FreeCell is one of the most popular solitaire card games. A predecessor to FreeCell is described in the sweden book Världens bästa patienser och patiensspel (World's best solitaire card games), published in 1945. The solitaire more similar to FreeCell is Eight Off.
- "Eight Off boasts the rare distinction of having formed a subject of discussion and problemism in Martin Gardner's column in Scientific American, where it appeared (June 1968) in a slightly harsher version named after a mathematician, C.L. Baker, who drew it to hid (Gardner's) attention." (David Parlett, The Penguin Book of Patience, Allen Lane, London, 1979, ISBN 071391193X, p. 312-313)
Eight Off was gradually modified in some aspect, until Paul Alfille had the idea to allow packing of cards on the tableau in alternate colors, obtaining nearly every deal solvable. Alfille wrote the first version of FreeCell in 1978. The popularity of the game grew thanks to Jim Horne that wrote one first alphanumeric version for the DOS and a second one for Windows.
Solitaire Card Games
Solitaire games, also known as Patience in Britain, are card games for a single player. Does not exist a precise history of solitaires, but it is probable that solitaires are been born with the card games.
The word solitaire is of french origin, and it means patience. It must but wait for the age of Napoleon (is said Napoleon to have played a lot of solitaire) to see a true development of the solitaire games.
The first book on the argument comes printed in 1870. It was Illustrated Games of Patience by lady Adelaide Cadogan, containing 25 games, reprinted many times. In the U.S. mrs E.D. Cheney published the successive year the book Patience.
The publishing house Dick & Fitzgerald in New York published in 1883 a series of books dedicated to solitaire games ("Dick's Games of Patience") and a second series was published in 1898.
In the 1890's a great populariser of the game was Miss Whitemore Jones, whose 5 volumes on solitaires went reprint for thirty years.
- Solitaires "have a marvellous capacity both to soothe
and challenge the mind of the player" (Trevor Day and The Diagram
Group, Collins Gem Patience Card Games, HarperCollins Publishers,
1996, ISBN 0004720164, p. 3)
- "Patience is the mental equivalent of jogging: its purpose
is to tone the brain up and get rid of unsociable mental flabbiness."
(David Parlett, The Penguin Book of Patience, Penguin Books,
1980, ISBN 0140463461, p. 11)
- "It has many virtues, not the last being that it teaches one the self discipline of being honest with oneself." (George F. Hervey, The illustrated Book of Card Games for One, ISBN 0890091137, p. 7)
Rules for FreeCell Solitaire
From: SolSuite Solitaire
FreeCell type; 1 deck; no redeal
- Game time: Medium
- Difficulty level: Medium
- Skill level: Mostly Skill
- Chance of winning: High (about 1 in 3)
Object of the game
- To move all the cards to the foundations.
Foundations (Four piles; top right: complete these piles to win the game)
- Build up in suit from Ace to King (for example, a 2 can be played on an Ace ).
Cells (or Reserves; four cells, top left)
- These are the "cells". These cells are storage locations for cards being played to the foundations and the tableau.
- Cards in these cells can be moved to the foundations and the tableau.
- Cells can only hold one card at a time.
Tableau (Eight piles, below foundations and cells)
- Build down in alternating colors (for example, a 10 can be played on a Jack ).
- The top card of each pile is available for play on another tableau pile, the foundations or the cells.
- Move groups of cards if they are in sequence and if there are enough free cells that the cards could be moved individually.
- Spaces may be filled with any card.
Similar Games for FreeCell Solitaire
The following games are similar to FreCell Solitaire. They are all included in SolSuite Solitaire. Clicking a link will open the solitaire rules at SolSuite.com website.
(*) Original SolSuite Solitaire invented by the authors of SolSuite and therefore exclusive SolSuite solitaire. It is neither available in other solitaire collections nor is it included in any book of solitaire games.
Other Interesting Solitaire Sites