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  • Larry Ted McBride

Are Classic Card Games becoming relics of the past and what the Cutthroat Engine is doing about it…


Someone recently asked me, do people even play Spades anymore? With the multitude of other options there is to entertain us, that would seem to be a legitimate question. There is a vast number of popular apps out there. A quick look at the Apple App Store’s top 200 games includes only three card games and they are all solitaire. Not only that, but we are currently in a board game golden age.

Thousands of new card and board games are coming out every year. With all these new distractions what chance does an ageing classic card game have? Will Spades and other classic card games become relics of the past?

Like so much in our culture, that will depend on our youth. They will be the future card players. I grew up playing classics like Rummy, Poker, Crazy Eights, Go Fish, Old Maid, and 52 Card Pickup (yeah, my brother got me on that, one time). Those are fond memories and they helped my growing mind to learn and make critical decisions.

So, are people still playing Spades? Yes, they are. The top Spades app, Spades Plus, has millions of games played every month. But I fear that number could be declining, for Spades and all classic card games. Which brings me to one of the reasons we are so passionate about Spades Cutthroat Pirates.

The Cutthroat Spades app is developed with our software we call the Cutthroat Engine. With it, we will present users with unique experiences and tell stories revolving around any classic card game. It is our mission to reimagine and reinvigorate the thrill of classic card games in new and interesting ways, while keeping true to the original spirit of each game.

We have many plans for the Cutthroat Engine. For example; we have a Hearts Bloody Pirates app in the works which will be what we have coined a “paralleliquel”. It will be based on the very popular Hearts game and will tell a story from the point of view of a crewman of the pirate ship, the Impaler. You may recognize the Impaler as the name of the villain’s ship in the Spades Cutthroat Pirates story. We’ll also be visiting other classic games, such as Whist, Poker, and Rummy.

With all our games, you will be able to play them with a standard deck of cards. It is our hope that once players experience one of our apps, they will invite their friends to play in a real life match up, start some rivalries, and continue with the tradition.

Another of our plans, that we are super excited about, is to create apps for children that help them learn the basic concepts of card games. I recently purchased a collection of children’s card games. In it there was Old Maid, Crazy Eights, Go Fish, and Slap Jack. I played a couple with my six-year-old and every day, when things get quiet, she wants to play more.

I have come to realize that card games are not relics of the past, they are an ever-evolving cultural phenomenon that has crossed the globe and brought people and societies closer together. They provide entertainment to millions of players the world over. They are fun to hold, shuffle, do tricks with, and they are cheap. They can be used to teach children about numbers and shapes, and very importantly, how to win and how to lose. They inspire the imagination and stir ideas.

Card games will stand the test of time and we are making sure that Spades, and other classics, will be played for generations to come.


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