How to Play BS: a Game of Bluffing




Introduction: How to Play BS: a Game of Bluffing

In this instructable I will teach you how to play BS, a fun card game. This is one of my favorite card games to play and often brings about many laughs and smiles. The object of the game is to get rid of all your cards. I hope you enjoy this as much as I do and have fun experiences with it! This is my second instructable, so feedback and comments would be much appreciated.

Step 1: What You Need

To play BS you will need:

  1. 3 or more people
  2. A deck of 52 playing cards, with or without jokers
  3. Sunglasses(optional)-You'll see why later!

Step 2: Preparation

The very first thing you need to do is take out the Jokers of the deck if you are playing the normal version.(More on that later) Once you have done this, shuffle the deck very well. You want the deck to be mixed up! Depending on how many people you have, start dealing the cards out to each individual. Continue until you have dealt all of the cards. You are now ready to begin!

Step 3: Choosing Who Goes First

In the traditional rules, whoever has the ace of spades goes first. They would place that card down, along with any other aces they have. Depending on the players' liking, that can be changed. Here are some variations:

  • -Youngest begins and play rotates clockwise
  • -Oldest begins and play rotates counterclockwise
  • -Whoever has the ace of spades goes first and play rotates clockwise
  • -Whoever "calls it" goes first and play rotates either direction
  • -A loud argument occurs and whoever owns the cards gets the last word in, choosing who goes first and which way play rotates.

Once it is decided who shall go first, players organize their cards and the game begins!

Step 4: The Rules of the Game and Organizing Cards

The object of BS is to get rid of one's cards. To do this you "bluff" your opponents. The play will go by card number, starting at aces, then two's, three's, four's, and so on. The starting player must place the ace of spades facedown on their first hand if they have it. If not, then they can place down as many aces as they have. If they do not have any aces then they have to bluff. They do this by placing down 1 to 4 different number cards. For example, if it is my turn and I do not have any six's, and the play is on six's, I put down an ace and say, "One six." That was my turn and now it is the next player's turn.

If someone can tell that I was bluffing, they must shout "BS!!!" before the next player goes. If nothing is said, one cannot come back to a turn and proclaim that a bluff was in action. If small children are playing, substitute with words like "Peanut Butter!!!" or "Baloney Sandwich!!!" I have always liked the latter phrase. If the bluff is true, and the player did not place only the designated card(s) down, then the bluffing player must take all the cards in the middle of the table. If a bluff wasn't actually in play and the player was being honest, the accuser must take all of the cards. Played cards will be facedown until challenged.

Back to the beginning, after the initial starting turn, the play goes by number. Example: The player before me was required to play five's. I now play six's. Whomever is after me plays seven's. The game continues like this.

If a bluff is called out, the top cards that were just played are flipped over for everyone to see. Based on the cards, someone will have to take them. Play continues on the NEXT number with the NEXT player! If a bluff was called on an ace, with player number 3, then player number 4 begins the next turn on two's.

Organizing your cards will make the game quicker and flow smoother, and might even help you win. See pictures for examples. There are several ways to do this:

  1. Number order - Exactly as the name says - Makes it easier to find cards
  2. Jumbled - Makes it harder for your opponents to tell if you are bluffing; they can't tell if your cards are in order and if you are pulling out the wrong card to bluff
  3. By suit - Place your cards in groups of suit, hearts, spades, clubs, and diamonds - makes it slightly more difficult for your opponents to tell if you are bluffing


All of the side notes on the pictures aren't showing up, but if you click on the picture, you can see the notes.

Step 5: Winning the Game

To win the game, get rid of all your cards. If you have more than three people, you can also play for first place, second place, third place, etc...

It can be advantageous to always call a bluff whenever a player puts their last card(s) down. The winner now has earned bragging rights.

Step 6: Advanced Play

More experienced players can enjoy some variations, such as adding in Jokers. A Joker counts as any card at all, and can lead to some interesting bluffs. Another variation is adding an extra deck or two into play, which is especially useful when playing large rounds. Tournaments are also another possibility. The list is endless!

Step 7: Tips, Tricks, and Fun!

Tips and Tricks

  1. I find that wearing sunglasses while playing is EXTREMELY advantageous, as it means that many people won't be able to see your eyes. Who knows what you're going to do? Wearing reflective sunglasses is even better.

  2. Don't let other players see your cards. Simple as that.
  3. Sometimes, collecting cards can be fun! I always get a kick out of having all four of a card, and calling a bluff before someone even plays their cards! "Nope, just pick them up Mary."
  4. Not letting people see how many cards you have allows you to go unnoticed. When people see someone is almost out, they call BS a lot more. If you stay quiet and subtle, you can win without the others even knowing what just happened.
  5. Watch their eyes! Eyes give away everything!

Step 8: Enjoy!

If you have any questions, let me know and I will get back to you quickly. Have fun bluffing!

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    Void Schism
    Void Schism

    6 years ago on Introduction

    Wow, I had forgotten about this game. Used to play it loads at college, thanks for reminding me of happy times screaming "BULLSHIT!" at my friends.

    We sometimes played with a double deck due to numbers of players. Also, I heard some people play with aces as wild cards to make it harder to call bluffs.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    I like the idea of aces! Imagine a double deck, with aces and jokers as wilds! The fun possibilities. When I went skiing and a blizzard snowed us in, all one could hear was the sound of cussing and "PEANUT BUTTER!!!" as we played. Fond memories...


    10 months ago

    Can I add extra cards secretly with out others knowing?


    1 year ago on Step 7

    Hi, Nice tutorial!
    I just have one question:
    Won't sunglasses reflect the cards and reveal them to other players?


    2 years ago

    When you’re about to go out...just before the next persons it in the rules,to say you are just about out of cards? Kind of like you have to knock in Rummy?

    Oreo robinson
    Oreo robinson

    Question 3 years ago on Step 1

    Can u drow from the deck of remader cards


    6 years ago on Introduction

    When it comes your turn to play, and you don't have any of the number card, do you have the option to pass? Or must you put down a card (obvious a bluff)?

    And if you are able to pass, does the card number stay the same or does it proceed higher to the next one up?


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    You cannot pass. You must do your best to bluff. If you play with Jokers, you could play one. Another option would be to integrate a new rule that each player is allowed one pass. If you were to start that new rule, I would say that the number should stay the same. That's what I love about card games: being able to invent rules!