OBJECT: To be the first player to complete all 11 phases. In case of a tie, the player with the lowest score is the winner. (Ignore Suites)

EQUIPMENT: Use regular playing cards. 2-4 players – 3 decks, 5-6 players – 4 decks, 7-8 players – 5 decks.

PLAY: One players shuffles and deals out a hand of 11 cards, and turns over one card from the draw pile to become the discard pile. Play beings with the player to the left of the dealer,and progresses to the left. In turn, a player draws one card – either the top card from the pile or the top card from the discard pile – and adds it to their hand. The player ends the turn by discarding one card onto the discard pile. Play of the first hand begins with each player trying to complete the first Phase of the 11 Phases. Each player can make only one Phase during the play of a hand. Phases are made of sets and runs.

SETS: A set is made of 2 or more cards with the same number showing on their face. (E.G.) Phase 1 consists of 2 sets of 3, which could be 3 “7s” and 3 “10s”. The cards can be in any combination.

RUNS: A run is made of four or more cards numbered in order. (E.G.) Part of Phase 2 requires a run of 4, which could be 3,4,5,6 or A,K,Q,J. The cards can be in any combination.

MAKING A PHASE: If, during their turn the player makes a Phase with the cards in hand, the player may lay it down, face up on the table. (E.G.)The player is trying to make Phase 1 and has 3 “5s” & 2 “7s” and draws another “7”. The player now has 2 sets of 3 and may lay them down.

NOTE 1: A player may never lay down part of a phase, but must have the whole Phase in hand before laying it down.

NOTE 2: A player may lay down more than the minimum requirements of a Phase, but only if the additional cards can be directly added to the cards already in the Phase.

EXAMPLES: A player making Phase 1 lays down 3 “5s” & 3 “7s”. The player has 2 more “5’s” in hand and can immediately lay them down with the 3 “5s”, all in the same turn. Another player making Phase 1 lays down 3”6s” & 3 “8s”. The player also has 3 “10s” in hand, but cannot lay them down because Phase 1 requires exactly 2 sets. Thus, the player can only add more “6s” & “8s” to their Phase made of “6s” & “8s”.

Only one Phase can be made per hand. If a player successfully makes a Phase in a hand, then the player must try to make the next Phase in a hand. If a player fails to make a Phase in a hand, the player must try to make the same Phase again in the next hand. Thus, some players, in the next hand, may no longer be working on the same Phase as the other players.

A player may never make a Phase out of order. (E.G.) A player trying to make Phase 3 (1 run of 7) lays down a run of 9 cards. This qualifies for Phase 3, but cannot be used as credit for either Phase 7 or Phase 9.

A player receives credit for making a Phase as soon as the player lays down that Phase. The player does not need to win the hand in order to receive credit for a Phase. Several players will often complete a Phase in the same hand.

HITTING: Hitting is the way to get rid of leftover cards in the hand after making a Phase. A player makes a hit by laying down a card directly on a Phase already laid down. The card must properly fit in with the cards already down. (E.G.) A player may add one or more “4s” to another player’s existing set of “4s”. A player may add a “2” to another player’s existing run of 3,4,5,6 – and - 7 & 8 if the player has them.

NOTE 3: Before a player can make a hit, the player’s own Phase must already be laid down. A player may hit only during their turn. A player may hit their own cards or another player’s cards or both.

GOING OUT: The player who gets rid of the last card in hand, by discarding or hitting, is Said to “go out.” The winner of the hand, and any other players who also complete their Phase, will advance to the next Phase for the next hand.

SCORING: Paper and Pencil are needed for scoring, and a running total for each player is Kept. The winner of the hand scores ZERO. All remaining players score points against them for cards still in hand, as follows:
ACE = 20 points
King, Queen, Jack & 10 = 10 points
9 – 2 = 5 points


Only cards in hand are scored, not cards already laid down. After the scores are recorded,the player to the left of the dealer becomes the new dealer.


Mexican Rummy Player's Cards

Mexican Rummy Score Card