Faro is believed to have originated in France during the 17th century. At one point in time, it even rivaled Poker, which isn’t something many card games can say! But while Faro might not be quite as popular these days, it’s still sure to be a fun game that is well-worth playing.
Faro went by many names in the US, including Bucking The Tiger. There are also a few different variations of the game. In this guide, we will focus on classic/ traditional Faro and examine everything you need to know to play.
What is Faro Card Game?
Faro, like Baccarat, is played with a dealer/ banker just like it would be at a casino. While it can be played with several players, you’ll all be going against the dealer. Faro was at one time popular because of its simplicity compared to other card games.
But to today’s audience, the game might seem a little complex at first glance. But once you have got the basics down, you’ll see how simple Faro is. In Faro, players will win by betting on what they think the winning card is.
During each turn, the dealer will turn over two cards, a winner and a loser. Players win by simply betting on the winning card. That’s the basics of how you play Faro, but there is of course, more to the game than just that. So, let’s take a more in-depth look at Faro by first examining what you need to play.
What You’ll Need To Play?
To play Faro, you’ll need a deck of playing cards and Poker/ casino chips. If you don’t have chips, then you could use coins instead. You can use any playing cards, but we recommend sticking to the traditional designs.
These playing cards from Bicycle are a great example. Now, most people likely won’t have a supply of Poker chips at home. While they aren’t strictly necessary, they certainly are a nice touch to have. These Okuna Outpost chips would make a fine choice.
Faro Rules and Gameplay
The Aim of The Game
Faro aims to win as many bets as you can. Since every game is a single-player against the dealer, it’s a fun 2 player card game, even if played with a group! Now let’s look at how you set up and play this classic French card game in more detail.
Now, if there is one part of Faro that often confuses people, it is the setup. To start with, choose who will act as the dealer/ banker. The dealer will then go through the deck and take all the cards of a single suit.
Under traditional Faro rules, the Spades suit is usually taken out of the deck. Although for at-home casual play, you can remove any suit. With the Ace, King, Queen, Jack, and all the numbered cards, you should have 13 cards in total.
The cards are split into two equal rows; the upper row will contain the King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, and 8 cards. The bottom row will have the Ace, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 cards. The 7 card will sit at the end of both rows in the middle.
Once the Faro board is ready, every player should be given some chips. For at-home play, you should make sure every player has the same number of chips. If you want the game to continue for a moderate duration, 10 – 20 chips is a good starting point.
Now here is how betting works in Faro. On the first round, the dealer will deal the top card from the deck. They’ll then reveal this card to all players. Every player will then bet on what they think the winning card will be.
Bets are made by placing a chip on the card you think the dealer will draw. The dealer will then deal 2 cards; the first card is the losing card. The second card is the winning card. Any chip placed on the losing card will go to the dealer.
While anyone who bet on the winning card will win the same amount of chips back, if the winning and losing cards are the same, then the dealer will take half of the amount bet possible.
Players can also bet that the winning card will be higher than the losing card. This is done by placing a chip/s next to the deck. This is known as betting on a high card or a high card bet. All the cards that have been dealt with throughout the game are kept visible to players.
This can help give you an idea of what cards are left to be dealt. If you bet on a card that has already been drawn and the dealer notices, they can immediately take your chip. This is known as a dead bet,
Finally, when only 3 cards are renaming in the deck, players can bet on how the final cards will be dealt. If they get the order right, they will win 4 times the amount of chips they bet. So, that is how you play Faro. But if you want to add another twist to the game, you could always cheat!
Faro was at one time a popular gambling and drinking game. So, cheating from both the dealer and players was to be expected, to some degree. For casual at-home games, some players have added cheats to make the game more fun.
Common cheats are to try and move your chip without the dealer noticing. But if the dealer sees you, you are penalized by losing twice the number of chips you initially bet. Adding cheats as a house rule can be a fun twist for casual games.
Faro – A French Favorite
Faro is a game with a rich history and well worth playing if you’re a fan of classic card games. While the setup might take a little getting used to, the strategic and straightforward gameplay is sure to entertain anyone.