How to play Samba

Samba is a popular card game that originated in Brazil and has gained popularity all over the world. It is a fast-paced and exciting game that requires both luck and skill. If you’re new to Samba, don’t worry, this article will guide you through the basics of the game and give you tips on how to increase your chances of winning. So grab your deck of cards and let’s dive into the world of Samba!

Introduction to Samba

Samba is a variation of Canasta, a card game that originated in Uruguay in the 1940s. It was introduced to Brazil in the 1950s and quickly became a favorite among the locals. The game is usually played with two decks of cards, including jokers, making a total of 108 cards.

The objective of Samba is to score points by melding cards into sets and sequences. A set is a group of three or more cards of the same rank, while a sequence is a group of three or more consecutive cards of the same suit. The game can be played with 2-4 players, but it is best enjoyed with four players in teams of two.

The Characteristics of Samba

Before we dive into the rules and strategies of Samba, let’s take a look at some of its key characteristics:

  • Fast-paced: Samba is a quick game that requires players to make decisions and play their turns swiftly.
  • Luck and Skill: While luck plays a significant role in Samba, skill and strategy are also essential for winning.
  • Teamwork: Samba is usually played in teams of two, which adds an element of teamwork and communication to the game.
  • Multiple Melds: Unlike other card games, Samba allows players to make multiple melds in one turn, making it more challenging and exciting.
  • Jokers: Jokers are wild cards in Samba, which can be used to substitute any card in a set or sequence.

Now that we have an overview of Samba let’s move on to the rules and strategies of the game.

How to Play Samba: A Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Setting up the Game

To start a game of Samba, you will need two decks of cards, including jokers, and four players. If you don’t have four players, you can play with two or three players, but it is best enjoyed with four players. Once you have your players and cards ready, follow these steps to set up the game:

  1. Shuffle the two decks of cards together and place them face down on the table.
  2. Each player draws a card from the deck, and the player with the highest card becomes the dealer.
  3. The dealer shuffles the cards again and deals 11 cards to each player, one at a time, starting from their left.
  4. The remaining cards are placed in the center of the table to form the stockpile. The top card of the stockpile is turned face up, and it becomes the discard pile.

Step 2: Understanding the Cards

In Samba, the cards are ranked as follows (from highest to lowest):

  • Joker
  • Two
  • Ace
  • King
  • Queen
  • Jack
  • Ten
  • Nine
  • Eight
  • Seven
  • Six
  • Five
  • Four
  • Three

As mentioned earlier, jokers are wild cards and can be used to substitute any card in a set or sequence. However, they cannot be used to create a pure sequence, which is a sequence without any wild cards.

Step 3: Making Melds

The objective of Samba is to score points by making melds, which are sets and sequences of cards. A set is a group of three or more cards of the same rank, while a sequence is a group of three or more consecutive cards of the same suit. To make a meld, a player must have at least two natural cards (without any wild cards) and one wild card.

In Samba, players can make multiple melds in one turn, as long as they meet the minimum requirement of two natural cards and one wild card for each meld. For example, if a player has three jokers and one natural card, they can make two separate melds using the three jokers and the natural card.

Step 4: Drawing and Discarding Cards

At the beginning of their turn, players have the option to draw cards from either the stockpile or the discard pile. If a player chooses to draw from the discard pile, they must take all the cards on top of the desired card. However, if a player draws from the stockpile, they can choose to take either the top card or the top two cards.

After drawing, the player must discard one card from their hand onto the discard pile. The discarded card cannot be the same as the card they drew, and it must be placed face up so that other players can see it.

Step 5: Going Out and Scoring Points

The game ends when a player goes out, which means they have no cards left in their hand after making their final meld. To go out, a player must have at least one pure sequence (without any wild cards) and a total of at least three melds.

Once a player goes out, their team’s score is calculated by adding up the points of all the cards in their opponent’s hands. The points are calculated as follows:

  • Natural cards (without any wild cards) = Face value
  • Wild cards (jokers) = 50 points each
  • Red threes = 100 points each
  • Black threes = 5 points each

The team that goes out also receives a bonus of 500 points if they have at least one pure sequence and 300 points if they don’t have any pure sequences.

Tips for Winning at Samba

Now that you know the basics of Samba let’s look at some tips and strategies that can help you increase your chances of winning:

  1. Focus on making pure sequences: Pure sequences are essential in Samba as they cannot be substituted with wild cards. Try to make at least one pure sequence in your hand before going out.
  2. Keep track of the discard pile: Pay attention to the cards being discarded by your opponents, as this can give you an idea of what cards they need or don’t need.
  3. Use jokers wisely: Jokers are valuable in Samba, so use them strategically. Don’t waste them on sets or sequences that can be made without them.
  4. Discard high-value cards: If you have high-value cards that you cannot use in a meld, it is best to discard them to avoid losing points if your opponent goes out.
  5. Communicate with your partner: Since Samba is played in teams, communication with your partner is crucial. Let them know which cards you need and which ones you can discard.
  6. Pay attention to the score: Keep track of the score throughout the game, so you know how close you are to winning. This can also help you decide whether to go out or continue playing.
  7. Practice, practice, practice: Like any other game, practice makes perfect. The more you play Samba, the better you will become at strategizing and making quick decisions.

Playing Samba at CKjili Casino: A Guide for Beginners

If you’re new to Samba and want to try your hand at playing it online, CKjili Casino is the perfect place for you. CKjili Casino offers a wide range of casino games, including Samba, from top game providers like Jili Games. Here’s how you can play Samba at CKjili Casino:

  1. Create an account: To start playing Samba at CKjili Casino, you will need to create an account on their website. The process is quick and easy, and you will be ready to play in no time.
  2. Navigate to the Samba game: Once you have created an account, navigate to the Samba game by clicking on the “Casino” tab and searching for “Samba.”
  3. Read the rules: Before you start playing, make sure to read the rules of the game provided by CKjili Casino. While the basic rules of Samba remain the same, there may be slight variations in the online version.
  4. Practice with free games: If you’re new to Samba or want to brush up on your skills, CKjili Casino offers free games that you can practice on before playing with real money.
  5. Place your bets: Once you’re comfortable with the game, you can start placing your bets. CKjili Casino offers various betting options, so choose the one that suits your budget.
  6. Enjoy the game: Now that you know how to play Samba at CKjili Casino, all that’s left to do is enjoy the game and hopefully win some money!


Samba is a fun and exciting card game that requires both luck and skill. With its fast-paced gameplay and multiple melds, it is sure to keep you on the edge of your seat. Whether you’re playing with friends or trying your luck at CKjili Casino, this comprehensive guide has everything you need to know to start playing Samba like a pro. So gather your friends or log on to CKjili Casino and let the Samba fun begin!