Rolling Stone, known in French as Enflé and in German as Schwellen (both meaning, approximately, swollen), is a game for four to six players that bridges the gap between the trick-taking games and the Stops games. Players that can’t follow suit have to take the rest of the trick so far into their hand—meaning a player’s hand can keep getting bigger and bigger as the game goes on, explaining the French and German names. Unfortunately, this tendency does mean that the game can go on quite a long time, as the winner is the one who finally runs out of cards!
Object of Rolling Stone
The object of Rolling Stone is to be the first player to run out of cards.
Rolling Stone uses a deck that varies in composition depending on how many are playing; the game requires that the deck contain eight cards for each player. Starting with a deck of Denexa 100% Plastic Playing Cards, remove all of the 2s for a six-player game, the 2s through 4s for a five-player game, and the 2s through 6s for a four-player game. You’ll be left with a 48-card deck (aces down through 3s) for the six-player game, a 40-card deck (aces down through 5s) for the five player game, and a 32-card deck (aces down through 7s) for the four-player game.
Shuffle and deal eight cards to each player.
Play begins with the player to the dealer’s left. They may play any card they wish, face up to the center of the table. The next player to the left must then play a card of the same suit, as does the next play, and so on until everyone has played a card (this sequence of cards constitutes a trick). If all the players manage to follow suit, the cards are moved to a discard pile, and the person who played the highest card leads to the next trick. For the purposes of determining the winner of a trick, aces are considered high, and the other cards rank in their usual order.
If a player is unable to follow suit, they collect all of the cards that have been played so far to the trick and add them to their hand. They then lead to the next trick.
Game play continues until one player has completely run out of cards. That player is the winner.