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Go Fish Rules: How to Play & Win Go Fish Card Game!

Go Fish Card Game

Go Fish Game has gained immense popularity in the recent past. Many even fondly refer to this game as, ‘Fish.’ However, it can get pretty confusing as the term ‘Fish’ (Be it Canadian Fish or Russian Fish) is also used when referring to a comparatively more complex partnership game called ‘Literature.’

As far as the ‘Go Fish Rules’ game is concerned, it is best suited for around three to six participants. It is also possible for merely two players to participate in the game as well. The ‘Go Fish’ game requires a standard 52 card deck. The dealer needs to deal 5 cards to each of the participants. However, if only two players are gaming then the dealer will be required to deal seven cards to each of the players. The remaining cards will be placed facing-down in a form of stock separately.

Before we dive into the Go Fish Rules, let’s first see how does the game work, in short, how to play Go Fish Card Game online. Later on, there’s a surprise for you. Read till the end to know how to win Go Fish card game. Here you go with how the Go Fish game actually work. Have a glimpse at it first!

Go Fish Rules

How to Play Go Fish Game?

As mentioned previously, the dealer will be required to deal five cards to each player and seven cards in case there are only two players. The player, sitting on the left side, will begin the game. Each of the turns will involve the participating player to speak out specific ranks. An example of a question relating to ranks: “Please give me your jacks?” The opposite player must be holding at least one card of the requested rank. In the case of the jacks example above, the person asking for the card must contain at least one jack of another type in his possession.

If the opposing player is actually holding the card that the former asked for, then he/she must give up all the cards of that particular rank. The player, in case he/she is successful at obtaining his/her desired card, will be required to play another turn. At the same time, if the card which is being asked for, is not in possession of the opposing player then they must yell out, “Go Fish!” This will end up in the asker drawing the top card of the undealt stock lying on the side.

If he ends up receiving a card that belongs to the rank that he/she asked for, then he gets another turn to continue the game. Otherwise, the asker is meant to keep the card with him and consequently, the playing chance will carry on to the next player. Once any of the players is successful at collecting a book of four cards of the same rank, they must discard their cards and deal out of the game. The game will continue until the time there are no cards and the stock actually runs out. The winner is the player who has the most books towards the end of the game.

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Go Fish Rules: The different variations?

#1. Not ranks, but specific cards

Another popular way of playing Go Fish Rules is by asking for a specific card, rather than a particular rank. Players must be in possession of at least one card that belongs to the rank. This particular variation will require the players to agree on whether it is permissible to ask for cards which are already in possession of the player. This eventually leads to players choosing to fish their cards and their turns ending consequently. This method of Go Fish is usually opted for when the participating players run out of stock to play with.

How to Play Go Fish Card Game and Win

#2. The Australian way

It is being suggested that in Australia, players usually opt for a variant wherein they have to deal in pairs and not all the four cards. Under this method as well, players are required to deal seven cards to each of the players. The player who is in possession of the most number of pairs will win the game. Each of the players will be required to turn to others and ask for a pair that matches the one that they have. All pairs must be placed downwards each time they are linked. The game will continue to strive till the time everyone runs out of cards. There are special cards being created for this variant of the game Even the ‘Joker’ card is meant to be dealt with, in such a situation.

#3. The Backstab way

This variant of Go Fish Rules involves the use of 108 cards, including the four Jokers that come accompanied in the stock. This requires at least four and a maximum of ten participants. Each player is expected to ask for a specific number of cards of a particular rank in order to complete their set. This type of Go Fish usually takes up little time to finish off.

Interested in playing Go Fish? Here’s what you’ll need!

If Go Fish Rules sounds like your type of game, then following given items are what you will require in order to play the game:

  1. A standard deck of 52 playing cards/a deck which is specifically designed for Go Fish
  2. Minimum of two and maximum of four players
  • An official set up of the game as a whole
  1. Dealing five cards to each players (seven in case of two players) facing downwards.

Go Fish: How to win the game?

Go Fish Rules is pretty simple to understand, however, players have to be extremely smart at calculating the pairs that they can make quickly. Once you collect the set of four cards of the same rank, you are required to place it down on the dealing table. The game will continue till the time the deck is over. The player, who holds the most number of pairs, will win. Therefore, it is important for you to start makings sets that can be made quickly. It must not be the same as other players because it will end up taking a lot more time.

In order to win at Go Fish Rules, one requires good luck, a decent memory and a good sense of timing for things. While luck is something that cannot be helped with, a decent memory is something that you can work on. There is a special Memory Match strategy that you can work on before playing this game. Try to remember what people have asked for in their previous turns and you will be good to go.

This is especially important if the other players have been successful at collecting two cards of any given rank. You don’t want to end up with an unbalanced hand in the end. Therefore, unnecessarily holding on to a pair of cards is of no use either. If you feel that the player has ended up making good progress in that particular rank then you must let go of it.

Conclusion on Go Fish Game

Go Fish Rules a great pass time for a group of friends on a picnic or a family night in. Understanding Go Fish gameplay is not exactly rocket science. Therefore, you won’t find a lot of difficulty in explaining the game to beginners or newbies.

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