Kings in the Corner Card Game: How To Play, Rules and Strategies

Kings in the Corner is a game that brings together elements of solitaire and luck to create a fast-paced and enjoyable experience.

Perfect for a group of 2-4 players, Kings in the Corner is simple enough to pick up quickly, yet challenging enough to keep players engaged.

With each round typically lasting between 5 to 15 minutes, Kings in the Corner is both fast-paced and exciting, making it a great choice for groups seeking quick and engaging entertainment. Let’s get started!


A birds eye view of a game of Kings Corner

Kings in the Corner, also known as Kings Corner, is a multiplayer card game that bears resemblance to solitaire in its layout and gameplay. Played with a standard 52-card deck, it’s ideal for 2 to 4 players. However, adaptations can be made for larger groups.

The game revolves around playing cards in descending order and alternating colours, similar to solitaire, but with a twist – the game is competitive.

The ultimate goal in Kings in the Corner is to get rid of all the cards in your hand before anyone else. This is achieved by playing them into the middle layout according to the game’s rules.

Although the game primarily revolves around luck (as the cards are drawn randomly), there’s room for strategy. You need to carefully choose where to place your cards on the table layout and decide when to withhold cards for optimal play later. The anticipation of your opponents’ moves also adds an exciting layer to the game.

Kings in the Corner Game Setup

Setting up Kings in the Corner is a straightforward process. Here’s how you go about it:

Shuffling and Dealing Cards

To begin, a dealer is selected who shuffles the deck and deals seven cards to each player if there are two to four players. For games with five or more players, only five cards are dealt.

The dealer’s role rotates clockwise with each new round.

Setting Up the Draw Pile and the Corner Spaces

After dealing, the remaining cards form a draw pile placed in the centre of the playing area.

This draw pile is laid down crosswise, which creates a visualization of four corner ‘spaces’.

The Kings’ Corners

These corner spaces are the proverbial ‘corners’ where, during gameplay, Kings will be placed. They’re essential for the progress and ultimate conclusion of the game.

With the deck shuffled, cards dealt, and the draw pile set up, we are ready to kick off the game.

Kings in the Corner Gameplay and Rules

Kings in the Corner has simple, easy-to-follow rules, making it an engaging game for both children and adults. The gameplay unfolds as follows:

Starting Your Turn

The player to the left of the dealer goes first. On their turn, a player must draw a card from the central pile. After that, they can make as many valid moves as they can or wish.

Playing Cards

A valid move consists of playing a card (or sequence of cards) from one’s hand onto the playing area. Cards can be placed in two areas:

  1. The Foundation Piles: These piles start with a King and are built downwards in descending order with alternate colours. For instance, a black Queen can be placed on a red King, a red Jack on a black Queen, and so on. Only one King can be placed in each corner.
  2. The Intermediate Piles: These piles start with any card placed in the centre square, next to the draw pile. They follow the same descending and alternating colour rule as the foundation piles. If a pile starts with a 7, for instance, a 6 of the opposite colour can be placed on it.
A players hand in a game of Kings Corner

Moving Cards

In addition to playing cards from their hand, players can also move entire piles onto other piles, as long as the sequence respects the descending order and alternating colour rule. This can open up spaces for other cards to be played and create strategic advantages.

Emptying a Corner

If a King and all cards beneath it are moved, leaving a corner empty, only a King can fill the empty corner.

Passing a Turn

If a player can’t or doesn’t wish to make a move, they simply draw a card and end their turn.

Ending the Game

The game continues with players taking turns clockwise. The first player to play all their cards is the winner. If no players can make a move and the central pile is exhausted, the player with the fewest cards in hand wins.

With the gameplay explained, let’s now dive into some strategies that can help you gain an upper hand in Kings in the Corner.

Kings in the Corner Strategies and Tips

Just because Kings in the Corner has simple rules doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to outwit your opponents. Here are some strategies and tips to give you the upper hand:

  1. Keep your options open: Hold onto your lower-ranking cards for as long as possible. They offer you more flexibility as the game progresses and can be used to build onto multiple piles.
  2. Be strategic with your Kings: Since Kings start the foundation piles and can only be played in the corners, be mindful of when and where you play them. If you have a King in your hand and one of the corners is free, consider whether you can benefit from starting a new pile.
  3. Move your piles: Remember, you can move an entire pile onto another pile if the bottom card of the moving pile can be played on the top card of the other pile. This can free up spaces for you to make more moves and play more cards on your turn.
  4. Play aggressively: The aim of the game is to get rid of all your cards, so play as many cards as you can each turn. However, always remember to balance this with keeping your options open.
  5. Watch your opponents: Keep an eye on what cards others are holding back or playing often. This can give you clues about their strategy and help you plan your own moves better.

Remember, the more you play, the better you will understand the dynamics and strategies of the game.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some questions that players often ask about Kings in the Corner:

What happens when the draw pile runs out?

If the draw pile runs out before anyone has won, shuffle the discard pile (excluding the top card) to create a new draw pile.

Can I move a pile to an empty corner?

No, only a King can start a new pile in an empty corner.

Can you play Kings in the Corner with two players?

Yes, Kings in the Corner can be played with two players. The rules remain the same.

What happens if I run out of cards in my hand?

If you run out of cards in your hand before your turn is over, draw five more cards from the draw pile and continue your turn. If it’s not your turn, wait until your next turn to draw five new cards.

Can I play a King from my hand into a corner?

Yes, if there’s an empty corner, you can play a King from your hand to start a new pile.


“Kings in the Corner” is a delightful and engaging game that combines elements of luck and strategy. With its easy-to-learn rules and fast-paced gameplay, it is an excellent choice for family game nights, gatherings with friends, or even as a quick pastime between tasks.

Do you have any unique variations, tips, or strategies that you use when playing Kings in the Corner? Share them in the comments below!

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