How To: Play The Card Game "Jack Thief"

Play The Card Game "Jack Thief"

If you have ever wondered how to teach kids to play cards then this is the game to start with.  This is the best game to teach your kids and educate them about playing cards.

The words "Jack Thief" are derived from the Hindi words "Gulaam Chor" as the game is called in Hindi where Gulaam means Jack and chor means a robber or a thief.  This game is played with 51 cards.  The jokers have no role here and out of 4 jacks, one jack is removed which can be of any suit.

This game is usually played by 2 players or more.  Majority of the times it is played by kids or elders who wish to teach the kids.

In our example we'll consider a two-player game.

Distributing the cards

After the shuffle, it would be very tedious for the dealer to give one card to each and every player since the entire 51 cards have to be distributed amongst all the players equally or nearly equally.  It won't matter much, if he keeps the cards on a uniform surface, which can be a table or a floor and try to divide the cards equally by splitting.  The cards are divided into two piles. Once the cards are divided into 2 piles, both the players will take one pile each which should be of 25 cards for one and 26 cards for another but can even be of 23 cards for one player and 28 cards for another player.  The slight variations in the number of cards do not matter.

How To Play

After both the players get their respective bunch or pile of cards, the process of separation begins.  All paired cards are kept face up and are put in a separate pile.  For example, if the player 1 has two aces, two Kings, two 10s, two 5s, then he will remove these cards.  These cards are kept face up for the other player to see and then pushed on the left or the right because they would not be used in the game anymore.  Similarly for cards such as four 7s, four 4s and so on, because these form two pairs.

After the pairs are weeded out, both the players will be left with odd number of cards usually one of each, since if there are three cards of six say, then two of them form pairs and are discarded and only one six is left.

In our example, say Player 1 has 5 cards (one king, one ten, one four, one seven) and Player 2 has 4 cards (one king, one ten, one four, one seven, one jack).  Now each player has to pull one card from the other players' hands alternately. The one who dealt the cards will pull last.

Say, Player 1 has done the shuffle and dealt the cards. Then he will keep all the 5 cards in his one or both the hands after rearranging them as many times as he wants.  Player 2 takes the first turn to pull one card from the hands of player 1.  He pulls a four, for example, and then he completes two 4s, which are then discarded.

Then Player 1, pulls or draws one card from player 2.  He draws a ten that completes a pair of tens which are then discarded.  Then Player 2 will draw and he draws a King thus completing the King pair, which is then discarded.  So King, Ten and Four has been discarded.  Now player 1 has just one seven and player 2 has one seven and one jack.  And it is the turn of player 1 to pull.

If the player 1 pulls seven then his sevens complete the pair and he wins the game and player 2 becomes the Jack Thief because he has the jack left.  If the player 1 pulls out the Jack from player 2, then the game continues with player 2 getting a turn to pull.  This would go on till the sevens have formed a pair with one of the players and are discarded and the one with the Jack is the loser and is known as the Jack Thief.

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