Crazy Eights

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For other uses, see Crazy Eights (disambiguation).
"8s" redirects here. For other uses, see 8S (disambiguation).
Crazy Eights
8 playing cards.jpg
In Crazy Eights, playing an 8 card will change the current suit of the game.
Origin Venezuela
Type Shedding-type
Players 2+
Skills required Tactics and communication
Age range 4-12
Cards 52
Deck French
Play Clockwise and counter-clockwise
Card rank (highest to lowest) 8 J A 2 joker 4 K Q 10 9 7 6 5 3
Playing time Various
Random chance Medium
Related games
UNO, Seven Seas

Crazy Eights is a shedding-type card game for two to seven players. The object of the game is to be the first to get rid of all the player's cards to a discard pile. The game is considered a pre-extension of Switch[citation needed] and Mau Mau.[1]

A standard 52-card deck is used when there are five or fewer players. When there are more than five players, two decks are shuffled together and all 104 cards are used.


The game first appeared as Eights in the 1930s,[1] and the name Crazy Eights dates to the 1940s, derived from the military designation for discharge of mentally unstable soldiers, Section 8.[2][3]

There are many variations of the basic game, and a number of different names including Craits, Last One, Mau-Mau, Pesten, Rockaway, Swedish Rummy, Switch, Last Card, Screw Your Neighbour, Püskiyon and Tschausepp. Bartok, Mao, Quango, Zar, Taki and Uno are more extreme variations.

David Parlett describes Crazy Eights as "not so much a game as a basic pattern of play on which a wide variety of changes can be rung", noting that players can easily invent and explore new rules.[1]

Basic play[edit]

Five cards are dealt to each player (or seven in a two-player game).[4] The remaining cards of the deck are placed face down at the center of the table. The top card is then turned face up to start the game.

Players discard by matching rank or suit with the top card of the discard pile, starting with the player left of the dealer. If a player is unable to match the rank or suit of the top card of the discard pile and does not have an eight, they draw cards from the stockpile until getting a playable card. When a player plays an eight, they must declare the suit that the next player is to play; that player must then follow the named suit or play another eight.

As an example: Once the six of clubs is played the next player:

  1. can play any of the other sixes
  2. can play any of the clubs
  3. can play any eight (then must declare a different suit)
  4. can draw from the stockpile until willing and able to play one of the above

The game ends as soon as one player has emptied their hand. That player collects a payment from each opponent equal to the point score of the cards remaining in that opponent's hand. Eights score 50, court cards 10 and all other cards face value. If the players run out of cards in the deck, the player with the lowest point score in their hand scores the difference between that hand and each opponent's hand.[1]

The winner of the game is the first player to reach a specific number of points. For two players it is 100pts, three players 150pts, four 200pts, five 250pts, six 300pts and for seven players 350pts.[citation needed] 1 eyed jacks are to pick up five.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d David Parlett, Oxford Dictionary of Card Games, pg. 291 - Oxford University Press, 1996. ISBN 0-19-869173-4
  2. ^ Rauf, written by Don (2013). Simple rules for card games : instructions and strategy for twenty card games (1st ed.). New York: Potter Style. p. 25. ISBN 978-0-7704-3385-7. 
  3. ^ Rome, Ben H.; Hussey, Chris (2013). Games' most wanted : the top 10 book of players, pawns, and power-ups (First ed.). University of Nebraska Press. ISBN 978-1-59797-723-4. 
  4. ^