Gin Rummy

Gin Rummy is one of the most popular members of the rummy family. Two people play the card game, and each of the players gets 10 cards.

Gin Rummy can be played by 2 to 6 players with one deck of cards. For more than 6 players it is necessary to put in the second deck of cards.

gin rummy

In this article, we will explore the game rules and the gameplay. Continue reading to learn more about one of the most popular classic card games, Gin Rummy.

Related: Card games list

Gin Rummy rules

The goal of the game is to make cards in your hand from lowest to highest, a mix of 3 cards of the same suits, numbers, or ranks.

Players play the game on 52 card decks.

The jokers also known as wildcards are not used.

If there is more than 6 players in the game it is advisable to use two decks when playing Gin Rummy.

This allows one player to deal with the card, while the other player shuffles the other deck. Gin Rummy cards are ranked from the highest to the lowest.

Here’s the ranking in action:

  • (K) King,
  • (Q) Queen
  • (J) Jack
  • 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3
  • deuce and ace.

When it comes to the game’s card value, the figure card is equivalent to 10 points, while the rest cards are equivalent to the value shown by their pips.

How to play Gin Rummy

Gin Rummy involves the participating players assembling the 10 cards in their hands to form the lowest combination of 3 cards of equal runs of equal suits or ranks.

Dealing cards
Every player receives 10 cards. The remaining deck is placed on the table face down between all players.
Start of the game
However, to begin the game, a first card is placed face up. In each turn, a player will have to begin by drawing a card.
First move
The player has the option to either draw the top card from the deck or the one from the discard pile. Usually, players only draw the top card from the discard pile when they know that it’ll assist them to create a meld with other cards in their hand.
However, keep in mind that the starting players will have two options, which is to draw the upturned card or to simply pass the turn. This means that one of the players’ cards must be discarded.
Discarding cards
The player can decide to pass the card without discarding it if it’s of no interest. The second player on the other hand may choose to pick the card and discard another. If that happens the starting player will then be able to draw the top card from the deck, discarding another.
Drawing cards
The players will continue the game with each of them being able to draw the top card from the deck or from the discard pile, then discard pile. However, it may not be the same card the players just take from the discarding pile.

Creating a knock

You can combine the aces with a deuce, but you can’t mix it with the King (K).

You can decide to fold if your hands consist only of unmatched cards that are equivalent to a value that’s not above 10 points, creating a knock.

knocking hands in gin rummy

Immediately, you discard your last card. You’ll need to show all your cards, and make known the remaining points without combining. It’s not mandatory to knock, you can decide to extend, so you can improve your hand.

Calling a Gin

Making Gin is the best hand, and it comprises putting down the 10 cards combined. Also, when either of the player’s folds, showing his or her cards, the other player will have to do the same too.

winning hand  - Gin

This allows players to remove cards that weren’t matched and allows you to combine cards with those of the player who announced Gin.

The player who announces the Gin wins the partial game, while none of the competing players can win it if one of them knocks.

Gin Rummy glosarry

  • Stock: This refers to a turned-down card in the middle of the table.
  • Discard pile: A pile of turned-up cards kept next to the stock.
  • Meld: A word for runs and sets.
  • Deadwood: Cards in players’ hands that are not part of meld.
  • Knocking: Concluding a round by setting a card turned-down on the discard pile.
  • Lay off: Including your deadwood cards to your opponent’s melds.
  • Gin: This refers to when the 10 cards in a player’s hand are part of melds, and the player has no deadwood.


What is the difference between rummy and gin rummy?

The difference between rummy and gin rummy is that players don’t put down their sets and runs until they’re ready to conclude the game.

Can you play gin rummy with three players?

Yes, you can play gin rummy with three players. However, the dealer will deal only to the two players and won’t be part of the game.

Can you pick up the pile in gin rummy?

At the start of the game, you can pick up the turned-face card or pass.