(Above is the set up for a traditional game of Spit)
Card Game Rules
Spit is a classic game played with 2 people and a standard 52 playing card deck. The objective of the game is to lose all of your cards.
For more classic games, check out our guides for Crazy Eights and Slapjack.
If you are looking for cards to play Spit with, check out a standard deck here or one of our more recent arrivals here.
A free online version of Spit may be played here.
Before gameplay can begin, a dealer must be selected. Each player draws one card from a shuffled deck. The player with the lowest card becomes the dealer. The dealer shuffles the deck and passes out all of the cards one by one to them and the other player.
Players then alternately build up 5 stacks to form the tableau. With the first stack contains 1 card, the second stack contains 2 cards and so on until 5 stacks are made. The top cards are faced up while the others are faced down.
The rest of the cards are kept by each player and form the spit pile.
How to Play
Players begin gameplay by each placing the top card of their spit pile onto the center of the playing table. Players then use the two piles to get rid of cards in their tableau. Players can get rid of cards if the card is up facing on their tableau and follows in increasing or decreasing sequence to the cards in the center. Players can also place cards on their own tableau piles as long as the cards follow in sequence. In Spit, Aces can be high and low so, they can be played against a King and a 2. Once a card is played, players will flip up the top card of the pile they just played from and continue in the game.
There are no turns in Spit. Instead, players try to get rid of their tableau as soon as possible. If no player can play against any of the cards in the center, players play the top card in their spit pile.
Once one of the players gets rid of their tableau, any player can quickly slap either of the two center piles. The first one to do so keeps the pile they slap while the other player gets the other pile. Because the objective is to ultimately get rid of all of your cards, players should try to slap the pile with the fewest cards. After a round, players will shuffle their cards and build a new tableau and continue playing.
If both players do not have spit piles and neither can play on the center cards, the round is over and players try to slap the pile with the fewest cards.
When a player cannot build a full tableau, their will only be one pile in the center. Gameplay continues until one player loses all of their cards.
For more information on the rules of Spit, check out Wikipedia’s article here and Pagat’s article here.
Looking for more card games to play? Check out this article:
40+ Great Card Games For All Occasions
About the author: John Taylor is a content writer and freelancer through the company Upwork.com. You may view his freelancing profile here. He has a B. A. in English, with a specialty in technical writing, from Texas A&M University and a M. A. in English from the University of Glasgow. You may view his previous articles about card games here and his LinkedIn profile here.