By Consumer Dummies

All your friends will want to join in when you play the card game Fan Tan, which is where Double-Deck Fan Tan comes in — it’s a great game for large groups, when a single deck leaves you with too small a hand to start with.

To play Double-Deck Fan Tan, you need the following:

  • Seven or more players
  • Two standard decks of 52 cards without jokers
  • A pencil and paper for scoring
  • A big table and plenty of chairs

You play Double-Deck Fan Tan just as you play Fan Tan. The most glaring difference is that you have eight rows of cards in Double-Deck Fan Tan rather than the four rows in traditional Fan Tan (eight 7s compared to four).

With two of each card circulating in the double-deck, you have no assurance that you’ll be able to put down a card when a space arises because someone else may fill in the vacancy first. More 7s are around, but you still don’t know exactly when you can get your cards out. When the player on your left puts down the jack of diamonds, will you be able to get your queen of diamonds out, or will someone with the other queen of diamonds beat you to it?

Double-Deck Fan Tan is more random than standard Fan Tan, and thus less strategic, which you may view as a disadvantage. At the same time, Double-Deck Fan Tan equals out skill levels, so it’s appropriate for adults and children playing together, and the longer game fits well in social atmospheres.

The scoring works as in regular Fan Tan, with players playing to a specific target, or for stakes.