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Playing Spider Solitaire: Rules, Setup, and Strategies

spider solitiare rules setup and strategy


Spider Solitaire is a variation of Solitaire that is sure to challenge even the most seasoned lovers of this card-sorting genre. If you’re willing to put the patience and time into learning to conquer one of the most difficult Solitaire games on the market, you’ll be in for a compelling and rewarding gaming experience few others can compare to.

Ready to get to grips with the Spider? This blog will outline Spider Solitaire rules and setup and offer some tips and strategies to help you get started.

Getting started with Spider Solitaire

getting started with spider solitaire

Spider Solitaire, at its core, is like classic Solitaire but doubled. Double the amount of cards, double the foundations, and a difficult ruleset. Here’s how to get yourself familiar with Spider Solitaire

The rules of Spider Solitaire

Spider Solitaire plays quite similarly to the classic “Klondike" variation of Solitaire you’ve likely played. Organize a randomly sorted set of tableau piles to sort them by their suit and color into foundational piles. Spider takes everything that makes Klondike an addicting gameplay experience and doubles it.

A small but substantial rule difference from Klondike is that cards don’t need to be stacked in an alternating color format. This small change opens more opportunities for player movement and makes sorting more than a hundred cards much easier.

Spider Solitaire setup

To set up the game, you’ll first need to shuffle your two decks if they aren’t already. You should have 104 playing cards in total. Begin by building ten columns in the tableau like this:

The first four columns on the left-hand side of the tableau should contain six cards in total. That’s one card face-up, and five cards face-down.

The next six columns should contain five cards in total. One card face-up, and four cards face-down.

The remaining fifty cards become your stockpile, which you can draw from at any point in the game five times. Each time, you’ll add a face-up card to every one of the ten available tableau spaces. A caveat to keep in mind is that Spider Solitaire only allows you to take cards from the stock when every tableau pile has at least one card in it.

If you want to avoid the lengthy physical setup of Spider Solitaire, consider playing online at 247 Solitaire!

Strategies for Spider Solitaire

Making the most of hidden cards is the key to freeing your tableau space for open movement. A common beginner trap for newer Solitaire players is to neglect to reveal your hidden tableau cards in favor of grabbing new cards from the stock. While this can feel like progress, this strategy may be setting you back.

Once you’ve revealed your cards, you may have an open tableau space. Making the most of these spaces is important as they can be used to help build complicated stacks of cards. Only kings can be placed into an empty space, so you should use them to begin creating a natural build.

A “natural build" means to make large stacks of the same suit in your tableau. For example, keeping diamonds with diamonds, and hearts with hearts. These stacks are easy to arrange and transfer around the board. With an empty space, you’ll always be starting with a king, so if you can isolate the same color and suit that match that specific king, you can build an entire completed foundation in a clean, empty column space. These can be vitally helpful to your game since you’ll be aiming to build your foundations in suit anyway.

If you’re playing Spider Solitaire online, don’t be afraid to make use of the undo button. The undo button can be an incredibly valuable learning tool – retrace your steps to undo a suboptimal move, or figure out where you misstepped.

Spider Solitaire rules: 1-suit, 2-suit, and 4-suit

1suit 2suit 4suit spider solitaire rules

There are many variations of Spider Solitaire that you can play. These variations mainly alter the winning conditions of the game and how you interact with the foundations for completion. If you want to play Spider Solitaire but are in the market for an easier time to learn or practice, then consider checking out these fun variations!

Spider Solitaire 1-suit rules

In Spider Solitaire 1-suit, you’ll play a simplified version of the prime game. This is the easiest variation of Spider to play and is great for beginners.

To complete 1-suit, you’ll simply need to stack the eight foundations with cards of any suit and color in numerical order. You don’t need to worry about keeping suits together, red with red, or black with black. Simply stack the cards and enjoy!

This is the most easily winnable Solitaire variation and is useful if you want to get better at your tableau management before tackling the full challenge of 2-suit or 4-suit Spider Solitaire.

Spider Solitaire 2-suit rules

In Spider Solitaire 2-Suit, you’ll still have an easier time playing than standard 4-Suit, but the main difference is you will have to build your foundations according to the deck’s two colors: red and black.

In essence, red foundations must be built with all red cards, and black foundations must be built with all black. Otherwise, the card’s suits don’t matter as much as long as the foundations are built numerically as per standard rules.

Spider Solitaire 4-suit rules

Finally, Spider Solitaire 4-suit is the classic variation of the game we described in the first section of this piece. You’ll have to arrange your foundations by suit and color.

It’s important to keep in mind that Spider Solitaire is a challenging game, and winning isn’t always guaranteed. If you feel frustrated or stuck, there’s no shame in retrying later or using some of the tools afforded by playing online at 247 Solitaire, such as auto-play and undoing your previous move!

Play Spider Solitaire online at 247 Solitaire

play spider solitaire online at 247solitaire

If you’re interested in playing one of the most challenging and complex game variations of Solitaire on the internet, you should consider checking out 247 Solitaire’s Spider Solitaire! Guaranteed to test your card skills and give you endless hours of replayable enjoyment.

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