Kalooki 51 Rules

Over the past two centuries, variations of Rummy games have been some of the most popular card games around the world. Kalooki 51 is one such game. The game is usually played between 2-4 payers and the goal of the game is to get rid of your cards. The game developed when people decided to make the usual game of Rummy a bit more challenging by adding certain stipulations. Here are the rules of the game.


The player has to discard all of his cards by making runs or sets. To create a run, a player must have three or more cards from the same suit in order. For instance, having 3, 4, and 5 of clubs is a run. To have a set, a player must have three cards or more from different suits, but must have the same value. For instance, having 9 of clubs, diamonds, and hearts is a set.

Details about the cards

You need two full decks of cards for playing Kalooki 51. The cards have points assigned to them depending on their face value. For example, a 3 of spades is equivalent to three points and a 7 of hearts has 7 points. Every face card is allotted 10 points. The value of the Ace can either be 1 point or 11 points. While the play is on, the jokers have a value equivalent to the card they substitute. When the game ends, they are worth 25 points.

Playing the game

To start a game of Kalooki 51, every player is dealt 13 cards. Once the distribution is done, the rest of the cards are placed face down in the center of the table. Then the top card from this pile is removed and placed facing upward on the playing area. The pile that faces down is called stock pile and the pile that will be created on the overturned card is the discard pile.

After this is done, every player has to take a turn. During his turn, a player has to take a card from the stock pile and discard another from hand. The idea here is that at all times, the player should have no more than 13 cards. This way, players can also make melds. Usually, a lot of players try to hold their melds to gain a strategic advantage later on. In case the cards from the stock pile get over, the dealer will shuffle the discard pile to put it up as the new stock pile. The last discarded card would remain in its place to start the new discard pile.

Creating melds

To start creating their own melds, players must create a meld with a total value of 51. This process is known as building. While building, a fourth card can be added to a three card set only if no joker has been used. Also, repeated suits are not permitted. A set is closed when a player adds a suit that was missing. You also have the luxury to release the joker from a set of three cards, but then it has to be replaced with a card from the missing suit, and the joker should also be used somewhere else. While doing all this, keep in mind that you cannot rearrange a meld, you can only build upon it.


Ending a game

The game can end in two ways. The first one is 'Going Kalooki', that is, a player lays down all the cards at the same time. This results in remaining players getting a penalty of 25 points plus the sum of their cards. The other way of ending a game is Going Down, when a player gradually discards all the cards, and the remaining players get a penalty equivalent to the sum total of their remaining cards.