All You Need To Know About Online Rummy Glossary And Terminology

Rummy Glossary and Terminology

Rummy card games have been an Indian favourite for many years. Most people know what the games entail when playing at festivals or relaxing with family and friends. The hype for this game has increased with the rise of online rummy games. Rummy is a game that requires many skills and tricks to win. But, before learning that, you need to understand rummy terms to make playing easier.

Rummy Glossary Terms You Should Know

Here are some online rummy terminology you must know before you start playing. They include:

A Discard Pile or Open Deck: It contains cards players get rid of, except the first card. It is situated next to the closed deck and contains a single card facing up. After the dealer deals cards at the start of the game, a card from the remaining pile is placed facing up to form an open deck. Gamers can take the top card from the discard pile or draw the cards from the closed deck.

Dealer: It refers to a player who deals the cards to all the players. When playing the game physically, the dealer is chosen as the gamer with the lowest value card. But online rummy is automated, and each player is dealt 13 cards before the game starts.

Draw: It’s the most common online rummy term. It means when a gamer picks a card from the stack on the table during their move. In each game, there’s a discarding slot and a picking slot.

Discard: It’s when you get rid of a card because you think it won’t help make a sequence.

Deck of cards: This is a collection of 52 cards containing 13 cards of each suit, e.g. Clubs, Hearts, Diamonds and Spades.

Drop: Gamers playing rummy have an alternative to leave or drop out before the game ends. When a gamer leaves, it’s a drop. They receive penalty points depending on whether it was the first or the middle drop.

Additional Read: Top 10 Benefits of Playing the Online Rummy Card Game

Draw pile or closed deck: In a rummy game, the dealer gives 13 cards to each gamer, and the rest are placed facing down on the table. This deck is known as the draw pile or closed pile. Gamers can pick cards from the draw pile and get rid of them in the discard pile. When cards from the draw pile are used, the dealer reshuffles cards from the discard pile to form a draw pile.

Declaration: It’s a rummy term a gamer uses when they wish to end the game because they have met the purpose. It can be the gamer who manages to form the required sets and sequences. A gamer with this set can tap and make a declaration.

Deadwood/Unmatched Cards: Deadwood is the ungrouped cards in hand. But unmatched are the remaining cards that do not play a role in forming a sequence at the end of the game. These cards are added as points when the game ends.

First life: It targets making the first mandatory sequences for a declaration. Remember, the 1st set has to be a pure sequence.

Impure sequence: One can form this after running short on cards of a similar suit by using a joker.

Joker/wild joker: When the game starts, a joker is picked randomly from the deck. The card can be used as a substitution for any missing card when making an impure sequence or set.

Pass: It’s when a player makes no bid or bet first.

Plain suit: It refers to any natural suit and not a trump

Prial: This is a set of three cards with a similar value or rank.

Printed Joker: A deck of cards has two or three printed jokers. It’s an essential card in rummy, although it has no points. Gamers can replace the desired number with a joker card forming an impure set.

Download Now

Pure Sequence: Gamers can form this by combining three or more consecutive cards of the same suit. You can never use a wild or printed joker to create this sequence.

Round: As they enjoy online rummy games, they must make moves turn by turn. If all the gamers make tier-first moves, it’s known as the first round.

Ruff: Bringing a trump card in a non-trump deal.

Second life: Targeting to make a 2nd sequence for a declaration is known as second life. In the one, you can make either a pure or impure sequence.

Sequence: It combines three or more consecutive cards of a similar suit. The game has two types of sequences: pure and impure. Gamers must form at least one pure and impure sequence to make a declaration.

Sets: Groups of three or more cards with the same rank but from different suits.

Score: The total of all the cards is not part of any sequence or set when the game ends. The players’ score varies depending on the cards a gamer has at hand.

Shuffling: After every game, mixing the cards before the next one is a must. The mixing is known as shuffling to ensure the cards are balanced.

Tenace: It’s when a player forms cards with higher value but not in a sequence.

Trump: A card that holds the highest value than any plain card.

Unload: Discarding the most powerful cards that any player may have. 

Variants: There are different rummy games that games can participate in depending on their preference, convenience and experience. These are known as card game variants. They include points rummy, poo rummy and deals rummy.

Whitewashed: It means ducking out of rummy which is scoring zero points.

Before playing the game, beginners must learn the online rummy terminology and variants. The next step is understanding the rules of each variant to make it an easy journey. After learning all this, you can play a rummy variant to your favourite bookie. Ensure you have the terms at your fingertips to avoid confusion during gameplay.

Basic Rules of Rummy Game:

A) Objective:

The main goal in most Rummy variations is to form sets (three or four cards of the same rank) and sequences (three or more consecutive cards of the same suit).

B) Deck:

Rummy is typically played with a standard 52-card deck. Jokers may also be used as wild cards.

C) Dealing:

Players are dealt a certain number of cards (usually 10 or 13) depending on the variant being played.

D) Turns:

Players take turns drawing a card from the deck or discard pile and then discarding a card. The goal is to create a valid hand for declaring.

Strategies To Play Rummy Game:

A) Discard Wisely:

Be mindful of the cards you discard, as you don’t want to give your opponents an advantage.

B) Watch Your Opponents:

Pay attention to the cards your opponents pick and discard to anticipate their strategy.

C) Forming Pure Sequences First:

In many variations, forming a pure sequence (a sequence without a joker) is a priority.

D) Use Jokers Wisely:

If jokers are in play, use them strategically to complete sets or sequences.

E) Calculate Deadwood:

Keep track of the value of unmatched cards in your hand. Minimize deadwood to reduce penalty points.

F) Declaring and Scoring:

  • Declare: When you have formed a valid hand, you declare, and the round ends.
  • Scoring: Points are assigned based on the cards left in opponents’ hands. Face cards usually carry higher point values.
  • Penalties: Dropping out of a game prematurely may incur penalties in some variations.


In conclusion, Rummy stands as a timeless card game that effortlessly blends skill, strategy, and the thrill of unpredictable outcomes. From the careful consideration of each drawn and discarded card to the strategic use of jokers, Rummy demands a keen eye, a sharp mind, and a touch of intuition. Whether played casually among friends or competitively on digital platforms, Rummy continues to captivate players of all ages.

As players declare their hands, calculate points, and savor the sweet taste of victory or learn from defeat, it becomes evident that Rummy is more than a game; it’s a social experience that fosters camaraderie, sharpens cognitive abilities, and offers a delightful escape into a world of cards and strategies.
So, whether you’re a seasoned player or just embarking on your Rummy journey, the game promises not just entertainment but a journey. A journey of your skill set and geniuses.


Inline Feedbacks
View all comments