Cruel Solitaire

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Cruel Solitaire Rules


Move all cards to the four Foundation piles from Ace to King in the same suit.

The Deal

Using one deck, the four Aces are placed on the Foundations to start. The remaining cards are dealt face up evenly to 12 Fans of cards.

All cards of a Fan are dealt before the cards of the next Fan. This deal order becomes important on Redeals.


Foundations are built UP and IN SUIT starting with an Ace and ending with a King. For example, a 2 of Clubs can be placed on an Ace of Clubs, then a 3 of Clubs, then a 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, J, Q, up to the K of Clubs. The same holds true for the other suits.


Fans are built DOWN in the SAME SUIT. For example, the 6 of Spades may be placed only on the 7 of Spades.

The topmost card in any Fan is available for play to either another Fan or a Foundation. Only one card may be moved at a time.

Empty Columns must remain empty.


At any time during play, you may choose to redeal the cards. The cards in the Fans are gathered in a specific order and are not reshuffled, so that the order of the cards do not change as a result of the redeal. This is the key to playing Cruel Solitaire.

On a redeal, the original number of cards are dealt to the Fans until the cards run out.

There are unlimited Redeals.

An interesting note is that if no cards are moved between Fans then a Redeal will deal the cards in such a way that it results in identical order and layout.