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Switch (Black Jack 7 Cards) – Rules & How to Play for Fun

family playing black jack 7 cards (switch)

When I was younger, one of the card games I used to play with my family on vacations was a game that we called Switch.

I’ve also heard other people refer to the game as Black Jack 7 Cards, Irish Switch, Two Four Jacks, or even sometimes British Blackjack.

Despite the name, this game is nothing to do with the Blackjack you would find online or at any real-world casino in Britain, or anywhere else.

It should also not be confused with Blackjack Switch, which is a popular casino blackjack variation. The names may be similar, but the games are not. The rules are completely different. Black Jack 7 Cards is a fun game that is suitable for playing with friends and family of all ages.

If you’re interested in giving Switch a try, here are the rules and how to play.

What is Switch?

Switch is a card game that can be played with two or more players.

The object of the game is to get rid of all of the cards in your hand by matching them with either the rank or suit of the card previously played.

Rules of Switch

  • The game is played with a standard deck of 52 cards.
  • Aces are high and twos are low.
  • The game can be played with two or more players.
  • The player who starts the game is the one who has the lowest card. In the event of a tie, the player with the lowest card in suit order starts the game (e.g. clubs, diamonds, hearts, spades).
  • The turn to play passes clockwise around the table.
  • On your turn, you must play one card by placing it face up on the table.
  • The first card played in a turn sets the rank for that turn. The rank can be any card, except a two.
  • The second card played in a turn must match the suit of the first card, or match the rank of the first card.
  • If you are unable to play a card, you must draw cards from the deck until you can play.
  • If the deck runs out of cards, then the player who cannot play passes their turn.
  • The first player to get rid of all their cards (or with the lowest number of cards if more than one player is left) wins the game.

How to play Switch

To start the game, each player is dealt a hand of cards. The player with the lowest card in their hand starts the game.

On each turn, the player must play one card by placing it face up on the table.

The first card played in a turn sets the rank for that turn. The second card played in a turn must match the suit of the first card, or match the rank of the first card.

If the player is unable to play a card, they must draw cards from the deck until they can play.

The first player to get rid of all their cards (or with the lowest number of cards if more than one player is left) wins the game.

Winning the game

The first player to get rid of all their cards (or with the lowest number of cards if more than one player is left) wins the game.

Strategy Tips

  • Remember that the rank for the turn is set by the first card played, so you can use this to your advantage by playing a low card first if you think your opponent will have a hard time matching it.
  • If you are stuck with a lot of high cards, try to play them early on in the turn so that you can get rid of them before your opponent has a chance to play their low cards.
  • Keep track of the suits that have been played so far in the turn, as this will give you an idea of what cards your opponent is likely to have in their hand.
  • If you are close to winning the game, try to hold on to cards that will give you more than one way to play them (e.g. an Ace and a Two of the same suit). This will give you more options on your turn and make it harder for your opponent to stop you from winning.

Variants of the Game

There are a few different ways that the game can be played, depending on how many players there are and what you want to change about the game.

  • If there are only two players, each player is dealt 10 cards instead of 7.
  • If you want to make the game more challenging, you can play with a larger deck of cards (e.g. two standard decks).
  • If you want to make the game easier, you can remove the requirement that the second card played in a turn must match the rank or suit of the first card. This means that any card can be played on any turn.

Switch is a fun and easy-to-learn card game that can be enjoyed by players of all ages. So gather up a group of friends, deal out the cards, and enjoy a game of Switch!

Last Updated on September 22, 2022

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