Cribbage evolved from an earlier English game called "Noddy," and the man with whom it was invented is Sir John Suckling, a wealthy English poet. Cribbage offers players both the anticipation of the deal's fortune and plenty of opportunity to practice their dropping and playing skills.
One of the novel features of Cribbage is that a cribbage board is used for scoring instead of the usual pen and paper. The rectangular wooden board is equipped with holes for pens. The board speeds scoring, and in this fast-paced game, pegging significantly reduces the probability of computer scores.
Two or three people can play. Or four people can play two against two as partners. But Cribbage is basically best played by two people, and the rules that follow are for that number.
The standard 52-card package is used.
K (high), Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, A.
From a mixed deck, each player draws one card and leaves at least four cards at each end of the deck. If both players cut cards of the same rank, everyone draws again. The player with the lower card performs the first hand. Thereafter, the turn to the deal between the two players, except that the loser of the game covers first, when another game is played. The dealer has the right to shuffle last, and he presents the cards to the non-dealer for the cut before the deal. (In some games there is no cut at this time.)
The dealer spreads six cards face down to his opponent and himself, starting with the opponent.
The goal is to be the first player to score 121 points. (Some games have 61 points.) Players receive points during the game and for various card combinations.
Each player looks at his six cards and "covers" two of them face down to reduce the hand to four. The four folded cards form "the crib". The crib belongs to the dealer, but these cards are not suspended or used until the hands have been played.
After the cot has been deposited, the non-dealer cuts off the package. The dealer reveals the top card of the bottom pack and places it face up on the pack. This card is the "starter". If the starter is a Jack, his name is "His Heels" and the dealer bets 2 points at once. The starter will not be used in the game phase of Cribbage, but will later be used for various card combinations that score points.