n Pyramid Solitaire, only Kings can be removed from the pyramid by themselves

Easy to play alone or with friends, Pyramid Solitaire is enjoyed by people of all ages. The rules are simple, but hidden twists introduce new challenges to this fun variation of the classic game. Learn how to play Pyramid Solitaire with our easy-to-follow guide.

Pyramid Solitaire Rules

Pyramid Solitaire is a matching game with a few twists. All the cards are face up, the layout looks like a pyramid, and pairs are only matching if they add up to 13.

This image shows the pyramid layout, consisting of 28 cards in a seven-layer structure. The first layer has one card, the second layer has two, and so on. Compared to other Solitaire variations, this layout starts the game with fewer cards. Restricting the number of cards in play adds to the challenge of clearing the pyramid.

Pyramid Solitaire rules limit the use of the stock pile as indicated in the layout above.

Another deviation from classic Solitaire (also known as Klondike) is that you can only cycle through the stock pile a total of three times. As you can see, limiting card availability is a theme of this game. Your success depends as much on skill and strategy as the cards you’re dealt.

How to Play Pyramid Solitaire

To win the game, follow these rules and clear the pyramid:

Match cards of any suit to form a pair that adds up to 13. Because Kings are worth 13, they can be removed on their own without being part of a pair. Other face cards have values of their own.

  • Aces: 1
  • Jacks: 11
  • Queens: 12

Only unblocked cards can be matched, so focus on unblocking cards to bring them into play. Therefore, you need to find a match from the seven cards on the top-most layer of the pyramid and the top card of the stock pile at the beginning of the game.

  • If there are no matches that add up to 13, cycle through the stock one card at a time to create pairs. Unpaired cards from the stock go to the waste pile.

  • Pairs can be created using cards from the waste pile, stock pile, and the pyramid.

  • Once matched, remove paired cards to expose other cards below them.

  • The stock pile can be cycled through only three times.

  • The game ends once all cards are paired off the pyramid or if there are no more possible moves left. The remaining cards in the stock and waste pile are calculated for extra points accordingly.

Potential Pyramid Pairs

Feeling good about your cards but not sure which ones make a pair? Here’s a quick cheat sheet listing all the possible pairs in Pyramid Solitaire:

  • King
  • Queen and Ace
  • Jack and 2
  • 10 and 3
  • 9 and 4
  • 8 and 5
  • 7 and 4
  • 6 and 7
  • 5 and 8
  • 4 and 7
  • 3 and 10
  • 2 and Jack
  • Ace and Queen
  • King

13 is the magic number in Pyramid Solitaire. Remember that you can pair cards from any suit as long as they are unblocked and not covered by other cards.

Tips for Winning

Strategy is key. Here are some tips you can use to win your next game:

Analyze the pyramid. All of the cards face up in the pyramid. Take advantage of the layout and see which move you can make to unblock potential matching cards.

Unblock cards strategically. At the beginning of the game, start by finding matches from the seven-carded top layer of the pyramid and the top card of the stock pile. Bringing more cards into play increases your chances of winning.

Use the stock only when needed. Remember, you can’t cycle through the stock endlessly like in classic Solitaire. Reserve the stock for use only when no other moves can be made.

Prioritize removing Kings. Because of their number value of 13, Kings don’t pair with any other card. Remove them as quickly as possible to unblock other potential pairs underneath.

The point is to have fun. You don’t always need to create a long-term strategy or think five moves ahead. If you run into a dead end, don’t hesitate to start a new game and try your chances anew.

Play Pyramid Solitaire with Arkadium

Learning how to play Pyramid Solitaire is easy, but it takes skill and fortune to win the game. See how well you play Pyramid Solitaire today. All of our games are browser-based—no download needed! Play your favorite games with Arkadium anytime and anywhere.

Game loading screen of Arkadium’s Pyramid Solitaire

Did you know that Arkadium offers over 120 free online games? Browse our collection of Solitaire games, including Klondike, Spider Solitaire, Pyramid Solitaire, Tripeaks Solitaire, Canfield, Crescent, Forty Thieves, Freecell, and more. You can also try our popular Mahjongg games, including Mahjongg Dimensions, Mahjongg Remix, and Mahjongg Candy.

If you want to try something new, why don’t you head over to our collection of original Arkadium games? We also have our own version of popular game shows like Family Feud, Plinko Pegs (The Price Is Right), Card Sharks, and more.

Discover more free online games at Arkadium, home of the world’s best games available to play online.

Category: Card Games