Rummy rules that you should know

Rummy is one of the most popular games when it comes to card games. Seasoned pros have been playing it for years, while novices just cannot wait to be a part of a rummy table. If you’re interested in starting your rummy journey, you must start by understanding the basic rummy rules. This is because, as is the case with any game, this popular game has a set of rules everyone must follow in order to win at the end. Without doing so, you may find it hard to understand the game itself, and may even feel so demotivated that you give up!

So, without further ado, let us take a look at a few rummy rules that you should know before getting started:

How does the game start?

The game starts with the dealer distributing 13 cards to the players. In a game with 13 cards, the table can have anywhere between 2-6 players. In case there are more people playing, the rules state that there must be 2 decks of cards used, as opposed to just one. 

The rules regarding the objectives:

The main objectives of Rummy include creating sets and sequences out of the cards in your hand. A set is a bunch of cards that belong to the same value, such as a 6 of clubs, spades, and diamonds. On the other hand, a sequence refers to a chronological series of cards, such as 6,7,8 of diamonds. Here are a few rules to keep in mind regarding creating sets and sequences:

  • A sequence must include cards belonging to the same suite. If you have 3 of spades, 4 of clubs, and 5 of spades, this is not considered to be a sequence.
  • If you are playing with jokers, you can use it as a substitute for another card to complete your set or sequence. In this case, the meld you have is known as an impure sequence or set.
  • A pure sequence always wins over an impure one. The same goes for sets.
  • An ace is an interesting card in a game of rummy. This is because it can be used as a face card or as a number card, depending on the cards you have in your hand. 

The rules regarding the first drop:

A drop is when a player decides to call it quits. In case of pool rummy, there are certain rules to consider during a drop. If a player opts for a drop before picking up the first card, the points related to the same are 20 points when playing 101 pool, and 25 points when playing 201 pool.

Drops are not allowed if you are playing a best of 2 or best of 3 game.

The rules regarding a middle drop or interim drop:

When a player has played a few hands (by either discarding or picking up cards), and then decides to drop, this act is known as a middle drop. The rules regarding the points vary with the version of pool rummy you are playing. The points are 40 points when playing 101 pool, and 45 points when playing 201 pool.

Once again, there are no drops allowed if you are playing best of 2 or best of 3.

How to declare?

One of the objectivs of Rummy is to be the first to declare – which means you must be the first to complete the sets and sequences in time. When you declare, you need to lay out your cards on the table and show everyone the sets and sequences you have made. This is called validation. Once the players confirm your hand, you can then take your winnings!


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