Klondike is not just the world’s most popular solitaire card game. It is so popular that many people call it simply “Solitaire” although technically there are many different card games that are solitaire games. If you had no idea there is more than one type of solitaire game, the game you know as Solitaire is almost certainly Klondike. Klondike is a game of sorting cards. You move cards between columns in an attempt to put them in order into 4 piles of cards separated by suit.
The game begins with 28 cards dealt into 7 columns also known as the tableau. The first of these columns has only a single card in it, the second has two, the third has three and so on up to the 7th column. The remaining 24 cards are placed in the top left of the game screen as a stock pile you can draw from when you need additional cards.
In Klondike, there are 3 basic moves you can make. You can move cards between the columns on the tableau. You can move cards between the tableau and foundations. And you can move cards from the stock pile to either the tableau or foundations.
The columns in a game of Klondike Solitaire are also called the Tableau. They are the primary play area of the game. As a player, you are attempting to move cards from the columns into the suit piles on the top right of the game screen. All the cards in the columns with the exception of the bottom card start out face down. In order to move a card in a column, it must be turned face up. To turn a card face up, it must become the bottom card in the column, so all the cards below the face down card must be moved into a different column.
Moving Cards in the Tableau
When you’re moving cards between the columns, you can can grab any face up card, to move it, but you must move it with all the cards below it in the column. The top card in the group you’re moving must have a value one less than the bottom card in the column you are moving it to, and have a different color.
Moving Cards to the Suit Piles
There are four foundations that appear at the top right of the game screen. The goal of the game is to build these four piles up by suit from Ace to King.
The Stock Pile
The Stock Pile is what remains of the deck after the cards forming the Tableau have all been dealt out. You can deal cards one at a time face up. Once you have dealt out all the cards, you can reset the stock pile and deal them out all over again. There is no limit to the number of times you can deal out the cards.
Winning Klondike Solitaire
The goal of Klondike is to build all the cards on to the foundations (suit piles) at the top of the game screen. To win, all cards must be face up in the suit piles. This will appear as 4 Kings in the foundations.