Slapjack Card Game Rules

Girl shuffles cards
Slapjack is an often loud, raucous game that works well with children from about age 5 and up. Akiko Aoki / Getty Images

Slapjack is an often loud, raucous game that works well with children from about age 5 and up.


2 to 8 players; best with 3 or 4 players.


A standard 52-card ​​deck.

Don't use your best deck -- Slapjack has been known to cause damage to the cards.


Win all of the cards in the deck.


Shuffle the deck. Deal the cards one at a time, face down, to each player as evenly as possible.

Each player now has a face-down pile of cards in front of him.


The player to the left of the dealer goes first and play continues clockwise from there. In turn, each player takes the top card from his pile and places it, face up, in the middle of the table.

When moving a card from his pile to the middle of the table, each player should do so by turning the card away from himself. This ensures that the player does not see the card before his opponents have a chance to do the same. (The player should also turn the card quickly so that he’s not giving himself a disadvantage.)

When the card placed in the middle of the table is a Jack, players race to be the first to slap a hand on top of the Jack. The first player to do so wins the entire pile of cards. That player collects the cards and adds them to his pile. He then shuffles the entire pile and sets it down in front of him.

Multiple Players Slapping

When more than one player slaps at a Jack, the player whose hand is lowest on the pile wins.

Slapping the Wrong Card

When a player slaps any card other than a Jack, he gives one card from his own supply, face down, to the opponent who played the card that fooled him.

Running Out of Cards

When a player runs out of cards, he remains in the game until the next Jack is revealed. If the player with no cards is the first to slap the Jack, he wins the pile of cards and remains in the game.

If he is not first, however, he is eliminated from the game.


When one player wins all of the cards, he wins the game.