How Casino is Played

Casino is basically a card game played by two, three or four players. When played by four players, two players are paired. Here, face cards have no numerical value and aces are valued only as 1.

The goal for each player is to take in cards that has the following points:

• Most number of cards taken in amounts to 3 points

• Most number of spades taken in amounts to 1 point

• Big casino (or the 10 of diamonds) amounts to 2 points

• Little casino (or the 2 of spades) counts as 1 point

• A sweep (or the taking in of all cards in the table) also counts as 1 point

In case of a tie in the number of cards or spades, points will not be counted.

The Dealings

Each player gets four cards, while four cards faceup are dealt on the table. These cards are dealt two at a time, beginning from the dealer’s left.

The Play

After dealing, the player in turn has the following choices: Taking-in, building, increase a build, adding a build, and trailing.

In a Take-in, a player can pile on the table in front of him, facing down, the card he plays plus any faceup card on the table. For instance, holding an 8, he can take in any other 8 or a pair that adds up to eight.

In Building, a player can add a card or cards from his hand to the table to form any pair that at his next turn he will be able to take in. He should announce that he’s building. For instance, when a player have 2 and 6 in his hand and there’s a 4 on a table. He could drop the two and announce “building 6s”. And then with two 4s in his hand, he can drop a 4 and announce “building 4s”

In increasing a build, a player can add a card on his hand to a build already faceup on the table, as long as he can take in the increased build at his next turn. Take note, however, that only one build can be increased.

In adding a build, a player can a card from his hand to a build already faceup on the table and combine that card from his hand with a card on the table.

In trailing, a player who prefers not to make any play or cannot build must trail by playing faceup cards. However, he cannot trail if he has a build standing on the table.


When players have played all their four cards, another four is dealt. This time, there are no more cards dealt on the table. Four cards are dealt in every play until the deck is exhausted. The Game

The first player to acquire 11 points or 21 points wins the game. If both scores 11 or 21, then the one with a higher score wins. A tie is declared if scores are equal.

This article was written by Olavi Järvinen.

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