“Aunt Dian Solitaire”
JediBoy has been asking to learn how to play solitaire the past few weeks, and we’ve had lots of fun teaching him. First, he learned 10-20-30 (thank you, Paskowitzes – this is still our favorite and most common solitaire).
For 10-20-30, you start by dealing out seven cards face up to form seven rows. You continue the game by adding a new card to each row in turn, and then again, and again. In this game you are constantly dealing the cards, and hoping to pick some back up along the way. You are looking for patterns of 3 cards together (the bottom 3, the bottom 2 and the top 1, or the bottom 1 and the top 2 cards) which add up to 10, 20 or 30. Aces are 1, and all face cards are 10. When you see a combination of 3 cards that adds up to 10, 20 or 30, you pick it up and put it, face down, at the bottom of the deck in your hand.
For example, here’s a game I started dealing out. When I got to the 5th pile dealing out the 3rd row, I saw I had 30 (three face cards). So I can pick those three cards up and put them at the bottom of my deck.
Continue dealing with the next pile. If taking one combination reveals another in the same pile, take that one too. If taking a combination eliminates a pile, you don’t deal to that pile again. To win, you need to eliminate all seven piles and have the whole deck in your hand.
I continued dealing, finishing the 3rd row and moving on to the 4th. I skipped the 5th pile as I’d already eliminated it. Here on the 6th original pile, you can see a 4 and 5 at the bottom and an Ace at the top – I can pick up those three cards and put them on the bottom of my deck.
JediBoy liked this active game, but found it hard to watch the bottoms and the tops of the piles at the same time, so he learned Clock Solitaire next.
Clock Solitaire is pretty common, I think. You deal 51 cards out – 12 piles of 4 cards each arranged in a circle, corresponding to the 12 numbers on a clock, and 3 cards in a pile in the center of the circle. The remaining card is your start card. Flip over the start card and put it on the matching pile, in the spot where that number would be on a clock. Kings go on the center pile. Then take the bottom card off the pile you just played on, and flip that card over next. The goal of the game is to flip over all the cards, and put home all the 48 cards around the outside of the clock before you find the 4th king (which stops the game since there won’t be a 4th card to take away from that pile).
It looks something like this:
JediBoy loved Clock Solitaire, but he seemed to realize that it isn’t one of our favorite versions, so he asked to learn the other type we play frequently.
We call this “Aunt Dian Solitaire” because Aunt Dian taught it to us, but we’re hoping that someone out there somewhere knows the official, Hoyle name for this version.
In “Aunt Dian Solitaire,” you deal out all 52 cards into 7 piles: 1 card face up, then 6 face down for the first row, then 2 face up and 5 face down for the second row, etc. Keep dealing – the extra three cards go on the first three piles, face up. Here’s what the original deal looks like:
Now you look for moves. You can put cards together by suit, smaller on larger in consecutive order. If the smaller number has cards on top of it, you move that whole section of the pile all at once. When an ace is revealed (no cards on top of it), you put it above the tableau, and then you are able to build up on it, in suit, in the same way you build on aces in Klondike Solitaire.
Here’s the game a little farther through. I’m about to move the 9club, Aheart, 2heart and Jdiamond from the bottom of the 1st pile onto the 3rd pile where the 10club is face up. I’m moving the 9 onto the 10, and all the cards that are on top of the 9 come along with it. You can only place cards or piles of cards onto cards which are at the bottoms of the columns.
When you move all the face-up cards off a pile that still has face-down cards, flip over the top face-down card, which gives you a new number to work with. When you move all the face-up cards off a pile with no remaining face-down cards, you can move a king (and any cards on top of it) to that spot to restart the pile. Your goal is to get all the cards built up in suit on the 4 aces. This game is quite hard to win, and takes a lot of time to deal out. But we enjoy it!
PisecoDad mentioned last night (as I was playing solitaire in bed, which explains the quality of the pictures) that we would all enjoy Aunt Dian Solitaire more if we could find a version of it on the computer, or for the DS, because that would eliminate the 50% of your time spent in shuffling and dealing. Sometimes you shuffle and deal this whole tableau just to find you have one move and then you’re stumped, and you have to pick them all up, shuffle and deal all over again.
So please, if you have any clue what this solitaire version is officially named, or where we can find it online, we would be so grateful! (I’ve already checked the more common lists of top 25 solitaire versions, and it’s not there.)