How many possible deals in solitaire

Well, on the bright side, I have one less excuse not to do the things I actually should be doing. A few days ago, I thought I could contribute something worthwhile and interesting to the Triple Interchange thread by pointing out that Triple Interchange 0 is winnable I found out about the existence of game 0 in some thread in the old forum and thought it is a kind of hidden easter egg which not many people know about , but then I found out in another old forum thread that you were already aware of the existence of game 0, and what was more, that it actually produces a random game.

So there went that ambition. About the game itself, I found that the fact that every second card is face-down makes accepting cards from the stock a bit of guesswork I had to replay the game several times from almost the beginning because, upon uncovering a face-down card, it turned out that not accepting a card from the stock in the past would have been a better option, which might not have been necessary if the respective card in the tableau had not been face down , which ultimately reduced my liking for this game a bit.

I even played a game of Senate. I attempted game 5, which you posted was unwinnable, and I actually got pretty far, until I noticed that I actually wasn't playing game 5, but Turns out that I forgot to enter the game number and just played the first random game that popped up. When I then tried the real 5 and found out how unwinnable it actually was, I was too unmotivated to try another one. I didn't even win Well, I guess I'll just wait for the next blue moon, and when it happens, I'll probably be terrified of failing to solve the Spider in question unless you manage to solve it, in which case I'll be relieved that the question "is it winnable" could still be definitively answered.

Guess I might have some issues, but whatever. Meanwhile, I wish you a pleasant time on your ongoing Triple Interchange trip. Interesting to learn that I participated in a Spider project some time in the hazy past. I've reached the stage that I forget things I did a week ago. I do recall exploding the game zero myth for some reason, and pointing out it was just a random game number.

I believe there even was a guy who was using numbers below zero by sticking a minus in there. Given that nobody will ever live long enough to play them all I didn't see any point.

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Triple Interchange has long been one of our favourites. I've developed a strategy whereby I play as few cards onto the tableau as I can. I also like to run through the stock a couple of times to what it does and doesn't contain. There is also the bonus that when someone hits a problem one you can normally spot what the problem cards are. I often just play a single suit at a time and leave everything else in the stock. It saves undoing loads of cards that you didn't really need in the first place.

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Game solving software is of little interest to me. I don't particularly need to know which games are winnable and which are not. It's more fun finding out for yourself even if you spend an hour or more before discovering a game is un-winnable. I remember a guy from Hong Kong I believe, who complained that he thought that all of the games in PGS should be winnable, and that only those should be included. In my opinion, there is no pleasure in winning if losing is not possible.


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You will find some very interesting problem games listed here on occasion. Many different types. It can become a bit boring if you just stick to the same ones for months if not years. Friend Nu Je from Russia Servic posts some very challenging problem games. All winnable eventually.

You could do worse that to have a look at some of his. Larry Dale Lars suggested that you could make a valuable contribution to some of our projects. Not sure what the next one will be. Suggestions invited. You'd be most welcome to participate. Well, maybe the word "project" was a bit of an exaggeration. Somebody asked whether there are any unwinnable Spider Two Suit games among the first , and this person, you and some other players solved a couple of games upon closer inspection, I see that there really was no one else involved in the actual solving of the games.

You reported that the first 30 were solvable, then the original poster claimed that the first are solvable, and after that, you said you would play the Spiders in descending order in order to avoid duplicate games being played.

Are all potential games of solitaire winnable?

However, you only explicitly reported having solved , so it's not clear whether — have ever been attempted. On the point of solving programs: Maybe it's the hobby programmer in me, but I don't quite share your dismissive attitude about them.

How to Play Solitaire : The Basics of Solitaire

The problem is, how do you know that a game is unwinnable? While the site I linked to provided proof for two Spider games that they are unwinnable, this was only possible because it could be proven that it is impossible to clear a column, but what if it's possible to clear a column? The game might still be unwinnable, but how do you prove it?

There might be a way, but why not use a computer program to find out although it must be said that the solver was not exhaustive, meaning that the solver being unable to solve a game does not guarantee that the game is unwinnable, because an exhaustive search would take far too long. But it soon became clear that I underestimated the number of possible game positions, making a brute-force approach simply unrealistic, and I gave up again. And how fortunate that was, because now I can claim the glory of having solved these Spiders all for myself — yay me!

October Administrator, Beta Tester. Actually, Spider has a lot of fans, just not in this forum.


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On the subject of Spider solvers, I've never heard of one, it would probably be pretty difficult due to the large number of possible moves to check. But there is a quick and dirty way to tell if a Spider game is winnable or not. Go to the final deal of cards the last 10 cards dealt to the tableau. If there are no possible moves among these 10 cards, the game is unwinnable since you will never be able to get past those 10 cards to anything lower after you get to the last deal.

If there are possible moves, my assumption is that the game is winnable although of course mathematically that would not necessarily be true. Even if the cards from the final deal cannot be played upon each other, it might still be possible to arrange the cards before the last deal so they may be moved together with the cards from the final deal. Thus, it's not that easy to prove a game of Spider unwinnable.

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Schamschi, I also like reading through the old forum posts myself. Richard fancies himself quite a wit. I tell him he's half right! October edited October Member, Beta Tester. I do like Spiders. We always landed up playing hundreds and sometimes thousands of other games instead. I'm not bothered what I play as long as the games are challenging. I have no time for games where luck plays a big part. I disagree with Thomas's "dirty" method of finding if a game is winnable.

Groups are moveable so it will often happen that a card in the last deal will fall on a card or group of cards that can be moved. Yeah, I already disproved the final-deal-theory by pointing to the solution of Spider I asked about ONE card draw, standard scoring, untimed. There could be a difference. Highest I've been able to get - several times - is Posted by: Rose February 17, at PM. Pulling down before putting up on aces seems to do it. How long did it take to get to I am new to computers. Posted by: pamela M.

Lager June 07, at AM. Posted by: A. Moore July 21, at PM.

Posted by: Solitairitis October 14, at AM. I've actually pulled off in seconds, drawing one card, timed and with score. I can't imagine anyone finishing the game in less that 60 secs though Posted by: C. M October 18, at PM. Nice job.

Spider Solitaire - Detailed Game Rules and Terminology

In at least games over the past few weeks I've bettered a dozen times and a couple score. I like the timed games because it adds a whole extra dimension of mental agility and hand-eye coordination and I favor Draw 3 for the added strategy--it's not always beneficial to engage every playable card from the draw pile, for example. And let's face it, the game is already mindless enough.


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You may run through the deck as many times as you like - 4. You may use the Undo to go back 1 play, which is all mine will allow any number of times - 5. You may of course pull cards from any of the final four stacks back down to the column stacks to re-engage them in play if needed there's a small penalty to do this.

Play fast. I recommend playing the card directly from the draw to the final four, if applicable.

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