Spider Solitaire 2-Suits

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How to play Spider 2-Suits

Game Summary

Although the standard Spider Solitaire game still is a highly popular game, the 2-Suit Spider Solitaire variant has rapidly gained in popularity due to retaining what makes the classic Spider game so good, while making it much more accessible to the average player. For example, on SoliTaire! Network, standard Spider is only won about 4% of the time and is a very difficult game that requires more than the usual amount of strategy and concentration, whereas the the Spider Solitaire 2-suits variation is won about 18% of the time and is a more relaxed version. It is a great introduction to the game of Spider for most people.

Rules Summary:


  • Build sets of 13 cards from King to Ace IN SUIT within the Columns.
  • Complete sets of cards are removed from the layout.
  • Build Columns Down in ANY suit, but prefer the SAME SUIT.
  • Built cards IN SUIT can move as a unit, and can be split.
  • Empty Columns may be filled with any properly sequenced card(s).
  • Click on the Stock to deal another card to each Column, but only when no Column is empty.
How to play Spider 2-Suits Solitaire
Spider 2-Suits strikes the perfect balance. It is nowhere near as difficult as regular Spider, but it still makes you work for the win.

Goal

The goal in 2-suit Spider Solitaire is the same as in most other Spider games: Arrange eight sets of cards from King down to Ace in the same suit directly within the Columns.

The Deal

2-Suit Spider uses two decks (four sets of Ace through King in Hearts, and another 4 sets in Spades. There are ten Columns and each Column is dealt either 5 or 6 cards. The first four Columns are dealt 6 cards, and the remaining six Columns are each dealt 5 cards. Only the top card in each Column is dealt face up.

Stock

Every click on the Stock will deal one card to each Column. Click on the Stock after no more moves are possible (or desirable) in the layout. All Columns must contain at least one card before the cards will be dealt. There are no redeals.

Columns

Columns are built DOWN in ANY SUIT. However, you should prefer building cards that are of the same suit, since that is the goal. But it may become necessary or advantageous to build the opposite suits at times.

The fully exposed card of each Column is always available to move. Also, cards of the same suit and in proper sequence can be moved to another Column provided the above build rule applies. As an example, a 5, 4, and 3 of Hearts may move to any 6. However, an 5 of spades, and then a 4 and 3 of Hearts may not move as a unit because they are not all of the same suit.

Sequences may be split apart once formed. For example, in a sequence such as the 5, 4, and 3 of Hearts, the 4 and 3 may be moved away from from the 5 of Hearts so that it can be played to any other 5.

When a full sequence of King through Ace in the same suit is arranged within a Column, it is removed from the layout (tableau.)

Empty Columns can be filled with any single card or packed sequence of cards. All Columns must contain at least one card before more cards can be dealt from the Stock.

One point is scored for each built card within Columns starting with a King. For example, if a Column has a King, Queen, and Jack of the same suit in sequence then that will score three points. Hence, a fully packed set of King through Ace in the same suit scores 13 points.

Game Notes

2-Suit Spider Solitaire plays identically to standard Spider Solitaire except that only two suits are used: Hearts and Spades. Spider Solitaire 2-Suits is SoliTaire! Network's most popular variant of Spider by a significant margin.

Spider Solitaire 2-Suits Strategy

  • Although you are allowed to build cards of any suit on top of each other, you should always prefer building cards of the same suit whenever possible.
  • When building mixed-suit Columns, the higher-ranked cards should be preferred since those cards will be available for longer to build on versus lower-ranked cards that will soon have an Ace and cannot be built upon.
  • It is usually more important to make plays that reveal face-down cards even if that means you must build different suited cards onto each other.
  • When it is not possible to build cards of the same suit, consider whether or not it is advantageous to hold off building different-suited cards. However, it is usally correct to defer dealing new cards until there are no other plays.
  • Early in the game it is very useful to clear out at least one Column if possible. You most likely will need empty columns to move Kings into, but any card may be moved into empty Columns. Keep in mind though that once a King is moved into an empty Column that you will not be able to empty that Column again until the King's full sequence is made and removed from the layout. Therefore, only move Kings into empty Columns when it will help you gain access to cards under it.
  • Once you have an empty Column, try hard to make it easy to clear it out again so it can be reused. For example, try not to mix the suits of cards in that Column.
  • When possible, keep some Column's cards "clean" meaning all cards are of the same suit, and use other Columns for mixing the suits. This of course will get interrupted when dealing new cards, and that is unavoidable. But when this happens, work on those clean Columns first.
  • Once in a while it is advantageous to split up cards in a sequence, so be on the watch for those situations.
  • Although obvious, complete full sequences of cards whenever possible since they will be removed from play and will free up other moves.