Learn to Play

Boat House Rum

Go"rummy" when you get rid of all your cards at once.
Game Type
2, 3, 4, 5+

Rank of Cards

K (high), Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, A. (In many forms of Rummy, the ace may rank either high or low).

The Deal

Dealer gives one card at a time face down, beginning with the player on the left. When two people play, each person gets 10 cards. When three or four people play, each receives seven cards; when five or six play, each receives six cards. The remaining cards are placed face down on the table, forming the stock.

The top card of the stock is turned face up and becomes the upcard. It is placed next to the stock to start the discard pile.

When two people play, the winner of each hand deals the next. When more than two play, the deal passes to next the player on the left.

Object of the Game

Each player tries to form matched sets consisting of groups of three or four of a kind, or sequences of three or more cards of the same suit. An ace counts either high or low in a sequence, and sequences may go round the corner as in K, A, 2, or A, K, Q.

The Play

Beginning with the player to the left of the dealer, each player in turn may draw two cards from the stock or, before drawing those cards, two cards from the top of the discard pile. Then the player discards only one card. Play does not end until a player can lay down their entire hand at once.

The player may also lie down on the table, face up, any meld (matched set). If the player does not wish to lay down a meld, they discard one card, face up, onto the discard pile. If the player has drawn from the discard pile, they may not discard the same card on that turn.

Laying Off

A player may add one or more from their hand to any matched set already shown on the table. Thus, if threes are showing, they may add the fourth three; if 10, 9, 8 are showing, he may add J, or Q, J, 7, or 7, 6.

Going Out

When a player gets rid of all of their cards, they win the game.

If the last card of the stock has been drawn and no player has gone out, the next player in turn may either take the top of the discard pile, or may turn the discard pile over to form a new stock (without shuffling it) and draw the top card. Play then proceeds as before.

How to Keep Score

A player pays only for cards in their hand, which does not form matched sets. A player pays the pip value of all unmatched cards, with the ace counting as 11 points

A player goes "rummy" when they get rid of all cards in their hand at once, without previously having put down or laid off any cards. In this event, every other player pays double - twice what their opponents would otherwise owe.