Speed the Card Game; How to Play with printable

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Speed AKA Spit or Slam although they are actually slightly different games.

Speed the card game is a fast, fun, game that tests your speed and focus. Two (or more!) players race (they do NOT take turns) to get rid of all of their stock cards before their opponent gets rid of theirs. We explain the rules and have a cheat sheet to remind you how to play.

Just need a reminder of how to play?
Click on our Printable / Cheatsheet >

SPEED Cheatsheet
SPEED Printable Cheatsheet
What is the difference between Speed and Spit?
Speed is basically a simplified version of the other two.

In Speed one game is over as soon as you play the last card in your hand.

In Spit, the card game, players then also race to choose the smallest middle pile and then both players re-deal and continue until one player has no middle or stock pile cards. Click here for an easy explanation.

How to Play two-player Speed


One player deals two cards face down in the middle and then two ‘draw’ piles of five cards on either side.

The remaining cards are dealt out evenly to each player creating a stock pile of cards each.

Each player can then pick-up 5 of their stock cards and can organise them for the start of the game.

Rules Of Engagement

  • Players can always have a maximum of 5 cards in their hand
  • Players can only move one card at a time
  • Ace’s are Low and High (can go on a 2 or a King)
  • Players can only lay a card that is one number higher or one lower
    • (e.g. If the middle card is a 6 then you can ONLY use a 5 or a 7!)

General Play

Simultaneously both players turn over the two single middle cards and play begins.

Each player races to lay down a card from their hand onto either of the two middle piles.

They can ONLY play a card that is one higher or lower, if their opponent beats them to place a card, they have to be faster!

Simultaneously players turnover the middle card and race to play.

Having played a card you can take another from your stock pile, to a maximum of 5 in your hand.

Note: You do NOT have to do this immediately!

Tactically you may be better to play another card than to use the time picking up a new card!

Player 2 beats Player 1 to play card


When neither player can make any further moves, either playing a card on to a middle pile or filling an empty stockpile.


As at the start, simultaneously, both players turn over the next card from their ‘draw’ pile in the centre, and place it face-up on their Middle Pile.

The Race then continues as before, trying to get rid of all your stock pile cards onto either Middle Pile.

 NB: If both players still cannot move, they repeat this process until all draw cards are gone, in which case, cards from the bottom of the middle piles are placed on top.

Again both players simultaneously turnover cards from their draw pile to restart the game.


The WINNER is the first player to have no cards left!

They will therefore have picked up and played all of their stock cards.

Player 2 plays their last card and WINS!

How to Play Speed with Multi Player

Increase the frantic fun by having more than just two players!

Add and shuffle in a second deck of cards.

The original set-up deal is the same, (1 middle card and 5 Draw cards each) except dealing for three or four or more players. The remaining cards are then dealt out to each player to create their stock cards.

Note: the number of stock cards dealt to each player may be different, depending on the number of players.

(NB: It is possible to for three players to play with a single deck but the games can be too short)

Setup for three players

General play is the same, only now there are three or four (depending on how many players) middle piles that ANY player can use to get rid of their stock piles.

Let the race begin!

Setup for four players

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