Carioca Rummy is very popular in Argentina and Chile which makes it a regional game, some what in the mould of Contract Rummy, but designed more for two players rather than the normal four. Two packs of cards are used without the jokers, although including them does give the game a more exciting slant.
The two packs of cards are shuffled together and cut by both players to determine the dealer.Lowest card deals, (ace being the lowest and king the highest) 12 cards to each player, with the balance placed in the center of the table, face down. The top card is turned over and placed next to the stack.
The aim of the game is to make contracts of three or more cards in sets (called ‘Trios’), or sequences ( called ‘Escalas’). Sets are cards of the same value, and sequences are cards of the same suit, running sequentially. In this game, sequences can run ‘around the corner’ ie K,A,2,3 etc. When a player has a contract in their hand they place it on the table face up, (also called melding). The idea of the game is to get rid of all your cards as soon as possible. Once the player has cards on the table they can ‘lay off’ cards on their opponents contracts as well.
Carioca Rummy is made up of 8 deals all requiring differing Trios and Escalas as follows:-
- Deal 1 Two Trios
- Deal 2 one Trio and one Escalas
- Deal 3 Two Escalas
- Deal 4 Three Trios
- Deal 5 Two Trios and one Escalas
- Deal 6 One Trios and two Escalas
- Deal 7 Four Trios
- Deal 8 Three Escalas
As in rummy a normal turn consisits of either taking a card off the stack or discard pile to enhance the cards held in the players hand, and then discarding a card not rquired. The player with the least amount of points after 8 deals is the winner. Cards have the following points value.
- Jokers 25 points
- Aces 15 points
- Picture cards 10 points
- All other cards are valued as per their printed value. ie 3=3,4=4,5=5,etc.
At the end of each deal, cards still in the players hand are totalled up and a score sheet kept.