Screw Your Neighbor

2 minute read

Screw Your Neighbor is an elimination card game.  After each round, one player is eliminated (or loses a token). When all players but one have been eliminated, the remaining player wins the game. Known as ‘Cuckoo’, ‘Chase the Ace’ or sometimes ‘Go Round in Britain’.  In the US it’s called ‘Screw Your Neighbor’.

What You Need to Play

  • A deck of cards
  • 3 or more players
  • Coins or chips 2 per person

Object of the Game The object is not to be the player left holding the lowest card.

How to Play the Game The dealer deals one card face down to each player.  Each player then looks at their card and decided to keep it or trade it.  Starting with the player to the left of the dealer, each player in turn can either keep their card or trade with the player immediately to their left in hopes of getting a higher card. If a player is asked to trade they must, unless they hold a king, at which point they can show the king and block the trade.  If a trade is blocked, the player who asked for the trade must keep the card they are holding.

The dealer, whose turn comes last, can try to exchange with a card cut from the undealt stock, but if the card obtained is a king, the dealer must keep their original card.

After the dealer trades the round is done.  Everyone must show their card and the player, or players with the lowest ranking cards (aces are always low and suits don"t matter) must place one of their chips into the pot.

If a player has no chips they are eliminated.

If several players tie for lowest they all lose a life.

The next round begins with the next player to the left, dealing as above. Play continues until only one player is left in the game. They win, and collect the pot.

Suits are irrelevant and the cards rank K (high), Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, A (low).

Optional Rules Some people play that anyone who is dealt a king must flip it face-up immediately after the deal.  If there are any kings in the deal then no one is allowed to trade and whoever was dealt the lowest card(s) loses a chip. Kings get flipped over when someone tries to trade with one and no further trading takes place on that deal. If someone tries to trade with you and you have a queen, they instead must trade their card with the person on their right. (If that person also has a queen, the player or players between the queens are not allowed to trade). If you have a jack and someone tries to trade with you, you show them the jack and they are not allowed to trade.  Trading continues with the person whose turn comes next.

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