If you know how to play ‘Slap Jack’ but you’ve never heard of the ‘Egyptian war’, you’re almost good to go, because these 2 card games are very similar. However, if ‘Slap Jack’ doesn’t ring any bells, don’t panic. We’ve prepared a quick guide on the ‘Egyptian war’ card game and you’ll be a master in no time.
Keep on reading to discover the rules of the game and, most importantly, how to win it.
Materials and equipment
All you need to get things started is a standard 52-card deck.
Players and purposes
Since the ‘Egyptian war’ card game doesn’t require too much preparation, it’s a great indoor activity to be played at school, at home, during outdoor team buildings, campings, or when you’re having friends over in your backyard.
Players: It’s also appropriate for any age, so it can be played by the entire family – kids, teens, adults, elder people – just name the people you want to have fun with! The ‘Egyptian war’ card game requires between 2 and 6 players.
Objective: The winner of the game is the player who gathers all the cards.
How do you play the ‘Egyptian war’ card game?
- The dealer starts by dealing out all the cards. Some players might have 1 more card than others. The cards are not looked at and remain face down in front of each player.
- The player left of the dealer is the first to play.
- He starts by flipping over a card from the top of his deck and placing it in the middle. This is how the central pile begins.
- The play moves clockwise, until a face card (Jack, Queen, King), or Ace is played. Now, once that happens, the real game begins. Let’s name the player flipping over a face card or an Ace, Player A. The one following him, player B, has to play a face card or Ace as well. Depending on the face card showing, player B will have a different number of chances to play a face card or an Ace.
- If an Ace is played, player B has 4 chances to play a face card or an Ace.
- If a King is played, player B has 3 chances to play a face card or an Ace.
- If a Queen is played, player B has 2 chances to play a face card or an Ace.
- If a Jack is played, player B has 1 chance to play a face card or an Ace.
4. The challenged player (player B, in our case) has to play his cards one at a time until he either draws another face card onto the pile or exhausts all of his given chances.
- If player B is able to play a face card, the next player after him must beat it.
- If player B doesn’t flip over a face card or an Ace, player A wins the middle pile. The player who wins the middle pile (player A, in our case) starts the new pile.
*Important: Players are not allowed to shuffle their cards at any time. Once a player wins the middle pile, he must add it to the bottom of his stack.
5. There is another way to win the ‘Egyptian war’ card game; that is by snapping.
- When two cards of the same rank (for example 2 of hearts and 2 of diamonds) are placed next to each other;
- When three cards form a sandwich around another card (for example 2 of hearts, 9 of spades, and 2 of clubs). Any of the players who placed the 2 of hearts and clubs may place their hand on the pile. For a valid snap, the person who reacts the quickest and slaps the pile first wins.
*Note: If multiple players slap at the same time with no clear winner, the game continues with no one taking the pile.
6. If players have fewer cards than chances left while attempting to counter a challenge and they run out of cards without a successful counter, they are eliminated from play.
*Note: Players who have been eliminated may re-enter the game by winning a snap.
Skills and abilities
- Focus: You have to pay attention to the other players as well and be quick when you spot the chance to slap.
- Mathe skills: It’s useful to keep in mind what face cards have been played in order to figure out your chances of winning.
- Strategic thinking: Each hand comes with a new opportunity to slap and get ahold of the whole pile of cards.
If you’re into card games, you might also want to check out how to play ‘Fruit salad’!