• Rummy Tips and Tricks

Rummy Tips, Tricks and Strategies

Indian rummy is an exciting card game that tests a player’s patience, strategy, and observation skills. From its presumed roots in the Mughal era, rummy has evolved to become a part of the very fabric of our culture. This 13-card game is a part of our festivities and is widely played amongst friends and family, thanks to its online popularity.

Rummy Tips and Tricks
Rummy Tips and Tricks

A rummy game needs a player to use a combination of logical reasoning and strategic skills. One needs to be quick with their moves as a rummy game is timed, but at the same time, think a few moves ahead. Mastering rummy takes practice; lots and lots of it. Platforms like Playship Rummy App offer players virtually unlimited free games to practice with.

While the basics remain the same, each rummy game comes with its own set of challenges. Each game requires a slightly different tactic. Expert players who play for real cash employ many tricks along with their usual rummy strategy to outsmart their opponents. Today we will talk about some rummy tricks that can help give you an edge during the game.

High-Value Cards Should be Discarded if Required

K, Q, J and Ace are the highest-ranking cards in a rummy game, each with 10 points. A player should try to discard them early in the game if they are not likely to declare before their opponents to reduce their final points.

High-Value Cards Should be Discarded if Required

A player should aim at discarding duplicate cards/idle cards that might not fit in a potential set or sequence at the earliest. For example, if you have 2♥, 3♥, 4♥, 4♥, 5♥, and the extra 4♥ does not have other 4s to make a set with, then it’s a good idea to discard it.

Discard Cards Close to the Wild Joker

A Joker is a very valuable card that can be used to substitute any missing card in a sequence or set. Many pro players do not like using the wild card Joker as part of a pure sequence.

Let’s say 2♦ is the wild card Joker in the game. You can discard cards around this, such as 3♦, A♦ or 4♦. Your opponent may not want to waste a Joker in creating a pure sequence, so chances are they will not pick up any of your discarded cards.

Use Jokers Smarty

Jokers, both printed and wild cards, are very crucial to your game. They can substitute any card in a sequence or a set and are worth 0 points, so most players retain them till the end. Once you have a pure sequence in place, all other sequences and sets can use Jokers in them.

It is important to note the priority order of groupings. The ‘lifeline’ for a rummy game is a pure sequence. If you don’t have that, all your other sequences and sets will be considered invalid. The next important part is having a sequence, which can be pure too, or impure, which is where the Joker comes in. Once you have 2 sequences, the rest of the cards and Jokers can be grouped as sets too.

Save Middle Cards for Making Desired Sequences

Let’s say you have 4♣, 6♣ and 8♣. In this case, you would want to save 6♣ because it can help with sequences on both sides:

4♣, 5♣, 6♣


6♣, 7♣, 8♣

4-Card Sequences Increase the Chances of Winning

Since there are 13 cards in rummy, the breakup of groups would most likely be 4 + 3 + 3 + 3 cards. There are higher chances of making a 4-card sequence than of getting all 4 same-ranked cards. So, try to make a 4-card sequence early on in the game to increase your chances of winning.

Making at Least One Pure Sequence Should be Priority

The first ‘heart’ in a rummy game is unlocked when you make a pure sequence. It’s only after a pure sequence that your other groupings would be deemed valid. A second heart unlocks upon making the second sequence, which can be pure or impure. After this, one can make sequences or sets, there’s no rule.

A lot depends on making a pure sequence early on. Don’t wait for the right card for too long, and keep updating your strategy. Let us suppose you have a 5♠ and 7♠ and are waiting for 6♠. If there’s an open 4♠ to take, most players would take it and discard the 7♠ because the possibilities with 2 consecutive cards are higher than that of alternate cards.

Never Hold on to Cards for Too Long

Don’t keep holding on to cards for too long, hoping for a future sequence or set. Hindering the other possible groupings may be a bad strategy. A pro player knows when to get rid of a card.

Keep in Mind the Cards You Discard

It is advisable to remember your disposed cards because they help you strategise better. Pro players also monitor the cards their opponents discard to gauge what kind of sequences and sets they’re making.

Watch Your Opponents’ Moves Carefully

Pro rummy players always keep track of the disposed cards and the cards picked up by the opponents. That way, they can gauge what kind of sequences and sets the opponents are making, helping them stay one step ahead in the game.

For example, if you see your opponent discard 2♥, 3♥ and K♥, it is a safe assumption that they are not looking at making

A♥, K♥, Q♥ or

A♥, 2♥, 3♥ or

2♥, 3♥, 4♥

So, you can discard A♥ which is a high-ranking card (reducing your total points) and would be unusable to your opponent.

Fishing Technique to Outsmart Your Opponents

Tricking your opponent to dispose of a card you require for your own sequences/sets is called fishing. Pro players use this little rummy trick all the time; they use a card to bait the opponent to discard a desirable card.

Let’s say you are looking to make a set of 4s. You presently hold 4♠, 4♥ and 5♣. You may want to discard the 5♣, so the opponent may feel it is safe to discard a 4♣, which is the card you want.

Drop Out at the Right Time

At the end of a rummy game, the goal is to make the first valid declaration, and if not, then to be left with the lowest points possible on the table. There is no compulsion to play the game till the end. Dropping is always an option especially when you are dealt a hand you’re not confident with.

For example, in a Points rummy game, if you drop as soon as the deal begins without drawing a card, you get 20 points. Dropping midway would cost you 40 points.

FAQs on Rummy Tips, Tricks and Strategies

1. Is it possible to win against pro players if you are a beginner?

Yes! It is possible to win against pro players once you completely understand how to play rummy and keep the aforementioned strategies in mind. Practice makes perfect, so keep playing free rummy games to build your skills and confidence.

2. Is it possible to win in rummy every time?

Winning every rummy game is not guaranteed, no matter how great you are at the game. One wrong disposed card or one sequence you wait too long to complete can result in a loss. Every game is different, and so is its strategy. With continuous practice, every player can certainly get much better at quick thinking and dynamic strategising.

3. Is it advisable to start playing cash games directly?

No, it is always advisable to start with free/practice rummy games before playing cash games. Practice games help you develop a greater understanding of rummy and the different situations you will encounter when playing real cash rummy games. Sometimes you’ll instantly have a pure sequence, while sometimes, you may have to fish cards from your opponents. Which strategy to use where is something players grasp slowly over the course of a few games.

4. How long should one practice with free games before venturing into cash games?

One should practice with free games till they feel confident about rummy rules, tricks and strategies. There is no set duration or number of matches to turn a beginner into a pro; this will vary from player to player. Once you’re comfortable with your level of expertise, you can start with small cash games first and then move up gradually.

5. What is the best trick in rummy?

There is no single best trick in a rummy game. Every player develops their own style of playing by employing the different techniques mentioned above. Before any tricks, a player should focus on the basics of the game, such as prioritising a pure sequence and keeping their points as low as possible. Once the basics are covered, a player can mix and match various tricks and form a strategy.