Skip to Content

How To Play Sequence (4 Minute Guide)

How To Play Sequence (4 Minute Guide)


The game of Sequence was designed in 1982 by designer Doug Reuter. It is a board and card game that supports 2-12 players at a time. The board displays 2 decks of 52 cards placed in a 10 x 10 pattern, excluding all Jack cards with 4 free spaces in the corners. Throughout the game, players will create connected rows of checkers over the cards they discard from their hand called sequences.

If you don’t own Sequence already, check it out here on Amazon.



To begin, place the game board in the middle of all the players and place the deck of cards, marker chips, and discard piles for each player around it. For 2 players or 2 teams, members will alternate their positions with the other team around the playing area. The dealer will shuffle the cards and deal the same number of cards to each person, depending on how many players are in the game. For 2 players, everyone will get 7 cards each.


The objective of the game is to create connecting sequences of 5 chips on the board as quickly as possible to reach the minimum amount before the other players or teams.

Player Actions

The player to the left of the dealer will be the first player of the game. During their turn, they will choose a card from their hand and place it face up on their own discard pile in front of them. Then, they will place one of their chips on the card that matches it on the game board (each card appears 2 times on the game board, and Jacks are not there at all). Players can place their chip on any card space as long as it is not covered by another player’s chip. Once a chip is placed on the board, it cannot be taken off unless someone uses a One-eyed Jack.

Out of  8 Jacks in the card deck, the 4 of them with two eyes are considered wild cards. To play one of these cards, you will put it on top of the discard pile in front of you and put your chip on any available space on the game board. The remaining 4 Jack cards in the deck have one eye and are considered anti-wild. To play this card, put it on top of the discard pile in front of you and remove one chip from the game board that was placed there by another player. These actions count as a regular turn and will not allow you to place another chip on the board. The only exception to the one-eyed Jack rule is if the chip is already part of a sequence, in that case it cannot be broken and will remain on the board.

If you have a card in your hand that no longer has an empty space on the game board, it is considered a dead card and can be traded in for a new card. This is done by placing the dead card on the discard pile, taking a replacement card, and proceeding with your turn as usual.

Sequences are achieved by placing 5 chips in a row on the board either horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. The 4 empty spaces on the corners of the board count as one chip and can complete a sequence.

How to End the Game

A game of Sequence ends when one of the players reaches the specified number of connections on the board. For a 2 player game, one player must score 2 sequences before their opponent to win the game.

Rule Variations for Playing with Kids

To make this game easier and faster for kids, sequences can consist of 4 chips in a row instead of 5. For very young children, Sequence can be played in partners and teams with adults who can help them.

How the Game Changes Depending on the Number of Players

Sequence can be played by 2 or 3 single players without teams. Groups of players up to 12 can play this game in partners or groups of 3. For 3 single players or 3 teams, someone must score one sequence to win the game instead of 2.

Common House Rules

After each player completes their turn, they must take another card from the draw deck. If they do not draw an additional card by the time the next player begins their turn, they lose their chance to draw the new card.

There is also a rule against talking to partners or team members during the game. This prevents players talking their team members out of making a mistake or alerting them about what they are planning to do on their turn. If this happens, everyone in that team has to discard 1 card from their hand as a penalty.


Time to play: 10-30 minutes

Alternative titles of the game: One Eyed Jacks

Manufacturer suggested player age: 7+

Community suggested player age: 6+

Community rating: 6/10

Popularity: Rank 3,194

Difficulty: Easy

Designer credits: Doug Reuter

Published year: 1982

Link to official game site:

If you like this game you’ll also like:

Yahtzee, Apples to Apples, Scattergories

If you don’t like this game, you should try:

Go Fish, Scrabble, Old Maid