How to Play Kings in the Corner

By: David Galt

Kings in the Corner is a snappy card game that feels like everybody's playing a single solitaire game -- but there's only one winner! Here's how to play:

Number of players: Two to six; four is best

Object: To go out by playing off all your cards.

The cards: You'll need one 52-card deck, plus a supply of pennies or chips.

To play: Deal each player seven cards, then turn four cards face up to start layoff piles. (One king will go in each corner space as shown in the diagram below.) Place the remaining cards face down in the center as a draw pile.

In the card game Kings in the Corner, try to get rid of all your cards first.
©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
The corner spaces are reserved for the four kings.

Player at dealer's left goes first, and subsequent play moves clockwise. If you make no play, pay a chip into the pool. Otherwise, play any number of cards, as long as the plays are valid. At the end of your turn, whether you made any plays or not, draw a new card -- except if you go out!

Card Term Glossary
Here's a quick reference for some of the card language you will find in this article.

Deal: The act of portioning out the cards to the players; also, the period of play in the game between one deal and the next.

Draw: To take a new card or cards.

Lay off: To play one or more cards according to allowable plays.

For a complete listing of card terminology, click here.

These moves are valid:

1. Playing a king in a corner.

2. Playing a card one rank lower and of opposite color on the top card of any pile. (In other words, these piles have alternating colors.) Ace is the lowest card.

3. Moving an entire layoff pile onto another, if the bottom card of the pile moved is one lower and of the opposite color than the card you are moving it to. This may occur during your turn or as a result of the deal. For example, in the layout shown, the first player can move the
7 onto the 8. A king dealt to the layout can be moved into the corner by the first player.

4. Playing any card onto a layoff space that has become empty during play.

If you play your last card during your turn, you win.

Scoring: At the end of the game, losers pay 10 chips for each king they hold, while every other card costs one chip. Winner collects all the chips. If you prefer to score on paper, omit the penalty chips paid for passes.

Tips: Although you may have several plays to make on one turn, it may be wise to save some plays for a later round. First, if you save a play for a future round, it may spare you from paying a chip to the pool. Second, by holding back a card, you may prevent the next players from making plays they might otherwise make.

©Publications International, Inc.