The Ultimate Guide to Cribbage Rules for Bicycle

Nov 19, 2023


Welcome to Central Gaming Corps, your go-to source for all things gaming! In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the exciting world of cribbage rules using Bicycle cards. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced player seeking to refine your skills, this article is designed to provide you with an in-depth understanding of the game so you can dominate the competition!

What is Cribbage?

Cribbage is a classic card game that has been enjoyed for centuries. It is a game that combines strategy, skill, and a touch of luck. Typically played with a standard deck of 52 playing cards, the game can also be played with a specifically designed cribbage deck, such as Bicycle cards.

The Cribbage Board

A cribbage board is an essential tool used to keep score during the game. It consists of a series of holes, usually arranged in rows of 30, to represent different score values. Players use pegs or markers to track their progress and count the points earned throughout the game.

How to Play Cribbage

Now that we have a basic understanding of what cribbage is, let's dive into the gameplay mechanics and rules. Here's a step-by-step breakdown:

Step 1: Setup

Before starting the game, make sure you have a cribbage board and a standard deck of cards, preferably Bicycle cards. Shuffle the deck thoroughly and distribute six cards to each player. Then, place two cards face down in the "crib" – a special area that will be used later for scoring.

Step 2: The Starter Card

The non-dealer cuts the deck to select the starter card. This card will be revealed during gameplay and has a significant impact on the scoring process.

Step 3: Discarding to the Crib

Both players now discard two cards from their hand to the crib. The crib is a separate scoring area, controlled by the dealer. Choosing the right cards to discard while preventing your opponent from building a strong crib is a crucial aspect of the game.

Step 4: The Play

The player who is not the dealer starts the game by laying down a card face-up on the table. The other player then plays a card, and both players continue to alternate until the total value of the cards played reaches 31 or cannot be increased without exceeding 31.

Step 5: Scoring

Once the play ends, players earn points based on the combinations formed by the cards played. Some of the most common scoring opportunities in cribbage include:

  • Fifteens: A combination of cards that adds up to fifteen, earning two points.
  • Runs: A sequence of consecutive cards, such as 2-3-4, earning one point for each card in the run.
  • Pairs: Two cards of the same rank played consecutively earn two points.
  • Flush: If all four cards in the play are of the same suit, the player scores four points.

Cribbage Strategies

To become a skilled cribbage player, it is essential to master specific strategies. Here are some tips to elevate your game:

1. Pegging Strategy

Pegging is the process of taking turns and scoring points during the play. To maximize your pegging potential, try to:

  • Utilize low-value cards strategically to manipulate the total value closer to key pegging holes, such as 15 or 31.
  • Pay close attention to your opponent's discards, as they can give you valuable clues about their hand.
  • Balance your own discards to maintain a mix of high and low-value cards, ensuring versatility during play.

2. The Crib

When discarding cards to the crib, consider the following strategies:

  • Avoid discarding cards that could create easy scoring opportunities for your opponent.
  • Utilize cards that complement the starter card, creating combinations that are difficult to counter.
  • When in a leading position, discard low-scoring or similar-value cards to diminish your opponent's potential.

3. Card Counting

Keep a mental track of the cards played throughout the game to gain an advantage. By monitoring the cards in play, you can make more informed decisions about which cards to play or retain in your hand.


Cribbage is a captivating game that rewards both strategy and skill. With the comprehensive rules and expert tips outlined in this guide, you are well-equipped to enjoy countless hours of thrilling gameplay. Remember, practice makes perfect!

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