Snap- The card game
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Snap- The card game

Snap is a very popular game of cards that two to eight players can play. The game is in fact quite simple; the objective of the game is to rid your hands of the cards that you are holding. The game begins with all the cards being dealt face down to each of the players. In case the number of players is not even, the number of cards each player gets will not be exactly equal. The game proceeds with players taking turns to remove a card from their stack of face down cards, and place it face up in the center. This eventually becomes a central pile on which cards start to pile up. If a player puts a card that matches the number with the card that faces top most on the pile, then all the players are required to shout ‘snap’ and place their hands on the central pile. The player who does this the last or in other words ‘snaps’ the card last, has to keep all the cards on the pile. The player with the most number of cards at hand loses the game.

The game of snap is actually quite simple, but it requires quick reflexes, and is sometimes taught to children for improving visual discrimination skills and speed up motor reflex time. The more players playing the game of Snap, the more intense the game play. Snap is most commonly played with playing cards, but it can also be played with cards that have words, letters, syllables, pictures on them. There are alternate versions of the playing card version with different rules. Some versions require players to claim the card by shouting ‘snap’ and the player with the most number of cards wins the game. Alternate rules of the game include having to touch their heads before placing their hands on the pile. Players who forget to touch their heads are not counted; this rule adds a humorous twist to the game.

There are special children’s versions of the game that can be played with colored cards or cards with characters from films or TV programs. There are snap card packs for older children that are more complicated, with cards exhibiting subtle differences instead of more apparent ones. Penalties are taken if players snap a card that only seems similar to the one on the pile, but on closer observation is seen that it is not. However the game of snap with the conventional playing cards is the most beloved one around the world.

Different cultures around the world have had their own versions of Snap, whether it is called by Slap Jack, or Egyptian Ratscrew. The game of Beggar My Neighbour is also a similar accumulation card game. Slap jack is sometimes referred to as the same game with a different name, which proceeds by players slapping the central pile as quickly as they can. The simple game of snap, or slap jack is sometimes taught to children as young as 4 or 5 years old, as their first card games.
May 6, 2008, 9:03 am

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