The Rules of Spider Solitaire

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Spider solitaire is a more difficult version of solitaire that does not use a waste pile, and it has a two-deck stockpile. Find out when everything can be moved up into a foundation pile in Spider solitaire with help from an experience card game player in this free video on spider solitaire.

Part of the Video Series: Solitaire Games
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Video Transcript

This is a video for how to learn to play the Spider version of Solitaire. Now before we go any further, I want to ask you a question- are you ready to learn about a very hard version of Solitaire? If you haven't played a lot of Solitaire perhaps try another game first because Spider in its original form is indeed hard. Now in Solitaire games you have a stockpile which is the deck of cards that is left over after you deal what's called your tableau. This is the Spider tableau and commonly in Solitaire games there is a waste pile. Spider does not have a waste pile. It has a two deck stock pile, tableau with ten piles on it, the four on your left are going to be one, two, three, four, five cards down, one card up and then six on your right are going to be four cards down and one card up and since you are playing with two decks you are trying to build up to eight foundations, one for each suit and we've got double the amounts of suit. What I mean is there are two hearts, two sets of spades, two sets of clubs, two sets of diamonds and therefore, you have eight foundations. Now the way the game works is that on the tableau we build down from King to Ace so that's descending and one plus for this game is we're not concerned about suit when we're building down which is very good. We're only concerned about suit when actually we're not even concerned so much about suit when we're building up so that's excellent. So the way that it works is I've got a King over here and I'm going to look for something to play on that King. There's a Queen so I'm going to move it over and I'm going to turn the card below it over. It's an Ace. One thing that's very important about this game is you cannot move anything up to a foundation pile until you have a run descending from King to Ace. So even though I've got Aces on three of my tableau piles I cannot move them up at this time. This is a very hard game. So looking around the board right now the best play I can make is to move this two over to this three and turn a card over. There's a six. I'm going to move this five over to the six, turn the next card in that tableau pile over. It's a four, get a little run going, that's cool and then I hit a ten, can't make any more moves over here. I can move this three and this two over and this is a very important time to mention that where suits do apply are when you want to move a run a sequence of cards. You can only move sequenced cards that are in the same suit. I told you this game was hard. I hope you still want to play it. So there you go. Now I've got a six, five, four, three, two and I could move the three and the two because they were the same suit. Back over here going to turn over what turns out to be a Queen. Put this Queen on top of this King. I hit a four, let's look around for other moves. Well I can move one of my three Ace's to any two, there's a two, there we go, turn this tableau over and I hit a six. Finally I have no moves left on the tableau. In my opinion it is very important to make sure that you exhaust every move you can on the tableau before you take cards from the stock pile because what you're going to do is now that I have no moves you're going to go card here, card here, and so forth and every time just about what you're going to be adding is a card that disrupts the sequence beneath it and that's another level of difficulty for this game. So now you have to work with these and you have to try to move cards around and get back to recreating your sequences. Like I said the game is very hard so I want to make a couple, mention a couple of points. Let's say hypothetically that I was able to move all of my cards that were in this tableau pile to another space on the board and create an empty space on the tableau. Well if I get to a point where I can make no moves and this space is open the way the rules work for Spider I cannot deal cards from the stock pile until I fill this space. What's cool is you can fill this space with any card, you know in Klondike, regular Solitaire you can only fill a space, an empty space on the tableau with a King. In this game you can fill it with any card or any suited sequence and at this time I'm going to fill it maybe not with the best card for what's available out here but I want to show you, you can put a Jack in there or you can choose to put a Queen in there or a seven, whatever works best based upon your experience with the game and the strategy that you develop. Now that I have this spot filled and we assume that I have no moves left again I would go one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten and again you see how hard this game is. It gets harder and harder but it is possible to actually build a descending sequence from King to Ace and when you do that you will have the opportunity to reverse that sequence and put it on the foundation area, your eight foundations in reverse order. Now obviously we have described and demonstrated a game here that's very hard so I want to take this opportunity before we end and explain to you that there are two rule variations that make this game much easier to play. One is called Spider Two Suits, the other is called Spider One Suit. Basically in Spider Two Suits you're going to need four decks of cards and what you're going to do is that instead of having four suits from two decks of cards you're going to have two suits, four decks of cards, take your four decks of cards and separate all of the spades and the hearts casting all of the clubs and the diamonds aside and you can play this game with two suits which makes it, takes it from high difficulty to like medium difficulty and the reason is you can only move sequences from one pile to another if the whole sequence is suited and that's why if you want to play a really easy version of Spider you play One Suit Spider so you don't ever have to think about that suited sequence rule and I can tell you the only game of Spider I personally ever completed and won is Single Suit Spider. So there you go. I hope you have a good time and I hope you pick the version of Spider that suits you.


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