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Want to play rummy? Learn all the rummy rules!

Rummy is a very old and popular car game Earlier it was played offline but with the advent of technology and internet it is now played online as well. The online rummy rules are very similar to the offline game. Like on the PlayRummy app, the game is played between 2 to 5 players and each player is dealt 13 cards. For 2 or 4 players, two 52-card decks (104 cards) and 4 jokers (wild cards) are used. For 5 players, three decks (156 cards) and 6 jokers are used. Each player in clockwise order deals the cards on their turn but the key is to remember all the rummy game rules.

How to play rummy?

What’s the game’s objective?

It is to form Runs (or sequences) and Sets. And when a player has formed required runs and sets using all the 13 cards, the player declares his/her turn. According to PlayRummy rulesa valid declare must have minimum two runs and out of these runs one run must be pure (called First Life). The second run can be pure or non-pure (called Second Life). Either the First Life or Second Life must have 4 or more cards. Once the objective is met the player can tap on the ‘Declare’ button.

Rummy card rules say that once a valid declare is made, rest of the players on the table must also declare. For these players all the unmatched cards are counted. The rummy guidelines say that every player must meet the requirements of minimum two runs (First Life and Second Life) else all 13 cards are treated as unmatched and are counted. When all the 13 cards are unmatched, the player loses 80 points.

Dropping the game

If a player drops from the game without picking any card from the discard/stock pile, he/she loses 10 points. If the drop is in between a hand, before any other player has made a valid declare, he/she loses 30 points.

After the points for everyone is calculated, the winner gets the prize money.

Some online rummy rules to remember:

What’s a Sequence or Run?

It’s group of three or more consecutive cards of the same suit. Rummy card rules say thar in 13 card rummy sequences are of two types. A Pure Sequence and an Impure Sequence.

Pure sequence

5 6 7 are three consecutive cards of the same suit

A K Q J are four consecutive cards of the same suit

A 2 3 are three consecutive cares of the same suit

However: K A 2 is not considered a valid sequence. In order for a set to be valid it has to follow the sequence A,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,J,Q,K,A in a loop and A,K,Q,J,10,9,8,7,6,5,4,3,2,A.

Three Identical Cards

While playing with three 52-card decks, the three cards of same rank and same suit are treated as pure sequence/run. For example: 9 9 9 and J♠ J♠ J♠.

Impure sequence

It is when a printed joker or a wild card is used to create a sequence. Let's assume K is a selected Wild Card.

4♣ 5♣ PJ 7♣ - here a printed joker has been used to replace 6♣.

4♣ 5♣ K 7♣ - here the selected wild card K has been used to build a sequence by replacing 6♣.

What is a First Life & Second Life?

In a valid declare a player must have a minimum of two sequences. One of the two required sequence must have a pure sequence and the other must have a minimum of 4 cards.

First Combination: Both sequences are pure

First Life : 5 6 7

Second Life : A K Q J

Second Combination: One of the sequences is pure and the other impure (considering J♠ is a joker)

First Life : 5 J♠ 7

Second Life : A K Q J

Third Combination: Both sequences are pure

First Life : 5 6 7

Second Life : A J♠ Q J

Three Identical Cards: Three cards of same rank and same suit are treated as pure sequence/run. For example: 9 9 9. This can also be treated as a first life.

What is a Set?

Three or more cards of the same face value but different suits in a row is a Set.

Pure Set

77♣7 are of different suits

K K♣ K K♠ are of different suits ♣♠

7 7 7however, is not considered a valid set. All the cards in a set have to be of different suits. If two or more cards of the same suit are used to make a set of three or more cards, it is an invalid set. (this is applicable in gameplays with 2 or more deck of cards). As you can see two of 7 has been used to declare the set.

Impure Set

A set can also be built with a Wild Card or a printed joker. Let’s assume the Wild Card is K.

4♣ 4 PJ 4 - here a printed joker has been used to replace 4♠ in the set.

A♣ A K A♠ - here the selected wild card K has been used to build a set replacing A.

How to use the Joker?

Rule of playing rummy permit the use of two types of jokers.

Wild 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 a player meets the requirement of at least one valid sequence.

For example:

If 6 is selected as the wild joker, then 6 of any suit can be utilised as the wild joker i.e. 6, 6♠ 6 6♣ are all joker cards.

4♣ 5♣ 6 7♣ - 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 clubs. 6 being a joker in this case.

4♣ 5♣ 6♣ 7♣ - 6♣ has been used to form a sequence. Even though 6♣ is a joker, it’s considered a pure sequence because it belongs to the same suit. (this is possibly the worst placement with a joker considering it is blocked in a sequence reducing its value of wild card)

A♣ K♣ 6 J♣ - 6 has been used to form a sequence by replacing in space of Q♣. This is an impure sequence using a joker.

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.

A♣ K♣ PJ J♣ - PJ has been used to form a sequence by replacing in space of Q♣. This is an impure sequence using a printed joker.

A PJ A♣ A - PJ has replaced A♠ to form a set of A A♠ A♣ A

Note: If the Printed Joker is randomly selected as the wild joker, then A’s of all suits will become wild jokers. i.e. A A♠ A♣ A automatically become the jokers.

What’s valid declaration?

Example 1: Declaring with Pure Sequences and Sets

A K Q J| 2♣ 3♣ 4♣ | 5 5♠ 5 | K K K♣

This is a valid declaration as it meets the objective of the game.

Example 2: Declaring with Pure and Impure Sets & Sequence Combo K is the Wild Joker

A 2 3 K| 2♣ 3♣ 4♣ | 5 5♠ 5 | K K K♣

This is a valid declaration.

Example 3: Declaring with Pure and Impure Sets & Sequence Combo PJ is the Wild Joker - (A A♠ A♣ A)

PJ 8 9 10| 2♣ 3♣ 4♣ | 5 A♣ 5 | K K K♣

This is a valid declaration.

What’s a wrong declaration?

Example 1: Declaring with an Invalid Set

A K Q J| 2♣ 3♣ 4♣ 5♣ 6♣ |6 6 6 6♣

Example 2: Declaring without any Sequence

3 3♠ 3 3♣ | 6 6♠ 6 | A A♣ A | 5 5♠ 5|

Example 3: Declaring without Two Sequences

K is the Wild Joker

A 2 3 4 | 5♣ 5♠ 5 | 6 6♠ 6 | 3 3♠ 3 |

Example 4: Declaring without Pure Sequence

K is the Wild Joker

A 2 K | 2♣ K 4♣ 5♣ 6♣ |6 6 6 6♣

Example 5: Declaring without a Sequences of Four

K is the Wild Joker

8 9 10| 2♣ 3♣ 4♣ | 5 5♠ 5 |Q Q Q♣ K

After thoroughly go through all the above rules, you can show your skills on Octro PlayRummy. Download the rummy app for a smooth gaming experiencing. This app is available for both android users and IOS users.