How to Play Rummy

How To Play Rummy- Beginners Guide

Entering the rummy world for the first time can be confusing and can perhaps make you feel a bit nervous as well. Is it very hard to win a rummy game? Will it take long to win a game? Are the rules very complicated? All these questions are very common and once you understand how to play rummy, they are answered automatically.

Rummy is a simple game and how to play rummy with examples are shown below. The only thing a player who is just starting off needs to remember is to practice playing rummy every day. It makes you confident and helps you enjoy the game. So, let’s get you started with how to play rummy.

Understand how to play rummy online with the important rules that act as a beginner’s guide to get started with the rummy card game.

  1. Indian rummy is played with 2 deck of cards with 13 cards distributed to each player.
  2. Rummy is played with 2 to 6 players.
  3. Rummy is all about making sequences and sets.
  4. The dealer is chosen at random at the beginning, and then each player takes turn to deal the cards.
  5. Once the cards a dealt, a random card is selected from the deck that is called the Joker. A Joker can be used as a substitute for any other card in Rummy.
  6. There are 2 printed Jokers as well that can be used as substitutes while making sets or sequences.
  7. Cards rank from low to high: Ace, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, Jack, Queen and King. Ace has 10 points, number cards have value equal to their number and J, Q, K have 10 points each.
  8. Ace is used as point 10 when making sets in rummy.
  9. To finish or declare this 13 card game, you must have at least 2 sequences (of which one must be pure) and remaining cards can be arranged as sets.

So far so good? Let's get deeper into the objective, how to play and what things we should know while playing online rummy:

How to win the rummy game?

Rummy is the most popular cards game under 'Draw & Discard' category. Here are the main elements to win the rummy game:

Keep a watch on the discard and draw pile and analyze the cards
Observe the moves of the opponent
Shuffle cards and close pure sequence
Create remaining sets sequences
Make a valid Declaration

How are points calculated in rummy game?

Calculating points in rummy game are quite simple. Here are how the cards are valued as per rummy rules.

  • Ace, J, Q, K have 10 points each
  • 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.
  • A Joker has the value equivalent to the card it is replacing. The wild joker has the value of the card it is preselected on.
10 pts
6 pts
10 pts
Equivalent to the number the card represents

How to make sequences and sets?

Every beginner who is starting off with rummy should remember the importance of pure sequence and how to play rummy to win the game quickly.

Rummy 13 card game should have two sequences, out of which one must be pure sequence.

Pure Sequence:

A sequence is a group of 3 or more cards of the same suit. A pure sequence is a group of 3 or more cards of the same suit without any wild card. Here’s an example of a sequence and a pure sequence.

Example of Pure Sequence

Situation 1: K,Q, J are running cards of the same suit and there is no use of any wild card or Jokers. Hence, this forms a pure sequence in rummy.

This is a Sequence
Running cards of the same suit.

Situation 2: This example once more shows, number cards of the same suit without any Joker. This also forms a pure sequence.

4 5 6
Pure Sequence.
Running cards of the same suit.

Situation 3: A pure sequence doesn’t necessarily need to be limited to 3 cards. A pure sequence can be made from 3 or more cards. Here’s an example of pure sequence with 4 cards.

Tip: The straightforward way to do it is, pick cards of the same suit in a continuous order and you get a pure sequence. Colour of the card is not important here.
2 3 4 5

Impure sequence:

In this, cards are of the same suit, but one card in the group is a wild or Joker card. Let’s elaborate this with the help of examples.

Situation 1: In this example, the Joker card is replacing the Jack card. Even though it forms a sequence, this type is called an impure sequence.

8 9 10  JOKER

Situation 2: In this situation, the Joker is replacing 10 while the remaining cards remain the same. This is an example of a valid impure sequence.


Valid Set:

A set is a group of 3 or 4 cards of the same rank but different suits. However, a set cannot have two or more cards of the same rank. A set can also include a Joker to complete the hand.

Situation 1: A A A This is a valid set having same value cards of different suits. The colour of the suits is not important.

This is a set
This face value cards

Situation 2: This is one more example of a valid set. However, the fourth card here is a Joker, replacing 7 ️. There’s nothing like pure or impure sets, so Joker can be used here.

7 7 7  JOKER

Invalid Set:

If a player use 2 cards of the same suit in one group of set, it is called as invalid set. Here are some situations of invalid set in rummy.

Situation 1: This group has two cards of K and that’s incorrect. Hence, this will not be counted as a valid set.


Situation 2: In this group, there are 2 cards of 7 and hence this set is also not valid.

7 7 7 7
This is a invalid set

Tip: One of the key elements to play rummy is to balance the sequences and sets.

How to use Jokers to play rummy?

Joker card is used in both sequences and sets. There are two types of Jokers that are used in a 13 card rummy game. One is the wild card Joker and the other is the Joker card available in the pack.

Wild Joker:

At the beginning of the game, one card at random is selected as the Wild Card Joker. This card is selected from the closed deck and is placed horizontally along with the closed deck.

Situation 1: Queen as Wild Joker card to form impure sequence (5 6 7 Q)
We will first form a sequence with Q. Here Q is replacing 8 . This is an example of impure sequence.

Situation 2: Queen as Joker to form set (A Q A A)
We will now form a set here with Q . Here the Q has been used in place of A to form a set. Q has replaced A to form a set of A A A A

What are Printed Joker (PJ) & how they are used?

There are two printed Jokers in a 13 card rummy game. They are used in the same way as the wild card Joker. You can use printed Jokers to form sets and sequences. Here’re some examples using printed Joker to form your hand.

Situation 1: Printed Joker to form sequence (3 4 5PJ)
Here printed Joker has replaced 6 to form a sequence 3 4 5 6. Remember, you can’t form a pure sequence using a printed Joker.

3 4 5  JOKER

Situation 2: Printed Joker to form set (5 5 PJ 5)
In this example, printed Joker has replaced 5 to form a set of 5 5 5 5

5 5  JOKER 5

Important Tip: If the printed Joker is also the wild card in a rummy game, then all the Ace’s of the suits become wild card

What is Open Deck and Closed Deck in Rummy?

After the players have 13 cards each, the remaining cards are arranged in a closed deck. Here’s how players can pick and discard cards from the given decks.

  • The game starts with one card in the open deck and a wild card selected at random.
  • He can then pick a card either from the open deck where he can see the card he is picking up or from the closed deck, where he doesn’t know the card coming his way.
  • A player must also discard a card that he doesn’t require in the open deck. It’s also called the discard pile.

Please note, a player who is picking the card from the open deck, cannot discard the same card again in the pile.

What is a Valid and Invalid Declaration?

When you are learning how to play rummy, it is important to know the difference between a valid declaration and an invalid declaration.

For a valid declaration, the show of hands must be in a proper order. You need 2 valid sequences and 2 sets. Here’re some things to keep in mind while making a Declaration.

  1. A set can have maximum of 4 cards. So, if a Joker is added it should be the 4th card in the set and not the 5th.
  2. A set cannot have more than one card of the same suit. If a set has two cards of the same suit, it can lead to invalid declare.
  3. A pure sequence is a must to qualify as a valid Declare. Also, a pure sequence can’t have any Joker or Wild Card.

Example of a valid declaration: In this example 8 is the wild card and replacing 2 . The first group is a pure sequence, next is impure sequence, then a regular set and a set with wild joker.

You need atleast 1 pure sequence and 1 valid sequence

Example of invalid declaration: In this hand, there is no pure sequence. It is a must to have a pure sequence before you declare the game.

Show does not have a life (Sequences) without a joker - That is a wrong show

How to Play Rummy Videos

There are different variants of rummy and they differ slightly from one another. Here’re some demo videos to get you started with playing rummy.

Points Rummy

Points Rummy

This is the classic and the most popular format of Rummy where points are assigned to each card. The points have a pre-decided rupee value. Winning amount of the winner is decided based on the remaining points of other players. The 13 card game format is preferred due its fast pace as the game lasts for only one round unlike Deals or Pool Rummy. Watch the demo to learn more

Deals Rummy

Deals Rummy

This format was introduced exclusively for the benefit of our players. All players are given an equal number of chips where they play for a pre-decided number of deals. One winner wins all the chips at the end of each deal. Player with maximum number of chips, at the end of all pre-decided deals, wins the game. Watch the demo to know more.

Pool Rummy

Pool Rummy

Pool Rummy is one of the most exciting 13 card game rummy version that you can enjoy on our website. All players pay a fixed entry fee that becomes the prize pool. More than winning, one needs to minimize losses! Winner of every deal gets 0 points, and the rest accumulate points based on their cards. Once a player reaches the maximum limit of points on the table (101 or 201), he/she is eliminated. Watch the demo to find out how Pool Rummy is played.

Hope you have learned quite in details and know the basic things to start playing online rummy game. For android users, RummyCircle have rummy game free download app and if you are an IOS user, you can play on mobile site

Now learn more while playing practice games. Once you feel you have grabbed enough rummy skills, you should try rummy cash games to win cash and have fun!

Top FAQs on How to Play Rummy for Beginners

  1. From which pile can I pick the card?
    A player can pick card from both the discard pile and the closed pile. However, as a useful rummy tip, you should always try to pick from the closed pile.
  2. Once I have grouped my cards in sets and sequences, what should I do with the last extra card?
    Before you hit the Declare button, you have to discard that last extra card. At no point, your hand can have more than 13 cards. The best way is to discard and Declare.
  3. If I don’t have a pure sequence can I declare?
    If you declare without a pure sequence in your hand, then it will be an invalid declaration and your opponent will win the game.
  4. Can the Joker be used as a wild card?
    Yes, the regular Joker card can also be used as a wild card in rummy. The other wild card is the one peeping from the closed deck and can replace any card value.
  5. If I pick a card from the discard pile and see another card that I could also use, can I pick up again?
    No, you can only pick one card/turn.
  6. Can you place King and Ace one after the other?
    Yes, in rummy Ace can be placed along with King. So the sequence is Ace, King, Queen, Jack.
  7. What is a drop? When a player decides to exit the game for any reason it is called a drop.  
  8. When does auto play happen in rummy?
    If the player gets disconnected due to instable internet connect, auto play gets enabled. Once, he is again connected, he can resume playing the game.
  9. Can you play more than one game at a time?
    Yes, it is possible to play multi-table games with RummyCircle.
  10. How can you play cash games?
    To play cash games, the player must do a minimum deposit of Rs. 25/- and pick a cash game to get started.
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