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Official War Rules

War is a simple and quick card game that can be enjoyed by two players. Here's how to play:

Objective

  • Be the first player to collect all the cards in the deck.

Setup

1. Shuffle the deck and deal all the cards face down evenly to both players. Each player should have their own stack of cards.

Gameplay

Simultaneously, both players turn over the top card of their deck and place it face up in the center of the playing area.

  1. The player who reveals the card with the higher rank wins both cards. The winner takes both cards played (their own and their opponent's) and places them face down on the bottom of their stack.

  2. If both players reveal cards of the same rank, it's "War"! Here's what happens in a War:

    • Each player turns over three cards face down (these are called "war cards") to a new pile in the center, next to the two cards already revealed.

    • Then, both players turn over one final card face up each. This is the "battle" round.

    • The player who reveals the higher card in the battle round wins all ten cards in the center pile (the two initially revealed cards, the six war cards, and the two battle cards). They add all these cards face down to the bottom of their stack.

  3. If the cards revealed in the battle round are another tie, another war is declared! Follow the same steps again, placing three more cards face down for war and then revealing one final card each for battle. This process continues until one player reveals a higher card in the battle round, winning that entire stack of cards.

  4. Play continues by both players revealing one card each time, with the higher card winning both cards played.

Winning the Game

  • The first player to collect all the cards in the deck wins the game!

Notes/Variations

  • Some variations allow the loser of a War to shuffle their entire deck (including the cards they lost in the War) before dealing the three face-down war cards.


  • War is a fast-paced game that can involve some luck with the cards you draw. However, there's no real strategy involved beyond trying to remember which cards have been played to estimate the potential value of your remaining cards.

  • War is a straightforward game that requires no skill or strategy, making it suitable for players of all ages. It's often used as a quick and entertaining way to pass the time.

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