rat - a - tat - CAT / math card game -- fun!
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Quick summary in ten words or less
A fun way to practice adding several numbers in your head. Award winner

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Short description (~1 to 3 sentences)

Get rid of rats and go for the cats! Win by having your cards add up to the lowest number (a poker face helps). - description from Amazon.com

Price (US$)


Long description

It is very fun.


Each player is dealt four cards that are placed, face down, in a row in front of him/her. Everyone is allowed to look at their two outermost cards. Players do not look at the middle two cards, and they do not look at their opponents' cards. The remaining cards form a draw pile, and the top one is turned over to form a discard pile (if this card is a power card, it is placed in the middle of the draw pile and a new one is drawn).


The objective is to have the fewest points at the end of the game. The points are the total of all cards that the person has at the end of the round. Therefore, players try to get rid of high cards like 9's and gain low cards like 0's. Since cards are left face down, memory is a very important part of this game.

Game Play

On a player's turn, he/she takes a card. This can either be the top card of the discard pile (but not if it is a "power card"), or the top card of the draw pile. Anyone who takes a card from the discard pile uses it to replace one of his/her face down cards, and puts that card on the discard pile. The other choice is to take a card from the draw pile. If this is a number card, the person may either use it to replace one of the face down cards, or place the drawn card directly in the discard pile. If the draw pile is exhausted, the discard pile is reshuffled and placed face down.

Power Cards

Power cards may only be used if they are drawn from the draw pile. They may not be taken from the discard pile, and are useless if found in the hand. After use, they are placed in the discard pile. If a power card is taken from the draw pile, it has the following effect:


If a "Peek" card is drawn, the player may immediately look at ONE of his/her face down cards.


If a "Swap" is drawn, the player may switch one of his cards with one of another players' cards. However, the player may not look at either card until receiving a peek card. If the player does not want to swap, he/she does not have to.

Draw 2

A player drawing a "Draw 2" card then draws another card from the pile, and may use this card as if it were a normal turn. However, if it is a number card and is discarded, or if it is a power card and the player decides not to use it, the player then picks another card from the pile, and plays that as if it were a normal turn.

The End of the Round

At the end of a player's turn, he may choose to end the round. All other players get one more turn. After that, everyone counts up his/her points. Any power cards are placed at the bottom of the deck and replaced with the top card.

The End of the Game

At the beginning of the game, the players decide how to win. There are three possibilities:

1. Play for a specific length of time, and the person with the fewest points at the end is the winner.
2. Play a specific number of rounds, and the person with the fewest points at the end is the winner.
3. A player with a certain number of points is kicked out of the game, and the last one still in is the winner.

(I got this description from wikipedia)

Rating (1 to 100) 75 = very good; 50 = good; 1 = unknown

Library of Congress topic

To see articles on the same topic, click the links below the name of the author at the top of this page.
Authored by games.editor on Aug 08, 2008.

Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award
Dr. Toy's Best Vacation Products
Mensa Select
National Parenting Publications (NAPPA) Honors
Games Magazine Top 100 Game
Canadian Toy Testing Council *** (Highest Rating)
Canadian Toy Testing Council "Children's Choice" Award
Dr. Toy's Best Classic Toys

Authored by kidslikeinfo on Aug 08, 2008.