Squeal (a Card Game)

Introduction: Squeal (a Card Game)

the most fun-est best-est card game ever. plays like double solitaire or spit, but on a whole different level of chaos and speed. origins of this game afaik originate somewhere at the university of chicago, mid 90's.

Step 1: Initial Setup

every player has their own deck of cards, somewhere from 4-7 players is a good number. 3 is too slow, 8 your better off with two games of 4. each deck must be different in some way to separate them later. players site in a circle, square, or polygon of some sort on a rug. it is important to play on some sort of rug or other surface which prevents the cards from sliding around. each player deals out 13 cards for their draw pile, and then 4 cards face up. As soon as all players have 4 cards up, play immediately begins.

Step 2: Go!!!!

The end goal is score points, and to do this, you need to do get your cards into the center, and deplete your flip deck. In the center, play starts from aces, and follows same suit sequentially. When you clear out one of your four spaces, fill it in with a card from your filp pile. If you notice here, two players are now in a race to play the 3 of spades. It is important to note, that when placing cards in the center, you must only use one hand to let all players have a chance when there is a run. So unless the player who played the 2 is very fast, they may miss out on placing the 3. Also, don't throw your cards. It makes things messy and uncertain.

Step 3: Building

you can also free up spaces by building, alternating suits, sequentially down (like solitaire). Building can work for you, but also against you, as you no longer have access to the cards that have been built under.

Step 4: Flip Pile

you also have your flip pile to utilize. going 3 cards at a time, utilizing the top card, like solitaire. after playing the top of the 3 cards, you can use the card beneath it. the bottom card of your flip pile is your hole card, which you may use at any time. you can also use a card from your flip pile to build.

Step 5: King Piles

when you finish a pile with a king, remove it from the center, and set aside for later.

Step 6: Point of Chaos

when things get too messy, and they will, any player may call point of chaos. All play stops, and every one tidies up. The player who called the PoC then says resume to begin play.

Step 7: Squealing

when you are the first to deplete your draw pile (13 cards), you call squeal, or actually squeal. Whatever you prefer. Don't say squeal, unless you are calling it, the word can cause alarm. All play stops immediately, no more cards may be placed in the center, and no more building. however you may fill in empty spaces if you have any.

Step 8: Scoring Part 1

take your working cards and flip deck and set aside. count the your remaining draw pile cards (unless you squealed, then you won't have any obviously) and remember that number. set these aside as well.

Step 9: The Vortex

flip all the cards in the center over (don't forget to throw those king piles back in) and start vortexing your cards out. moving in a clockwise or counter-clockwise motion (coriolis compliant if you like), draw your cards out with one hand, and keep the swirl going with your other. you may even push your own cards past your, just let them go, they will come back around.

Step 10: Scoring Part 2

all cards you got into the center are worth 1 point each, with the exception of kings which are worth 3 points. Each card you had left in your draw pile is worth -2 points. add it up and you have your score for that round. you can get negative points for an individual round, however your total score for the match can't go below zero. that would be cruel. continue playing until some predetermined score, or until physical exhaustion.

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    6 Discussions


    1 year ago

    My family called this game screech. We have been doing it as long as I remember. I started playing in the early to mid 80s with my sister and grandmother. I can't believe there are other names for this game. I am teaching my son to play now. Like squeal, the leftover draw pile was -2 points a card, but anything in the middle was only 1 point. Makes it hard to score sometimes if nobody gets screech. thanks for sharing this.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    Oh, this is like what we call minnesota speed. Minnesota because our teacher from minnesota taught us it.


    Reply 4 years ago

    this is almost exactly like speed, only multi player


    9 years ago on Introduction

    I learned this growing up, only we called it "Nertz" and didn't use the vortex. :) Also, all cards were worth 1 point (if in the center) or -1 point if in our draw.