Top 5 Indian Traditional Card Games

Every family in India has at least once sat together with masala chai and bhaji to enjoy a game of cards. There are several card games enjoyed in India, but the most popular ones are those listed below:


Poker is a family of card games that involve betting among players. This game combines gambling, strategy, and skill. You can play it with 5 to 10 players. Some of the common poker variations are Texas hold’em, Omaha, and Seven-Card Stud.

Indian Rummy

Indian Rummy, also known as Paplu, is a fun version of the original rummy that is a cross between gin rummy and Rummy 500. In this game, a set of 13 cards is dealt to each player. Over the years, many people have opted to play online rummy game for free.Online rummy games are completely legal in India.


– 10 cards are distributed to each player and the remaining deck is kept in the middle.

– 3 sets of cards need to be made – the 1st set could contain 3 jacks, the 2nd set could contain 3 aces,while the 3rd set could contain 4 consecutive cards of the same suit like 3,4,5,6 of diamonds.

– Each player, as per turn, can pick a card at a time from the deck in the middle to complete the sets.

– If the card picked is beneficial then the player can add that card to his/her sets and remove a useless one instead and add it to the deck in the middle.

– The next player may pick the card thrown by the previous player or may pick a fresh card from the deck.

– Whoever makes the 3 sets first wins the game.

SattePeSatta (7 on 7)

SattePeSattais a strategic Indian card game in which one has to block the other player’s cards to win the game. In this game, the player with 7 hearts wins.


– The person who holds the 7 of hearts (Laal Paan) starts the game.

– The player next to him/her can only play either a 6 or 8 of hearts. If either of the cards are not there, then he/she will have to pass.

– If the player has a 7 of any other suit, like spades, diamonds, or clubs, then passing is not an option.

– As the game progresses all the suits will eventually be completed (from ace to king).

– It is a strategy game, so blocking the others’ cards is the only way to win.

– Whoever finishes their cards first wins the game.

Teen Do Paanch (3-2-5)

One of the most popular games of India, Teen Do Paanch is played with a 30-card stripped deck limited to all 8s onwards for all suits except for the 7 of Hearts and the 7 of Spades. This game is very similar to bridge, just that there are three players instead of four, and all play individually.


– Three players play this game.One makes 5 hands, the second has to make 3 hands, and the dealer has to make 2 hands.

– There are 30 cards as out of the 52 cards, 22 are removed. Ace to seven of spades and hearts and ace to eight of clubs and diamonds form the playing 30 cards.

– Three cards, 2, 3 and 5 are taken out, shuffled and then distributed among the players. Whoever gets the 2 becomes the dealer of the game and has to make 2 hands. The person sitting on the dealer’s right has to make 5 hands and the third player has to make 3 hands. So, in total, 10 hands are to be made.

– The player who manages to make 2 hands in this game will have to make 3 hands in the next game. And, the player who makes 5 hands in this game will deal and have to make 2 hands in the next.

– Each player gets 10 cards (in two rounds, 5 cards are distributed to each player).

– In case the player is not comfortable with declaring the trump from those 5 cards, he/she can open a random card from the next 5 cards that he/she would get and that suit becomes the trump for that particular game.

– The player who has to make 5 hands starts the game. The aim is to make more and more hands.

– At the end of the game, if a player makes more hands than he/she is supposed to, he/she has the right to pull those many cards from the other 2 players.


Donkey is a fun card came played among friends. The game begins with 4 players collecting four sets of the same suit for each player (ex- 4 Ace’s, 4 King’s, 4 Queen’s & 4 Jack’s). The one who folds last is the donkey.


– One card is hidden and the rest of the cards in the deck are distributed equally amongst all the players.

– The game starts with a player picking one card from the adjacent player’s set.

– If he/she gets a pair of cards, for e.g. 2 clubs, then he can open those cards and place them in the middle.

– The adjacent player will pick a card from his adjacent player and so on and so forth.

– The player who is left with a card,in the end,is named the Donkey.