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Go Fish

Game Type: Children's
Age: Kids
Players:  2-5
Deck:  Standard, Jumbo Index 52 card deck

Go Fish is a fun game that will amuse and entertain even the youngest card players. It is similar to the game Authors, described below.

Suggested Ages. 4 to 10.

Skills Developed. Matching and pairing.

Rank of Cards. The cards rank from ace (high) to two (low). The suits are not important, only the card numbers are relevant, such as two 3s, two 10s, and so on.

The Draw. Any player deals one card face up to each player. The player with the lowest card is the dealer.

The Shuffle and Cut. The dealer shuffles the cards, and the player on his right cuts them.

The Deal. The dealer completes the cut and deals the cards clockwise one at a time, face down, beginning with the player to his left. If two or three people are playing, each player receives seven cards. If four or five people are playing, each receives five cards. The remainder of the pack is placed face down on the table to form the stock.

Object of the Game. The goal is to win the most "books" of cards. A book is any four of a kind, such as four kings, four aces, and so on.

The Play. The player to the left of the dealer looks directly at any opponent and says, for example, "Give me your kings," usually addressing the opponent by name and specifying the rank he wants, from ace down to two. The player who is "fishing"must have at least one card of the rank he asked for in his hand. The player who is addressed must hand over all the cards requested. If he has none, he says, "Go fish!" and the player who made the request draws the top card of the stock and places it in his hand.

If a player gets one or more cards of the named rank he asked for, he is entitled to ask the same or another player for a card. He can ask for the same card or a different one. So long as he is succeeds in getting cards (makes a catch), his turn continues. When a player makes a catch, he must reveal the card so that the catch is verified.
If a player gets the fourth card of a book, he shows all four cards, places them on the table face up in front of him, and plays again.

If the player goes fishing without "making a catch" (does not receive a card he asked for), the turn passes to his left.

The game ends when all thirteen books have been won. The winner is the player with the most books.
During the game, if a player is left without cards, he may (when it's his turn to play), draw from the stock and then ask for cards of that rank. If there are no cards left in the stock, he is out of the game.

This game is similar to Go Fish, but there is more to learn and remember.

Suggested Ages. 8 and up.

Skills Developed. Counting, matching, and recognizing suits.

It is best for four or five players. The whole pack is dealt out, as nearly evenly as possible. Each player requests a desired card, not only by rank but also by suit. For example: he says to an opponent "Give me the queen of diamonds." If the opponent has the card, he must hand it over. The player's turn continues so long as the player receives the card requested. If not, the turn passes to the left

As soon as a player collects four cards of the same denomination such as four 3s or four queens, he lays them face down. The game continues until all cards have been laid down in books.
Irregularities. These apply to both Go Fish and Authors.

The dealer must deal again if he exposes a card while dealing, or if any player receives too few cards and calls attention to this mistake before looking at his hand.

Exposed card. When a player drops or otherwise exposes a card, there is no penalty. He simply restores the card to his hand.

Playing out of turn. If a player asks for cards when it is not his turn, he may not score a book in that rank for the rest of the game.

Failure to show a book. If a player fails to show a book he has formed before the end of his turn, he cannot count that book in his score.

Illegal call. If a player asks for a rank when holding no card of that rank (or, in Authors, asks for a card that he already holds), he misses his next turn.

Failure to give up card. If a player has a card in his hand that he fails to hand over when properly asked for, that player may not score a book in that rank and also misses his next turn.