Stop the Bus

👨‍💼Players Number2-9
🃏Card Deck54
📋Type Of GameSolitare
💪Difficulty3/5 🌶️🌶️🌶️
🏷️Different name Scat, 31 card game
🥇Rating4/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Getting Started with “Stop the Bus” Card Game

Welcome to the lively world of Stop the Bus, a captivating British card game where the pursuit is to assemble a compelling Brag hand!

Understanding the Game’s Essence

Distinctively known as a draw and discard game, participants strive for a solid Brag hand while navigating through strategic decisions.

When content with their cards, a player may opt to “stop the bus,” ending the drawing phase and shifting the gameplay towards its climax.

Alternate Versions and Names

  • An iteration of Thirty-One or Ride the Bus, focusing on accruing high-value cards within a suit, with 31 being the pinnacle hand.
  • A variation, occasionally termed ‘Bastard Stop the Bus’ or Bastard Brag, where achieving a commendable Brag hand involves swapping cards with a visible 3-card hand on the table.

This guide explores a version graciously shared by Nic Cleveland from Guernsey.

Configuring Players and Cards

Employing a standard Anglo-American 52-card pack, the cards within each suit are valued from the highest, Ace, to the lowest, 2.

Designed for anywhere between 2 to an approximate 9 participants, it truly shines with a cozy 3 to 5 player setting, ensuring brisk turns and heightened engagement.

Token and Life Mechanics

  • Each contender initiates the game with three tokens, symbolizing their lifelines within the game.
  • For an added thematic flair, a miniature bus model can be utilized to denote the conclusion of play.

Always remember, deal and play proceed in a clockwise manner, paving the way for systematic and fair gameplay.

Key Takeaways for New Players

  1. The goal is to compile a strong Brag hand, navigating through a series of draws and discards.
  2. Declaring “Stop the Bus” can be a strategic move, signaling the nearing end of the round and potentially securing a victory.

Stay vigilant, strategize wisely, and may the best Brag hand win in your Stop the Bus gaming sessions!

Mastering “Stop the Bus” with Hand Rankings and Game Flow

Dive into the vibrant world of Stop the Bus, where the key to victory lies in amassing an enviable three-card Brag hand. Let’s unravel the enthralling journey from dealing cards to declaring a triumphant stop!

Brag Hand Hierarchies

The heartbeat of this game is undeniably understanding the potency of your Brag hand, ranked distinctively from the most to least potent.

1. Prial: Trio of Power

Three cards boasting identical rank stand tall as a Prial, with 3-3-3 reigning supreme, cascading down through A-A-A to the humble 2-2-2.

2. Running Flush: Suited Sequence

A consecutive triplet of the same suit, the mightiest being 3-2-A, followed closely by A-K-Q, spiraling down to the modest 4-3-2.

3. Run: Unsuited Straight

Three successive cards of varying suits, still led by the formidable 3-2-A, with A-K-Q to 4-3-2 following in rank.

4. Flush: Suited Non-Sequentials

Non-consecutive cards of identical suits, compare from highest to lowest card when flushes clash, making A-K-J the zenith and 5-3-2 the nadir of flush hands.

5. Pair: Double Dose with a Sidekick

Two cards of matching rank, evaluated by comparing the paired cards first, then the odd one out. A-A-K stands proud, while 2-2-3 lingers at the base.

6. High Card: The Diverse Trio

The non-sequential, varied-suit trio, where comparison commences from the highest card. A-K-J beams at the pinnacle, opposing the base dweller 5-3-2.

Seamless Dealing, Smooth Playing

The initial dealer is selected via a convenient method, ensuring a fair start, with subsequent hands dealt by the next player to the left.

  • The dealer deftly shuffles and deals three concealed cards to each player.
  • One card is placed face-up, igniting the discard pile, while the remaining deck forms the draw pile.

Play commences with the dealer’s left neighbor, evolving clockwise with each player presented with three options: drawing from the stock, drawing the top discard, or boldly declaring “stop the bus”.

Ending Rounds and Stopping that Bus

Once the bus is stopped, each player is granted one final turn, potentially bypassing drawing and discarding if satisfied with their hand, before unveiling their cards.

The Lifeline: Tokens and Triumphs

All hands are revealed in the wake, and a life, symbolized by a token, is surrendered by the player with the weakest Brag hand.

  • When devoid of tokens, a player is ‘on welfare’ and subsequent losses spell elimination.
  • Survival continues until one player remains, emerging victorious in Stop the Bus.

Take note: in the rare tie, suits break the deadlock, ranked from the mighty spades through hearts and diamonds, to the humble clubs.

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