rummy vs gin rummy

7 Differences Between Rummy and Gin Rummy


People have loved and played rummy for ages. There are a lot of popular variants of rummy like Shanghai Rummy, Contract Rummy, Dummy Rummy, Gin Rummy, Indian Rummy, and many more. But do you know which variant of rummy received the most players’ love and appreciation across the globe? It’s Indian Rummy and Gin Rummy.

These two card games might appear similar to you but they have many significant differences. To answer all your questions about Gin Rummy and Indian Rummy or 13 card rummy, we describe all the differences between the two versions of rummy below.

1. Number of Players

Rummy:  Indian Rummy is usually played by two to six players.

Gin Rummy: In Gin Rummy, the number of players is either two or four.

2. Choosing the Dealer

Rummy: When you play rummy online for cash or for free, cards are dealt automatically by the game program. There is no human dealer in online Indian Rummy but in real-world Indian Rummy, the dealer is picked randomly for the first game/round and the opportunity to deal cards rotates clockwise in subsequent games/rounds.

Gin Rummy: In the real-world Gin Rummy card game, each player picks up a card from the shuffled deck and the player who gets the lowest-value card is chosen to deal cards first. The same procedure is used after each hand to determine the dealer. Unlike in Indian Rummy, the chance to deal doesn’t move automatically.

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3. Game Objective

Rummy: Whether you play free rummy game or cash rummy game, the objective in Indian Rummy is to arrange your cards in valid sets and sequences and get a score of zero or get the lowest score in the pool rummy format of Indian Rummy.

Gin Rummy: The objective is to arrange your cards in valid sets and runs/sequences until a player knocks or lays down their hand after forming necessary sets and runs.

4. Playing Cards

Rummy: As per the basic Indian rummy rules, each player draws a card from the closed deck or the open deck/discard pile on each turn. After picking a card, the player discards a card to the discard pile. But if the player chooses to draw the top card from the discard pile, the rules prohibit them from discarding the same card to the discard pile in the same turn.

Gin Rummy: In a Gin Rummy game, the non-dealing player has the choice to pick the topmost card from the open deck. If the player refuses to pick that card, the opportunity goes to the dealer. If the dealer does not want to pick that card either, the non-dealing player may pick a card from the closed deck.

5. Scoring 

Rummy: Face cards are worth 10 points each, while the numbered cards are worth their face values. The total value of the unmatched cards in each player’s hand at the time of declaration is added up and they lose the game by those points.

Gin Rummy: Here, the player may declare their hand in two ways. The first way is by declaring the hand after arranging all the cards in sets and runs with no deadwood. This is called going gin, for which the player scores 25 points.

The second way is by knocking. If the total value of a player’s deadwood cards is less than 10, the player may go for knocking. The knocker’s score is equal to the difference between the values of the knocker’s deadwood cards and the deadwood cards of their opponent.

6. Jokers

Rummy: The Indian Rummy card game is played with Jokers. After shuffling, a wild Joker is also selected randomly. All the cards that have the same face value as the randomly selected wild Joker but different suits become wild Jokers.

Gin Rummy: No jokers are used in Gin Rummy. 

7. Aces

Rummy: Aces have the lowest as well as the highest value in the Indian Rummy game. An ace can form a sequence with the 2 and the 3 of the same suit or the Queen and the King of the same suit. 

Gin Rummy: Aces have the lowest value in a Gin Rummy game.


Indian Rummy and Gin Rummy have differences in the number of cards used as well as the value of aces, number of players, play and scoring. They are both exciting games but Indian Rummy is by far the most popular rummy variant in India. 

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