Demon Patience, also known as Canfield Solitaire in the United States, is a patience game that grew to popularity in the United Kingdom. Like all patience games, Canfield is designed to be a single-player game which is used as a “time-waster” or a way to spend time doing something fun and challenging while waiting.
Canfield came to the United States in the 20s, and grew to popularity under its American name.
How to Play Canfield Solitaire?
Canfield is a game with a somewhat complicated setup, but once the setup is out of the way the game is fairly simple.
Utilizing a 52-card standard Anglo-American deck with no Jokers, a player should shuffle that deck and then deal out thirteen cards in a single overlapping column, such that the bottom of each card is visible beneath the card on top of it. These thirteen cards are known as the Demon.
- The card at the very top of the thirteen cards should be turned upwards, so that it is visible to the Player.
- The Player must then imagine 4 “zones” next to the top card of their Demon. These will be the foundation zones.
- The Player should then draw one card from the remaining cards in their hand in the first foundation zone, face-up.
The goal of the game is to complete the foundation zones, with the starting card of each foundation zone matching that of the first card placed in the first foundation zone.
For example, if the card in the first foundation zone is a 4, then all foundation zones must be filled with their own respective 4 card.
- Each foundation will be made of ascending cards, until all cards are in the foundation zones.
- Each foundation zone must contain the same suit (♥♦♣♠) all the way down.
- Each Foundation zone has its own suit to complete, and a totally completed game should have all 52 cards organized by suit in each Foundation zone.
4 cards should then be drawn and placed directly beneath the foundation zones, with these cards forming the tableaus
Tableaus are places to store cards that might not immediately fill a foundation, but will be useful at a later time.
In order to form tableaus, the cards must descend in order, from high to low, and they must alternate colors. This means a heart or diamond card must have a spade or club on top of it and vice versa.
The remaining cards in the deck are kept in the Players hand, with these cards becoming the stock. If no more moves can be made, a Player may draw 3 cards from the stock and place them in the “discard pile”.
Cards in the discard pile are face-up, and a Player may draw and play with the top card of the discard pile.
When a card may legally be played from the Demon, either in a tableau or in a foundation, that card may be drawn, and the new top card of the Demon may be flipped over.
When the stock is exhausted from these draws, the Player may then shuffle the discard pile into a new stock. The player may re-deal as many times as they want, so long as there are legal moves to be made.
When a Player has completely exhausted their legal moves, either by winning the game or by being unable to complete it, the game ends.
- Foundations must be the same suit all the way down, and must go in ascending order.
- As the first card of the foundations is randomly determined, foundations are allowed to wrap from King to Ace so that all cards in a particular suit can be completed.
- Tableaus must be alternating color, and in descending order, descending from the 4 cards beneath the foundation zones.
- There is no time limit to Canfield Solitaire.
- In order to truly win, the entire stock, discard pile, and demon must be exhausted and placed into a foundation.
As in other games of solitaire, a winning Player will always score 0, making 0 a “perfect score” in a game of Canfield.
However, if a Player cannot make any more legal moves with the cards they have available, they must then declare the game a loss and calculate their score.
All cards not present in the foundation zones will add 1 penalty point to the total, for a maximum of 51 points (as one card will always be present in the foundation zones at the start of the game.)
Imagine the following are the foundation cards:
K♦ K♣ K♠ K♥
Therefore, the next cards in the foundation should be Aces, followed by 2s. This is because the Foundations are ascending in order, and may wrap from Ace to King.
How many cards are in a game of Canfield?
The whole of a 52 card deck is used in Canfield Solitaire, and the game is only truly won by a Player when all 52 cards are in the foundations.
Can I play Canfield online?
Yes. As one of the most popular variations of Solitaire outside of the regular solitaire gameplay offered by Microsoft windows on all of their software versions, Canfield is available for play on Cardgames.io.