What You Need to Know About Shanghai Rummy


Shanghai Rummy is a card game, based on Gin Rummy and a type of contract rummy, that has been around for a long time. This rummy variant, also known as California Rummy, is considered a family game due to its popularity as a card game played by family members.

Shanghai Rummy

Shanghai Rummy is played with a fixed number of rounds. Here is what you need to know about the game.

Shanghai Rummy is played with two decks of cards including printed Jokers. A minimum of two and a maximum of 4 players can play this game. Each game has a fixed set of 10 rounds. Each round is played with a separate set of conditions and the players have to form sets or sequences as per the conditions of that round. Every player is dealt 11 cards. The objective of the game is to complete all ten hands with the lowest score, and the person with the lowest points at the end of the rounds is declared the winner.

Features of Shanghai Rummy

Shanghai Rummy has the following set of features that are unique to it.

  1. Buy

As per Shanghai Rummy rules, a player may ‘buy’ a card. A player can opt to buy a card from the set of cards placed face up even when it is not their turn. There is a limit to how many ‘buys’ a player can make in each round.

  1. Jokers

Jokers can be used as wild cards in this game. They can be used to complete any incomplete sets or sequences as substitutes for any other cards. However, there is a limit to the number of Jokers you can use per set or sequence.

  1. Melding

Each round is played as per the condition set for the round. The condition here means that a particular set or sequence is to be formed by all the players to win a round. Each of the ten rounds has a different combination as the winning condition.

  1. Playing after being down

Once a player is ‘down,’ meaning they have completed the requirement of the round, they still need to play till the round is completed. They can draw and discard a card each time it is their turn. If the cards they draw can be added to their set they have formed, they can do it without changing the set or sequence.

Melding Cards in Shanghai Rummy

As mentioned earlier each round of Shanghai rummy has a separate condition to win. Here are the conditions for all the rounds.

  • Two sets of three.
  • One set of three and one run of four
  • Two runs of four
  • Three sets of three
  • One set of three and one run of seven
  • Two sets of three and one run of five
  • Three runs of four
  • One set of three and one run of 10
  • Three sets of three and one run of five
  • Three runs of five

So that is the format of Shanghai Rummy. There are a lot of gaming portals that offer this game. One such reputed site is Junglee Games. Visit the site to find further details and learn a lot of other exciting card games.

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