How to play Cribbage?

Cribbage is a game played with 2-4 people. The game is easy to learn and play. To keep track of the score, a cribbage board is very useful. Here are the steps that those that play for the first time can follow.

Getting a cribbage board

Cribbage is a card game and needs a deck of cards, the cribbage board and pegs to keep track of your score. The jokers are not used, and each player needs a pair of pegs. Generally, the unused pegs are kept underneath the board. You can also do away with the board if you record your score simply on paper. The person, who can score 121 fastest, wins the game.

Dealing the hand.

To determine the dealer, the deck is picked up and shuffled a couple of times. Next the deck is placed upside down on the table and each player chooses a card. The player who gets the lowest card becomes the dealer. The dealer’s job is to distribute 6 cards to each player.


According to the game rules each player has to give away 2 cards from the 6 cards that they get from the dealer. The player is free to choose the two cards that they want to give away. The pile in which the cards are collected is called the crib.


In a two-player game, the player who is not the dealer divides the deck to allot a top card. This card is called the ‘cut’ and will be used by both the players. It is used as the wild 5th card for counting points when a round ends.


Players alternately lay their cards starting with the person who hasn’t dealt the cards. After playing a card, they call out the total value. While face cards are worth 10 points, the number cards have the same value as the number printed on them. The value of an ace is 1. The game does not take into account the suits.

Maximum value of 31

When a player is not able to call out a number less than 31, he will pass on the turn. At this point, of time, the other player can place cards a number of times, unless he too has to call ‘31’. After the second player adds all the cards, he says ‘go’ earning ‘1’ point. He is awarded ‘2’ points if his cumulative total is exactly 31.

Other peg points

If a player has exact 15 points, then they are awarded 2 points. If a player can call out the same value that the other player just called, he or she is too awarded 2 points. Players can also earn points if they can complete a run of three. Furthermore, the player who has the final card gets 1 point as a reward.


When all the cards have been played the counting process starts. The person whose cards are counted first is non dealer, followed by the dealer and then the crib.

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