More Games to Play with a Loonacy deck!

We love finding new ways of playing with existing gaming equipment. (That's what our Pyramids are all about!) So we were very excited when we realized you could play various traditional card games with a deck of Loonacy cards!

Below are instructions for playing other games with a Loonacy deck. Please note that some of these games only work with particular versions of Loonacy; for example, Peace (inspired by War) only works with a Mary Engelbreit Loonacy deck because it calls for counting the number of people in the various pictures seen on the cards. Some Loonacy decks have 100 cards while others have only 72, and this too may impact how well a particular game may work.


We will add more games as we discover others that work!

Note: Since this page started with a focus on the Mary Englebreit version, most of the examples below describe cards from that version, even if the game works with other flavors of Loonacy.


Versions: This game works with every version of Loonacy except orginal and Retro.

Goal: To clear all cards played on the table.

Number of Players: 1

Deal: Make 7 piles face down. The first pile will have one card, the second two, and so on. The seventh pile will have seven cards in it. Line these piles up from left to right. Now turn over the top card of each pile and lay it face up on the remaining cards in that pile. The cards that haven't been dealt yet are your hand and stay face down until you're ready to use them.

Play: Play consists of placing matching cards on top of each other to create a series of cards coming down off of each pile. A single card can be turned either direction at any time, but once it's in a series, it can't be turned. For example, a card with Images A and B can be placed on top of a card with Images B and C so that only Image B overlaps. Image A is now available if you have another card or series of cards with Image A at the top.

Continue making matches as long as you can from the cards you have on the table. When a face-down card is exposed, turn it face up.

When you can't find any more matches, begin flipping through your deck. Count out three cards and turn them over. The top card only is available for play. If you can play that one, the one underneath it becomes available to play as well, and so on. 

Whenever all the cards in a pile are gone, you can fill the space created by moving a single card or a stacked series of cards from another pile into that spot. You do not have to fill empty spots with cards from your hand, but you can if it will make a play for you.

Whenever you have seven or more cards in a series, all of those cards can be cleared from the game and set aside.

Continue to play matches and flip through your deck until either you clear all the cards on the table (you win!) or you have no more cards in your hand (you lose). You do not have to clear all the cards in your hand, but you do have to clear all the cards on the table. 

Go Fish


Versions: This game works with any version of Loonacy.

Goal: To be the first to empty your hand.

Number of Players: 2-5 (best with 3)

Deal: Deal 11 cards to each player face down. Spread the rest of the cards face down in the middle of the table to form the "river" that players can fish from.

Play: Players look at their hands and lay down any pairs (not triples or more... only pairs). A pair consists of any two cards that have one matching picture (you do not need to match both pictures).

Once all players have laid down all of their pairs, the youngest player goes first. They may ask any one player for a picture of their choice. For example, they might say, "Joe, do you have the three owls?" If Joe has that picture, he must give one card with that picture to the player who asked for it and that player gets another turn. If Joe does not have that picture, he says, "Go fish!" The asking player then chooses one "fish" card from the river. If it contains the requested picture, the player lays down their pair and gets another turn. If the "fish" chosen does not contain the requested picture but does contain a picture the player has in their hand, the player lays down their pair and their turn is over. If the "fish" card does not match anything in the player's hand, the "fish" gets added to their hand and their turn is over.

Play continues clockwise. The first player to lay down all their cards wins!



Versions: This game works with Mary Englebreit Loonacy.

Goal: To be the first to empty your hand.

Number of Players: 2-5

Deal: Deal 11 cards face down to each player. Place the remaining cards face down in the middle of the table to form the draw pile. Turn the top card of the draw pile face up and place it next to the draw pile to form the discard pile.

Play: Play consists of:

1. Drawing one or more cards

2. Playing cards if possible

3. Discarding exactly one card

Drawing: A player can choose to draw one card from the top of the draw pile (without knowing what they will get), OR the top card from the discard pile, OR more than one card from the top of the discard pile. If they draw more than one card, they must immediately play the bottom card they drew.

Playing: Players are trying to lay down books and runs. A book is three or more cards with a matching picture. In the illustration, the three King of the Dads cards form a book. A run is three or more cards that form a chain of paired matches. In the illustration, a pair of Moms was played, leaving either She Who Laughs or the owls open to take another match. They then played an owl match, leaving May Wonders Never Cease open. They matched that as well, leaving the Queen of Everything open to add to the chain if possible.

The person whose birthday is next gets to go first. After drawing, they play any books or runs they can form. Additionally, once a player has played at least one book or run, they can steal cards from in front of other players. However, when their turn is over, all cards on the table must be part of a valid book or run. For example, in the illustration, a player could take the three May Wonders Never Cease and form a new book. The run still has three cards in it, so that's OK. But there is a single card (She Who Laughs/Snap Out Of It) left without a match. It all works out this time, though, because that card can be added to the She Who Laughs at the beginning of the run.

Discarding: Once a player is done playing cards to the table, they discard exactly one card. Note that this means you cannot play ALL the cards in your hand, because you will not have a card left to discard!

Play continues clockwise until someone plays all of their cards (by playing all but one and then discarding that last card). That player is the winner!

Peace (usually called War, but we prefer Peace)

Versions: This game only works with Mary Englebreit Loonacy.

Goal: To collect all the cards.

Number of Players: Best with 2, but up to 5 can play.

Deal: This game can be played with any number of cards. For a shorter game, use just 10 cards per player. For a longer game, use 25 cards per player. Once you've decided how many cards to play with, deal them out evenly between all the players, face down.

Play: Players do not look at their cards. They keep them in a pile face down, forming their deck. Each player turns the top card of their deck face up in the middle of the table, counts the number of humans on their card, and announces that number. (Note: Although the skaters and fishing boys have more people in the background, we suggest only counting 7 skaters and 2 fishermen. It's just too hard to count those tiny people in the background!)

The person with the most people on their card collects all cards played by all players. If there is a tie for the most people, the tied players each lay 3 cards face down, then one face up. These new face up cards are counted, and the one with the most people wins. If it's still a tie, repeat until there's a clear winner. That person takes all the cards played in that round.

When a player runs out of cards in their deck, they gather their collected cards and use them to form a new deck. They do not shuffle those cards. When one player possesses all the cards, they win!