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Creating A New Card Game

Updated on January 5, 2015

I created a new card game. I based my game on the sequence of playing cards, specifically the sequence of cards in a single suit. This has already been used in traditional card games such as Michigan and Klondike Solitaire. In Michigan, a player lays down a card, and all players lay down cards from the same suit in ascending sequence. In Klondike Solitaire, cards with alternating suit colors are played in descending sequence on seven tableau piles, and cards of one suit are played in ascending sequence on each of four foundation piles.

The Basic Game

I took a different approach. The game I created uses a layout consisting of the 13 cards from one suit. Remove the cards in one suit from a deck of cards, shuffle them, and lay them side-by-side on the table. When you are done, the cards will be mostly in non-sequential order. The players then take turns moving cards to different locations, and scoring points for placing cards in their correct sequential location. When the cards are in sequence, pick them up, shuffle them, and lay them side-by-side again.

Methods of Moving Cards

Most of my effort in creating the game went into choosing the methods of moving cards. I wanted to have at least two methods.

The easiest method of moving cards is simply to exchange two cards in the layout. At the end of your turn you score zero, one, or two points.

Moving more that two cards was more complicated. The method I started out with was to remove a card from the end of a row of unsequenced cards, and then slide each card over one space, and place the removed card on the opposite end of the row. This method could involve three or more cards. But it was somewhat kludgy.

So I decided just to remove three unsequenced cards from the layout, and move each card to another card's previous location. But after looking more closely at this, I realized that using this method you could always score at least two points and sometimes three. So why exchange two cards.

If the Three is in the nineth location, and the Nine is in the fifth location, remove the Three, the Nine, and whatever card is in the third location. Then place the Three in the third location, the Nine in the nineth location, and the other card in the fifth location. At least two points, sometimes three. Every time.

Final Methods

I finally settled on a modified method of removing and moving three cards. Remove three cards that are evenly distributed in the unsequenced cards, and move each card to another card's previous location.

So moving cards became either exchanging two cards, or rearranging three evenly distributed cards.


I named the game 'Orangutan' because it sort of sounded like 'arrange', and because all of my games are Animal Games. It's a simple game, but it took some time and effort to make it work.

And it can be played as a solitaire game. How many turns does it take to get the cards in proper sequence?

The complete rules for Orangutan can be found on the Animal Games page of Animal Game Annex.


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