The game’s namesake is a special tradition. If a Player manages to win their game, then they may make one wish. A wish should never be spoken aloud, or else it won’t come true!
How to Play Wish Solitaire?
To begin a game, a Player must first modify a 52-card Anglo-American standard deck. In order to make a Wish Solitaire deck, all the cards ranked from 2-6 should be removed from the deck. This leaves Ace-7 of all suits, for a total of 32 cards.
Once there are 32 cards, the modified deck should be shuffled. After the shuffle, the solitaire board may be set up.
The setup is very simple. Simply deal out 8 distinct piles of 3 cards each, all face-down. Make sure that these piles are close together, but not overlapping.
The traditional orientation is 2 rows of 4 piles. Once the face-down cards have all been dealt out, the remaining 8 cards in the deck should be dealt out face-up, one card on top of each pile.
From this point on, the game has officially begun. Unlike other Solitaire games, there is no tableau formation in this game. Rather, in Wish Solitaire, cards are removed in pairs of the same rank.
For example, if there are two face-up Kings, then both Kings may be grouped together and discarded off to the side.
After the face-up top-card of a pile is discarded, a Player may then flip the new face-down top-card of the pile. Players may only flip the top card of a pile, and may only flip cards face-up.
There is no mechanic for “holding” cards in Wish Solitaire, they may only be discarded by forming a pair.
The game continues in this fashion, with a Player removing pairs and flipping the face-down cards, on each of their piles. Like the majority of Solitaire games, there is a chance of failure.
It is possible that no face-up cards produce a pair. If this is the case, the game has ended and the Player has lost.
However, if a Player manages to remove all of the cards from the board, they are the winner!
- Cards may only be removed in pairs. Three cards cannot be moved simultaneously. However, moving two pairs at the same time is allowed, as it is a Single-Player game and there is no timer.
- When a pile is completely cleared, no cards may be placed in the empty square. Cards remain in the piles they were dealt into until they are removed in a pair.
- If there are no possible moves at the beginning of the game, the game is over before any moves can be made.
- If a Player wins their first game of the day on their first try, they may make a wish. A wish should be thought, not spoken!
Scoring & Points
Wish Solitaire can be scored by its “wishing” condition, where the Player winning their first game may make a wish. However, for subsequent games, the game may be scored by counting the number of remaining cards on the table at the end of the game.
As previously stated, the game ends when there are no possible moves, and the end of a game may result in a win, or a loss. In the case of a win, a Player’s score will always be 0, because there will be 0 remaining cards at the end of the game.
In the case of a loss, remaining cards on the board may be counted as “penalty points.” Similar to other Solitaire Scoring systems, a score of 0 is the best possible score.
Imagine the following is a board of top-cards in a game of Wish Solitaire, where suits are irrelevant:
- 9, K, 7, 7
- 8, K, 10, 10
With the above cards, there are already 3 pairs that can be removed from the game. These, representing the top cards of their respective piles, can be presumed to have been removed. This is what the board will look like after flipping the new face-down top cards:
- 9, 8, 10, Q
- 8, Q, J, A
And now, the pair of 8s and the Pair of Queens should be removed.
- Even though cards can be moved simultaneously, a Player should always flip the new top card immediately after removing each pair. This allows a Player to see new pairings in order to open up as many top cards as possible.
- There’s no timer, feel free to move slowly when playing. Although the game is very simple, accidentally removing the wrong card because of a mistake will lock a Player out of a win, as a group of 3 cards cannot be fully removed.
- The probability of not having a possible play on the opening board is extremely low. You will almost always be able to make at least one move in a game of Wish Solitaire.
- Try to clear the piles as quickly as you can. Prioritize making pairs from piles that have fewer cards in them. Exposing as many cards in a pile as possible speeds up the game and increases the chances that a necessary card won’t be locked out.
Can you lose in Wish Solitaire?
Yes, it is entirely possible to lose. Most solitaire games use strict rules that prevent players from shuffling too many cards around the board, giving them a chance for failure. As they are Single-Player games, there must be a fail-state in order to be an exciting game.
Can you play Wish Solitaire online?
Yes. There is a free, simple, digital version of Wish Solitaire (called Patience Wish on the website) available on BlacksReds.com, a website that hosts digital versions of many Solitaire games.