Tripeaks Solitaire is a single-player card game with an easy, but no less challenging, gameplay. Its name comes from the shape of the cards displayed in the tableau. These are positioned in such a way that they create three pyramids of overlapping cards, and since each pyramid has a peak, we have Tri-Peaks or triple peaks.
As with other Solitaire games, the goal here is also to clear all the cards from the tableau. However, the way to do it is significantly different from that of Klondike or Spider Solitaire. Instead of creating complete sequences in order and by suit, the players now have to create mixed sequences alternating between cards one number higher and/or lower than the previous one.
Tripeaks rules and tableau
Tripeaks Solitaire uses a 52-card deck. The goal is to collect all the cards displayed in the tableau by deconstructing the pyramids. The cards can only be collected if they rank one point higher or lower than the top card on the discard pile.
In Tripeaks Solitaire, the board is divided into three main areas: the pyramids (on the tableau), the stock pile, and the discard pile.
On the tableau, you will find three pyramids. Each one has 4 cards for a base and ends with one single card as the peak. This means that, in total, you have 28 cards laid out in 4 rows. The cards on the bottom row (the base of each pyramid) are facing up, while the remaining ones are facing down. It is only possible to turn a card around when there is no overlapping with others.
The remaining cards are grouped facing down in the stock pile. The discard pile is where the players must put the collected cards.
How to play Tripeaks Solitaire
To start the game, we remove one card from the stock pile and position it facing up on the discard pile (that starts empty). That card will serve as the first base to start deconstructing the pyramids.
You must pair it with a facing-forward card from the pyramids that is one point higher or lower than it. For instance, if your base card is a 5, you can pair it with either a 4 or a 6. The color and the suits are irrelevant in a game of Tripeaks Solitaire. Only the numbers matter.
The last card you add to the discard pile remains on top of it, facing forward, and becomes the next base for the following pairing. In reality, rather than just creating pairs, you are expected to build sequences by going higher or lower with each move.
If there is no card on the tableau to be put over the last discarded one, the sequence stops. When this happens, you can take one or several cards from the stock pile to replace the one on the discard pile. In this Tripeaks Solitaire online, you only have to click on the stock pile to turn a card.
You will lose the game when there are no more moves available (and the stock pile is empty) but some cards remain on the tableau.
Tips and Tricks to win at Tripeaks Solitaire
Despite its simple gameplay, winning at Tripeaks Solitaire is not as straightforward as it may seem. Although you do not need to be as strategic as in other Solitaire games such as Klondike or Spider, you still need to think carefully about your moves.
Pairing the cards absentmindedly rarely results in long sequences, for instance. This means you will have to use the stock pile often, increasing the chances of ending up with no more moves available even if several cards remain on the tableau.
If you want to win a game of Tripeaks Solitaire, here are some tricks and tips that will help you.
Go row by row
Instead of trying to deconstruct each pyramid at a time, tackle the tableau row by row. By doing this you will have fewer overlapping cards each time, which in turn will increase your chances of building sequences as you will have more cards facing forward.
Uncover face-down card when given the option
Whenever you find yourself having to choose between two or more cards when building a sequence, check if any of them would unlock a facing-down card. If so, that is the one you should choose.
While the others will leave you with the same tableau for the following move, the one that reveals a card adds a new path to the game. Even if there is no immediate advantage to it, you may need the now-uncovered card for your next sequence and perhaps it will help you avoid using the stock pile.
Try building long sequences by alternating going high and low
The longer the sequence, the more cards you reveal and discard without using the stock pile, which you want to keep as big as possible until the end.
When building a sequence keep in mind that you do not need to stick to one direction. You can go high or low at any time. Try to plan your moves ahead of time to maximize them. Additionally, try to play with different combinations of numbers to check if you can extend your sequence.
Remember which cards were used
This is one of the most useful and important Tripeaks Solitaire tips if you want to win. Remember that this game only uses one 52-card deck. Therefore, if you keep track of the cards discarded you can get a better idea of which ones may still be facing down or in the stock pile and plan your sequences accordingly.
For example, if all the 5 were already discarded and you have a 6 on the tableau, it means you can only remove it by pairing it with a 7. If you keep using your sevens to go high and match them with eights, you might eventually run out of cards to remove the 6 from the pyramid. And once you cannot remove it, you will lose the game.