If you have ever played the card game Gin Rummy, then throughout this guide, you will notice that there are quite a lot of similarities. That’s because it falls under the same type of game.
The Chinchon card game is a popular game in countries such as Spain and Uruguay and sometimes goes by the name Txintxon. Because this is a typically Spanish game, to play, you’ll need forty cards instead of a standard deck of 52.
It has the same goal as Rummy card games: to gather sets of matching cards to win.
The game starts with each player having seven cards and then working to form combinations before they can meld them, but I’ll go into more detail about that later.
During this guide, I will look at everything you need to play the Chinchon card game and go through the rules step-by-step. So by the end of this read, you’ll be clued and ready to go.
How to Play Chinchon?
Chinchon card game is to be played between two and eight players, and each person plays for themselves rather than in teams, meaning you don’t have to have an even number of players.
For this game, the Jokers are used, and they rank highest in the deck. There is also a wild card, which you can use instead of any other card. This is the Ace of Coins or Pentacles. The ranking for the cards is as follows, from highest to lowest:
- Joker – 25 points
- Ace of Coins – 25 points
- King – 12 points
- Horse – 11 points
- Jack – 10 points
- Nine – 9 points
- Eight – 8 points
- Seven – 7 points
- Six – 6 points
- Five – 5 points
- Four – 4 points
- Three – 3 points
- Two – 2 points
- Ace – 1 point
You will need to set a points limit at the start of the game. You will use this to determine the winner at the end of the rounds.
1. Dealing the Cards
First of all, select a dealer out of your group. This can be anyone you like; we usually go with the person whose birthday is coming up next when we play in our house.
You can also select who will deal by each drawing a card and seeing who has the highest. After the first dealer has been selected, the person sitting to the right of the last dealer will handle future games.
To begin, the dealer will need to shuffle the deck and give each player seven cards. The rest of the cards are placed face-down in the center of the playing area. Upturn a single card off the top of the pile; this is the start of your discard pile.
2. Playing the Game
Each player will take at least one turn through gameplay. You must take turns to either take a card from the stockpile or the discard pile and add it to your hand to try and form a set.
The set needs to be at least three cards of the same rank or three cards of that same suit which are sequential.
Once you have done this, you need to remove one card from your hand, and place it into the discard pile, face up, meaning you will always have seven cards in your hand at any given time.
The game continues in this format until someone is able to close, which I will talk more about shortly.
If you run out of cards in your stockpile, shuffle the discard pile and place it back in the middle, turning over the top card as you did at the start. However, this is only allowed to happen once. If it happens again, the game is over.
3. Closing Your Hand
You must have played at least one entire round before you can close your hand, and you can do this in multiple ways, such as:
- Melding all of your cards at once.
- Melding all but one card as long as the remaining card has a point value of three or five. (you should place this card on the discard pile).
4. The Sets
There are two ways you can make sets with your cards, either three cards of the same point value, so three sevens, or three or three horses, for example, or you can make a set with a straight, as long as the cards are of the same suits, for example, three, four, and five of cups.
Handy Tip: The Ace can not form part of a straight with the Joker or King. It can only form part of a sequence when paired with two.
What You’ll Need to Play?
Just like Mexican card games, to play the Chinchon card game, you will need a Spanish deck of cards. These usually contain forty or forty-eight cards per deck and can be purchased from Amazon.
If you’re playing with more than four people, you will need two decks of cards. Also, if you’re using the 48-card pack, then the Nines and Eights need to be removed.
How To Win?
There are a couple of ways in which you can win Chinchon. It depends on which one comes first.
The scoring is done by counting any points the player has remaining in their hand at the end of the game. Ten points are deducted if they have played all the cards in their hand.
The primary way to win the game is by staying within the points limit you set at the start of the game (usually between 70 – 100).
However, suppose everybody goes over the points limit. In that case, the person who went over it by the least amount of points is the winner.
In the case of a tie, the points are split equally between the players, and the next rounds can begin.
So that’s how you play the Chinchon card game. It’s not about having skills but more about the luck of the draw.
Also, if you don’t want to purchase a brand new set of cards to play this game, you can use an ordinary deck of cards by removing the eights, nines, and tens from the pack.
If you’re interested in learning how to play other card games, then you should look at my step-by-step guide on playing the red dog card game.