This is a popular non-poker, pot matching game guts game where each player recieves 4 cards, and duces are wild. Play continues until only one player that elects to play and beats the ghost hand, called the kitty.
Before the first hand is played, it is traditional to hum the first line of Bonanza.
- Each player is dealt four cards, duces are wild. One ghost hand is also dealth (down).
- Each player holds the 4 cards out in front of him (as if to drop them to the table)
- The dealer says 1-2-3-drop.
- Based on the three cards in a player's hand the player elects to stay in the hand by holding his cards, or abandon the hand by dropping the cards.
- If there is two or more players the ghost hand is disgarded.
- Players that remain in the hand can elect to take 0, 1 or 2 cards, in turn.
- All hands are then turned over, and the player with the best high hand wins.
- Winners scoop the pot, losers match the pot.
- If only one player elects to play, they must beat the ghost hand (called the kitty)
- If the player does not beat the kitty, or there are 2 or more players in a hand, gameplay continues until a sole player beats the kitty.
Usually, there is a cap to the match. We used to do $20 then we moved it to $5, it made for a better game with the lower limit.
This is one of the games where you want to confirm if you need to beat the kitty or just tie the kitty to win. Usually you must beat the kitty.