16 Different Ways to Play The Cardistry Game



If you've watched any of the battles on our Instagram then you know that there's more than just one type of battle. Actually, in the rulebook (which you get with your physical deck) you'll find 4 additional alternative gameplays. If you haven't checked them out, here they are.


If you're having trouble understanding these in English you can find these translated in a bunch of other languages in this post!

But, let's say you've played these versions and would like to try out something else, something different or maybe none of these versions clicked with you yet. No worries, Biz got you covered. Here's a couple other versions of The Cardistry Game that you can play.

1. King of Numbers

0. Remove all Special Cards from the game deck.

1. You choose a number between 1 and 10. If this is your first time playing this version go with a smaller number. Let's say you've decided on 4.

2. Shuffle the game deck. Place 4 face up cards from the deck on the table. Let's assume these cards are INTERLOCK , FAN, SPREAD and SPIN.

3. Each player has 30 seconds to think of ONE MOVE that includes all 4 elements. For example: Scissor Interlock -> Fan -> Spread -> 1 Card Shootout .

4. After both players have successfully performed a flourish, the following cards are placed on top of the previous ones (creating stacks).


You collect points when your opponent fails a move while you don't. If this turn you've successfully performed your move, but your opponent has failed, you collect all the piles from the table. These are your current points. The following turn new piles are created. The player with the most collected game cards at the end of the game deck wins.

If you have no more cards to draw and none of the players have failed, the game is considered a draw, the piles are shuffled well and a new game is started.

If you have no more cards to draw one of you has 4 points and the other 0, the player with the most points wins.


- The game ends when you have no more cards to draw from the game deck.

- You may not execute separate moves one after the other. That completely defeats the purpose of this game.

- A routine (which is technically one move after the other) that includes all elements is valid only if the routine has a nice flow and the flow of the routine is not broken.

- A move is considered finished once the deck is squared.

- You can perform one handed flourishes with both hands that include different elements.


Birger and I played a couple rounds of this game on his live twitch which you can check out here!

2. King of Numbers Advanced

What makes this version special is the addition of the Special Cards. We'll understand this version better if we take an example.

Let's say we have 4 cards again: ONE HANDED CUT, CLIPPED, BEHIND THE BACK and XCM. Special Cards do not need to be applied to all the cuts. You pair them. So, if you perform an XCM cut with a card CLIPPED between your fingers and a ONE HANDED CUT executed BEHIND YOUR BACK, then you've successfully used all elements. The only thing left is to somehow connect all of these into one fluid routine or one single cut.

What? It's not supposed to be easy, it's supposed to be challenging haha. Don't forget guys, it's out of special situations like these that great memories while jamming or interesting ideas come out of and that's why we've created this game in the first place :) !

3. Blitzkrieg: Fastest Leads Version

One player, let's say "The Referee" calls out the cards for everyone. All participants perform the flourish that is called out. As soon as the first person finishes their flourish the referee calls out the second flourish, even if all the other players have not finished their flourishes yet.

This version of the gameplay will really turn the party spirit up for everyone and motivate players to find quick flourishes that achieve what type of card is called out (Fan, One Handed Cut, etc.).

Normal "Blitzkrieg" rules still apply. You cannot repeat your own flourishes. If you fail you stop there for that round. A time limit is set (such as 1 minute per round). First player that reaches 20 points wins. 

4. Blitzkrieg: Tag Version

Players form teams. For this example let's assume there are 2 teams of 2 players. The referee calls out the first card and only 1 member from each team performs a flourish. The referee calls out the next card when the first player finishes their flourishes, even if the other player hasn't finished performing. The other teammate execute the next flourish. This goes on until the time runs out, passing a flourish from one to the other. The interesting thing happens when one of you fails.

If a teammate fails the other teammate can perform a move instead of them. As soon as they finish performing the failed cut, they will have to perform the following called out card as well. In this moment the team has to come up with flourishes that allow them to catch up to the other players as the referee will keep calling cards.

If both players fail the same cut, they cannot perform anymore for that round and must wait until their opponents finish theirs.

5. No Cards Version

In this version of the game you use anything else but cards. Wallet, lego, fruits or vegetables, photos , you name it. The weirder the shape the more entertaining it will be!

The rules for the game are the same as with the Standard Version, just that you remove from the deck all the Special Cards and instead of removing cards you write down on a piece of paper the points every player makes. 4 points for every card in a pile that you have failed. First to get to 52 loses.

Mario Lopez, FISM World Champion, and I have played this version of the game on instagram live! You can check it over here.

6. Cards Down 

- Check gameplay here !

A version where the players attack each other, every time you're performing a successful move the other player must remove 4 cards. As you keep playing your deck and your opponent's gets thinner and thinner, making it more challenging to perform.

7. Speedrun 

- Check gameplay here !

Here the players must perform all 34 type moves as fast as they can while being timed. I've managed to do all 34 cards in 4 minutes and 45 seconds. This is also the first version that allows ranking of the players.

8. Puzzle 

- Check gameplay here !

Here cards are placed adjacent to one another. Players have to perform moves from a line, be it horizontal or vertical. The damage card in this gamplay takes the role of a BOMB, removing all cards adjacent to it.

9. Follow the Leader 

- Check gameplay here !

The deck is shuffled and one random card is placed face up next to the deck. This card is the leader and will influence all other cards to come. For exmaple, if the leader card is a "One Handed Cut" then all following cards (ISOs, Displays, etc.) all have to be one handed cuts.

10. Face Up Face Down: Team Game 

- Check gameplay here !

This is a team game. The Cardistry Game is split into 2 halves. One team takes a half, the other takes another. You and your teammate then split your packet into half face up and half face down cards, which you then shuffle together. REALLY SHUFFLE. One of you will perform face up cards, the other face down ones. After successfully performing a move, if you've performed a face up card, you turn this face down and place it to the right. If you've performed a pace down card you turn that face up and place it to the left. The reason you do this is because in the event that you fail, each cardist will perform slightly different moves the next time.

In case one of you fails their cut or performs miserably, all cards are put back together, shuffled, and the team starts from the beginning.

First team to finish their deck wins.

11. Spin the Bottle 

- Check gameplay here !

Cards games are places in 5 piles on a round board. Other things are on the board as well, such as "Do a 5 second plank while making one handed cuts", "Take a shot", "Truth", "Dare" and "Acting moment.". The player spins an arrow to arrive at a packet or special zone.

If you fall on a packet and perform a move successfully, you then move the top card from the pile on top or bellow another pile on the board.

The player that performs the last move from a pile wins.

12. Grab'em All 

- Check gameplay here !

All card games are placed one next to each other on the table. Players take turns performing 1 move that combines as many card games as possible. For example, during your turn you can perform a One Handed Cut that is a Display without using your Pinky while holding your Hands Up. That would be 4 points. After your performance you remove the card games that match your performance and place them on your side.

When all cards have been gathered, each player counts their stack. The player with most cards wins.

13. Backup 

- Check gameplay here !

Each player splits their performance deck into 2 packets (you decide how many in each). 

When you fail, the player switches their deck with the backup one, removes the appropriate amount of cards and continues performing with that deck.

Each fail gives your opponent a point. When your backup deck is finished, your opponent receives 5 points.

When one of you is left without cards the game finishes. The person with most points wins. Note that in this version it does not matter who is left without cards first, but rather who fails less. This gives the chance for interesting strategies and sneaky plots.

14. Cardistry War 

- Check gameplay here !

- Each player for himself. You can choose to attack any player or recover cards that you have previously lost. The last person standing wins.

- Each successfully performed move is worth 4 points (which you can use to attack someone or recover cards).

- You start with 1 game packet. You can choose to create a new packet or place the new drawn card on top of an existing pile. There can be a maximum of only 3 piles.

- When you fail you remove cards as usual (by counting the cards in the pile and multiplying them by 4).

- This gameplay allows for sneaky tactics, alliances and a great deal of fun!

15. Building 

- Played with LingNemesis on her livestream.

You start with 4 cards. Every successfully performed flourish brings you 4 more cards. If you fail a flourish you do not take cards (nor remove). The person that recovers their entire deck wins.

16. Cardistry Bootcamp 

- Check gameplay here !

A card is drawn and each player must perform a move of that type until a player fails. So you have to keep performing on and on and on the same move until one of you drops a card. This version here is perfect for practicing with friends and feels a lot like a true gym workout for the hands haha.

I honestly cannot wait for all you to get your magnetic box with your deck of cards and start testing some of these versions out. Once more people have a game deck I will start playing games with them as well and who knows how many ideas there are out there when every player has a Cardistry Game deck!

 (to be continued)

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