A World of Card Play – Card Games from Different Cultures

Card Games from Different Cultures

Do you know that a traditional deck with 52 cards can generate around 8.0658 x 10^67 combinations? Ok, we have to admit something – we don’t understand this number either. But we know that it’s so huge that it’s beyond human comprehension (more than the number of grains of sand on a beach, we’re told). Another thing we’ve learned is that the same combination of shuffled cards has never happened since their very invention!

With so many possibilities (not to mention other types of cards!), it’s easy to see why they inspired different cultures to create different types of games. It all comes down to our own creativity – and not just with cards. For instance, putto is a widespread entertainment option in Hungary. It’s so popular that many people play it online as well. It’s common at digital casinos, so you might as well play online putto if you don’t feel like leaving your home. Most of them also offer lucrative bonuses, so it’s worth a shot for sure.

If this whole concept of card-based games sounds interesting enough, read on to learn about different concepts and options coming from different countries internationally. Let’s dive in!

Brief Origins of Card Games

The exact origins of card games remain shrouded in mystery. That’s why we won’t dig too deep into the timeline, but rather mention just a few important moments in this evolution:

Card games have their roots in China and India (dating back to the 7th century)

The earliest references mention the so-called “Ganjifa” cards

Playing cards made their way to Europe in the 14th century

The invention of the printing press revolutionized card production in the 15th century

Modern era sees many alternative formats, including Magic: The Gathering, Pokemon and Yu-Gi-Oh!

Popular Card Games from Around the World

Card games have taken root in specific cultures, and we must say that some of these truly impress us.

1. Hungary: Online Putto

Ulti, also known as “Ultimó,” is a popular Hungarian card game that combines elements of trick-taking and shedding games. It is played with a standard deck of 32 cards, removing the 2s through 6s, which results in an Ace through 10 in each of the four suits. The game is typically played by 3 or 4 players, and the objective is to be the first to get rid of all your cards. Ulti is known for its fast-paced and competitive nature, making it a favorite choice for gatherings and family occasions in Hungary.

2. India: Rummy

Rummy is an immensely popular card game in India, with countless variations and regional rules. The basic objective of Rummy is to form sets or sequences of cards from your hand. It’s a game that combines skill, strategy, and a bit of luck. The two most common variations in India are Indian Rummy and Gin Rummy.

3. Japan: Hanafuda

Hanafuda, colloquially referred to as “Flower Cards,” constitutes a venerable traditional Japanese card game that frequently employs exquisitely adorned decks as its instruments of play. Each card within this deck showcases a unique botanical motif, and the core objective of the game pertains to the meticulous assembly of specific card combinations. Hanafuda stands as a cultural emblem within the tapestry of Japan, replete with a plethora of variances and locally-specific regulations. It transcends the realm of mere card gaming, metamorphosing into a veritable vestige of Japanese heritage.

4. France: Belote

Belote usually engages 32 elegantly designed French-suited playing cards. As a sophisticated trick-taking diversion catering to a quartet of participants divided into two pairs, it orchestrates the interplay of bids, trump selections, and the fervent quest for triumph in trick accumulation. Intrinsic to its gameplay is an intricate strategic tapestry, where harmonious communication between players becomes pivotal.

5. China: Dou Shou Qi (The Game of Animals)

Dou Shou Qi, also known as “The Game of Animals,” is a traditional Chinese board and card game that has been enjoyed for centuries. In this game, cards represent different animals, each with specific rankings and abilities. Players engage in battles, strategically deploying their animals to defeat their opponents. Dou Shou Qi combines elements of strategy and luck and is cherished for its unique gameplay.


What a time to be a gamer! Internet posts like ours are unmatched sources of inspiration that introduce you to god knows how many new gaming options. Which one of the games discussed above seems like the one that would suit you?

Looking for card game rules?

Ask Chatty our Card Game Bot! You can find him on the left of our home page.


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