Number of players: Two to Five
The Deck: Standard 52 card deck
The Draw: Any player is allowed to deal one
card, face-up, to each player, and also low deals, with cards ranking
from Ace (high) to a 2 (low).
Shuffle and cut: The dealer shuffles the
cards and the player at the right cuts them.
The Deal: Cards are dealt one at a time to
the left, beginning with the player to the left of the dealer. If
there are two or three players, each one receives seven cards. If
there are four to five players, each receives five cards. The leftover
cards are placed face down on the table to form the stack.
The Play: The first player to the left of
the dealer starts by stating to any other player, "Give me
your king." He may name any rank, proveded he or she holds
at least one card of that rank. The player addressed is required
to hand over any or all cards asked for. But if that player has
none, he or she replies, "GO FISH!" Then the asker is
required to draw the top card of the stack. Once the player has
had to fish, without making a catch, the turn to ask now passes
to the left.
Object of Play: The object of this game is
to form books. That is, a book is any four-of-a-kind. For example,
four kings, four queens, four jacks, and so forth. The player must
place them on the table before he or she is allowed to proceed.
If the asker is given one or more cards of
that named rank from the player addressed, he or she asks again,
and could request a rank of the same player or any other player.
As long as the asker is successful in getting the desired cards,
he or she is able to continue. Furthermore, when told to go fish,
the asker gets the fourth card of the book in the designated rank,
shows the book and continues on.
A variation is possible. Some prefer playing
that the turn continues when the fisher obtains the card desired
from the stack, even though it does not complete a book. This is
optional and may be used to provide some variation if the game is
played several times in the session.
The game concludes when the ownership of
all 13 books has been decided. Suppose one player is left without
cards. The player may in turn draw the stack, and ask for cards
of that rank. But once the stack is gone, that player is out of