Five Crowns Card Game: A Special One For All Our Queens & Kings!

Five Crowns Game - Cover

Five crowns for five of you… okay, well, for all of you. You can all take one! To be honest, you won’t need the crown though, all the fun you’ll get by playing the game will be more than enough!

It is an amazing, well-made card game, specifically, it is a rummy-style card game (if you haven’t heard about it, rummy style means the group of matching cards), and it is made of 5 suits, which probably makes you all curious… 

What makes it unique, is that it can be considered a family card game, which means that it can be played by all ages, including here kids and elders. Another great fact is that the instructions can be easily understood, after a bit of explanation and concentration… 

We never forget our purpose! We’re about to explain how ‘Five Crowns’ was created, the idea behind it, all the special things it offers, instructions on how to play it, shops from where you can buy this card game, the cards inside the box, and lots more. Yes, we didn’t forget to share our experience with the game as well!

It’s very heartwarming knowing that Five Crowns was first released about 25 years ago, in 1996, and people never quit loving it since then! Obviously, there are lots of things to talk about, but, in general, here are the main points: 

  • A short biography of ‘Five Crowns’;
  • How does the box look: Does it have a good design?;
  • How do the cards look and how do we play them?;
  • Our experience with ‘Five Crowns’;
  • Shops to order the game & Competitors;
  • A surprise for you;
  • To Sum It Up: Why should you play it?;

Ps. we hope you enjoy it just half as much as we do… 

A Short Biography of ‘Five Crowns’ Card Game

Released date: 1986;
Invented by: Marsha Jean Falco;
Made in: China;
Game type: five-suited, rummy-style card game;
Box dimensions: 6.6 x 4.2 x 1 inches OR 16.8 x 10.16 x 2.5 cm;
The number of cards: 2 decks of 58 cards, a total of 116 cards;
Players: 1 to 7;
Age range: 8+;
Game time: 45 mins;
Level of difficulty: normal/medium;
Amazon ratings: 4.9 out of 5 stars, 18,923 ratings;
The object of the game: The player with the lowest score wins!

How Does The Box Look: Does It Have A Good Design?

First, I’ll leave you to imagine the box and all that… Make a connection, crowns, cards, five suited. What did you come up with? Is this what you were thinking inside your brain?:

Five Crowns Box - Front

Yes!!! It is very colorful, shiny, and pretty… All the best a box could have! Well, except one: we’d like to see some queens as well! 5 kings share one crown. What makes them differ from each other is that they have different suites, we’ll explain them later. 

At the upper left corner, you can see the details about the game, just as who can play and how much the game usually lasts. In the center (if I may say), you’ll see the game name, the game type, and somewhere at the bottom, you’ll understand that the game is junior (kid) friendly… A very important fact is written in the upper right, the game is a 10 best game awards winner!

We dealt with the front, now, let’s see the back of the box together: 

Five Crowns Box - Back

The back of the box, just as in most card games, is a whole storyteller! You can understand almost all the important stuff about the game, just by reading it. The requirements to play the game are repeated just as in the front.

But, n more detail, you can get a little about the instructions to play the game, a short game description, a creative way of explaining the suits, the number – and a preview of the cards, information about the manufacturer, and so on… 

How Do The Cards Look & How Do We Play Them?

First things first, Five Crowns has a total of 116 cards inside, which are divided into 2 decks – both have 58 cards. There are 11 cards of each suit, which are: stars, hearts, clubs, spades, and diamonds. The suits have numbers from 3 through 10, and kings, queens, and jacks. Also, there are 6 jokers included in the game.

Five Crowns Cards

As you can see, all the suits have different colors from each other, and different shapes as well. What we like is the high creativity that is used in all the drawings in the cards – they’re fascinating! 

To start the game, make sure you’re more than 1 person in the room( I don’t think anyone wants to play a card game alone, but anyways), and up to 7 people. It gets messy if there are more than 7 players, and it just isn’t that fun! 

As we mentioned, it doesn’t matter what age the players are. They must be old enough to understand the game, so, even if the kids are younger than 8, if they get the rules, no one stops them to play! So, you can play it starting from the kids till your grandparents! 

Before continuing with the rules, you should know some stuff first:

Wild cards are always jokers, but besides jokers, wild cards are also other cards that change each round. Wild cards of a specific round, base on the number of that round. This means that for example if you’re on the 5th round, 5s are wild cards.

To make runs in the game, you have to make a sequence of consecutive cards (going numerically up for 1), which have to be of the same suit. Here’s one example: 7♣ 8♣ 9♣ 10 ♣. You can also use wild cards if you have a missing regular card.

Books (except that they are, you know, books) are actions in the game, and to make a run, you should have a sequence of 3 or more same cards, with different suits. For example 10♥ 10♣ 10♠, and others. Also, you can use a wild card in the place of any card to complete a book:  10 ♥ 3(wild card)♣ 10♠

Long story short, the point of the game is to make as many books and runs as possible because this is how you win the game.

Five Crowns- Books And Runs

If we talk about dealing the cards, you should know that in the first round, each player should be dealt 3 cards, going clockwise, and in the following rounds, the number of cards dealt should be increased by one. For example, in the second round 4 cards, third round 5 cards, in the fourth round they should be dealt 6 cards, and so on. This continues until each player is dealt 13 cards.

But what happens with the remaining cards? You should put them on the table, and the purpose is to make the draw pile, which will be used to play the game! 

The game starts with the player on the dealer’s left, as I mentioned earlier, firstly starts with 3 cards for each player. First, that player has to see if they have any book or run in their hand. If they do, they immediately close them and get no points for that round. If they do not have the cards in order, they can draw a card from the table pile, only the top card!

If the card doesn’t help, that player takes away one of their cards and puts them in the discard pile, while the other players continue. But, when a run or book is shown, that player closes the cards, and all the cards that are out of the run or book (except one card that you can discard), which means they don’t fit in, are counted as points (against you).

Each player after someone else has made a book or run, gets another chance to try and lose their cards. If they can’t do a thing even in their second chance, that round ends and starts the other ones, where every player is dealt 1 card more than the previous round.

To count the points, you count the number on each card. For example, if you’re left with a 4 and a 5, you have 9 points. But, there are also other cards, besides the ones with the numbers. Well, a Joker is worth 50 points, current wild cards are worth 20 points, Kings are 13 points, Queens are equal to 12 cards, and Jacks are worth 11 points.

To sum it up, if I made it complicated, here are the how-to-play instructions shortly: 

  • Play it with 1-7 people;
  • Deal 3 cards on the first round, and increase it for 1 after each round, until each player is dealt 13 cards;
  • Jokers are always wild cards, and in each round, the number of the round means that the cards with the same number are wild cards (ex. In round 3 of the game, cards with number 3 are wild cards);
  • Place the remaining cards in the center of the table;
  • Start the game by the left of the dealer;
  • A run is made of consecutive cards of the same suit;
  • A book is a sequence of the same cards, with different suits;
  • Each player can draw a card from the table pile, or the discards;
  • If a player makes a run or a book, the turn goes to the other player; 
  • Every time someone makes a run or a book, all the other players have one more chance;
  • After making a run or a book, you can discard one card, and put it in the discard pile, and all the other remaining cards are counted as points against you;
  • Each card is worth depending on the number on the card, and the special cards, have a special worth: a Joker is worth 50 points, a wild card of that round is worth 20 points, a King is worth 13 points, a Queen is worth 12 points and a Jack is worth 11 points;
  • The player with the lowest number of points wins the game.

Our Experience With ‘Five Crowns’: Did It Get Competitive & Does It Work With All Ages?

Before starting, you should know that Five Crowns is always my (our) game-to-go for every holiday, especially when the whole family gathers together. It’s the first game that comes to our minds, and our favorite as well. 

The last time we played was on Thanksgiving dinner of this year, and it’s fun telling that there were all ages included: my siblings, 10 and 15, parents, and my grandfather, a 65 handsome man <3…

To be honest, when we played it a few years ago, it was kinda complicated to explain, since we were used to playing some simpler games. But, after some time playing it, we all became more professional than each other, and the game became very competitive (in a good way).

I’m usually the dealer since I am the ‘organizing stuff’ member of the family. First, I dealt 3 cards to each of the players, since it was the first round, and this is what the rules say!!! Anyways, we spent some time drawing cards from the pile, I guess luck wasn’t at our side at first 🙁

Later on, when it was my mother’s second turn, she made a run! These were her run cards: 

Five Crowns - Run 1 Experience

Since she had to draw another card earlier, a 5 with a heart, she put it in the discard file, so she had no points against her in this round… 

After she made her run, we had another chance to try to make a run or book, by drawing one more card, each of us. Gladly, I did it!!! I now announce that I made a very pretty one!!! I made a book of 4 cards, meaning, I used 4 cards with the same numbers, but different suits: 

4♣, 4♥, 4♠, 4✩ 

So, this means that I already had 5 cards, I used 4 to make the book and discarded the other one. Lucky me!!! 

Next, that round ended and continued the second one. On the other rounds, it doesn’t mean that the player on the dealer’s left has to start, we usually pay attention to who was the last in the previous round, and the other player next starts, which means, in the second round my dad had to start first. He’s gonna get very competitive though.

Do you know what the shocking thing is? He made a book with the cards he had, he didn’t even have to draw a new one! Since he had 4 cards because that’s how many cards are supposed to be in the second round, all the 4 cards created the book together:

Five Crowns - Book 1 Experience

This is how he got a rest… It was our time to shine! We spent around 10 minutes without making a think, we just drew and discarded cards, until my fabulous grandfather made a run, using a joker, as you know, a wild card:

Five Crowns - Book 2 Experience

He had to let down  3 other cards, and just to see his disappointed face when he understood that one of the cards is a King, which means, -13 points. Anyways, it was very fun seeing him get angry for a card game. Such a king!!! 

Kinda, this is how the game continued. Starting from the 5th round, it just became more fun and competitive, because we already knew who was ahead with points (which sadly wasn’t me)…

The fun part happened in the 8th round, which was just getting harder, and we had 10 cards, each of us, my 10-year-old sister, made a run out of 8 cards, in her second turn! The ‘secret’ is that she had 2 jokers, 2 eights, which were the wildcards of that round, and a 7,8,9 and Jack, and their suit was the spades!

It was her victory! You don’t know how hay she was! Just imagine it, having to let down only 1 card, and guess what: it was a 2! Only 2 points against her! My brother didn’t have any victory of this kind, but anyways, he won – he won lots of laughs and good times! 

Just as we mentioned in the rules section, the game continues until all the players are dealt 13 cards, and this is what we did! In the end, even though I win most of the card games, it wasn’t my best day (I hate to admit that they’re better than me on this game), I didn’t win Five Crowns… 

It was a tie between my dad and my sister, let’s mention it again, she’s only 2 because they did so many runs and books, and also, they had only 14 points against them: My sister had a Queen and a 3, while my dad had a King and a 1. Amazing, huh? I bet you can imagine how proud they were! 

It’s very heartwarming seeing your people get hay for these little things, which have a big impact on our lives. We undoubtedly need to spend time with them and feel at home, so this game helps to achieve this! 

Ps. don’t worry, we’re gonna play it again for Christmas. Probably with some relatives, or again with my lovely family, we never get bored of it, it always brings new stuff and techniques we find along the way. So yeah, it’s gonna be a great Christmas game, we don’t doubt that!

Shops To Order The Game & The Game Competitors 

We already understood how famous Five Crowns is, and the perennial period the game’s on the market. By that, we understand that there can be dozens of shops that sell it. Trusting the shops, especially after they’d let you down, is such a hard decision to make. That’s why, to help you out (which we love to), we made a list of our favorite shops & the price of the game in that specific shop: 

Now, the competitors are card games, which are made in a similar style to Five Crowns. This is what I mean:

1. Rummy – $12.99

Rummy Card Game

Rummy, a card game, originated in 1890, somewhere around Mexico, is one amazing classic card game. It has 2 decks of 54 cards inside. What we truly love is the large range of people that can play it. This means, anyone can play it, all ages, but, a condition is that you should have a team of 2-6 players.

The point of the game is to get rid of all your cards. If all the cards are matching, you won’t have to play a discarding card. This is where the game ends, so there are no further rounds.

2. Sequence – $17.97

Sequence Card Game

It’s time for another fun card game you fellas! What’s great about it, is that it also includes a folding board and chips. It can be played by more players, from 2 to 12, and they should be all 7 years or older!!! Each player ‘fights’ to reach the five numbers sequence before the other players. 

It is a great strategy game, fun for the whole family, which works great if played individually or in teams! 

3. Skip-Bo – $6.39

Skip Bo

Skip-Bo is one of the card games under $10, which is endless fun (and cheap)!!! It includes a set of 162 cards, which are made for 2 to 6 players, from kids, older than 7 years, and all the other ages, even your grandparents!

What you’ll want to do, if you want to win, of course, you should use all your skills and strategy to make sequencing stacks of cards, which means, cards that have 1 more number than the previous one, 3, 4, 5, and so on.

The Surprise Came: A Special Pack Of ‘Five Crowns’! 

The game hasn’t any expansion or any edition, that doesn’t make any sense. But… as we promised, yes, there is a themed pack – and you’re gonna love it! 

Five Crowns 25th Anniversary Tin 

Five Crowns - 25th Anniversary Tin

Now, what’s this 25th Anniversary Tin? Well, all the cards, the rules, game style, design, are all the same, no difference at all… But, this one was made for the 25th anniversary of the game, and it comes with a collectible tin and a special scorecard to keep the game on track! 

You can find it on Amazon, and it costs about $17.99! Pretty great if you want to take care of your pretty cards <3

This was it… you know what? Wait, we have one more surprise for our dear readers: 

Five Crowns – Junior

Five Crowns- Junior Edition

This is probably the cutest thing eva! It has simpler rules, more creative, cute cards, which only have colored crowns on them, and have some pretty treasure chips, which tell you who the winner is… But, you pray you don’t get a Robby chip, because he could steal your treasure! 

What’s special about it, is that it can be played by younger kids, starting from 5, and to be honest, I love playing it as well. It takes me back to being a kid! Contains 50 cards, 84 chips, and 5 wild cards! You can find it on Amazon, for only $12.99.

To Sum It Up: Why Should You Play It?

Living in the 21 century, it is a lucky charm to find a game of this kind, which keeps everyone out of technology for some minutes, or even hours, because that’s its power! 

It also connects all the players more, positively affects concentration, strategy development, the feeling of competition, and so on. But the best thing of all is the large age range it can be played by. Even if you’re playing with all your adult friends, even if you’re planning to make a gift for your lovely grandparents, or you just want to have a heartwarming game to play with your siblings…

If you want, you can also get a Five Crowns’ portable case (which costs from $10-$15), because you’ll probably take it to every vacation you go (especially the family ones), and you don’t want to destroy the cards, do you? I mean, this is what we also do with CAH, that’s why we get the CAH cases or storage!

You queens and kings, enjoy it!

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