Old maid card Game

Old Maid is an easy and fun card game to play with friends; simply learn it quickly! Decks specifically created for this game can also be used.


Shuffle and distribute cards face down among players, then arrange that whoever makes a pair will pass it along in turn order.

Game play

  1. Shuffle the deck and remove one Queen to be the Old Maid.
  2. Deal all cards face-down to players equally.
  3. Players remove pairs from their hands and place them face-up on the table.
  4. The player to the left draws a card from the right player and checks for pairs.
  5. That player then discards if they have a pair, otherwise, they add it to their hand.
  6. Play continues clockwise until all pairs except the Old Maid are made.
  7. The player with the Old Maid in their hand loses.



The objective of Old Maid is to not be left holding the Old Maid card at the end of the game.

Number of Players:

Old Maid can be played with 3 or more players.


Use a standard deck of 52 playing cards. Remove one Queen from the deck, leaving one Queen as the Old Maid.

Detailed Game Play

Old Maid is an exciting family card game designed for two or more players that is both easy and fun to learn and play. Unlike many other card games, Old Maid does not involve betting or gambling and can be enjoyed by people of all ages. To win at Old Maid quickly take cards from each pair you receive by discarding pairs quickly while leaving one unmatched card behind as quickly as possible – otherwise that player loses.

How its Played

  1. The dealer shuffles the deck of cards and deals them out to all players face-down until all players have an equal amount of cards.
  2. Each player then looks at their cards and removes any pairs they have (two cards with the same rank and suit). These pairs are set aside.
  3. The dealer then takes the remaining cards and holds them face-down, fanning them out so that the other players can draw from them.
  4. The player to the left of the dealer draws one card from the dealer’s hand without looking at it.
  5. If the drawn card makes a pair with any of the player’s existing cards, the pair is removed and set aside.
  6. If the drawn card does not make a pair, it is added to the player’s hand.
  7. Play then passes to the next player to the left, who repeats steps 4-6.
  8. The game continues like this until all pairs have been removed from each player’s hand except for one: the Old Maid. This means that the player who drew the last matching pair will be left with the Old Maid.
  9. That player loses the game and is declared the “Old Maid.”
  10. The game can be played again with the roles of the dealer and the Old Maid rotating among the players.


  • It’s a good strategy to pay attention to what cards are being drawn and discarded by the other players. This can give you clues as to what cards they might still have in their hand.
  • Try to avoid drawing from the same spot in the dealer’s hand every time, as this can make it easier for other players to predict which card you might pick up next.
  • Be aware of the possibility that the Old Maid may not be the last card remaining in the game. If all players run out of cards except for one player who still has the Old Maid, that player also loses the game.


Old Maid is a timeless card game designed for two or more players that can be enjoyed by children of any age and can help develop matching skills. You can play the classic deck or opt for one specifically tailored to the game!

Some may modify the rules of this game to make it more engaging, such as by taking away one queen from each pack and playing 51 cards instead of 52 – this makes the game both harder and more entertaining, and allows someone left with only an odd Jack to become known as Old Maid; such variations of this game are frequently used in schools to teach children numbers and counting.

old maid

Crazy Eights Old Maid:

In this version, the standard deck is used but the 8’s are also designated as “Old Maids.” This means there are now four “Old Maids” in the deck instead of one. The rules remain the same, but players must now watch out for all four “Old Maids.”

Go Fish Old Maid:

In this variation, the game is played in a similar way to Go Fish. Each player starts with a hand of five cards and takes turns asking other players if they have a certain card to form a pair. If the other player has the card, they must give it to the player who asked. If not, the player who asked must “go fish” and take a card from the dealer’s hand. The game continues until all pairs except for the Old Maid have been formed.

Reverse Old Maid:

In this version, the goal is to be the player left with the Old Maid at the end of the game. The game is played in the same way, but the player who ends up with the Old Maid is declared the winner.

Kings Old Maid:

In this variation, the Kings are the designated “Old Maids.” This makes the game a bit more challenging, as the Kings are usually valuable cards in other games.


Old Maid is an easy and engaging card game for both kids and families to enjoy together, offering simple rules with fast-paced action. The game can be enjoyed using either regular playing cards or ones specifically designed for it with one queen removed for 51-card deck. The goal is to form and discard pairs while avoiding being left with “old maids”. Two to eight people can participate at once!

Set up and play of Old Maid is simple, with only a few key considerations to keep in mind when getting started. First, the dealer should thoroughly shuffle the cards before dealing them to each player – this may mean not everyone receiving equal numbers of cards but this is OK. Also, they should remove one of the Queens from the deck prior to hand distribution so no one knows which card represents Old Maid until after it has all been dealt out.

Once cards have been dealt, each player must carefully consider their hand. If a pair exists in their hand, it should be discarded by offering any remaining cards face down to their player on the left; until all potential pairs have been eliminated. Whoever remains with an Old Maid card at this point will be considered the loser.

For older students, you can use a word card creator to design custom sets of Old Maid cards that reflect their sight reading vocabulary. As they master certain words, reduce their usage while adding in newer sight words for extra challenge.

Once completed, this traditional family card game will provide hours of fun and learning! Also known as Scabby Queen, Vieux Garcon, Schwarzer Peter or Black Peter – this classic must be included on every family game night – nothing beats watching your kids share this activity together!


Old Maid is an ageless classic card game loved by children of all ages, as well as adults of any age. This fast-paced, fun game requires basic matching and discarding skills as well as some level of luck; its goal is to avoid becoming the “Old Maid.” There are multiple variations for Old Maid which can be played with either standard decks of cards or special Old Maid decks.

Old Maid is an easy card game with straightforward rules: simply shuffle and deal all of the cards clockwise from you, accepting that some may receive more cards than others; when sorting their cards they should all remove any pairs; if a player has three of a rank card they should discard two and keep one; finally whoever holds onto their highest pair wins while those holding onto an Old Maid card lose.

While there are multiple ways to play this card game, most involve matching up all your cards so as to avoid the Old Maid (an unpaired Queen card) at any point during gameplay. Whoever matches their entire set first wins the game until there are no more matches left and game play resumes until all cards have been paired successfully.

This game may be easy to learn, but mastery can be challenging. Success requires some focus, recognition of all cards involved, good observation skills and some luck thrown in as well.

Old Maid card game is an entertaining way to bring friends and family together for some friendly competition. Played with either standard deck of cards or one designed specifically for it, Old Maid can bring laughs and make wonderful memories during fast-paced card play – find decks in funny vintage designs to add an extra element of fun!

Original Old Maid Card Game Characters

Old MaidAn elderly lady with gray hair and a mischievous smile.
Gentleman CallerA dapper gentleman with a suit and top hat, often carrying gifts.
Dancing CoupleElegantly dressed individuals locked in a graceful dance.
Jolly JokerA jester or clown character known for colorful attire and antics.
Miserly MillionaireA wealthy-looking character surrounded by money and treasure.
Scaredy CatA timid and easily frightened cat with wide eyes.
Mischievous MonkeyA playful monkey known for causing mischief and surprises.
Busy BeeA hardworking bee character often seen buzzing around.
Happy HikerA cheerful hiker with a backpack and walking stick.
Clever CookA skilled chef or cook character with a chef’s hat and utensils.

How to Play Old Maid With Picture Cards?

  1. Gather a deck of Old Maid cards featuring pictures instead of numbers. You can find these decks online or at local stores.
  2. Shuffle the cards and distribute them equally among the players. It’s okay if some players have one more card than others.
  3. The dealer presents their hand face-down to the player on their left.
  4. The player on the left selects one card from the dealer’s hand. If it matches any pair in their hand, they place the pair face-up on the table. If it doesn’t match, they keep it for later turns.
  5. This process continues clockwise until all pairs have been created and placed on the table. The player left with the unmatched card (the Old Maid) loses the game.
  6. Pairs can be formed by matching cards of the same rank. Suit doesn’t matter. For example, two sixes of hearts and two fives of clubs would make a pair.
  7. Pay attention to other players’ drawing habits. If you notice a pattern in how they draw cards, it can help you predict where they might lay down their pairs, giving you an advantage.
  8. The winner of the game is the player with the most pairs once all players have discarded theirs. You can achieve this by pairing all the cards in your hand or by having fewer cards left than the other players. You can also try to outdraw your opponents by drawing more cards than they do, which increases your chances of winning.

How to Play Od Maid Card Game With Regular Cards ?

Old Maid is a classic card game that can be played with a regular deck of cards. Here’s a simplified guide to playing Old Maid with regular cards:

  1. Remove one queen card from the deck to act as the “Old Maid” card. The remaining queens will be used as regular matching pairs.
  2. Shuffle the deck thoroughly.
  3. Deal all the cards to the players. It’s okay if some players have more cards than others, as long as every player has roughly the same number of cards.
  4. Each player removes any matching pairs from their hand (e.g., two cards of the same rank, such as two Aces or two Jacks) and places them face-up on the table.
  5. The player to the left of the dealer selects a random card from the hand of the player on their left. If it matches a card in their hand, they remove that pair and place it face-up on the table. If it doesn’t match, they keep it in their hand.
  6. Play continues clockwise, with each player selecting a card from the player on their left and attempting to make pairs. If a player runs out of cards during their turn, they are out of the game.
  7. As the game progresses, players will try to avoid being left with the “Old Maid” card, which is the remaining queen. The player who ends up with the “Old Maid” card loses the game.
  8. The game continues until only one player is left without the “Old Maid” card. That player is declared the winner.

Old Maid is a fun and simple game that can be enjoyed by players of all ages. It’s a great way to pass the time and can be played with family and friends using a regular deck of cards.

Old Maid Card Game rules 2 Players vs 3 Player

The main difference between playing Old Maid with 2 players and 3 players is the gameplay dynamics and the way cards are exchanged between players.

In the 2-player version, each player takes turns selecting a card from their opponent’s hand. The goal is to make pairs and avoid being left with the “Old Maid” card. The game continues until one player is left with only the “Old Maid” card, and that player loses.

In the 3-player version, players exchange cards in a clockwise direction. Each player offers a card from their hand face-down to the player on their left, who then selects a card without looking at it. The goal is still to make pairs and avoid the “Old Maid” card. The game continues until only one player is left without the “Old Maid” card, and that player is declared the winner.

The main difference lies in the card exchange mechanism and the number of players involved. The 2-player version allows for more direct interaction between the two players, while the 3-player version introduces a round-robin style of card exchange among the players.

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