How to play Peanuts


As well as being a comic strip and a tasty snack, Peanuts, is also a fast paced card game.

Lindsay taught me this game as follows.

Two players sit opposite one another with a standard pack of playing cards (without jokers) each. The backs of the cards must be different so they can be identified later.

Each player shuffles a pack and then passes it to their opponent.

Each player then deals out their cards in this way.

11 cards face down to form the Peanut Pile,

4 cards face up side-by-side in a row,

and the remaining cards are left in a stock pile.

Space should be left between the players for a maximum of 8 Suit Building Piles to be built up.

The winner of each round of the game is the first one to get rid of all the cards in their Peanut Pile and shout, "Peanuts!"

When play begins, the horizontal row cards can be played out into the Suit Building Piles, or built on top of one another to form columns of alternating colour and descending rank (King of Clubs, Queen of Hearts, Jack of Spades, 10 of Diamonds, etc).

At the beginning of the game each player turns over the top card of his Peanut Pile this card can then be played either onto one of the horizontal row columns (as described above), into an empty cell in the horizontal row, or on to one of the Suit Building Piles. Once it is played you can turn over the next card in the Peanut Pile.

Aces go straight out into the middle, where they become a Suit Building Pile, and can then be built up in suit order (Ace of Spades, 2 of Spades, 3 of Spades, etc.)

If you can't go, you turn over three cards from the stock pile (like if you are playing solitaire) and continue doing so until you can go. If you reach the end of the pack, you turn it over and continue. (If both players go right around the deck twice without being able to go, they both take one card, put it to the bottom of the pack and continue as before.)

Both players play concurrently and as fast as possible. They cannot touch their opponent's cards but both share the same 8 suit building piles in the middle, so you need to be quick before you are beaten to it.

At the end of the game the cards in the Suit Building Piles are sorted and counted.

The winner is awarded 10 points for winning and an additional point for each card he got out into the Suit Building Piles.

The loser gets 1 point for each card he got out into the Suit Building Piles and -2 points for each card remaining in his Peanut Pile.

First to 150 wins.

OPTIONAL EXTRA PLAYERS (ideal for the pub, but a bit frenetic):

Can be played in teams of 2 or 3 on each side. For instance, if there are 3 on each team, the first player controls the horizontal row, the second player controls the draw pile, and the third player the Peanut Pile. They can only touch the cards in their control, but can shout at each other as much as they like! For 2 players in a team one player controls the Peanut Pile and the other controls the horizontal row and the draw pile.

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