The Best Family Card Games: Bluff and Go Fish

Best family card games

If you plan to take some time to bond with your family, you may want to consider a good old family card game. Sure, you could take your kids to an amusement park or sit with them in front of the TV and get into a father-and-son a Playstation battle - but you should know that none of these options offers you that amazing combination of fun and companionship that comes with the best card games.

While most of today’s bond at the dinner table while they watch TV, a good old fashioned family card game is often a much better alternative to bring the members of your family close to each other and create some really fun moments to remember.

Also, don’t forget that card games are not only a fun way to spend time, but they can also really help your kids' analytical skills.

A lot of educators suggest parents to organize a weekly or a monthly family card night, where all the family members gets together just to play cards for a few hours.

If you plan to follow their advice, make sure you also always have some finger snacks, dips and drinks ready - as these (plus a deck of cards, of course) are going to be the ingredient for your recipe to a family success.

Keep in mind that people often shy away from family card games as they are afraid that they will not be able to understand the rules of the game or to play it properly.

If your family members (or your friends) are not confident with the rules of complex games as Texas hold’em poker or bridge, try to go for easy family card games with simple rules and basic strategy like the two explained below Go Fish and Bluff.

How To Play ‘Go Fish’ Card Game?

Go Fish is a popular family card game that is best played by 3 to 5 players.

The number of cards dealt to each player in a Go Fish game changes as the number of players increase. For instance, when played between 3 players, each player is dealt 7 cards. 6 cards are dealt when 4 players sit at the table, and 5 cards each are dealt when 5 people are in the game.

The goal of the game is to be able to put together as many ‘books’ as possible. A book, in Go Fish, is created when a player owns all four cards of one rank.

Once the cards have been dealt - and all the remaining ones are disorderly placed on the table in a pile that is then named ‘the pool’ -, the game begins with a player asks for one particular card to the one who sits at his left.

Let’s make an example. If you have two fives and you decide to try to create a book of fives, you will ask the player who sits next to you if he has any five for you. If he does, he is obliged to hand it over to you; if he doesn’t, then he will ask you to ‘go fish’ and draw a card from ‘the pool.’

If the player has the card that you have asked for, then you keep playing by asking for the same (or another) card to the player who sits next to him - and you will keep doing this until you won’t have to take a card from ‘the pool.’

Please, note that if a player has more than one of the card you have asked him for, he has to give them all to you.

Go Fish is a very interactive game that can result in a lot of fun and laughs - especially as, at any given moment, an almost finished book can be taken away from you by a player who manages to ask you for that exact same card you have hoped to steal from him.

A game of Go Fish continues until all sets of cards have been laid down. The player with the highest number of finished ‘books’ wins the game.

How to play ‘Bluff’?

Bluff is one of the most popular and played family card games in the world. Although Bluff is a very simple game to play, the way people usually behave during a hand of Bluff is what makes it really special…and fun.

The fact that your lie can be caught and severely punished during the game is what makes it so intriguing and fun. This is one of those games where the more players you got, the more fun you will have. So, before you start a game of Bluff, make sure you have a couple of card decks at hand and a good company of family members and friends.

There are no sequences or books to be made in Bluff, as there are no strict rules or restrictions - all you need to do while you play a game of Bluff with your family is to work towards one goal: to get rid of your cards.

This game is all about to lie your way to success. If your game involves 5 players (or less), you are going to need one deck of 52 cards. An additional deck is required if you plan to play with 6 or more people.

During a hand of Bluff, all the cards are evenly distributed amongst all players - even this means that some players may receive a card more than some others.

The game begins when one player discards some of his cards and puts them face down in a discard pile. The difference between Bluff and many other games, is that in this game the players are required to tell which cards the have put down.

For example, player 1 might put down 3 cards and say, “those are three jacks.” The fun begins right after that, as then next player can decide if to do the same (to discard some of his cards and announce their value), or to call the ‘bluff’ and say that he does not believe that the cards the previous player has announced are exactly the ones that he has placed in the discard pile.

If the bluff-catcher is correct, the previous player has to pick up all the cards in the stockpile. If the cards in the stockpile are the ones that were publicly announced, the player who called the bluff needs to take all the cards left in the discard stockpile..

Bluff is really one of best family card games that stay interesting until the very last hand, as it only take one good (or lucky) bluff catcher to turn the game around at any given moment.

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