What are Fishing Card Games?
Fishing Card Games are games that utilize specific mechanics, laid out in the game rules, that allow players to take cards from a public “pool” of community cards. Fishing games are usually scored, with Players awarded points based on taking specific cards and adding them to their collection.
How to Play Fishing-Type Games?
Fishing-Type Games usually use any 52-card decks. Fishing Card Games are generally more popular in Europe and the Middle East than they are in other parts of the world. As such, it might be more appropriate to see something like the French-Suited deck, as opposed to the Standard Anglo-American deck.
Fishing-Type games can generally be broken down into their relevant phases and shared mechanics.
Fishing games begin, like all standard card games, with a deal. The Deal in most Fishing games involves dealing personal cards to each Player, as well as a specific number of cards into the pool. Cards dealt to a Player are usually face-down and hidden, while cards dealt into the pool are usually face-up.
Picking up, also sometimes referred to as matching or taking cards, is the core gameplay mechanic of fishing games. Players pick-up “Fish” from the “Pool” by playing “Bait” cards from their hand. Non-metaphorically, Players pick-up cards from the community cards by playing the appropriate cards from their hand. Cards must be considered picked up in order to be scored for points at the end of a round.
Fishing card games are all scored, with points awarded for achieving specific conditions. Usually, these conditions involve taking specific cards. Multiple hands of a single Fishing-type game are played, with a Player only declared the winner when they achieve a certain number of points.
Even in Fishing games without a scoring system, like Shithead, still have some form of mechanic that incentivizes multiple games in a single session (The punishments for the Shithead, for example.)
Most Fishing card games involve some kind of mathematical element, where cards from the hand can be added together with cards from the pool to achieve some kind of desired number. In Cassino, for example, Players add cards from the hand together in order to match them with cards in the pool. In Cassino, matching cards can be picked up. Pasur adds numbers differently, with cards from the hand and pool added together in order to total 11, as collections of cards adding up to 11 can be picked up.
Like in Shedding Games, which is the general umbrella under which the Fishing-Type game exists, there are special cards in many Fishing games called bombs. In Shedding games where Players can be forced to draw the whole discard pile, Bombs exist to clear the pile and reduce the risk.
- Generally in Fishing card games, it is better to play your lower-ranking cards first, as many of these games make it a requirement to play a higher-ranking card than the previously played card.
- Fishing games are almost always scored based on a table, which awards points to Players for achieving special conditions. Pay attention to the particular conditions of the specific game you are playing, as all games are slightly different, and divvy out awards for different conditions.
- It is best to make a move on your turn if you are able. While you might foresee a greater advantage if you are able to stall your move for a full rotation, you never know if another Player might be able to pick up the card you needed to achieve one of your scoring conditions. Pick up cards whenever you are able.
In former Ottoman territories, such as Turkey and Albania, there is a special version of Fishing-Type games that are more “all or nothing” than the majority of other games in the genre.
In the Turkish Fishing card games, Players utilize a large discard pile, rather than a pool of multiple cards. If Players wish to pick up, they must pick up the top card of the pile. If they are able to do so, they are able to pick up the entire pile. This makes it less likely to pick up cards over all, but when you do, you hit it big and pick up many cards all at once.