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Blitzkrieg is like War, except it doesn’t take as long to play and it is a lot more fun because of all the special new rules. It is a multi-player game, but playing it by yourself is fun as well.


Ace = 1, Deuce through 10 are worth their respective numbers, Jack = 11, Queen = 12, King = 13, The Diplomat = 0.


Shuffle the cards and divide the deck in two. One half is given to each player. The object of the game is to take all of the cards. Each player draws a card from their deck, and the higher card wins. This is called a battle. This is repeated until all cards belong to one person. However, many battles come with special rules that make them more exciting.


The rules of Blitzkrieg are the same as the rules of War, except in addition to the classic “war” scenario (the same card drawn from each deck), there are twenty new scenarios that call for special measures to be taken to decide the winner of the battle. Also, the classic “War” scenario has been revised. Each new scenario has a name. Some have the potential to win you loads of cards at once, some have the potential to render you powerless and stupid, but all of them are fun and horrible.


The same card is drawn from each deck. The cards are placed face up on the table. The winner is decided by an additional four battles, the first three of which decide which player will have advantage in the fourth.

The first three additional battles are played as independent battles, following all the new rules of battle until someone wins. Two of three wins gets advantage. (If all three of these battles are won by the same player, a fourth battle is not required.) The player with advantage now draws two cards and adds their numerical value. The opposing player now draws one card. The player with the higher total card value is the winner of the war and takes all cards.


In battle, when two numbered cards are drawn and one is exactly half the value of the other, the player who drew the lower card declares “Halfsies!” and wins the battle. They also win the top card from the opponent’s deck.


When two numbered cards of the same suit are drawn, the player with the smaller number may defend themselves by calling for more troops (attempting to draw more numbered cards of the same suit.) If a card of the opposite color is drawn, the player loses. If the player draws a card of the same color but a different suit, or a face card of the same color, no more troops are gained, but another draw is granted. If the player draws a card of the same suit, this number is added to the original card’s value. The player must continue drawing until their total exceeds that of the opposing player’s card. Once they have done this, the opposing player now follows the same procedure for calling more troops. This is done back and forth until someone draws a card of the opposite color. This person is the loser.


This scenario occurs when battle cards are drawn in sequence. For example, a 7 v. 8, a 10 v. Jack, etc. The player with the higher card has the advantage, and now draws two more cards from their deck. If neither card is one of the two already in play, one that will play in sequence at either end, or two that are in sequence themselves, then the opposing player wins the battle. If not, the player with the advantage has now earned the opportunity to “Cross the Delaware.”

This is done by the losing player drawing more cards from his deck. If the first card drawn is not already present and will not play at either end, another card is drawn. If this card does not meet the same criteria, the battle is finished and the advantaged player takes the cards they’ve already won plus the two extra they just won from the losing player.

However, if the card does meet the criteria, the loser then continues to draw more cards until either two non-playing cards are drawn in a row, or the straight is fully completed from Ace to King. If this happens, the advantaged player has successfully crossed the Delaware and is now likely to be in possession of most of the losing player’s deck.

It should also be noted that a Crossing the Delaware type of straight is cyclical, meaning Aces can be played at either end, or to connect a Deuce to a King.


Napoleon occurs when a Jack and a numbered card of the same suit are drawn in battle. The player who drew the numbered card must now place face down on the table from his deck the same number of cards as the number on the card he drew. For example, if a Jack and 5 of diamonds are drawn, the player who drew the 5 of diamonds must place five more of their cards face down on the table.

The player now chooses one of these five cards to flip over. If the chosen card is of the same suit as the Jack (diamonds in this example), then that player has successfully defended themselves, and wins the battle. If the flipped card’s suit is different, the player who played the Jack wins the battle.


This is when a King and a numbered card of the same suit are drawn in battle. In this scenario, the player with the numbered card gets however many chances as the number on the card he drew to assassinate the King (drawing an Ace).

If an Ace is drawn and the King assassinated, the assassin wins the battle. If he cannot draw an Ace by the time his number of chances is up, the player who drew the King wins.


This is when a Queen and a numbered card of the same suit are drawn in battle. In this scenario, the player who drew the numbered card must place face up on the table from their deck the same number of cards as the number on the card they drew. The highest of these cards is selected and pitted against a final draw from the same deck.

If this new card is not higher than the selected card, the player who drew the Queen gets all the cards and the battle is over. If it is, then the defending player wins and gets to keep all the cards.


When the Queen of hearts is up against any numbered card, the player who drew her may take from their opponent’s deck the same number of cards as the number on the card their opponent drew, keeping only the red ones and giving back the black ones. (This rule trumps Helen of Troy.)


When a red and a black Queen are drawn for battle, Classic War (Revised) rules are overridden by the rules of Cold War. In this scenario, the Queens are placed on the table then each player draws five additional cards off of their own deck, holding them as if a poker hand and making sure the other player cannot see them.

Each player then adds the values of these five cards together. If the player who drew the red Queen thinks the numerical value of their hand is higher than that of their opponent’s, they may challenge. Both hands are now shown, and the player with the higher hand wins.

If, however, the player who drew the red Queen feels that they might not be able to win in a challenge, they may elect to disarm. In this case, both players take their own cards and the battle is complete.


When a King and Queen of differing colors are drawn for battle, each player draws two more cards off of their own deck. If three or all of these four new cards are of the same color, the player whose King or Queen was that color wins all the cards. If the four new cards are split evenly by color, four more are drawn until a majority is found.


This is when two regular battles (no new rules in play) in a row have the same cards. For example, a 3 v. 7 battle then another 3 v. 7 battle. In this scenario, the cards from both battles are picked up and one of each card is given to each player, regardless of who won the battles. These cards are placed on the table.

Then each player draws two more cards from their own deck and plays them against the other player’s two cards just put on the table. This is essentially four new separate battles. Winners of the battles take cards accordingly.


When a Joker (known in Blitzkrieg as a Diplomat) is drawn for battle, it is put aside permanently, and the card it was up against is set aside to await a new opponent. Then, each player draws three cards from their deck and lays them down on the table face up. Now each player gives the other their group of cards as a measure of peace.

But there’s a catch: If any of your three new cards are the same as any of the three new cards of your opponent, you may take all six cards. For example, if the second card drawn by your opponent is a 3, and the third card you draw is a 3, you take all six cards. Similarly, if the first card drawn by your opponent is a 3, and the second card you draw is a 3, you take the cards.

At this point, the card that was originally up against the Diplomat is replayed against a new draw from the opposing player’s deck.


When a 3 is against a 9, the player who drew the 3 has three chances to draw a 3 of any suit from their own deck to win. If a 9 is drawn before the three chances are up, three more chances are awarded. If no 3 is drawn, the other player wins all cards drawn and you have to stay in East Germany.


Foxhole occurs when a Jack and King or Queen and Ace of differing suits are played in battle. The player of the higher card in either scenario is the winner, and now has a chance to win bonus cards from the losing player.

The winning player now draws another card. If it is a Queen (in the case of the former situation) or a King (in the case of the latter), the player has won ten more cards from their opponent. If not, they still win, but no bonus cards are awarded.

Royal Foxhole is exactly the same, except in this situation, the original cards drawn in battle are of the same suit. If the winning player fills the hole with a Queen or King of the same suit, twenty additional cards are awarded from the losing player’s deck.


When a 10 is against a 2, both cards are placed face up on the table as if they were numbers on a clock. Then, the player who drew the 2 must fill in the rest of the numbers on the clock with cards from his deck, face down. They then draw a final card from their deck and choose one of the face down cards from the clock to flip over and play against. If the newly drawn card beats the flipped over card, the player has successfully defended themselves, and wins the battle. If not, all the cards go to the other player.


When a 9 is against a 5, the player who drew the 5 must now draw five more cards from their deck. If the total numerical value of these cards is forty, all cards go to that player. If not, all cards go to the other player.

If the sum is greater than forty, the winning player not only takes the cards in play, but also an amount of cards equal to the sum over forty from the other player’s deck.


When a 7 is against a 10, the player who drew the 7 must take eight additional cards from their deck and add them to the pot at stake. They must then draw a final card and play it against the 10 (no new rules applied here). If the 10 is beaten by a Jack or higher, that player takes the cards. If not, the opposing player wins the cards in play.


When a 6 is against a 9, the players switch decks (winnings included) for the remainder of the game. This is repeated as many times as the situation presents itself.


This is when a 10 and a 4 are played against each other. Both players now draw a certain number of cards from their deck. This number is determined by the suit of their 10 or 4. The number of letters in the suit of each player’s card is the number of cards each player now draws.

The players now add the numerical value of the cards they are holding (original 10 and 4 excluded), and the winner is the player whose value is larger.


A-Bomb is a very special battle and a very difficult one to win. It occurs when an ace and a numbered card of the same suit are drawn.

If the player who drew the ace can now draw an ace from their opponent’s deck, they have successfully detonated an A-Bomb and won the entire game!


Those are all the new scenarios and rules you need to know to play Blitzkrieg. Obviously, there might be times when the battle to determine the winner of one of these new scenarios will result in another new type of battle. Remember, finish new battles first, and then go back to older ones. Some battles have the ability to fractal out of control, but try to keep a clear head. This is war, after all.

Also, sometimes two scenarios will occur simultaneously. Commonly, a Crossing the Delaware situation will occur jointly with a Battalion situation. In this instance, Crossing the Delaware must be dealt with first. Afterwards, the player with the lower card can either defend using the rules of Battalion, or won’t need to because the other player lost Crossing the Delaware. (Battalion must always be the last rule applied to any situation involving multiple rules of engagement.)

The winner of an original battle wins all cards of all subsequent battles played within it, even if the other player won some of them. If at any time a player runs out of cards or does not have enough cards to complete a battle, they lose.

If a player has only one card left during a large battle, the A-Bomb rule may not be applied.

Any time a player must play a card against his own card, no new rules are applied and ties are considered losses.

Aces may change value frequently. They always beat everything in regular play or in a battle where no new rules can be applied. Numerically, they are worth 1. During Battalion, they are worth one troop.

Finally, you may be in the middle of a battle when a Diplomat (Joker) pops up. When this happens, drop everything and have a peace treaty. When the peace treaty is over, return to the battle you were conducting.

Questions? Confused? Email me at [email protected]!