Spider Solitaire – Player’s Guide

The goal of this solitaire game is to remove 8 columns of cards at the bottom, each descending from King to Ace in a single suit. When a column like this is created it is automatically removed from the game freeing up space and opening up cards for you to continue.

Game set up

Spider Solitaire is played with two decks of 52 cards with all jokers removed.

You will see at the start of the game that 10 columns are dealt at the top, with only the top card shown. You must rearrange the deal to uncover the cards underneath.

The first 4 columns of cards have 5 cards that are face down with the sixth card at the bottom dealt face up. The last 6 columns of cards have 4 cards dealt face down, with the fifth and final card on these columns dealt face up.

The rest of the cards remain in the deck to be used later.

How to play the game

The basic rules of spider solitaire are as follows. A single card can be moved onto a column if it is one lower than the card it is covering (e.g. A Queen of Hearts can cover any Red King or Black King). When trying to move a column of cards, they can only be moved if they are all in the same suit. For this reason, wherever possible it is best to create descending columns of the same suit.

If a column is empty, you can place anything on it. It is vitally important to use this well, as freeing up other options is exactly what this card game is about.

You can deal more cards to the layout by clicking the card located in the bottom right. These cards will cover all 8 columns, forcing you to rearrange them so you can reach any grouped columns you have created and arranged previously.

There are three possible versions of spider solitaire. All three use the same basic rules, but the way the cards can be moved is slightly different for the easier version. It’s probably best to explain the detailed rules for the 4-suit version of the game first and then explain the changes for the easier two suit version and one suit version.

Things to keep in mind

  • Cards can be built by ranking them in a descending order
  • You can pick and drag only cards of the same suit
  • The purpose is to remove all cards from the game board by scoring royal flushes (of the same suit), from King to Ace
  • Earn 100 points by scoring a royal flush
  • Don’t use too many moves as you will lose one point for every move
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