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Card Games To Play With 2 People

Schnapsen (2 players) - Popular in many parts of Europe, Schnapsen is the national card game of Austria, and is a classic trick-taking card game for two players with a long history, and allows for genuinely. Spades is a popular trick-taking card game that two partnerships typically play. However, this version of Spades is just for two players. It uses a standard 52-card deck; ace is high, and 2 is low. The goal is to be the first player to reach 500 points.

  1. The simple card game, War, is available free of charge on the App Store and Google Play, or you can play with an actual deck of cards. After you divide the deck evenly, each player turns up a card.
  2. At that point, the previously “out” player is back in and can play with the cards collected from the pile. Play continues until one person wins all of the cards. For a shorter version, stop play when the first person runs out of cards. Whoever has the most cards in his or her hand is the winner. Ages: Kids, Teens.

Do you prefer playing card games for two much more than anything else?

-Well, if so, right on the spot you are.

Here are 13 pretty enjoyable variations of card games for 2 persons. Test some of them with just one more card enthusiast!

Table of Contents

We selected some of the easiest and probably the most known 2 player card games. Some of them are very specific and locally played. Anyway, this is the proposal – try and have fun with a different game!

Popular Card Games for 2

1. Double Solitaire

Being a variation of classical Solitaire, Double Solitaire is one of the most elegant card games for two players. The main object is putting down all your cards after rearranging the deck by suiting and ranking the cards in a series of moves. Most of the rules are the same as in the classical version, excluding the competitive twist- one of the players decreases pile while making the opponent pile bigger. It’s also widely recognized with the name Patience. Already guessed why? Right, it’s definitely the best time killer of all times.

2. Sixty Six

It’s a pretty interesting 2 player card game most popular in Germany. It involves a dosage of strategy and can be undoubtedly considered as a trick-taking card game. Math skills are definitely a must should you desire to be the ultimate winner in this game. This card game for two boasts a very engaging and smart gameplay. It can be played for ages especially if you are that sort of brain-teasing lover.
Full Rules

3. Rummy

Rummy is an enjoyable and well-known option if you like card games for two people. It can be considered as a family game and is most popular in the United States. When two people play, the winner of each hand deals the next. When more than two people are involved, the deal passes to next the player on the left. Each player has the goal to shape matched sets consisting of groups of 3 or 4 of a kind, or sequences of 3 or more cards of the same suit.

4. Durak

In this game the difference is that there is no winner. Only the loser is defined, even the game is played by 2 or more persons.
If you have Russian friends, ask them about their experience with Durak, an original Russian card game. It can be the perfect option to choose as a different 2 person card game.

5. Go Fish

If you are looking for a very easy and really funny game 🙂 stop at Go Fish and learn very fast how to play it and show it to your family!

In Go Fish card game are used 54 standard deck cards (including 2 Jokers). Each player receives 7 cards. All remaining cards are separated and placed disordered between both players.

The game goal is to make more “books” – combinations of 4 cards having the same value.

The player in turn asks his opponent for a special card value. The only requirement is to ask for the card values that the player in turn has already some of them in his hands. There are 2 possible situations:

-If the card(s) from the same value exists then they should be given to the asking player.
-If another player has not any then the opponent says “go fish” or “fish” and the player in turn is taking a card from the disordered pile which also is named “pool”.

When somebody obtains a “book” the cards are placed face up and if all books are collected the game stops. The player with more books is the winner.

For more details you can check the game variations and also the options to play Go Fish with 3 players.

6. Spit

Now, this is one very classic and dynamic 2 players card game, all about speed and fast reflexes. It’s a jungle of fun, yet helping you push your concentration and counting skills to the limits. The winner is the one who gets rid of their cards first. What’s the best about it- it’s more relaxing than brain teasing so it’s brilliant for a quality chill out with a friend of yours and a glass of frozen mojito.

7. The Bidding War

Yes, a bit childish you would say, but admit it- it’s tons of fun after all. The ultimate goal is as easy as that- it simply requires to war over the card of your opponent to never run out of cards. This practically makes the gameplay kind of endless. In general, this game is not a brain-teaser but relaxing and engaging way to spend some quality family time with your kid, so never underestimate this card game for two. Better give it a try!

8. Egyptian Rat Screw

It’s a speed matching card game which boosts adrenaline and provokes fast reactions. Being a card game for two or more players, the objective requires taking as many cards as you can to become the winner. It slightly reminds of the old game named Beggar-Thy-Neighbor but what makes it stand out from the other similar two player card games, is the following rule: The players may only slap the cards if they are firstly gathered in special combinations.

9. Pinochle

Often referred to also as binocle, Pinochle is a classic and one of the best 2 player card games originated from the US. It’s a trick-taking card game using a 48-card deck. The players strive to win tricks, score the value of cards and meld certain card combinations thanks to the values in points.

10. Poker

Poker is the total blockbuster in the card games collection. As they say, it may take a day or a year to learn it but a lifetime to master it! Amongst the innumerable variations Texas Hold’em is the most popular poker types of all. If wondering, you can sure play poker as a card game for 2 people only. Firstly, make sure to explore the certain rules for playing 2 player poker that might apply.

Now we have shortlisted for you 3 of the very best and most lovable two player card games ever. Dip into the mechanics of these emblematic card games for 2 people and learn how to play to become the ultimate master.

11. Spades

Introduction of the game

It is one of the most admired card games of all times. Usually played by two partnerships, but very appropriate for 2 players as well. It’s played with a standard 52-card deck where the Ace is high; the 2 is low. The winner is deemed to be the first player to reach 500 points. The deck is standard 52 – card deck and 1 or 2 Jokers may be added.


Highest to lowest: Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2.

Spades Dealing

The first dealer is chosen by a draw for “first spade” or “high card”, and then after each hand, the deal passes to the dealer’s left. The dealer shuffles and the player to the right is to “cut” the cards to avert the dealer from stacking the deck. The entire deck is then faced-down in clockwise order with one card at a time. The players then take their cards, count to ensure the right number received and if all is properly set, arrange them by suit and rank.

Bidding in Spades

Players bid the number of tricks expected to be taken. The one standing at the left side of the dealer starts the bidding which goes in a clockwise direction, ending up with the dealer. A bid of “zero” is called “nil”; the player must bid at least 1, not to bid “nil”.

What is the Gameplay

Each hand includes a number of tricks (the 4-handed game contains 13 tricks using all 52 cards). The player on the dealer’s left makes the opening lead by playing a single card of their choice. Players in clockwise direction play a card with the obligation to follow suit if they can. If not they can play any card, including a trump Spade. A general rule, taken from Hearts states that a player may not lead Spades until a Spade has been played to trump another trick. This stops a player who holds a large number of Spades from leading Spades one after the other at the beginning of the hand to deplete other hands, blocking the opponents from using them as trumps.

The action of playing the first Spade in a hand is called “breaking Spades”, rooting from its original rule, “Breaking Hearts”. When a player leads with a spade (after Spades have been broken), the other players must follow suit.

Another common rule, also been borrowed from Hearts, says that a player is not allowed to lead Spades in the first trick. The trick is considered to be won or taken by the player who played the highest card of the led suit – or if trumps were played, the highest trump card wins. The winner of the trick gathers the cards up into a face-down arrangement aiming to allow players to count the number of tricks taken. The number of tricks a player has won cannot be disguised; if asked each player must count out their tricks until everyone agrees on their “trick count”. The player who wins any given trick leads the next. Play continues until all players have run out of their hands, which should occur on the same (last) trick. Otherwise, it is alleged as a misdeal.

12. Whist

Introduction of Whist

This is a two-player version of Scandinavian Whist, also recognized as Norwegian Whist. We should state it differs quite a lot from the most popular two-player game called German Whist. What makes it unique is the rule that each player plays 2 cards to each trick.

Game Cards

A standard 52-card pack is needed. The cards are ranked from high to low A-K-Q-J-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2.

Dealing in the game

Turn to deal alternates. The dealer shuffles, the non-dealer cuts. 26 cards are dealt to each player, one at a time starting with dealer’s opponent and alternating. In the beginning, each player is dealt 8 cards face down on the table in a 4×2 rectangle, after another 8 cards face up on top of the face-down ones, then a hand of 10 cards follows. This means that each player has 10 cards that only they can see (in the hand), there are 16 cards down that can’t be seen by any of the players and then 16 more face-up cards that can see by both players.

Whist Bidding

To start with – the non-dealer bids “high” or “low”. If high, it’s then called a high game and the dealer has no say. However if low, the dealer should bid “high” or “low”. If the dealer defines it as high, it’s a high game. If both say low, it’s a low game. In a high game the goal is winning tricks, and in a low game to the contrary- avoiding winning tricks.


When the game is low- the non-dealer leads to the first trick. In case of a high game, the first lead is by the player who did not bid high. Therefore the only case where the dealer leads first is when the non-dealer bids high. Each trick includes 4 cards, 2 from each player. At your turn, you can play a card from your hand or one of the cards in your face up layout. Right after a card from the layout is played, if this uncovers a face-down card, the latter is immediately turned face up, before any other cards are played by either player. Any card can be led. The rest 3 cards played should possibly follow the suit. So if the leader’s opponent has any cards of the same suit as the led card, either in hand or face-up on the table, he is obliged to play the card. Then the leader is obliged to play a second card, also following suit to the card led if possible, and in the end, the opponent plays a second card, also possibly following suit to the original lead. The four-card trick is won by the highest card of the suit led and the player who wins the trick leads to the next.

13. Blackjack


To avoid any mischief information, you should have in mind that in the UK there is another card game called Black Jack but it’s entirely different one, more or less similar to Crazy Eights. The popular Blackjack card game, also known as 21, originates from North America and we can call it the ruby of casino games not only in the States but all across the globe. Beaten only by the poker, it’s the best gambling card games by popularity. It can be perfectly played as a 2 player card game. At the start of each new game, the players and the dealer are dealt two cards each. The players’ cards are normally dealt face up, the dealer has one face up and one face down. The best Blackjack hand is an opening deal of an ace with any ten-point card.


A standard 52-card pack is involved, but a predominant part of casinos use to shuffle several decks of cards together which makes it a six-deck game – 312 cards. The players attempt to beat the dealer by getting a count as close to 21 as possible. That’s the overall objective of the game. The cards are duly shuffled by the dealer and then a random player cut the pile. Face cards are 10 and any other card is its pip value. The player is the one to choose the worth of an ace – either 1 or 11.

Dealing in Blackjack

When all the bets are registered, the dealer gives one card face up to each player in a clockwise manner, and then one card face up to himself. Another round of cards is then dealt face up to each player where the dealer takes his second card face down so everyone except him receives two cards face up while he receives one card face up and one face down.

How Bidding works

The bets widely vary from $2 to $500 in general, since there are minimum and maximum limits set.

Gameplay Basics

The player to the left goes first and should choose whether to “stand” (not asking for another card) or “hit” (asking for another card to try to get closer to a count of 21 or even hit 21 exactly). Therefore, a player may keep the originally dealt cards, or ask the dealer for extra cards, one at a time, until he either decides to stand on the total (if 21 or under), or goes “bust” (if over 21). In case of the second scenario, he loses and the dealer collects the bet and serves the next player to his left in the same way. “Soft hand is called the combination of an ace with a card other than a ten-card, because the player can count the ace as a 1 or 11, and either draw cards or not depending on the current cards count and what he considers to be a better move for his strategy.


If you need a simple card game for 2 people try now Double Solitaire or Sixty-six.

Kids game?
-Nothing better than Go Fish or Bidding War!

Durak is an exotic game, that probably you haven’t tried before. Egyptian Rat Screw may be another way to try a new game.

In case that you like to practice or learn some of the most popular 2 person card games, Spades, Whist, or Blackjack are the top choice for you.

If you are playing 3 people-Go fish is one of the options listed here, but we have much more to show you in our 3 player card games post.

Try playing Spades with other people

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Playing cards have been around for quite a while — hundreds of years — and with all the games to choose from, both modern and classic, cards are even more fun today than they were in 867 BCE.

Whether you’re looking for a quick and simple game to play at parties or a strategic partnership game, there are plenty of games you can play with a standard deck of cards.

1. Party Games

These are games that are quick to teach, quick to play, and always hilarious.


3 to 13 players

In Spoons, there are no turns — players are quickly passing cards to try to get a hand of four of a kind. There are several spoons (or similar objects) in the middle of the table, one fewer than the number of players.

You can pass as quickly or slowly as you want, but if you go too slowly, you might end up with a buildup of cards next to you. Once a player has four of a kind in their hand, they may grab a spoon from the middle. As soon as one player grabs a spoon, anyone else can grab one. The player who fails to grab a spoon loses a life, and play continues until there is a winner.

If you don’t have spoons, you can also play by having players stick out their tongue when they have four of a kind or when they see another player sticking out their tongue.


3 or more players

This incredibly simple game is a great choice for families, though it works just as well in a bar.

Each player has three lives, which can be marked with a token or simply remembered. The dealer deals one card to each player, and the player to the left of the dealer goes first.

The objective is to avoid being the player with the lowest card at the end of a round. On your turn, you may choose to keep your card or swap it with the player on your left. After everyone has gone, the player (or players) with the lowest card loses a life. The last player in wins.

Stress/James Bond

2 to 5 players

James Bond is a lightning speed game of racing to make groups of four cards. The deck is divided into thirteen piles of four cards, with one pile dealt face up to form a central group of four cards that everyone can reach. The remaining decks are divided among the players.

When the game begins, each player can look at any one of their piles at a time and may swap cards with the middle cards. The first player to have only groups of four of a kind wins.

2. Strategic games

If you have a small group looking for a clever game of wits, there are many classics to choose from.


4 players

This game for four pits players against each other to see who can take the fewest points.

The entire deck is dealt out, and players take turns playing cards in tricks (in which one card is played per player). The highest card of the suit led takes the trick.

Every Heart in the game is worth one point, and the dreaded Queen of Spades is worth a massive thirteen points, so winning tricks is usually a bad thing.

The endless strategies make it easy to play this game for hours and hours.


4 players

Grab a partner for this cunning game of trust and trick-taking.

Spades is a trick-taking game in which two teams of two make bids to guess how many tricks they can win. Spades is always the trump suit, so a Spade will beat a card of any other suit. Your team’s bid determines how many points you earn (or lose if you don’t take enough tricks). The first team to 500 points wins.

Knowing your hand—and trusting your partner—are key to this sometimes cutthroat trick-taking game.

Up Down

3 to 8 players

Also known as “Oh, Hell!,” this trick-taking game has its roots in other classics like Whist and Bridge.

Each player is dealt a number of cards (which will change from one round to the next) and must guess how many tricks they will win. The number of tricks in a round is equal to the number of cards the players are holding.

The trump suit changes from one round to the next. Because you can only score points if your bid is dead-on, this tense game leads to great failures and great victories.


Card Games To Play With 2 People

2 to 4 players

Palace is a “shedding” game in which players are racing to be the first one with no cards left.

Each player is dealt three cards face down and a hand of six cards, of which they choose three to put face up on their three face down cards. Then, everyone is dealt a draw pile.

Players take turns playing cards from their hand to the center of the table. Each card played must be equal or greater in value than the previous card, or you must pick up the entire pile.

Once your draw pile is gone, you can start playing from your three piles. The first player to empty all three piles wins.

Peter McPherson is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.

Best Card Games For Two People

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