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Game Type
6, 7, 8

The game of Panguingue is the rage in areas of California and Southern Florida. It is a product of the Rummy family, but it is a gambling game, too. Imagine large round tables that seat up to 15 players, plus 320 playing cards, and hundreds of betting chips! Panguingue has a lot of action and a lot of devotees.

Number of Players. Any number of players, up to about 15 people can play, but the game is best played with six, seven, or eight people.

The Pack. Eight standard 52-card packs are used with the eights, nines and tens removed from each pack. (In some localities, as few as five packs are used.) Chips are used for settlement.

Rank of Cards. The cards in each suit rank: K (high), Q, J, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, A. The jack and seven are considered to be in sequence.


The Draw. A portion of the pack is shuffled and spread face down. Each player draws a card. The lowest card deals the first hand and has the choice of seats; if two or more players tie for low, they draw again. Other players take seats at random.

Rotation. The rotation of dealing and playing is to the right, not to the left as in most games. The first hand is therefore the player on the dealer's right. The winner of each hand becomes the first hand for the next, and the opponent on his left deals and deals first to that player.

The Shuffle. The player on dealer's left shuffles. Before the first deal, the eight packs are shuffled together thoroughly. After each hand, the discards are shuffled with a packet from the "foot" (bottom of the stock), to which they are then restored.

The Deal. The dealer gives each player 10 cards, in two rounds of five at a time, beginning with the first hand. 
For the deal, he should take from the top of the pack only such cards as he needs as nearly as can be estimated, taking more if needed or returning any excess to the top of the pack. After all hands are complete, the rest of the pack is placed face down on the table to form the stock, which is usually cut in two portions; the "head" is used in play, and the "foot" is set aside to be used if the head becomes exhausted. The top card of the stock is turned face up and set beside it to start the discard pile.

Going on Top. Before play begins, each player, starting with the first hand, declares whether he will stay in the play or retire. If he retires, he pays a forfeit, usually two chips. The player who retires is said to "go on top" because the forfeits are by custom stacked on the foot of the pack. Hands discarded by retiring players are not returned to the stock, but are kept separate, so that they may not be drawn in play. The "tops" (chips thus deposited) go to the player who goes out.

Object of the Game. The goal is to be the first player to meld all 11 cards in his hand.

The Play. Each player in turn, to the right, either must take the top card of the discard pile or the top card of the stock. A player may take from the discard pile only if the card 1) was drawn from the stock by the preceding player, and 2) can be immediately melded with the cards in the taker's hand. When a player draws from the stock, he must immediately meld the card or discard it (he may not put it in his hand and discard another unless the drawn card matches a meld of his right-hand opponent who has already melded 10 cards). To complete his turn, a player discards one card face up on the pile.

After drawing and before discarding, a player may meld as many sets as he holds or may add to his existing melds.

Melds. Each meld (or spread ) must comprise at least three cards and may consist of as many as 11. The melds may be classified for convenience as sequences and matched sets, or just "sets." (Sequences are often called "stringers" or "ropes.")

Sequence. A sequence is a run of any three cards of the same suit, as Q, J, 7.

Set. A set is three cards of the same rank and of different suits, as 4, 4, 4, or all of the same suit, as three Q. In addition, any three aces or any three kings form a valid set regardless of suit, as A, A, A. (Aces and kings are called "non-comoquers.")


Conditions. Certain melds are called "conditions." On melding a condition, the player immediately collects chips from every other player. All threes, fives, and sevens are "valle" (pronounced "valley") cards, that is,"cards of value." Cards of other rank are non-valle. The conditions are:

1) Any set of valle cards not in the same suit collects 1 chip from every player.

2) Any set of valle cards in the same suit collects 4 chips in spades, 2 chips in any other suit.

3) Any set of non-valle cards in the same suit collects 2 chips in spades, 1 chip in any other suit.

4) Any sequence of 3, 2, A in the same suit collects 2 chips in spades, 1 chip in any other suit.

5) Any sequence of K, Q, J in the same suit collects 2 chips in spades, 1 chip in any other suit.

Increasing. A player may add one or more cards to any of his melds, provided that the character of the meld is preserved. He may add a card of the same rank to a set of different suits or to a set of the same suit, another card of the same suit and rank. When cards are so added to a condition, the player collects the value of the original condition for each additional card except that for addition to a set of three valle cards in the same suit the payment is only 2 chips for spades, 1 chip for any other suit.

Through the addition of cards, one meld may be split into two, provided that each new part forms a valid meld in itself. For example: J, 7, 6, 5 may be made into two melds by the addition of Q, 4. If splitting a meld creates a condition, payment is duly collected. A player may take a card from one of his melds to complete a new meld, provided he leaves a valid meld. Example: From 7, 6, 5, 4, either the 7 or 4 may be borrowed, but not the 6 or 5.
Forcing Cards. If the top of the discard pile can be added to a meld of a person playing in turn, he is forced to take the card and meld it if another player demands that he do so.

Going Out. When any player shows 11 cards in melds, he collects 1 chip from every other player and also collects all over again for each condition in his cards. (In some games, a hand that has made no meld when another wins must pay 2 chips.)
When a player has melded 10 cards and needs only to pick up one card and meld it to bring his meld up to 11 cards, the player on his left may not discard a card that can be added to any of his melds, thereby putting his opponent out - unless the player on the left holds no safe card.

Any time a player holds exactly 31, he may "knock" immediately, and he wins the pot. 

If a player knocks before the first round of exchanges have begun, the showdown occurs immediately, with no exchange of cards.

After the pot has been won, all the players put in chips for the next hand.

Irregularities. Wrong number of cards. If a player finds that he has more or less than ten cards before drawing for the first time, the dealer must withdraw any extra cards and put them with the discarded hands of retired players, or he deals the short hand right number of additional cards from the center of the pack. If, after a player's first draw, his hand is found to be incorrect, he must discard and retire from that deal, return all collections he has made for conditions, but continues to make payments due to others for conditions and winning.

Foul meld. If a player lays down any spread not conforming to the rules, he must make it valid on demand. If he cannot do so, any collections must be returned because of the improper spread and then legally proceed with his turn. If the player has already discarded, he must return all conditions made on that hand, and then he must discard his hand and retire from the play until the next deal. He must nevertheless continue to make payments due to others for conditions and winning. Exception: If the player has made the meld valid before attention is called to it, there is no penalty.