Written By: Mark Chapman
Mark Chapman is a children’s writer, board game geek, and school teacher. He writes and shares children’s stories and family-friendly board/card games on his YouTube channel, Bananas 4 Books & Board Games.
OBJECTIVE OF CLOCK PATIENCE: The objective of Clock Patience is to place cards from the deck around the clock, avoiding the kings.
NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 1
NUMBER OF CARDS: Standard 52-card deck
RANK OF CARDS: Ace is one o’clock, 2 is 2 o’clock and so on. Jack is 11 o’clock and queen is 12 o’clock. Kings are placed inside the clock.
TYPE OF GAME: Solitaire (also known as clock solitaire)
AUDIENCE: Solo players
HOW TO DEAL CLOCK PATIENCE
Shuffle the deck and lay them out face down and one at a time to create a clock (i.e. start at 1 o’clock, then 2, 3 etc ensuring the clock is symmetrical). Once you have completed one layer of the clock, place a 13th card face down in the centre of the clock and then repeat the process another 3 times until you have gone through the deck. Flip the top card of the pile inside the clock and you’re ready to begin.
HOW TO PLAY CLOCK PATIENCE
Place the revealed face-up card outside the clock corresponding to its value on the clock (e.g. If you have a Jack, place that at 11 o’clock). You can now pick up a card from that corresponding deck (in my example, the deck at 11 o’clock) and repeat the process until all cards have been revealed.
However, if you reveal a king (bad news!) you must place it inside the clock and reveal the top card of the facedown deck inside the clock.
HOW TO WIN
You win clock patience if the very last card is a king. The game ends as soon as the fourth and final king has been revealed.
It is a game of pure luck but there’s something satisfying about whittling down the clock face and if you’re luck enough to get down to the final few cards, the tension builds for quite an exciting finish! Enjoy! 😊
There aren’t many variations to this game however, when you reveal the fourth and final king, you can replace it with a facedown card from the clock and continue playing – this version is called Watch.