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Official Haggis (Card Game) Rules

Haggis, the card game, is a strategic shedding game for two or three players that combines elements of climbing and trick-taking. It's known for being the first successful climbing game designed specifically for a smaller player count. Here's a breakdown of the mechanics to get you started:

Objective

  • Be the first player to discard all the cards in your hand.


Components:

  • Deck of Cards (42 cards): Ranks 2-10 in four suits, plus two Jacks, two Queens, and two Kings (these act as Wild Cards).

Setup

  • Remove one Jack, one Queen, and one King from the deck (if playing with 3 players, remove an entire suit as well).

  • Each player receives one face-up Jack, Queen, and King, placing them in front of them as part of their playable cards. These are your permanent Wild Cards.

  • Shuffle the remaining deck and deal 14 cards face down to each player.

  • The remaining deck forms the "Haggis" pile and is not used during play.pen_spark

Gameplay

A round of Haggis consists of three phases:

  1. Draw a Card:  Draw the top card from the deck and add it to your hand.

  2. Play a Card: You must play a card from your hand or one of your face-up Wild Cards. The card you play must be higher in value than the previous card played (according to the following rules):

    • Matching Numbers: A set of two or more cards with the same number (e.g., three 7s beat two 7s).

    • Consecutive Runs: Three or more cards in ascending or descending order (e.g., 4, 5, 6 or 8, 7, 6). Cards can wrap around (e.g., a Queen followed by a King and an Ace).

  3. Discard a Card: After playing a card, discard any card from your hand to a discard pile.

Climbing the Ladder:

The key strategic element in Haggis is climbing the value ladder. You can play sets or consecutive runs to establish a higher "played value" that subsequent players must overcome.

Wild Cards:

The face-up Jacks, Queens, and Kings in your playing area act as permanent Wild Cards. You can play them as any number (2-10) to fit your strategic needs.

Special Rules:

  • Bombs: Specific card combinations (like three of a kind or a straight flush) force the next player to draw multiple cards as a penalty.

  • Limited Hand Size: You cannot end your turn with more than the starting number of cards in your hand (14). If playing a card or drawing a card would cause you to exceed this limit, you must discard cards down to the limit before drawing or playing.

Winning the Game

  • The first player to discard all the cards in their hand wins the game!

Notes/Variations

  • The game is only designed for 2-3 players, no variations for more players currently exists.

Haggis offers a fun and challenging experience for 2-3 players. It requires strategic thinking, hand management, and the ability to adapt to the changing flow of the cards played. So grab some friends, shuffle the deck, and see who can climb their way to victory in the fast-paced world of Haggis!

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