Beleaguered Castle Instructions
The objective of Beleaguered Castle solitaire is to erode the "wall" stacks
on the sides of the layout by placing their contents in the suit stacks in
the middle. (Beleaguered Castle can be considered "FreeCell without free
cells", but card stacks do not need to have alternating colors and the aces
are already removed to compensate (partially) for the lack.)
There are two types of card stacks:
- Building Stacks
There are four building, or wall, stacks on the left and right sides of the
layout. A building stack can accept a card of any suit provided that the
card's rank is one less than the rank of the card currently at the top
of the stack. An empty building stack can accept any card from the top
of another stack.
- Suit Stacks
The suit stacks are located in the middle column of the layout and initially
contain an ace. Suit stacks can accept a card from the tops of the building
if the suit is the same, and the rank is one more than the rank of the
card at the top of the stack.
To move a card, click on the card (which will highlight it) and then
click on the destination. The following are valid moves:
A card at the top of a stack can be moved to its corresponding suit stack if
the rank of the card at the top of that stack is one less than the card's
rank (Kings have a rank of 13, queens 12, jacks 11 and an ace has a rank of
The card at the top of a building stack can be moved to an empty building
A card can be moved from a building stack to another building stack if the
card at the top of the destination stack has a rank one more than the card.
Ordered cards at the top of a building stack can be moved to another
building stack if there is a card in the ordered sequence which has a a rank
one less than the card at the top of the destination stack. There must be an
empty space for every moved card below the top card.
To move an ordered sequence of cards at the top of a stack to an empty
building stack, first select all the ordered cards by clicking twice on the
stack, then click the empty space. If there are fewer empty spaces than
selected cards, the number of cards moved will equal the original number of
Right-clicking on a stack will move the its top card to an empty space, if
present. If more than one card in the right-clicked stack has been selected,
the selected cards will be moved to empty stacks until there are no more
selected cards or there are no more empty stacks.
A card will be automatically moved to the suit stacks from the tops of the
building stacks if the cards which might be placed on top of it are already
in the suit stacks. Clicking undo will retract an automatic move.
Holding the shift key down while moving multiple cards will
make the move even if there are not enough empty spaces.
- Increase the rank of the cards at the top of the suit stacks (in the
options window) if you are unfamiliar with the game.
- Try to obtain an empty space early in the game, then move a king to
the empty space and build on that.
- Move an ordered sequence of cards in stages if there are not enough
empty spaces to move the sequence in one step. If there is more than one
empty space, transfer as many cards as possible to each space and then
reassemble the sequence on the desired destination stack. Even if there are
not enough empty spaces, it might be possible to move the sequence if there
is a card on top of another stack
which can accept a subsequence of the moved cards.
Clicking on these buttons will perform the following actions:
- New Game
- Begin a new game after shuffling the deck
- Return to the original state of the current game
- Return to the condition before the previous move was made
- Bring up a window with the following options:
- Starting rank
- This option sets the rank of the cards at the tops of the suit stacks
at the start of the game. A new game must be started for this option to
take effect. Increasing this value will result in an easier game. Having
no cards initially in the suit stacks will produce a more difficult variation
which is also known as Streets and Alleys
- Automatic card moving
- When this box is set (which is the default), a card atop a stack will
be moved to its suit stack automatically if there are no cards available
which might be placed on top of it.