Crystal Spider Solitaire

Game Description: Prepare to take on the fearsome might of Crystal Spider Solitaire! Hone your card skills with the one-suit Casual version. Practice your techniques on the two-suit Regular version. And prepare to take on what is possibly the toughest solitaire game in the world - the full four-suit Expert mode!

How to Play Crystal Spider Solitaire:

  • Select from 3 difficulty levels: Casual (one-suit), Regular (two-suits), or Expert (four-suits).
  • Crystal Spider Solitaire is played with two decks of cards. You'll always use 104 cards.
  • When you begin a new game 54 cards are dealt to 10 stacks (44 cards are dealt face down, and 10 cards are dealt face up, one to each stack). The remaining 50 cards are placed in the deck in the lower-left corner of the game screen and are used to deal a new row of cards, 10 at a time.
  • To move a card, drag the card from one stack to another.
  • You can move a card from the bottom of a stack to an empty stack.
  • You can move a card from the bottom of a stack to a card with the next highest value, regardless of suit or color. For instance, any six may be moved on top of any seven. (Aces have the lowest value and may be moved on top of any deuce).
  • You can move a set of cards all of the same suit, and in descending numeric order, as if they were one card. For instance, if you have built a sequence consisting of the 8, 7, and 6 of spades these cards may be moved as if they were a single card.
  • When you have no plays left click the deck to deal another row of cards!
  • There must be at least one card in each stack before you can deal a new row of cards.
  • When you create a set of cards from king through ace, they will automatically move as one card to the bottom of the playing field in one of the 8 available spaces.
  • Your goal is to build all 8 stacks from King to Ace of the same suit to win!

Crystal Spider Solitaire Game Options: All game options are accessed by clicking the Menu button located at the upper-left corner of the game screen. Then, click the Options button. Each option has its own control. Game options are as follows:
  • The music may be turned on or off.
  • Sounds may be turned on or off.
  • Animate cards may be turned on or off.
  • There are 9 card styles you may choose: Spider, Pink Checks, Water Drops, Fish, Flowers, Purple Fractal, Yellow Fractal, Lake, or Tiger.
  • 3 different card layouts are available (though they are all pretty similar): Casual, Strict, or Scruffy.

Crystal Spider Solitaire Playing Tips:
  • Do play the game in Full Screen mode. You will simply have that much more fun.
  • If you are new to Spider Solitaire like I am, start at the Casual level. Later, when you develop your skills you can play at the Normal or Expert levels.
  • If you need extra help, turn the 'Show Help' button on, and Crystal Spider Solitaire will actually walk you through the first few moves of the game and explain some of the basic rules.
  • If you get stuck use the 'Hint' button, located at the top of the game screen, and Crystal Spider Solitaire will show you a move if one is available. (Each time you use the 'Hint' button, 10 points will be deducted from your score).
  • If you make a mistake, use the 'Undo' button which is also located at the top of the game screen. Frequent use of the 'Undo' button can really give you a big advantage, especially if you are still learning the game. So, use it often! You may also want to take a peek at a face down card. Then if you don't like the card, use the 'Undo' button. (You will lose points anytime you use 'Undo', but only advanced players should probably be concerned with their points anyway).
  • Crystal Spider Solitaire appears to use a rather complex scoring system, which, at the moment, I still do not fully understand. Unless you are an advanced player, it is probably best to ignore the scoring for now and just concentrate on winning each hand.
  • There seems to be no pause button, at least none that I can find. If you wish to pause the game (so you can try for those Bonus points for finishing a round early), you can simply click the 'Menu' button and this will effectively pause the game for you. Then, click the 'Continue Game' button to resume play.
  • Clear a stack right away. Get a stack open as soon as possible by turning over all of the cards in a stack, and try to play cards on the space you just opened. This will allow you to build the longest runs.
  • Try to uncover cards as soon as possible. Bring cards into play by clearing off the stacks and turning the lower cards over within the stacks. This opens up possibilities for you very quickly. If more cards are in play before you deal from the deck, you have more possibilities for runs, and fewer "missing" cards to stall your runs.
  • Don't block cards. When you play at more difficult settings, avoid placing lower cards on other cards of a different suit. That blocks them from play until the lower cards are moved.

Richard's Rating: 5 out of 5.

Comments: Crystal Spider Solitaire is an absolutely top-notch fun filled game. It is highly strategic, and extremely challenging, especially at the Expert level. If you like card games, this one is a definite winner!

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