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Hand and Foot Card Game Variations



The Shuffle:

 All respondents except ten shuffle all the cards together. The author and one other are the only ones who sort the card after each deal. We do this to prevent someone getting an extremely unbalanced hand. It also makes it possible to increase the odds of picking up the card you want, by watching what cards have come from which pile.

The Deal:

       There are many variations in ways of dealing. Because they all end up with each player having a hand and a foot, I won't go into them. A number of respondents (58) do give a bonus if when dealing, a person picks up the exact number of cards required to make one hand and one foot.

       Number of cards in the hand and foot do vary widely, as follows:

Object of Game & Length of Game.

       The object of the game is to either get the most points in a fixed number of rounds, (381 of 506 resp.) or to be the first to reach a certain number of points (125 of 503 respondents.

Minimum Points for initial meld at each round

By Rounds

By Game score - 125 respondents


       Threes are almost always minus points, unless they can be put into a canasta. The points shown here are for threes not in a canasta

Types & Values of Canastas

Picking Up and Discarding:

       Almost all respondents pick up two cards and discard one card

       One respondent plays that the first person playing, can pick up the single discard, and doesn't have to play. He only gets the one card if he does pick up the discard.

Picking up the discard pile:

       All respondents required that to pick up the discard pile, the player must hold two matching cards in his hand, and must play the top card together with his matching pair.

       The number of cards taken from the discard pile varied as follows:

Picking up the Foot:

       Most respondents play that you can pick up your foot after you get rid of all the cards from your Hand. Most play that if you play all your cards in the hand, you can immediately go into your foot without stopping. One resp. plays that you must wait until your next turn.

       One resp. plays that partner of the intial melder, after completing the first canasta, may pick up his foot. His partner then is free to complete a canasta, and when he has done so, may pick up his foot.

       One resp. plays that the partnership must have completed one clean and two dirties before they can pick up their foot.

Clean and Dirty Piles: No. of cards allowed

Dirty Piles:No. of wild cards allowed.

Going Out:

       In order to "go out" the partner going out must get rid of all the cards in your Hand and your Foot and have canastas as follows:

       Four respondents say that the partner going out cannot ask if his partner wants to go out. Most require that he ask. Two say that he may ask.

More card games.