Poker card games beyond poker: what they are and how to play them

As soon as you see the poker cards, a poker game comes to mind, forming hands and thinking of strategies for each street. But there are more games besides poker that can be enjoyed with those same cards and that are perfect if you are looking for something fun, but with a smaller mental component.

We are not saying that there is no strategic component to these games, but let's face it: poker can be exhausting, especially when you are not yet good enough to have the main variables under control.

Most popular poker card games with decks of cards


The Liar

This is a classic card game. Poker cards can also be played, keeping its basic concept suitable for all audiences, with a very simple premise that is the trigger for everything that happens in the game.

Recommended for five or six players, the objective is the same for everyone: to run out of cards. Beware, here what matters more than luck is memory. In each player's turn, he says what he has in his hand, which can be true or false. The cards are placed in the center (decks) and the next player has to judge whether he is telling the truth or not.

If he believes him, he must raise and can pass the turn. If he does not believe him, he has to raise the cards. If the player who made the judgment has lied, he keeps everything on the table. But if it was true, the player who raised the cards keeps them.

Playing with the joker gives a cushion of security and is an interesting way to encourage lying to give a second chance to the one who fails.

The Donkey

This is another game that can be played with poker cards. It can be played by up to a dozen people and you can even put several decks of cards in it. It is considered by some a cooperative card poker game, so you have to play as a team.

As many sets of 4 cards of the same index are chosen as the number of players playing. The objective is to get four cards with the same index by exchanging them with the players following a specific scheme: each player places one of the cards he has face down, counts to three, each player gives his card to the player on his right.

The mechanics is repeated until one player finishes and gets the four cards with the same index. When that happens, he must put his hand in the center of the table and shout "donkey!". At that instant, all players must place their hand on top of the winner's hand. The last one to do so loses.

As with almost all poker card games played with friends, there are versions to suit all tastes. In some areas it is even played with several rounds where winners and losers are designated.

Other poker card games for evenings with friends


You probably know these games because you have played them since childhood with different cards or with simpler rules. You should know that each of the card games played with poker decks also admit variants and concessions to continue playing the same way as always, perfect if you don't want to relearn how to play a classic game!

Reds and Blacks

This game is ideal to play with poker cards. Its mechanics are very simple: it's all about lying and knowing how to defend your lie. There are two roles: the defender and the liar. The players here draw the same number of cards as the number of players taking part (if there are six of you, each player draws six cards).

If there are six of you, you draw three black cards and three red cards. If there are seven of you, five red and two black or vice versa. Move them and deal one to each player. Here there is a narrator who will be one of the players, but the narrator only participates when there are two or three reds in the game. Otherwise, no.

The narrator acts as a mediator because the game is based on accusations, hence the importance of defense. The reds have the objective of lying and not being discovered, while the objective of the blacks is precisely to discover the liars, the reds.

The Solitaire

A mythical game that does not require more players to be enjoyed. Although it is a game that does not enhance the social character of the rest, it is a great way to train in the handling of cards and to learn the scale and hierarchy of cards.

The premise is simple: collect the cards in their respective suits in order. The cards of the deck are used to place them in descending order, and the cards of the column in which we are playing must remain covered until we manage to reposition those cards in a different column to unify the hierarchy. Only then can we uncover it and see if we can use it to continue the same or another ladder.

To move the cards, it is not necessary that the straight is complete, but the cards must be placed in order. The four aces are placed separately and are used to place the final decks, which also allows us to discover more cards of the final columns, the ones with more cards covered.

It is one of the poker card games that has less strategic component, but it is equally enjoyable at times when it is impossible to gather a team to form a game.

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