Chase the Ace Card Game

Name: Chase the Ace

Number of players: At least two, but the more the merrier!

Recommended ages: 8 and up

Average playing time: The hands move quickly (usually no more than a minute) so the game is a fast one depending on how many people you have playing.


The Chase the Ace card game also known as Screw Your Neighbor or Cuckoo is a very interesting game that can be played with a group of people. All you need is a standard 52 card deck.

Set Up

The dealer shuffles the cards and deals 1 card face down to all players on the field, that’s it, just 1.

Each player starts with a set number of lives, usually 3 or 4. Your objective to not be the one stuck with the lowest card. Cards go in this order from lowest to highest A,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,J,Q,K, Yes Aces are the lowest.

Play Chase the Ace

The dealer goes last. The person to the left of the dealer starts and it goes around clockwise until it gets to the dealer.

When it is your turn you look at your card and can choose 1 of 2 options, you can either choose to keep your card, or you can choose to exchange your card with the person on the left of you.

In which case the person to the left of you has to trade cards with you, unless they have a King. If they have a King they have to show everyone and get to keep their card, and you are stuck with yours.

This goes around the table until it gets to the dealer. When it is the dealers turn they can choose to keep their card or exchange it with one from the deck. If they exchange it with one from the deck and they draw a King they must return the king and keep their first card.

Losing a life

When everyone has gone the person with the lowest card loses a life if multiple people have the lowest card they all lose a life.

How to Win

Once you lose 3 lives you have lost and no longer get cards. You keep playing until everyone but 1 person has lost all 3 of their lives. That person is the winner.

If the last people lose their last life during the same round you do a rematch between them.

Final Thoughts

This is a great game not only for families, but also for those times when you have a group of friends over for some cards. The hands are quick and there's a lot of fun to be had in stealing the cards of your friends. Bluffing is also important as you want the person to your right to think that your card is horrible so they won't steal yours!

Remember to have fun!

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