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the egyptian rat screw

My siblings came over for dinner tonite. Mare made a delicious pasta meal consisting of fettuccine in marinara with Italian sausage.

Afterwards, we played Spades. Mare & I lost, but we were close. I managed to get a double nil one round and a nil another which brought us out of the heavy negative we were in at the beginning of the game.

To close out the night, we drank some coffee and played Egyptian Rat Screw. I’ve play this game before, but I couldn’t remember how. My sister gave me a quick run-through, and we were ready to go. I really enjoyed that game. My brother ended up winning, but the game did last a while.

In case you don’t remember, here’s the way we played Egyptian Rat Screw in a nutshell:

  • The entire deck is dealt minus the joker cards. Each person should have 13 cards.
  • No one looks at their cards.
  • The first person flips their top card out and face up. The person to his left then puts a card on the table face up. This process is repeated until a face card or an ace is drawn.
  • When a face card is put on the table, the person to the left of the person who put the face down puts down the corresponding number of cards:

Jacks – 1
Queens – 2
Kings 3
Aces – 4

  • If another face card isn’t placed in the number of tries, the person who put down the face card wins the pile. If a face card is put down, then the next person puts down the corresponding number of cards on the pile in hopes of putting down a face card.
  • Here’s the fun part: If two of the same card is put down on the table in a row, then the first person to slap the stack wins the pile. If two of the same card is put down on the table only one card apart (e.g. 10 then 5 then another 10), then the first person to slap the stack wins the pile. The latter is called a sandwich.
  • Jacks are the strong card of the game, because this gives the next person the least number of chances to draw a face card which gives the person who put down the Jack a better chance of winning the pile.
  • When a person wins the pile, the pile returns to his hand in order to the bottom of his existing pile.
  • If a person runs out of cards, then he still has a chance of returning by slapping doubles or a sandwich and winning the pile.
  • If a person with cards slaps and the top cards of the pile are neither doubles or a sandwich, then he has to discard his top card to the bottom of the pile face up.
  • The winner is the person who gets all of the cards.

I hope I covered most of the rules. Let me know if I missed something. I will now return to the second disc of Season Three of The Office ’cause that show is currently one of my favorites. I will probably fade out after a couple episodes then enjoy the rest of my Friday. I heart you, too. Peace out.


Comment from Carli
Time: 23 January 2008, 18:38

Do you know if their is a national or world Egyptian rat screw competition/ championship match and if so how I could get information on it??

Comment from Sam
Time: 20 June 2008, 20:50

I would also like to enter a tournament. I have been playing for quite some time, and I feel I am the best in this area.

Comment from J
Time: 14 July 2008, 11:58

i’d be interested in a tournament also…if there isn’t one, perhaps we should start one?

Comment from jimbobjune
Time: 22 August 2008, 18:15

well why don’t u all go suck eggs


Comment from Fedil
Time: 29 March 2012, 10:56

Egyptian Ratscrew is sooo addicting. My friend introduced me to the game on a snowboarding trip and now can’t get enough of it. There is also an iPhone/iPad app that looks very fun (

Comment from mathfreaak2
Time: 6 July 2012, 16:48

Well, now that a few of the seniors at my high school are leaving, I am the best at my school. Population: 2000 I am one of the best in my area and I can’t find a lot of people who are interested in the game anymore, and I would like to be bested because the only time I have been bested at ERS was at the end of the school year by one of the seniors… So that is why I am looking for a tournament.