- Game Type
- Kids, Adults
This game was created by Joli Quentin Kansil and is played in the same way as Klondike, but with a wild twist: Two jokers are added to the pack, and they serve as limited wild cards. Of all Klondike variations, this game probably requires the most skill because it demands that the player make many calculated decisions. Joker Solitaire is played Las Vegas-style: The cards of the stock are turned up one card at a time, rather than three at a time, and the player goes through the stock only once.
Jokers. The two jokers must be different from each other as one represents any black card, and the other is any red card. If the two jokers in the pack are different, the more ornate one can serve as the black joker, and the other one can be the red joker. (In packs of cards where the jokers are identical, use the extra advertising card that often comes with the pack as the red joker, or mark the face of one of the two jokers with a felt pen.)
How the Jokers Function. When the black joker appears in the tableau, it may be designated as any black card, such as a black queen or a black three. The player does not have to specify the particular suit. When the black joker is designated as a black king, it may be placed on an open space. When it is selected to be an ace, it is placed above to form one of the four foundations, though the player does not have to designate whether the joker is the club ace or spade ace. This joker will become either of these aces once the club deuce or spade deuce is played on it.
When a black joker is turned up from the stock, or when it appears as the top card of the talon (waste pile), it may be played as any needed black card on to the tableau as long as both such black cards are not in the tableau or foundations already. Example: A player would not be permitted to use a black joker as a black six, if both the spade six and club six were already in the tableau or foundations. When a black joker is the top card of the talon and cannot be played on to the tableau because only black cards are the top cards of the piles, it is not played, and the next card of the stock is turned up. All of these same rules apply in the same way for red jokers and red cards.
Tableau Rule. One important regulation is that when a joker is turned up from the stock, or when it is the top card of the talon, it may not be played directly to the foundations - it must first be played to the tableau before being placed in the foundations. Example: If the red joker is the top card of the talon and the player wishes to use it as a red ace, it must be placed on a black deuce in the tableau before then being played to the foundations as a red ace. Thus, the player should take care not to automatically play a black deuce onto a matching black ace in the foundations, as he may wish to keep open the option of using the black deuce in the tableau for the possible play of a red joker as a red ace.
Exchanging. When a joker is used for a specific card, and that card is later turned up in the stock or tableau, the player must use that card to exchange it with the matching joker. The card is placed where the joker was, either in the talon, tableau, or foundations. After the exchange, the player is permitted to use the joker for another card, and this process can later be repeated so that during the game, a joker may be used for several different cards. To illustrate: The red joker is a red seven in the tableau and is on top of a black eight, with a black six on top of the red joker. If the diamond seven is turned up from the stock, it is exchanged with the red joker, which is placed as the top card of the talon. This red joker can now be used as another playable red card. Another example:
The black joker is the club three in the foundations, and the club three is turned face up from one of the face-down piles in the tableau. The club three is exchanged with the black joker in the club foundation pile, and the joker is put on top of the pile in the tableau where the club three used to be. The joker can now be used as another black card, or the player can just leave the joker in the tableau and declare what card it will be at a later time.
Once a joker is declared, the player cannot change the decision and select a different card unless the joker is exchanged, as already described.
If a player cannot play a joker when it becomes available, he continues play by turning up cards from the stock. A player always has the option of removing the joker from the game by placing it out of play. Once a player does so, the joker cannot be used again.
Winning. If the player succeeds in playing 15 or more cards to the foundations, it is a win; 25 or more cards "up top" is a double victory, and all cards up top is a triple victory.