Go stop korean card game rules – learn how to play with game rules

By: Dennis B. B. Taylor

Let’s Play Go Stop!

In this card game, the goal is to capture cards and score points by making combinations. Are you ready to dive into the world of Go Stop?

First, let me give you some details about the game:

We need 2-3 players to get the fun started. For the game, we will be using a special deck of Korean flower cards, which can contain either 48 or 50 cards. In addition to the cards, we will also need some poker chips.

Now, let’s talk about Go Stop. This game falls into the category of fishing games, where you try to capture cards from the table. The cards we use in Go Stop are unique and special. Originally created in Japan, these cards showcase different flowers that represent each month. This type of deck was actually created to replace traditional decks that were banned at the time.

But here’s the twist: flower card games are more loved and cherished in Southern Korea these days. They have become a fascinating part of the culture.

When it comes to Go Stop, the objective is to grab cards from the central layout and earn points by making combinations with those cards. To capture cards, I need to use a card from the same month or one that has the same flower on it. Once I have enough points, I can make a decision: I can choose to stop the game and collect my winnings, or I can take a risk and continue playing, hoping to win even more. It’s this moment in the game that gives it its unique name, Go Stop.


Go Stop is a game that can be played with either 2 or 3 active players. Others can watch and wait for their turn to play in the next round.

A fun game called “hwatu” is played using a pack of Korean flower cards. You can easily find these cards online or at a local Korean market. There are four groups of twelve cards, each representing a specific flower and month.

Some of the cards also have pictures of ribbons, animals, or other objects, which make them more valuable.

The cards are divided into four groups: 24 junk cards (pi), 10 ribbon cards (tti), 9 animal cards (yul), and 5 bright cards (kwang). You can tell which group a card belongs to by looking at its design. Ribbon cards have a ribbon with text and flowers, bright cards have a red disc with Chinese characters, and so on.

Here is an image that shows what a deck of Korean flower cards looks like.

When you play card games like Go Stop, you’ll notice that each deck is unique. They have different jokers and qualities that add excitement to the game. Some decks even come with up to 5 jokers, which can make things really interesting!

Let’s Start Dealing and Setting Up

First, we need to decide who will be the dealer for the first game. This can be done by drawing lots or picking someone randomly. After the first game, the winner from the previous hand will become the dealer for the next round.

The dealer takes the deck of cards and shuffles them. Then, the opponent of the dealer (or the player to their left if there are more than 2 players) cuts the deck. This ensures that the game remains fair and balanced.

For a Two Player Game: The dealer hands out 10 cards to each player. Additionally, 8 cards are placed face-up in the center of the table. Here’s the sequence: the opponent receives 5 cards, then the dealer gets 5 cards, followed by 4 cards placed in the center. Finally, the opponent gets another 5 cards, the dealer gets 5 cards, and the remaining 4 cards are added to the center.

In a three-player game, we each get 7 cards from the dealer. Then, the dealer puts 6 cards face-up on the table. Here’s how it works: first, the dealer gives 4 cards to each player, then 3 cards to the center, then 3 cards to each player, and finally 3 cards to the center. The dealer starts by giving the first set of 3 cards to the player on their right, and they end up with themselves.

The remaining cards from the deck are placed in the middle of the table. This pile is called the stockpile.

After we receive our cards, we look at them and hold them in a way that keeps them a secret from the other players. The cards on the table make up the center layout. We can add cards to this layout and capture cards from it. When we capture cards, we keep them face-up in front of us so our opponents can see them. This area is called the capture area. Take a look at the example diagram below to see how the game layout is set up:

The Game

Before we begin playing, let’s make sure we check our hands for sets of three or four cards from the same month.

  • If there are already four cards of the same month on the table, we’ll start over. The dealer will reshuffle the cards and deal them again.
  • If you have a set of four cards from the same month in your hand, you need to reveal them right away and you win the game! The other players have to give you 5 chips each. But if all three players have a set of four cards, nobody wins any chips because they cancel each other out.
  • If there are sets of three cards from the same month on the table, we’ll stack them together in the center. And when the fourth card of that month appears, it captures the whole stack as one unit.

When playing the card game, if I have 3 cards from the same month, I can announce them before anyone else. I do this by showing the cards to the other players. This is called “heundeum”, which means “shaking” in English. It’s not ideal to have 3 cards from the same month, especially if the other players know about it. However, if I show them before playing, I can earn bonus points if I win the game.

The dealer starts the game and takes the first turn. During each turn, the dealer does two things: they play a card from their hand onto the center layout, and they flip over the top card from the stockpile and add it to the center layout.

This can lead to capturing cards. After a turn is finished, the play moves to the next player in either the right or counter-clockwise direction.

Now let’s talk about capturing cards and other important things.

The main goal of Go Stop is to collect cards from the arrangement that either match a card in your hand or belong to the same month (flower).

  • If you play a card that doesn’t match any cards, simply add that card to the arrangement as a single, separate card. Next, turn over the top card of the stock, following the instructions mentioned earlier.
  • If the card from the stock matches a card in the arrangement, you can capture both cards.
  • If the card from the stock matches two cards in the arrangement, choose one to capture along with the stock card.
  • If the card from the stock matches a stack of three cards in the arrangement, capture the entire stack and place all four cards in your collection area.
  • If the card from the stock doesn’t match any cards in the arrangement, place it in the arrangement as a separate card.

When I play the card game, there are a few important things to keep in mind. Let’s go through them together!

First, if the card in my hand doesn’t match any cards on the table, I place it on the table by itself. Then, I get to capture the cards that do match and place them face-up in my capture area. It’s like putting them aside for safekeeping.

Next, if the card in my hand matches a card on the table, but it’s not the same one I played, I place the card from my hand on top of the matching cards. Then, I can capture both pairs and put them in my capture area. It’s a great feeling when that happens!

But sometimes, I don’t get so lucky. If the card from the stock matches the pair I already made with my hand, and the fourth card I need isn’t on the table, something called a “ppuk” happens. Unfortunately, I can’t capture anything in this situation. But I still have to add the stock card to the three cards I played, and leave them in the middle of the table. It’s a bit of a bummer, but maybe someone else will be able to capture them later.

So those are the main things to remember when playing this card game. It’s all about matching and capturing, and sometimes things don’t go as planned. But that’s what makes it interesting and fun! Keep these rules in mind the next time you play, and you’ll be a pro in no time. Have fun!

I’m going to explain how you play the game. Play will keep going until someone stops it or until there are no more cards left.

There are some special moments that can happen during the game. If any of these things happen, the current player can take 1 junk card from their opponent(s).

Here are the special moments:

1. When there are 2 cards left in the centre layout, and they are from different months, the player can take them both.

2. When there are 2 cards from the same month in the centre layout, the player can take those 2 and the other 2 cards from that month.

3. When the player plays a card from their hand that doesn’t match anything in the centre layout, but then they draw the matching card from the stockpile, they can take the card they just played.

4. When the player captures a triple stack with the fourth card from their hand or from the stockpile, they can take all the cards in that stack.

If you manage to snatch a triple stack that you built in your previous turn, that’s what we call a ja-ppuk. And let me tell you, it’s a big deal. Not only do you get to capture that whole stack, but you also get two extra junk cards from your opponent(s). Sweet deal, right?


Now, listen up because this move is mind-blowing. If you happen to have a triple in your hand when it’s your turn, and you haven’t declared them yet, but there’s already a fourth card from that same month on the table, get ready for some fireworks. You play all those cards in one shot and capture the entire month. Boom! That move is called bombing the field. But hold on, there’s more. After playing the bomb, you still have to flip over a card from the stockpile to end your turn. Got it?

But here’s the catch. Playing the bomb leaves you with 2 fewer cards than usual. It’s a sacrifice, but you can make up for it. Instead of playing cards from your hand for the next 2 turns, you can just use the stock. It’s like hitting the pause button and using that time to catch your breath. Smart move, right?


Jokers, those extra cards that add a touch of luck to the game, can be quite entertaining. If you decide to play a joker, whether it’s from your hand or the stock pile, just place it face-up in the capture area. Then, it’s time to flip a card from the stock pile and use it as a substitute for the joker. That means you gotta flip the stock pile card twice if you want to play a joker. Fun, right?

At the start of the game, any jokers dealt to the table will be put in the dealer’s captured area. In exchange, the dealer will replace them with the same number of cards from the stock pile. Typically, there are 2 jokers in play. One of them equals 2 junk cards, while the other equals 3 junk cards. Got it?

Now, let’s talk about the endgame and payments. Before jumping into the game, all the players must agree on a target score that determines when the game stops. Usually, if there are 3 players, the goal is around 3 points. But if you’re playing with just 2 players, the target gets higher, usually ranging from 5 to 7 points. Choose wisely!

Alright, now that you know the ins and outs of playing with jokers and how to determine the endgame, it’s time to have some fun. Let’s get the cards on the table and start playing!

When you play the game and capture certain combinations of cards, you earn points. These combinations have different point values. If you reach the target score, you can choose to stop playing or keep going and score more points. But if you choose to keep playing, you won’t be able to stop again until your score surpasses your previous score. Then you’ll have to make the decision to stop or keep going once more.

Here are the point values for different card combinations:

Bright Cards

A set of 5 cards: 15 points

A set of 4 cards: 4 points

A set of 3 cards (excluding rain): 3 points

A set of 3 cards (including rain): 2 points

Animal Cards

A set of 5 cards: 1 point

Each additional card beyond 5: 1 point

The godori combination (3 bird cards): 5 points

Ribbon Cards

If you want to score points in this game, here’s how:

  • A set of 5 cards is worth 1 point.
  • Each additional card after 5 is also worth 1 point.
  • A set of 3 red ribbons with poems is worth 3 points.
  • A set of 3 blue ribbons is also worth 3 points.
  • A set of 3 red ribbons without poems (excluding rain) is worth 3 points.
  • Junk Cards

Now, let’s talk about junk cards:

  • A set of 10 junk cards is worth 1 point.
  • Each additional junk card after 10 is also worth 1 point.

If you decide to end the game, your opponent(s) will have to pay you chips equal to your score. However, there are cases where players can earn more chips.

If no one reaches the target or if the player who said “go” did not increase their score, the game ends without a winner. This is called a nagari. In this case, reshuffle the cards and deal again, but no one gets paid out.

Now, let’s talk about the cases where players can earn more chips. These are the exceptions:

    I want to tell you about some rules in a card game called “heundeum.” There are different situations where one player wins, and in each situation, the other players have to pay double. Let me explain:

    1. If the winner shows three cards of the same month (heundeum), everyone else has to pay double. If the winner has two sets, then the other players have to pay quadruple.

    2. If the winner has a scoring set of bright cards and no one else has captured any bright cards, the other players must pay double.

    3. If the winner has seven or more animal cards, all the other players have to pay double.

    4. If the winner has ten or more junk cards and the opponents have five or less, they have to pay double.

    5. If there is no winner on the last deal, the pay out is doubled.

    6. If the winner said “Go” previously and still won, they get 1 extra chip each time they said “Go.” If they said “Go” more than three times, the payout is doubled.

    Those are the rules of heundeum. It’s a fun card game where you can win big if you play your cards right. Give it a try and see if you can come out on top!

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