Welcome to the world of Wyoming Cowboy enthusiasts. Wyoming Cowboy is a card game for 3 or 4 players* in which you score points by shacking up, shooting cowboys, forming harems, creating orphanages, and much, much more. The game is probably best suited for folks of high school age and above. You can watch our example game to get an idea of how it works.
There has never been another card game which forces so many strategic decisions or has so many fascinating variables. Typically, a game takes around six hands and lasts about 45 minutes. However, some games have lasted over three hours and 12 hands while others have been won in as little as 15 minutes with just a few hands. It all depends on the players. The number of cards in your hand can vary from 0 to as many as you can hold but is typically around seven. Every hand is different and no two games are alike. If you're bored with normal card games, this is the game for you.
Is it complicated? Yes; at first. Is it addictive? Shockingly so. Once you've learned to play (which may take a game or two) you'll never want to play another game.
Wyoming Cowboy has never been packaged or sold. It was invented by two guys who spent a week in the Wyoming desert, camping and, as it happened, bored to tears. So, you can blame them for the thing to which you will shortly become addicted. (For more on the two guys, click here.) They both worked at a camp in Colorado where they taught the game to college-age folk from all over the country who came and worked. Thus Wyoming Cowboy has spread abroad through colleges via word of mouth. As far as I know, the rules have never even been written down until now; only maintained as an oral tradition.
This site is maintained by a small group of us who played religiously back in college and still get together when we can. We offer it as a central location for all the small pockets of Wyoming Cowboy enthusiasts to make contact, and, in the true spirit of the Phaedrus, we are writing down the rules so that the game can spread beyond those to whom we speak. Some may call us radicals but we bend our shoulders into the winds of critcism and, shrugging the burden of responsibility higher onto our backs, stalwartly we carry on.
If you'd like to give us a shout and tell us you're out there, or if you're looking for a game in your area, or if you'd like to take umbrage with our written rules, send us an email. If you're new to the game, give it a few tries; once you've grown to love it, spread the joy to others. For what is life without joy and what are games but a means to revelry.
If you'd like information on other original or unusual card games (as well as common games), check out Yahoo, Poker Games Guide, DMOZ, or Card Games (the web's most comprehensive card game site), where you will find this site listed among many others.
*up to 8 or 9 can play with a double deck and modified rules; see the FAQ.