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An animated image of a queen winking and holding a mug.An animated image of a queen winking and holding a mug.

We Don’t Play Games — Until We Do

Nothing passes the time like gathering your favorite people around a table (six feet apart!) and sharing laughs, stories, and trash talk while playing your favorite card games. Below, 4 of our favorites (with a few tricks up our sleeve).

Ante Up

Designing an entire deck of cards posed a unique challenge for our design team. This project was a great excuse to flex our creative muscles and build something for you to enjoy, especially now, as life changed so dramatically in spring 2020. The distinguishing features on each face card (with a timely update) were blended with individual references on the back pattern (how many can you spot?) that make up much of Artemis Ward’s heart and soul. So, please, enjoy these cards and these games during these difficult times. And, of course, stay safe.

How to Build a Card House, For Real.

We all remember the card houses of our childhood — spending 30 minutes trying to get two cards to lean together just right — well, forget all that. If you really want to build like a pro, think “T’s” not “V’s.”

  1. Start by putting two cards perpendicular to each other on their edges, so that they form an off-center “T” shape, and then lean a second T shape against the first two cards to form a square.
  2. Repeat a handful of times until you’ve created what might resemble a giant waffle.
  3. Cover each square with a pair of cards flat on their face to form a “Roof” and repeat until you’re out of cards.


Number of Players: 4
Difficulty Rating: ⭐️⭐️

Like Bridge, Hearts, and Oh, Hell, Spades is a variation of the game Whist, where the objective is to work with a partner to collect as many tricks as possible.

Why We Love This Game:

Like another one of the games on this site, Spades is a game where teamwork is paramount. Your ability to communicate (non-verbally, of course) will make or break a partnership, and few things are better than being so dialed in with your partner that you can run the table in complete silence. The other thing we love about spades? Talking trash. Spades is a game that favors the bold, so let that smack talk fly.

Learn to Play
An ace of spades lies on top of another card face-down.

Gin Rummy

Min. Number of Players: 2

Difficulty Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️


As its name would lead you to believe, Gin Rummy is part of the Rummy family of games, where you score by building sets and runs.

Why We Love This Game:

Gin Rummy doesn’t require rigorous thinking, just enough to keep one’s attention. The game also tends to be played with enthusiasm curbed — there’s no yelling, shouting things out — and is best by the fire, drinking wine (or, uh, gin), listening to Fleetwood Mac.

Learn to Play
A ten of clubs, ten of hearts, and ten of spades lie in a row.

How to Throw Cards Like a Pro

To the delight of some (and the mild annoyance of others) a playing card can be a mighty fine projectile, with the right technique.

  1. First, grip the short end of the card between your middle and index fingers with your palm facing upwards.
  2. Second, curl hand upwards as if you were flexing your bicep. At this point, the card should be near your shoulder, with your hand curled so that the top of your card is almost touching the inside of your wrist.
  3. Point the back of your hand at your target and snap your wrist forward while letting go of the card. If done correctly, the motion should look something like using a yoyo, and the card should shoot out of your hand like a ninja star.
  4. Struggling? Focus on getting the card to tumble forward end-over-end. The faster the spin, the further the card should travel.


Number of Players: 3-8; 9+ with 2 decks
Difficulty Rating: ⭐️

Unlike other trick-taking games like Spades, President (or Asshole) isn’t a variation of Whist. It’s actually a westernization of Asian card games like Daifugo and Big Two, where the objective is to empty your hand as quickly as possible.

Why We Love This Game:

Yelling. While shouting at your opponents offers little strategic advantage in this game, it’s hard not to let the Presidential title go to your head. So if you’re skilled enough to win a hand or two, lean into your newfound executive privilege while you can — your term may be short-lived.

Learn to Play
A two of diamonds lays on top of deck of green cards.


Number of Players: 4 players in 2 teams
Difficulty Rating: (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻

Like Spades, Euchre too is a trick-taking game. It (and its variations) are also the reason why modern card decks were first packaged with jokers, cards originally designed to act as the right and left “bowers” (high trumps).

Why We Love This Game:

Like lake-effect snow and elongated vowel sounds, Euchre is a staple of the Great Lakes region. With some of us passing a good chunk of our misspent youth playing the game, it’s become a go-to game for business trips (and post-Zoom calls). Euchre is known to bring out the competitive spirt in most, so while it (probably) won’t end any friendships, it will certainly put them to the test — in the best ways possible.

Learn to Play
A jack of hearts lies on top of a jack of diamonds.