It doesn’t matter if you’re bored, it’s 2 am and you can’t sleep, or you just don’t have anyone else to play cards with – playing cards are great but there never seems to be any solo player games for people without a playing card partner. Below, we’ve managed to scrounge up a few different games that are great for night owls with a love of all things black and red.
For this solo card game, you’ll need a standard set of fifty-two playing cards and a flat surface. Klondike is a variation of solitaire where the aim is to move all of the cards in the deck into their correct piles. You’ll need to deal the cards in seven stacks – stack one will have one card, face up. Stack two will have two cards, with the top one facing up. Stack three should have three cards etc. The last stack should have seven cards; again, with the top one facing up. Of course, you leave the rest of the cards in a deck, which you can turn over card by card if you can’t make any moves. The piles you make should start with the Ace of each suit, and end with the King.
Perhaps the easiest solo card game in existence, bowling solitaire uses a full playing card deck (including both Jokers). The goal for this game is to remove all cards that add up to ten in total. Layout 10 cards, face up, like bowling pins with 4 at the top, then 3, then 2, then 1 card at the front. The remaining cards in the deck are dealt in threes, with the top card showing and the others hidden. Your goal is to remove cards from the table layout that add up to 10 points (Jacks, Queens, and Kings are all 10 points and can be removed immediately, other cards are their card value). Once you’ve cleared all ten cards, deal again, keeping the used cards off to the side.
Disregard the suits in this card game, you won’t be paying attention to them at all. In Elevens, your challenge is to find matches between cards that total 11. To start, place a card down and begin making a 3-card by 3-card square. If you see a match before you finish making the square, place one card from the deck on each of the two cards that make up the number 11. Keep matching cards and putting new cards on top of matched ones. Eventually, all cards should be facing up in a 3 x 3 card square. If there are no pairs in that first square, deal again.
There are many other card games that you can play solo using a deck of playing cards. The majority of them are variations of solitaire or matching games that you can play on the go. For Solitaire-based games, we recommend having table space to properly lay out your cards.