Shockwave Demo
Please read the basic rules before watching this demo!
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For 2-4 players, best with 3 or 4.
Standard Poker Deck with the 2 Jokers (54 cards.)

  To be the first player to get rid of all your cards.

  Whoever has the cards shuffles and deals 10 cards to each player. The remaining cards form the draw pile. Traditionally, all players slam a fist onto their pile of cards before picking them up and ordering them. Yes, it may seem awkward now, but after a couple of heated games, it'll catch on. . . or else I'll cry. . . a lot.

  The player with the lowest card goes first, thus creating the play pile. Play passes to the left (clockwise).

  The lowest cards in Tenstuff are the Jokers, while the highest are the Kings. Here's the full spectrum:
  • Joker, Ace, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, Jack, Queen, King
  To differentiate between the two Jokers, the Joker with more words on it, maybe a guarantee or return policy or whatever, is considered the marked Joker. It is lower than the unmarked Joker for the purpose of deciding who goes first.
  To differentiate between the four of each of the other cards, the suits go in this order, low to high:

  • Diamonds , Clubs , Hearts , Spades
  This is the official worldwide order (as far as I know). These suit orders only apply to choosing who goes first.
  After getting your cards dealt to you, it is extremely helpful to order them and get them grouped correctly (all nines together etc.).

  Make a play on the play pile, then draw one card from the draw pile. If you can not play or do not want to play, just draw one card, thus passing on your turn. Then the next player goes.

  On your turn you play a 'set' of cards. You can only play cards together as a set if they are of the same value: three queens make a set, all four nines make a set, and the two jokers make a set. Also, single cards are always legal sets. So, sets always consist of 1 to 4 cards. The advantage to playing a large set is that you get rid of cards faster. Frequently, however, you will only be able to play a set of 1 card.
  You can only play a set if it is higher than or equal to to the last set played. Thus, on a set of 4's, you can play another set of 4's or anything higher. Suit does not matter in this way of playing sets.
  Obviously, the game would soon be stuck once the sets get high. To fix this, on face cards, you can play a higher set of face cards, or play a lower set as long as there is at least one matching suit between sets. You can only do this on Jacks, Queens, and Kings.
  Jokers can be played on face cards.
  On the first turn, the lowest possible set must be played.

  Special plays occur when you play a set on another set of the same value. For example, playing an 8 on an 8, or some Aces on some Aces. There are three distinct ways this can happen, same, less, and more:
  Same - called a 'match'. Occurs when you play a set on another set of the same size and value. For example, a 3 on a 3, two Kings on two Kings, etc.. This allows you to optionally play another legal set (which could very well be another 'match').
  Less - called an 'attempt'. Occurs when you play a set smaller than the previous set and of the same value. For example, a 3 on two 3's, a King on three Kings, etc.. When you do this, you can try to guess the next card in the draw pile. Then draw normally. If you guessed the exact right card (value AND suit) before touching the card, it goes to the NEXT player's hand instead of yours.
  More - called a 'slam'. Occurs when you play a bigger set on another set of the same value. For example, three 3's on one 3, two Kings on one King, etc.. When you accomplish a slam, you can optionally give any or all of your cards to whoever played the set you slammed on as long as they meet the following requirements:

  • Must be lower cards than the set you played to cause the slam.
  • Must match the suit of any card in the set you played to cause the slam.
  Before someone does their turn, you can forcibly skip their turn by handing them a 10 (or throwing it at them, whatever). They then have the option to give you any cards in their hand that match the suit of the 10 (but not the 10 itself). The skipped player does not draw, and play immediately passes to the next player. The only real point to doing this is if you have a really good slam to play but it's not your turn.

  Reshuffling happens when a player needs to draw a card, but there are no cards in the draw pile. At this point, the dealer, or the player with the most initiative, shuffles the play pile into a new draw pile (leaving out the most recent set).

  As soon as you have no cards left in your hand, you are out and have won. If there are multiple players left, play continues to determine 2nd place, 3rd place etc.. However, what if a player wins by running out of cards, but is then slammed by another player after they already won? Well, they unwin. They are back in the game with the cards they received from the slam and they lose the title of winner or nth place (for now). This can only happen in games of 3 or more players when the remaining players are going for 2nd place and so on.


  Not everyone plays with the following rules, you can decide for yourself. In 'official' games of Tenstuff, these rules DO apply.

  Moving the last set off of the play pile to shuffle the rest of the cards is annoying, so therefore we have Excommunication. When there is no draw pile left, the last play before reshuffling is to be placed on the plain table to start a new play pile. If the player mistakenly places the set on the about-to-be-shuffled play pile, he/she is Excommunicated. This means they are out of the game entirely, no playing, no drawing, until another player passes. This can be by choice or because he/she has no possible plays to make. Then the Excommunicated player resumes in their normal rotation.
  Excommunication is especially deadly when there are only two players because often the single not-excommunicated player is able to play all their cards in an order which requires no passing.

  After a player completes a turn in which a set of exactly three sixes was played, the following happens starting on the next turn:

  • Play now passes to the right (counterclockwise).
  • The face-up play pile becomes the face-up draw pile.
  • The face-down draw pile becomes the face-down play pile.
  Because sets are played face-down onto the play pile, they must be shown first and announced. For example, "The Jacks of Spades and Hearts." Also, guessing the next card in the draw pile becomes strikingly easy.
  As soon as their is no more draw pile left, the game 'restarts'. The face-down pile is now the draw pile again (don't reshuffle it), players keep the cards they have in their hands, and whoever has the lowest card goes first, and play passes to the left like normal.

  Cheating is officially legal in Tenstuff. However, if you get caught, you must enter the Round of Shame (see below). Common ways to cheat are: to slip extra cards onto the play pile under the set you are visibly playing, pretending to draw a card but not actually drawing a card, and arranging the cards however you want if the other players leave or go to the bathroom or something. In other words, don't go to the bathroom during Tenstuff.

  If another player knows you cheated, you're caught. This implies the following: no conspiring with others to cheat - because they would know you cheated. Also, don't tell anyone that you cheated or how you cheated until AFTER THE GAME, as you can get caught any time within the game you cheated. Anyway, when you're caught, you enter the Round of Shame. First, you must draw cards until you have a multiple of five in your hand. You must draw at least one card. So if you have 5 cards, draw to 10. Second, you must place your hand face up on the table (shamefully) so that everyone can see what you have, until your next turn ends.


  For some reason, I've never won in a game that I cheated in - even though I wasn't caught.
  After getting into Tenstuff, you may agree that other card games are stupid (except gambling games with real money) and people should really only play Tenstuff.
  It's always good to yell and throw cards a lot in a game of Tenstuff.
  Using more than one deck in Tenstuff is NOT recommended. It has been tested several times but the balance of the game is thrown off by the extra cards. Most importantly, the game becomes significantly less fun. If you want to play with more than 4 players, deal less cards to each player at the beginning. Follow this chart:
  • 5 players = 8 cards each.
  • 6 players = 7 cards each.
  • 7 players = 6 cards each.
  • 8 players = 5 cards each.
  Once you get to 8 players, you're better off breaking up into separate groups to play. Have a tournament.