How To Play Go Fish For Dummies

How To Play Go Fish (For Dummies)

There might be tons of Go Fish game variations created all over the world, fashioned with their own uniqueness, but in this article, we will guide you on the basics of a Go Fish game.

Hoping that wherever you come from, you will, too, enjoy learning and start playing Go Fish.

uno go fish playing cards

What You Need

  • A deck of cards
    These playing cards would do; a standard-52 deck, a Go Fish deck, or even an UNO deck.
  • 2-5 players
    You can check out these websites if you want to play against bots or online players.

How To Play Go Fish: For Dummies

1. Distributing cards.

Shuffle the cards facedown and deal cards to each player as follow:

  • 2 players: 7 cards each
  • 3-5 players: 5 cards each

2. Set aside all “books”.

A book is a suit of the same card number or rank. For example, four cards of 13 would be a book.

Now look at the cards you have in hand. If by chance you were dealt with cards with a book, set it aside faceup, and re-draw that much card from the deck.

7 go fish cards in a hand with a book

3. Deciding who plays first.

Next, each player draw one card out of the deck. The player with the highest card number starts the game. Return the cards and reshuffle the deck.

4. Make a “pond”.

Jumble and spread the rest of the deck in front of the players. This will be the pond to “fish” for cards.

go fish pond pile regal

5. First player moves.

As the first player, you request from another player any card number that you have. For example, if you have a 12 or 12s in your hand, ask the other player “Do you have any twelves?”.

Remember, you only ask for the number that you have in hand.

Tips: If there are more than 2 players, who should you ask first? It doesn’t matter! You can ask any opponent first.

6. Opponent is asked.

When you request a card number, the opponent must hand over all cards of the same number or rank. One cannot cheat by not handing over the cards because this beats the purpose of the game.

go fish cards 12s

  • Continue to no. 7 if the opponent has handed over the cards.
  • Skip to no. 8 if the opponent does not have the requested cards.

Tips: There are different variations of Go Fish games; some require you to hand in all same-rank cards, while others require you to hand in only one card, if you have more. At the end of the day, you choose the rules!

7. The next opponent is asked.

After the first opponent handed over their cards, you are still playing. So ask another opponent for any card number you have in hand.

8. Go Fish!

If they do not have the cards you requested, they tell you to “go fish, and you take a card from the “pond”. This is when your turn to ask around is over. Draw only 1 card from the pond.

Go fish take a card from pond

9. The next player’s turn to ask around.

The next player is decided in a clockwise direction. Now you can refer to the earlier instructions if you still haven’t got the gist of it.

We hope that with this article, we have helped you understand how to play Go Fish for dummies.

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