Faro is a historical casino game for two or more players. It requires a standard 52 card deck, an extra set of 13 cards for each rank, a set of betting chips for each player, and a penny for each player. In Faro, Aces are low and Kings are high. The objective is to win the most bets.
If you are looking for cards to play Faro with, check out a standard deck here or check out one of our recent arrivals here.
To set-up a game a Faro, place the extra 13 cards in two rows face up in the middle of the playing table. These cards make up the tableau. From the top left going right, the card order should be King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, and 8. The 7 should be placed to the right of and halfway down from the 8. The 6 should then be placed to the left of the 7 and directly below the 8. From the 6 going left, the card order should be 5, 4, 3, 2, and Ace.
The dealer sits opposite of the players with a faced down deck of shuffled cards in-front of them. Players bring their own chips to bet with. Every player receives a penny to bet against cards with.
How to Play
The dealer begins the game by showing everyone the top card of the deck. The card is then placed face up to the side of the gameplay area. Players then place bets on one of the cards in the tableau. Next the dealer draws two card from the deck and places them face up for all the players to see. The first card is the loser. The second card is the winner. Bets on the first card are lost. Bets on the second card receive 1:1 payout from the dealer.
The flipped over cards are placed to the side and another round begins. Players can move their bets around, keep them where they were or begin placing bets on multiple cards. Multiple players can bet on the same card. Gameplay continues until the deck runs out.
A player can bet that the winning card is higher than the losing card by placing chips next to the deck. Payout is 1:1.
A player can bet on the losing card by placing a penny on top of their chip.
When the deck has three cards left, players can bet on the order of the final draw.
If the losing and winning cards are of the same rank, then the dealer receives half of the bet made.
If a player places a bet on a card that has already been drawn four times from the deck, the first person (player or dealer) who notices can say "dead bet" and receive the chips.
Faro was first played in 18th century France. It was named after the picture of an Egyptian pharaoh that appeared on many French playing cards. The game spread eastward towards Russia and eventually reached the American West in the 1800's. By 1925, the game became virtually extinct as Baccarat and Blackjack took over as the more popular games at casinos.
For more information about Faro, check out David Parlett's article here or Pagat.com's article here.
Looking for more card games to play? Check out this article:
About the author: John Taylor is a content writer and freelancer through the company Upwork.com. You may view his freelancing profile here. He has a B. A. in English, with a specialty in technical writing, from Texas A&M University and a M. A. in English from the University of Glasgow. You may view his previous articles about card games here and his LinkedIn profile here.