Spider Solitaire the Challenge of the Game and How to Beat the Addiction

During my years as a computer trainer for the completely illiterate computer user, I struggled with ways to get my students familiar with the mouse. My students were quite familiar with the four legged variety of mouse but had no idea how to hold, use or manipulate the technological innovation of the eighties – the mouse attached to a computer. Surprisingly the easiest way was to teach them how to left click, right click or move the cursor, was by showing them how to play solitaire without a deck of cards. Spider Solitaire is the next step in what is essentially a card game played by one. But as the name suggests, it can be deadly.

Solitaire on Amazon

Microsoft Makes it Easy for Lovers of Solitaire

Played with a physical deck of cards or on a computer any game of solitaire requires patience. Hence the alternative name. Manually laying out the cards, playing the game only to discover the cards derive no satisfaction is disappointing and yet we must have another go. It is instinctive. No good the first time there is a desire to do better the next time. Thanks to Microsoft, with the introduction of the computer based solitaire, some of the frustration has been relieved. If the game looks as if it is going nowhere we can easily replay or move on to the next formation.

Microsoft introduced Spider Solitaire to the computer arena in the late nineties and all of a sudden games for one got a whole lot harder, more challenging and totally addictive. Spider Solitaire was less a game of chance because of the falling of the cards, but more a challenge on how the game was played.

Solitaire - The game and objectives

In any normal game of solitaire or patience the cards are laid out in order face down on top of each other. Seven across for five rows then upturned for the final six. There is a small deck remaining that can be used to play out as required. The objective is to build suits, hearts, diamonds, clubs and spades, from the Ace (or one) through the increasing numbers to ten followed by the picture cards, Jack, Queen and King.

Solitaire really is a game of chance. It is totally reliant on the way the cards fall and the observations of the player. This is the only challenge that the player might miss a move and resort to the cards in the unplayed deck.

Spider Solitaire - the Beginning

Spider Solitaire - The game and objectives

The first challenge of Spider Solitaire if you are playing with an actual pack of cards is in the use of two decks. It is time consuming to set up which makes the computer version user friendly and with the click of the mouse another game is laid out in an instant. Once more the cards are laid out face down with ten cards across the top row and followed by four more. The fifth row consists of the first four face-down then six face up with a further four cards on the final row, again face up. This will leave fifty cards or five lots of ten, to play out across the entire row each time you come to a standstill.

While the main objective is to build suits, the game play is quite different from the original. Any red card can be placed on another colour or suit as long as it comes in sequence. If you have a Queen of Hearts you can place any Jack on top to release the card underneath. The cards are moved back and forth between each pile until a complete suit is obtained starting from the King through to the Ace.

Never underestimate the value of an empty space. This is where you can interchange the messy piles that have built up through the course of the game. The Kings are crucial for starting the process but if they are placed in an empty space it means the spot can’t be used until the suit is complete.

Spider Solitaire - the Win

Here's the catch, want to play again?
Here's the catch, want to play again?

Spider Solitaire – How to Beat the Addiction

There are only two cures for the addicted Spider Solitaire player

  1. Delete the game from your computer
  2. Remove all playing cards from the house

It is fun, challenging and at times infuriating. Just when you see a pattern building the next layer of cards will tumble down and mess the whole thing up. Spider Solitaire is more than a game of chance. It takes a great deal of time and patience to master at the advanced level and is the most addictive card game I have ever played. My husband is a master but I remind him that is only because he has more hours to waste than me.

Copyright © 2011-2012 Karen Wilton

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Phillbert profile image

Phillbert 5 years ago from The Ozarks

Great hub! spider solitaire is very addicting! I spent hours on for a couple months playing that game!

Karanda profile image

Karanda 5 years ago from Australia Author

Phillbert it is addictive. If only I spent as much time on my Hubs I'd be on my way to having a thousand of them. There are times I have to remove it from my desktop so I can get on with what I'm supposed to be doing.

Karen Wodke profile image

Karen Wodke 5 years ago from Midwest

I love spider solitaire. Am I addicted? I don't know. I would be the last to know. I am in solitaire denial still. lol.

Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland

I both love and hate spider solitaire all at the same time. It is fun and addictive but it can also be the most frustrating game on the planet. Loved this hub about one of my favourite games.

b. Malin profile image

b. Malin 5 years ago

My husband plays and truly Enjoys it...He say's it's Relaxing! Fun Hub Karanda, I just showed it to him and he agreed after reading it too!

Karanda profile image

Karanda 5 years ago from Australia Author

Loved your response Karen Wodke. Perhaps there is a support group for those of us in denial of the Spider Solitaire addiction.

Karanda profile image

Karanda 5 years ago from Australia Author

Seeker7 the love-hate relationship is possibly the first sign the addiction has taken hold. Me too, love, hate that Spider Solitaire.

Karanda profile image

Karanda 5 years ago from Australia Author

Hi b.Malin, I want to encourage you to try the game if you haven't had a go before but at the same time I am anxious that your beautiful Hubs will not be as plentiful once you've discovered the Spider Solitaire challenge. Relaxing? Mm, but equally distracting.

attemptedhumour profile image

attemptedhumour 5 years ago from Australia

I haven't played spider solitaire but cards was a big activity in my earlier years. Hubpages takes up too much of my time these days, so a game of cards would be a good divergence. Cards is a great family activity too. Cheers

attemptedhumour profile image

attemptedhumour 5 years ago from Australia

PS have you heard of 'blokus'? It's a well thought out board game. Not competitive but good fun.

Karanda profile image

Karanda 5 years ago from Australia Author

Never heard of 'blokus'. I love board games, card games, good family fun. I grew up with grandparents that spent all their spare time playing games with their family and friends. Gee, it was a good way to grow up.

CMHypno profile image

CMHypno 5 years ago from Other Side of the Sun

I still only play on the intermediate level, but that is addictive enough! When I used to do software training, I had to get the card games removed from the PCs as a few of the trainees would spend all their time playing solitaire rather than following the course that their employer had paid for!

Karanda profile image

Karanda 5 years ago from Australia Author

It took me a long time to brave the advanced level on Spider Solitaire but now that's all I play. I've had to do the same thing CMHypno with PCs where trainees are involved. Playing solitaire always seems preferable to learning.

Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

A very useful and interesting hub , I am not much of a one for playing games on computer and I am glad because I would probably get totally waylaid.

Take care


Karanda profile image

Karanda 5 years ago from Australia Author

Eiddwen I am so glad you have not succumbed to the lure of the computer game. I'm sure we would see a lot less of your wonderful stories and prose if you did, better to create than amble away your hours on mindless dribble

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TajSingh 5 years ago from United Kingdom

I loved playing this game. I remember playing it all the time. I agree with you in that it is pretty addictive.

Karanda profile image

Karanda 5 years ago from Australia Author

TajSingh I am currently going through one of those stages when I can't get enough of spider solitaire. Luckily the phase passes and I get on with my life sooner or later.

Millionaire Tips profile image

Millionaire Tips 5 years ago from USA

It certainly is an addictive game, but then again so is freecell, sudoku and sooo many other games.

Karanda profile image

Karanda 5 years ago from Australia Author

All of them Millionaire Tips. At some stage I have been trapped in their webs. I've overcome most, but still find myself drawn to Spider Solitaire, it is so challenging.

Moose 4 years ago

It is my opinion that Spider Solitaire does not do a truly random shuffle. Far from it. Most casino gamers would call it a stacked deck. It is not fun playing against a diabolical S.O.B. who stacks the deck against you. I play the game for relaxation, not to have some unmitigated jerk get me infuriated by turning up five tens in a row. There is very little that is nature about the game under those conditions. They call it stress. Stress is defined as that unrequited urge that makes one want to stomp the living s*** out of some a**hole that desperately needs it.

Karanda profile image

Karanda 4 years ago from Australia Author

Oh, I hear your pain Moose. There is no joy in the game when we are confronted with the worst possible scenario, and I have certainly had my fair share. Have your tried playing with an actual deck of playing cards? These shuffles can be much worse and what a chore to have to reshuffle, redeal after the pain of placing the cards, manually, on the table.

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