98 cards were played, you beat the game. From now on you can increase the difficulty level.
The rules as described above stay the same, except this time, every player has to lay a minimum of 3 (instead of 2) cards per round. If that is still not difficult enough, you can also decrease the number of cards dealt to each player by 1.
In a 3, 4 or 5-player game, each player receives 5 cards, 6 cards for a 2-player game and 7 cards for a 1-player game.