Legend says that the game Comet was invented in France after the visit of Halley's comet in 1758, but the game is also known as Commit, so which name came first is a bit of a mystery.
Comet, a sequencing game with a twist, requires players to pay
attention to who has which cards. Anyone holding the "comet" for too long is likely to get burned.
Comet is not played using a full deck of cards. The eight of diamonds is removed from the deck first. After the eight of diamonds has been removed then additional sevens and eights can be removed based on the number of players. It makes no difference what suit the removed cards belong to. The number of cards needs to be evenly divided by the number of players. So if there are two or five players one additional seven or eight card is removed. With seven players two additional seven or eight cards are removed and with four, six or eight players three extra sevens or eights are removed.
The cards are then shuffled and the dealer deals all the cards out one at a time, face down to the players.
Each player arranges their hand by suit and rank, alternating the suits by color.
In this game Kings are high and Aces are low.
The player to the immediate left of the dealer starts the game by placing their lowest card face up in the center of the table. They then place any cards they have in sequence and of the same suit on top of the face up card announcing each card as they are played.
For example a player might start with the 2 of hearts and continue playing with the three of hearts followed by the four of hearts and so on until they can no longer play a card in the sequence. Once they are no longer able to play a card their turn is over and play continues with the next player to their left. The player then must build upon the started sequence. If they are unable to play any cards in the sequence they announce that they are unable to continue the sequence and the game continues with the next player.
If everyone has had a turn and no one can add to the sequence, the game has reached a stop. This happens when a player has reached a seven or eight that has been removed from the deck. When this happens the player who played the last card in the sequence starts a new sequence by playing their lowest card and any that follow it in value and suit.
When a sequence makes it all the way up to the King, the player that played the King is awarded a point.
The comet, nine of diamonds, for which the game is named can be played at anytime in place of any other card when the player holding the comet is unable to complete the sequence, including when the game reaches a stop.
After the comet has been played the next card in the sequence can be played or in the case of the stop the card following the removed card can be played.
Playing the comet earns the player two points.
It is wise to hold onto the comet until it can be best used, but a player must be careful not to hold it for too long or they may end up getting burned.
The first player to play all of their cards wins the round. They receive one point for winning the round as well as a point for each card in all the other players hands plus two extra points for every unplayed king.
If the comet was not played, everyone except the comet holder gets one point.
Play continues until one or more players reaches a predetermined points total, typically 100 points.
Did you know that the earliest board games discovered are more than 3,500 years old?