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Official Tri Peaks (Solitaire) Rules

Tri Peaks is a patience or solitaire card game that is similar to the solitaire games Golf and Black Hole. The game uses one deck and the object is to clear three peaks made up of cards. Here's how to play:

Objective

The goal of Tri Peaks Solitaire is to remove all the cards from the tableau (also called the peaks) by strategically playing them onto the discard pile (sometimes called the waste pile).

Setup

1. Shuffle the Deck: Mix all the cards in the deck face down.


2. Deal the Tableau: Deal 18 cards face down in three overlapping rows to form three peaks. The first row should have three cards, the second row should have five cards (covering the middle card of the first row), and the third row should have seven cards (covering the middle three cards of the second row).


3. Deal the Face-Up Cards: Turn the top card of each peak face up. These cards are available for play.


4. Deal the Stock and Waste Pile: Deal the remaining cards face down in a pile next to the tableau. This is the stock. Turn the top card of the stock face up to create the waste pile (discard pile).

Gameplay

Tri Peaks Solitaire is all about building on the discard pile and uncovering cards from the peaks to make them playable. Here's how it unfolds:

  1. Playing Cards: You can only play cards onto the discard pile (waste pile) if their rank is one higher or one lower than the value of the card currently showing on top of the pile. For example, if the top card on the discard pile is a Queen, you can play either a King or a Jack on it.

  2. Uncovering Cards: When you play a card from the face-up row of a peak, the card below it in that same peak is automatically revealed. This gives you more options for building on the discard pile.

  3. Using the Stock: If you can't play any face-up cards from the peaks onto the discard pile, you can flip the top card from the stock pile. If the revealed card can be played on the discard pile, you can do so. However, if the stock card cannot be played, it simply remains face up on the discard pile.

Winning the Game

You win Tri Peaks Solitaire if you successfully remove all 28 cards (18 from the tableau and 10 from the stock) by playing them onto the discard pile according to the rank building rules.

Notes/Variations

  • Aces are High: In Tri Peaks Solitaire, Aces are considered the highest value, ranking above Kings. So, you can only play a Two on an Ace.

  • No Redeals: Unlike some solitaire games, Tri Peaks typically doesn't allow you to restart the game with a new shuffle if you get stuck. The challenge is to strategize and utilize the available cards to try and win the game.

  • Multiple Discard Pile Strategies: Some variations allow you to move the entire discard pile (all the played cards) to create a temporary space to play a card from a peak that wouldn't normally be playable due to the current discard pile card. However, this adds another layer of complexity and may not be included in all versions.

Tri Peaks Solitaire is a fun and engaging game that provides a satisfying challenge for solitaire enthusiasts. It's a great way to test your strategic thinking and enjoy a relaxing game of cards.

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