How to Play Crazy 8: The Ultimate Guide 

How to Play Crazy 8: The Ultimate Guide 

There are plenty of fun card games that you can play these days, and they don’t necessarily need to be the traditional table games that you’ll see at most casinos. Crazy 8, also known as Crazy Eights, is one of the best examples of a fast-paced title that’s very easy to learn. 

Before you play Crazy 8, it’s a good idea to do some prior research and ensure that you know what you’re getting yourself into. Once you’ve learned the different rules and whatnot, you’ll have a much easier time understanding what you need to do when sitting down at the table. And because of this, you will also find it much more straightforward to both beat your competitors and explain what other players need to do. 

Today, you’ll learn everything you need to know about playing Crazy 8. We’ll discuss what Crazy 8 is, plus the necessary Crazy Eights instructions you should follow. On top of that, you’ll discover where you can play Crazy 8. 

What Is Crazy 8?

Crazy 8 is a game that derived from Eights, which initially came onto the gaming scene in the early 20th century. Around a decade later, Crazy Eights became popular. 

Crazy Eights involves a French deck of 52 cards, and the goal is to be the first person who gets rid of all your cards. In this sense, it’s very similar to UNO. In fact, Uno was developed from the base rules of Crazy 8. Even more interestingly, it was developed because of an argument around the rules of Crazy 8. 

Crazy 8 is a medium-chance game, which is different from the high-chance nature of Uno. The game has numerous variations when it comes to different rules, which we’ll discuss in more detail shortly. 

The game originated in the US, but it has since become popular across the world. You can play it for money, but it’s also possible to play Crazy 8 in family settings without needing to have cash at stake. 

Crazy 8 has many different names around the world. For example, it’s known as Otto Americano in Italian and 8 Américain in French. In Danish, Crazy Eights is referred to as Olsen – and in Icelandic, you’ll hear it called Ólsen Ólsen. 

What’s the Difference Between Crazy Eights and UNO?

UNO has many of the same rules that you’ll find in Crazy Eights. However, there is one key difference that you’ll need to consider when playing. That difference is the cards that you play with. 

As mentioned earlier, you’ll use a French deck of 52 cards when you play Crazy Eights. This is similar to other casino table games that you may be interested in playing, such as poker and blackjack. 

On the flip side, UNO has a specially designed set of cards for that specific game. Nonetheless, you effectively know how to play UNO if you’ve only played Crazy 8 – and vice versa if you’ve only ever played Crazy Eights. 

Crazy 8 Rules 

At the beginning of each Crazy 8 game, every player will receive five cards in their hand face-down. For this reason, it’s only possible to play with a maximum of 10 players (though you can also alter the rules for larger groups of people if you want). 

One thing worth noting in Crazy 8 is the importance of the number 8 card – which you may well have guessed from the game’s name. If the dealer pulls an 8 card straight after dealing the initial hand, they’ll need to put that to the bottom of the deck. In its replacement, you’ll receive something else. 

Another thing you’ll need to keep in mind when playing Crazy 8 is the “suit”. This refers to the card that you must match if you want to get rid of it. So, your ideal scenario is that the dealer pulls up a card from the suit that is something you already have. If it isn’t, you’ll need to take another card and add it to your hand. 

The only exception to the above rule is the 8 card. If you receive this later, you can use it for whatever suit you want. However, you must disclose the suit to the player whose turn is after you – though you can also tell them if they need to have an 8 to put down when it’s their turn. There is no universal rule as to which is better, and it’ll vary depending on your in-game situation. 

learn crazy 8 rules

See also: How to Play Cribbage

Crazy 8 Card Game Requirements 

To play Crazy 8, you need at least two players. One person will also need to be the dealer when you play to ensure that the game runs smoothly. You can find a French deck of cards in many stores, so you should have no problem getting this. And if they’re not available in any of your local shops, there are more than enough places to find some online. 

Other than the deck of cards and players to join in, there isn’t really a huge deal that you need – with the exception of some space to play. Once you have these things, it should be no big deal to get started. 

Another thing worth mentioning is that when you play Crazy 8, the rules can sometimes be quite flexible. So, if you need to, you can always make adjustments however you feel is necessary. Of course, this would not be possible in a casino – but if you’re playing on your own, you should have no problems whatsoever. 

Where to Play Crazy Eights Online 

In addition to playing Crazy 8 in person, it’s possible to play the game online if you would prefer. You’ll find a broad selection of card game websites that allow you to enjoy Crazy Eights, and you can do so for free in many cases. Some of the websites you choose will even let you set up a game and play with your friends from your computer! 

These free-to-play card websites are great for casual users who don’t want to spend any money on their games. On top of that, they’re also an ideal training ground if you want to get used to the rules of Crazy Eights before you begin playing with others. 

But despite the above, you might also want to play at an online casino instead. Admittedly, it’s much harder to find a place to play Crazy Eights online when playing for real money. Nonetheless, there are a handful of websites that are worth checking out. 

What to Look for When Playing Crazy 8 Online 

When looking to play Crazy 8 at a casino, there are a number of things you should consider. The first is that it’s worth looking for welcome bonuses, as these can make it much easier to get started and also potentially win some more money in the process. Welcome bonuses can cover multiple areas, such as: 

  • Free bets 
  • No-deposit bonuses 
  • Increased payouts if you win 

To find the best odds for the casino you’d like to play Crazy 8 at, you can find plenty of reviews and the like online. Once you’ve signed up, you will of course have access to other casino games as well – such as blackjack and various other card games. 

When looking for Crazy 8 online casinos, you also need to ensure that they’re actually legal in your jurisdiction. In some cases, you won’t be able to play Crazy 8 or other casino games for money because online casino gaming is illegal where you live. This can be the case even if you’re allowed to play the offline version. You can identify whether a casino is regulated or not via the license badges – which normally feature at the bottom of the screen. 

It’s also worth looking for different variations of Crazy 8 when you play online. These days, you will find titles for all kinds of themes – which can allow you to pick an even more interesting version of your game if you wish. Check for these and you can have a much more fun experience.  

Can I Play it at a Casino?

Crazy Eights is nowhere near as popular as many of the other card games that you’ll see in various casino destinations around the world, including Las Vegas. As a result, you will likely find it much more difficult to enjoy this game in the casino that you go to. 

Nonetheless, you may be able to find some places that offer Crazy 8. The most high-profile example is the World Series of Poker (WSOP)’s Crazy Eights series. It’s needless to say that you need to have a good knowledge of Crazy 8 before playing in these events, as you’re going to be up against some of the most knowledgeable people on the globe. 

crazy eight cards game

See also: How to Play Pai Gow

Crazy 8 Rules (Special Cards) 

The main rule with special cards in Crazy Eights is what we mentioned previously. The only special card in Crazy 8 is the number eight card, which you can use to either match another 8 or as more of a wild card. All of the other cards pretty much have the same face value that you see when you initially deal them – which makes it much easier to play Crazy Eights without too much of an issue. 

Crazy 8 House Edge

When you play many casino table games, you will typically need to deal with a house edge. However, that is not the case with many instances of Crazy 8. 

Instead, all you need to do is ensure that you’re the first player to lose all of their cards. Of course, some casinos might impose their own rules and whatnot – but this is a useful general rule of thumb. 

Is Crazy 8 Luck or Skill-Based? 

For the most part, Crazy 8 is luck-based. While you need to understand how to use the number 8 card, much of your success will be down to chance. In this respect, it’s very similar to if you would play UNO. 

There can be an element of skill in one sense when you play Crazy 8, in that you should know which suits to play for the 8 if you get one. On top of that, you will also need to know the basics of how to play the game – such as the initial dealing and whatnot. 

How to Win Crazy 8 

There is only one way to win Crazy Eights, and that is to ensure that all of your cards have returned to the pile before anyone else. As long as you follow the other Crazy 8 instructions, this should come quite naturally to you after a few games. 

Conclusion: A Complete Guide

While some table games are very difficult to learn, Crazy Eights is very much the opposite of that. You can easily figure out the basics of Crazy 8 with minimal effort, and the game should not take you a huge amount of time to figure out. In essence, you need to just have the right cards for success and know how to use the number 8 card. 

For these reasons, Crazy 8 is a fantastic game to play if you’re new to card games and want something easy to try. You can also then transfer your knowledge of this game to others that are of a similar nature, such as UNO. There are many places to play Crazy 8 online, but you can also play in person as well as long as you have a French deck of cards. 

See also: How to play poker