INTRODUCTION
DocFish is a game for two
players and requires two decks of cards. Players must know how to factor
numbers up to 14 (for example, 14 into 2 and 7).
During
play, cards have their numeric face values except the following:
Aces (identified as A) have the
value 14;
Kings,
(K), 13;
Jacks,
(J), 11.
Players
must also be able to identify the prime numbered cards:
2, 3, 5, 7, 9, J,
and K.
THE FIRST DECK IS
THE BANK
The
first deck is arranged into 13 stacks of likenumbered cards face up:
2, 3, 4, ..., Q, K,
A.
The
bank will be used during the game to “make change” which means to exchange
cards with the bank for their factors, for example
a Q for a 3 and a 4,
for
a 2 and 6,
or
for a 2, 2 and 3.
The 2, 3, 4 and 6
are considered “embedded” in the Q.
The
bank will also be used to exchange factors for their product, for example,
2 ,2 ,3 for their product Q.
Each
player cuts the Playing Deck. The one who cuts to a prime goes first. If both
cut to a prime, the lowest prime wins. Repeat until the starting player is
chosen.
In
these rules of play, the following language convention is used.
“She” designates the active player
(the person whose turn it is).
“He” designates the other player.
THE SECOND DECK IS
THE PLAYING DECK
He mixes the cards
and deals. Cards are dealt face down, alternately to each player, until each player
has a hand of five cards which is
concealed.
The
balance of the playing deck is placed face down where both players can reach
it.
ANNOUNCEMENTS
An
announcement is made before each action is performed.
When
she makes an announcement, he listens and watches to make sure she
performs the transaction correctly; and vice versa.
Other
card values may be substituted, in the following list of announcements, for
those used. The announcements are:
“Do you have any sevens?”
“DocFish;”
“Making Change for fourteen:
fourteen into the bank, two times seven out;”
“Seven down, seven into bank;”
“Two times seven into bank; fourteen out;”
“Two into bank;”
“Two out;”
“Fished My Wish;”
“Fished a Pair;”
“Consolidation;”
“No Consolidation;”
“Shortage in the Bank;”
“Frozen;”
“Change present;”
“Last card.”
The
meaning of these will become clear as you read the rules. Quotation marks
identify announcements.
Announcements
help the players prevent mistakes.
She makes the announcement “Making Change for fourteen:
fourteen into the bank, two times seven out”.
He watches and makes sure an A is put
into the bank, and a 2 and a 7 are withdrawn.
(At
the end of these rules, a method will be described to help determine whether
the game was played without errors.)
LAYING DOWN PAIRS
The
object of the game is to lay down pairs of prime numbered cards. One card is
laid face up before the player, becoming part of her pot. The other is placed face up in the
bank.
Example during Preparation: If she has two 3's in
her hand:
"Three down, three into
bank."
She
places one 3 into her pot and the other 3, face up into the bank.
Only pairs of primes are laid down. For example, if she has
two A’s,
each A is exchanged with
the bank for a 2 and a 7.
A pair of 2s is laid
down.
And a pair of 7s is laid
down.
The laying down of pairs may not be deferred. No pair of primes
may be held in the hand from one turn to the next, whether primes are embedded
or not.
THE BANK MAKES
CHANGE
Embedded
primes are considered present in the hand. For example, twos are embedded in
evennumbered cards 4, 6, 8, 10, Q, A;
and threes are embedded in 6, 9, and Q.
If
she has a 9 in her hand, the 9 must be exchanged with the
bank for two 3s, and a pair of 3s laid down.
CONSOLIDATION
Consolidation
is a set of exchanges between pot and bank. In each exchange, groups of two or
three cards in the pot are exchanged for one card in the bank which has the
value of their product.
For example, before Consolidation, the pot
may contain a 2 and a 3; after Consolidation it contains a 6.
Consolidation
must result in a pot for which further Consolidation is impossible. It is performed
in two steps.
First,
she arranges cards in her pot into “Consolidation Groups”.
This must follow the “Sequence Rule”: all
the lowest valued cards must be used in forming Groups.
If the Sequence Rule is followed correctly,
no card in the pot is excluded from the Consolidation Groups if its value is
lower than the highest valued card in any group.
Second,
after Groups have been segregated, He gives her one card from the bank
for each group. The bank card represents the product of the group.
Example
One:
Pot before Consolidation: 2,3,6,7.
“Consolidation.”
One group is
segregated: 2,3
She: “Two times three” putting them into the
bank.
He: “Six out”, giving
her a 6 from the bank in exchange.
Pot after Consolidation: 6,6,7.
In Example One, a 2 and 6 or
a 2 and 7 could not be included in a Group, because this would
have violated the Sequence Rule. It would have excluded the lowervalued 3.
Example
Two:
Pot before Consolidation: 2,2,6,7,8.
“Consolidation.”
Two groups are segregated: 2,6
2,7
She: “Two times six into bank.”
He: “Twelve out.”
She: “Two times seven into bank.”
He: “Fourteen
out.”
Pot after exchanges: 8,Q,A.
During
Preparation (see below), a turn may include more than one Consolidation. After
Preparation, Consolidation ends the turn. If she has no Group to
Consolidate, she announces “No Consolidation”.
PREPARATION
Preparation
is one special turn for each player at the start of the game. She goes
first. She lays down all pairs from her hand, making change when necessary; and
Consolidates.
Sometimes during Preparation
a card required to make change is not present in the bank. This pair should be
avoided there are no alternate pairs of primes in her hand which can be laid
down, making change when necessary.
She announces “Shortage in the bank,” and displays to her
opponent the card for which change cannot be made.
She Consolidates, hoping to provide change for the bank.
If
change has been provided for the bank through Consolidation, she continues to be
the active player and to lay down additional prime pairs ending in another Consolidation;
or announces “No Consolidation”.
He then follows the
same procedure.
See EXAMPLE OF PREPARATION
WITH MULTIPLE CONSOLIDATIONS at the end of the game instructions.
“FROZEN” DURING PREPARATION
Sometimes
she discovers that a card required to make change is not present in the
bank after she performs Consolidation. She announces “Shortage in the bank” and
displays one of the cards needing change.
She
then announces “Frozen” and places cards on the table which could not be laid
down as pairs, because of the shortage in the bank.
One or more pairs of cards with embedded
pairs are laid down, on her side of the table.
While they are frozen, they are not part of
her pot and not part of her hand.
FROZEN CARDS ON THE TABLE
After any subsequent Consolidation, if change for the frozen cards
is present in the bank, either person makes the announcement “Change Present”.
The game is temporarily interrupted for the following action.
This example uses a frozen 7 and A. The person on
whose side the cards are frozen makes the change.
“Fourteen into bank, two times seven out.”
If the frozen A came originally from her hand, the 2
goes into her hand. 
If the frozen A came originally from his hand, the 2
goes into his hand. 
The 7 goes into the hand of the person making the change.
This person announces “Seven down, seven into bank” and performs the action.
Play continues.
PLAY AFTER
PREPARATION
She chooses a prime
number present in her hand and requests it. The prime may be embedded in
another card.
For
example:
She: “Do you have any twos?”
If he has a 2, he places it
into the bank, announcing “Two into bank”.
She announces “Two
down”, putting a 2 into her pot.
If
he does not have a 2 but has an A, he announces:
“Changing fourteen: fourteen into bank,
seven times two out.”
He announces “Two into bank” while putting
the 7 into his hand.
She announces “Two down”, while putting a 2
into her pot.
She remains the active
player and continues with another question.
If she has run out of cards in her hand, she picks a card
from the playing deck and continues with the picked card as her hand.
If the picked card has an
embedded pair of primes (4 for example), she announces “Fished a Pair”.
She makes change and lays down the pair. She picks another card.
When
he does not have the card requested, he replies “DocFish”.
PLAY AFTER HE
ANNOUNCES “DocFish”
She picks a card from
the playing deck. If she picks the prime previously requested (or if the prime
is embedded in the picked card), she announces “Fished My Wish”.
A pair is laid down (making change if
necessary).
She continues as the active player and picks another card.
However,
if she does not fish her wish, she looks for a pair of primes in her hand.
If there is a pair in her hand, she announces
“Fished a Pair” and lays it down.
She
announces “Consolidation” and performs it; or announces “No Consolidation”.
This ends her turn.
He becomes the active player.
SHORTAGE IN THE
BANK DURING AFTER PREPARATION
A shortage in the bank will result in a “premature Consolidation”.
Consolidation ends her turn. In this situation, the turn ends without
the statement “DocFish”.
This will be explained through an example, using the cards 7
and A.
She asks “Do you have any sevens?”
One possibility is that he gives her an A.
He
gives her an A. 

She discovers there is no 2 in the bank to make change. 

“Consolidation.” 

Consolidation provides a 2 to the bank. 
Or, Consolidation
does not provide a 2 to the bank. 
“Changing fourteen: fourteen into bank, two times 7 out.” 
She shows him the A. “Frozen fourteen and seven.” 
She changes the A and gives him a 2. 
She lays down the A and 7. They are on her side of
the table but are not part of her pot or hand, while frozen. 
“Seven down, Seven into Bank.” Her turn is now over because a Consolidation took place. (The
pair of 7s was not part of her Consolidation.) 
Her turn is now over. 
Another possibility is that she has the A.
He
gives her a 7. 

She has an A in her hand and discovers there is no 2
in the bank to make change. 

“Consolidation.” 

Consolidation provides a 2 to the bank. 
Or, Consolidation
does not provide a 2 to the bank. 
“Changing fourteen: fourteen into bank, two times seven out.” “Seven down.” 
She shows him the A, “Frozen fourteen and seven” 
A into bank, 2 into her
hand. 7 into her pot. 
She lays down an A and a 7 on her side of the
table. They are not part of her pot or hand, while frozen. 
Her turn is now over because a Consolidation took place. (The
pair of 7s was not part of the Consolidation.) 
Her turn is now over because a Consolidation took place. 
LAST CARD IN
PLAYING DECK
At
some point in the game she draws the last card in the playing deck and
announces “Last Card”.
He now has the
opportunity to guess the value of that card.
If his guess is
correct. 
If his guess is
incorrect. 
The
last card is given to him. 
Her
turn continues. 
Her turn ends with “Consolidation.” She performs Consolidation. 
If
the game was played without mistakes, she will lay down pairs and win
the remaining cards ending with her “Consolidation”. 
He becomes the active player. If
the game was played without mistakes, he will lay down pairs and win
the remaining cards ending with his “Consolidation”. 

COUNTING SCORE
Each
player totals the value of cards in his or her pot. The player with the higher sum
is the winner.
FIND OUT WHETHER
THE GAME PLAYED CORRECTLY
If
no errors were made, at end of play neither hand has an unpaired prime.
Another
indication of correct play is that the sum of primes in both pots equals equal
44. To determine this, each person counts the total number of primes in her or
his pot.
Example of counting a pot:
Pot: 3, 6,
8 J, J,
Q, Q, A.
Number of primes: 1
+ 2 + 3 + 1 + 1 + 3 + 3 + 2.
Total primes in
this pot: 16 .
The
total of primes in the other pot should be 28. 16 + 28 = 44.
If
the game was invalid (and you are a purist), it should be replayed.
EXAMPLE OF
PREPARATION WITH MULTIPLE CONSOLIDATIONS
This
example is unusual in the length of the procedure because of the four 8s
in the first hand.
She does Preparation first. Her hand is:
7, 8, 8, 8, 8.
In the table below, her
hand, part of the bank, and her pot are shown after each Action.
Only twos, fours, and eights are shown in the bank (because the other cards are
not relevant to the Actions).
Action 
Her hand 
2s, 4s,
8s in Bank 
Her pot 

7 8 8 8 8 
2 2 2 2 4 4 4 4 

“Changing eight: eight into bank, two times two times two out.” 
2 2 2 7 8 8 8 
2 4 4 4 4 8 

“Two down, Two into bank.” 
2 7 8 8 8 
2 2 4 4 4 4 8 
2 
“Changing
eight: eight into bank, two times four out.” 
2 2 4 7 8 8 
2 4 4 4 8 8 
2 
“Two down, two into bank.” 
4 7 8 8 
2 2 4 4 4 8 8 
2 2 
“Changing
four: four into bank, two times two out.”

2 2 7 8 8 
4 4 4 4 8 8 
2 2 
“Two
down, two into bank.” 
7 8 8 
2 4 4 4 4 8 8 
2 2 2 
“Changing
eight: eight into bank, two times four out.” 
2 4 7 8 
4 4 4 8 8 8 
2 2 2 
She shows him an 8 from her hand and announces “Shortage in the bank.” 



“Consolidation.” She segregates the group 2 2 2 in her pot and exchanges it for an 8 in the bank. 
2 4 7 8 
2 2 2 4 4 4 8 8 
8 
Preparation
continues because change has been provided in the bank. “Changing
eight: eight into bank: two times two times two out.” She exchanges an 8 for three 2s. 
2 2 2 2 4 7 
4 4 4 8 8 8 
8 
“Two down, two into bank.” 
2 2 4 7 
2 4 4 4 8 8 8 
2 8 
“Two down, two into bank.” She puts
a 2 into the bank and a 2 into her pot. 
4 7 
2 2 4 4 4 8 8 8 
2 2 8 
“Changing four: four into bank, two times two out.” 
2 2 7 
4 4 4 4 8 8 8 
2 2 8 
“Two
down, two into bank." 
7 
2 4 4 4 4 8 8 8 
2 2 2 8 
“Consolidation.” She segregates the group two, two, two in her pot and exchanges it for an 8. 
7 
2 2 2 2 4 4 4 4 8 8 
8 8 
Her Preparation turn has ended. His now begins. 


