Crazy Eights

2 minute read

Crazy Eights is a card game for two or more players.

What you need to play

  • a standard 52-card pack
  • two or more players

The object of the game Is to get rid of all your cards to a discard pile.

How to play the game Each player is dealt seven or eight cards, with the rest of the deck being placed face down at the center of the table. The top card is then turned face up to start the discard pile.

Players discard their cards by matching rank or suit with the top card of the discard pile. Generally, any number of cards of the same rank may be played simultaneously.

If a player is unable to match the rank or suit of the top card of the discard pile and they don’t have an 8, they draw cards from the stockpile until they draw a card that they are able to play. If the stockpile runs out of cards, the top card of the discard pile is removed and the remaining cards in the discard pile are reshuffled and serve as the new stockpile. The first player to get rid of all their cards is the winner.

The main variations in play concern the attributes of cards with special actions. In the basic form of Crazy Eights, the only card with special attributes is the 8. The 8 can be played regardless of the top card on the pile, and the player may then call a change of suit.

Example Play Each player is delt 8 cards. The top card of the remaining cards is turned face up to start the discard pile.


The 7 of spades is played.  The player to the left of the dealer has to either play a spade or one or more 7s on top of the discard pile. If the player has an 8 of any suit they can play that card instead and change the suit to anything they want (hearts, spades, diamonds, clubs). If the player cannot play, they draw from the deck untill they can play on the seven of spades. After they have played at least one card, their turn ends and the next turn goes to the player to the right.

Variations Some people use jokers as wild cards or more then one pack of cards depending on how many people are playing. Runs of cards 4-5-6. When drawing cards instead of picking up untill you are able to play, alternatively they may pass after drawing one card.

Another version of the game, “Crazy Eights Countdown”, is usually played to extend the length of the game.  Once a player is able to discard his or her first hand, he draws another hand with one less card.  For example, if a person was dealt eight cards in his first hand and discards them all, he draws a second hand - this time with seven cards.  This goes on until a player goes down all the way to drawing one card and is able to discard that hand.

Scoring depends on the weighting of special cards.  Points are acquired for any cards left in hand at the end of a round. Traditionally, points  are as follows:  50pts for an 8,  10pts for a picture card,  and face value for a spot card. The winner is the player with the least points.

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