OBJECTIVE OF MYSTERY HAND: The objective of Mystery Hand is to be the first player to guess the four cards in the center of the table correctly.
NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 3 to 8 Players
MATERIALS: 1 Standard 52 Card Deck, Paper, and Pencils
TYPE OF GAME: Strategy Card Game
OVERVIEW OF MYSTERY HAND
Mystery Hand requires strategy, close attention, and great guessing skills. Players try to gather information throughout the course of the game by requesting information from other players. Players will then use their score pad to mark off cards they know are not in the center. They must try to guess which cards are in the center stack before another player!
There are many variations of the game that allow for longer gameplay and additional players.
Firstly, the dealer is chosen by drawing for the high card. The player who drew the highest card becomes the first dealer. The dealer will then shuffle the deck and deal four cards to the middle of the table face down.
Each player will then take a piece of paper and a pencil to record results throughout the game. The piece of paper should be made up of a space for every card in a normal deck. Pads should be hidden from other players, as these will be used to mark off cards throughout the game.
The dealer will deal all of the remaining cards, one card at a time to each player. Any odd cards that do not allow all of the players to have an equal hand will be dealt out to the middle of the table, facing up, so that all players may identify them. The game is ready to begin!
Players will attempt to gather information from other players by making requests during their turn. Information may also be gathered by watching what other players requests. Each player will examine their cards and mark the associated spots on their sheet. Players may only make one attempt during their turn to gather information unless otherwise specified.
Once a player gathers all of the information they need, they can make a declaration. They will then state what they believe the four cards are. The player will then look at the cards, keeping them hidden from the other players, and verify if they are correct. If they are correct, they show the cards to the other players and win! If they are incorrect, they will reveal their entire hand to the group and drop from the game.
Players may make specific player requests when gathering information. They may ask any player for a hand of their specifications. The player may ask for a suited run or four of a kind. Suited runs consist of all cards within the parameters set by the questioner that are within the same suit. Four of a kind allows the questioner to ask to see all cards of a specific rank from a single player.
Players can request from all, which means that whoever has cards within the parameters will place them face up in front of them for a period of time. All players will be able to see the cards. Exact cards can also be requested, and the player who holds that card will display it to all players.
The requester is the only one to see the cards, and other players should not see the cards. Players are not allowed to ask for cards that they hold themselves. If a request is made and the player questioned had three or four of the cards, the requester may make another request. before his turn ends.
END OF GAME
The game comes to an end when a player correctly guesses the exact cards that make up the mystery hand. This player is declared the winner!