Understanding Different Types of Rummy Games

Rummy has been a favorite card game in India for a long time. Now, thanks to smartphones, more people around the world can play it. While the basic rules of rummy stay the same, there are now many different ways to enjoy this game with friends.

The main kinds of rummy are 13 Card Rummy, 21 Card Rummy, Gin Rummy, and Contract Rummy. Each of these types has its own special rules and ways to play. 13 Card Rummy is especially popular in India and is the type most often found on gaming apps like TC Lottery. This variety means there’s always something new to try in rummy, no matter how long you’ve been playing.

13 Card Rummy

13 Card Rummy holds a prime spot among card games in India. In this version, each player starts with 13 cards. To win, the rules require players to form at least one pure sequence and one impure sequence as part of their hand before declaring.

This format has given rise to several popular variations, each with its own unique twist:

  • Indian Rummy: The classic form that most people are familiar with, focusing on creating sets and sequences.
  • Points Rummy: A fast-paced version where players compete for points with a pre-decided value.
  • Deals Rummy: Played over a fixed number of deals, with the winner having the most chips at the end.
  • Pool Rummy: Players are eliminated once their cumulative scores reach a certain limit.

These variations ensure that 13 Card Rummy remains engaging and accessible to a wide range of players, offering different challenges and styles of play.

Indian Rummy

Indian Rummy falls under the umbrella of 13 Card Rummy and is widely cherished across India. This variant blends elements from both Gin Rummy and 500 Rummy, offering a unique and engaging gameplay experience. It stands out as one of the most popular types of 13 Card Rummy in the country.

In Indian Rummy, the goal is to form sets and sequences before anyone else. Each player starts with 13 cards. The game requires a single deck of 52 cards for two players, but for games with six players, two decks (104 cards in total) are used. Victory goes to the player who first arranges their cards into valid sets and sequences and makes a successful declaration.

Points Rummy

Points Rummy is a version of the 13-card rummy game where players compete for points that have a set value in money. The goal is to declare your cards and end up with zero points, meaning all your cards are in proper sets or sequences. If you don’t win, you need to add up the points for any cards not in sets or sequences. The winner gets cash based on the total points the other players have, making it a quick and exciting game.

Deals Rummy

Deals Rummy is about playing a set number of rounds, making players think ahead and plan their strategy over the entire game, not just one hand. It’s a test of endurance and skill as you try to do well in each round to come out on top. This version of rummy makes each round important and keeps the game interesting from start to finish.

Pool Rummy

Pool Rummy is yet another engaging variant you’ll often find in online rummy apps. It’s all about lasting through the rounds — players compete to keep their points below a threshold, either 101 or 201 points, over multiple rounds. Just like in Points Rummy, the winner of each round in Pool Rummy scores 0 points, aiming to stay in the game as long as possible.

Because of this setup, Pool Rummy games tend to last longer than other rummy variants. It’s a true test of patience and strategy, as players must not only win rounds but also manage their points carefully across the game to avoid reaching the elimination threshold. This version is perfect for those who enjoy a slower-paced, more strategic rummy experience.

21 Card Rummy

21 Card Rummy expands on traditional rummy by dealing players 21 cards each and raising the stakes with the requirement of forming at least three pure sequences. This requirement makes it a more challenging version to master. Unique to this variant are the penalties for dropping out early or after playing a hand, set at 30 and 75 points respectively, adding pressure to each decision. Moreover, the inclusion of upper and lower jokers, determined by the draw, introduces additional strategic elements, allowing for their use in forming impure sequences and enhancing the complexity and enjoyment of the game.

Gin Rummy

Gin Rummy offers a distinctive twist on traditional Rummy games, tailored for 2-4 players. Each player starts with 10 cards, a slight departure from the 13 or 21 cards dealt in other Rummy variants. A notable feature of Gin Rummy is the flexibility of the Ace, which can be used either as the lowest card, before the 2, or in sequences with higher cards, adding a strategic layer to forming sets and sequences.

One of the unique aspects of Gin Rummy is the possibility of winning before achieving a full set of valid cards. If a player’s ungrouped cards (deadwood) total 10 points or fewer, they can opt to “knock,” potentially securing a win based on the point differential between their deadwood and their opponent’s. This scoring method emphasizes skillful play and strategic hand management, setting Gin Rummy apart from its counterparts. While 13 Card and 21 Card Rummy enjoy broader popularity, Gin Rummy remains a favorite for players seeking a faster-paced, more strategic game.

Contract Rummy

Contract Rummy builds on the foundations of Gin Rummy but introduces a progressive structure through seven distinct rounds. Each round challenges players to achieve specific combinations of sequences, increasing in difficulty as the game advances. This escalatory approach adds depth and variety, keeping players engaged throughout the game.

Initially, players receive 10 cards for the first four rounds, shifting to 12 cards in the last three, adjusting the complexity and strategy needed as the game progresses. While retaining much of Gin Rummy’s gameplay mechanics, Contract Rummy distinguishes itself with these round-specific goals, offering a unique blend of strategy, planning, and adaptability. This variant is perfect for those who enjoy a more structured and evolving rummy experience.


Canasta, with its origins traced back to Spain, stands out in the Rummy family for its unique gameplay and use of wild cards. Like traditional Rummy, the goal is to form sets and sequences, but Canasta introduces an interesting twist by designating both Jokers and 2s as wild cards. These wild cards add a strategic layer to the game, allowing for more flexibility in completing sets and sequences, and bring an added level of excitement and variability to each game. This makes Canasta a beloved variation for those looking to explore beyond the conventional Rummy rules.


Rummikub offers a unique blend of Rummy and Mahjong, capturing the hearts of players across Asia and Europe. Unlike traditional card-based Rummy, Rummikub is played with 104 tiles that mirror two decks of cards, numbered 1-13. Each player starts with 14 tiles, aiming to create and lay down sets in a gameplay experience that marries the strategic depth of Rummy with the tactile pleasure of Mahjong. Rummikub’s distinct approach and the use of tiles instead of cards provide a refreshing variation on the Rummy theme.

Oklahoma Rummy

Oklahoma Rummy draws close parallels to Gin Rummy but stands out by dealing players just 7 cards at the start, compared to the 10 cards in traditional Gin Rummy. This variation allows for the use of Jokers as wild cards to form impure sets and sequences, adding a layer of flexibility and strategy to the game. Oklahoma Rummy’s streamlined setup results in quicker games, making it an appealing option for players looking for a fast-paced version of Rummy that still requires thoughtful play and tactical decision-making.

Kalooki Rummy

Kalooki Rummy is a special kind of Rummy game that comes from Jamaica. In this game, every player gets 9 cards to start with. The twist here is that the winner is the person with the lowest number of points at the end of the game. This makes players think carefully about which cards to keep and which to get rid of, aiming to have as few points as possible. Kalooki adds a fun challenge to the usual Rummy game by changing the way you aim to win.

500 Rummy

500 Rummy is a fun card game that 2-8 people can play, very popular in America. It’s a lot like the regular Rummy game everyone knows, but with a twist. In this game, you get points for making the right card combinations. The first player to get to 500 points wins the game. This makes the game exciting because you have to think about how to get the most points every time you play your cards.

Shanghai Rummy

Shanghai Rummy is a card game that’s great for 3-5 players. Each player gets 11 cards to start. It’s a lot like another game called Contract Rummy, but with a special change: the 2 of Spades and the 2 of Clubs cards are also used as wild cards, just like Jokers. This makes the game even more interesting because you have more ways to put your cards together and win.

Dummy Rummy

Dummy Rummy is a really straightforward game that’s easy to get the hang of. In this version, all the 2s act as wild cards, just like the four regular joker cards do in a game that uses two decks of cards. This means you’ve got a lot of wild cards to play with, giving you plenty of options for making different sets and sequences. It’s a fun twist that makes creating combinations in Dummy Rummy quite exciting.

FAQ on Types of Rummy

How Many Versions of Rummy Exist?

On platforms like TC Lottery, you can find three main types of rummy games: Points Rummy, Deals Rummy, and Pool Rummy, which includes variations like 61, 101, and 201.

Which App is Best for Playing Different Rummy Variants?

TC Lottery stands out as a top choice for exploring various rummy games, including Deals Rummy, Points Rummy, and Pool Rummy. It offers a wide range of tables and tournaments, catering to all rummy enthusiasts.

Are All Rummy Variants the Same?

While the core goal in rummy—to create valid sets and sequences—remains consistent across variants, each type introduces its unique rules and challenges. This diversity ensures that rummy remains endlessly engaging and enjoyable for players of all skill levels.

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