14 Differences Explained – Poker Fortress

Whether you’re a fan of Solitaire or Spider, there’s no denying that these two classic card games are both a lot of fun. But did you know that there are some significant differences between the two? 

The main difference between Solitaire and Spider is that Solitaire is typically played with one deck of cards, while Spider is played with two. Also, in Solitaire, you can move any card to any other location on the board, while in Spider, you can only move the black Queens, Kings, and Jacks.

This blog post will explore the main differences between Spider and Solitaire so you can better understand each game and decide which of them is best for you. So whether you’re a Solitaire pro or a Spider newbie, read on to find out more!

1. Number of Decks

 SolitaireSpiderNumber of DecksOneTwoTable: Number of decks needed for Solitaire and for Spider SOlitaire

The primary difference between Solitaire and Spider is the number of decks used. Solitaire is typically played with one deck of cards, while Spider is played with two decks.

In Solitaire, the deck is shuffled and then dealt out into seven columns, with the first column containing one card, the second column containing two cards, and so on. Once all of the columns are filled, the rest of the cards will be used as a “stock” pile, which you will pull from as you play the game. 

The following video explains the typical card setup in Solitaire:

In Spider, however, the decks are shuffled together and then dealt out into ten columns, with the first column containing six cards, the second column containing five cards, and so on. Once all of the columns are filled, the rest of the cards will be used as a stockpile similar to classic solitaire. 

The difference in the number of decks used means more cards on the table in Spider, making the game pretty daunting at first. However, many people find the extra challenge quite enjoyable.

2. Number of Suits

 SolitaireSpiderNumber of SuitsFourOne, Two, or ThreeTable: Number of suits used in the Solitaire and Spider

Another critical difference between these two games is the number of suits used. In Solitaire, there are four suits (clubs, diamonds, hearts, and spades). Conversely, in Spider Solitaire, there are two or three suits. This difference may not seem significant, but it significantly affects gameplay.

In Spider Solitaire, the goal is to clear all of the cards from the board. This is often easier said than done, as there are at least two suits.

In Solitaire, the goal is to clear all of the cards from the board. However, since there are four suits, this can be more difficult.

Despite this difference, both games can be quite enjoyable and challenging. You may find that you prefer the extra challenge of four suits in Spider, or the simplicity of two suits in Solitaire.

3. Aim of the Game

 SolitaireSpiderAim of the GameCreate four stacks of cards, one for each suit.Remove all of the cards from the board.Table: Aim of the game in Solitaire and in Spider

Another notable difference between Spider and Solitaire is the objective. Notably, the aim of the game in Spider is to remove all of the cards from the board. This is accomplished by creating stacks of cards in descending order, from King to Ace. Once all cards have been removed from the board, the game is won.

In Solitaire, the aim is to create four stacks of cards, one for each suit. These stacks are built in ascending order, from Ace to King. You can win the game by moving the cards to these stacks.

While the aim of each game is different, they are both still quite challenging and enjoyable. You may find that you prefer the objective of one game over the other, or you may enjoy the challenge of both.

4. Winning Conditions

 SolitaireSpiderWinning ConditionsCreate four suited stacks of cards or make a stack of cards that starts with a king and ends with an ace.Create stacks of cards in descending order, from King to Ace.Table: Win conditions in Solitaire and in Spider

The conditions for winning each game are also quite different. In Solitaire, the game is won by creating four suited stacks of cards or making a stack of cards that starts with a king and ends with an ace.

In Spider, the game is won by removing all cards from the board. This is done by creating stacks of cards in descending order, from King to Ace.

The different winning conditions mean you must approach each game differently. In Solitaire, you may need to think about how to best use the cards that you are dealt to create the suited stacks.

In Spider, you will need to focus on creating the descending stacks, to remove all of the cards from the board. This can be a challenge, as you will need to consider the order in which you place the cards.

If you want to know how to increase the Spider Solitaire winrate, then go to this article.

5. Moving Sequences

 SolitaireSpiderMoving SequencesYou must move cards one at a timeYou can move cards in sequences

In both Solitaire and Spider, the game’s object is to move all of the cards from the tableau to the foundation. In Solitaire, this is done by ensuring that each column is sorted from Ace to King. In Spider, the columns are also sorted from Ace to King, but they can be of any suit.

The big difference between the two games is that, in Solitaire, you must move the cards one at a time. In Spider, you can move cards in sequences. This means that you can move multiple cards simultaneously, as long as they are in descending order and of the same suit.

This Youtube video below provides a tutorial on how to play Spider:

6. Arrangement of Cards in the Tableau

 SolitaireSpiderArrangement of cards in the TableauSeven piles of cards.Ten piles of cards.Table: Arrangement of cards in tableau for Solitaire and Spider

In the game of Solitaire, the cards are arranged in a specific pattern known as the tableau. This pattern consists of seven piles of cards, with each pile containing one more card than the previous pile.

The first pile has one card, the second pile has two cards, and so on. The cards in each pile are arranged in descending order, with the Ace being at the bottom and the King being at the top. 

The game aims to move all cards from the tableau to the foundation, a particular area for completed piles.

In Spider, the cards are also arranged in a tableau. However, instead of seven piles, there are ten. In addition, the number of cards in each pile varies. The first pile has one card, the second pile has two cards, and so on. The tenth pile has ten cards.

7. Redeal Button

 SolitaireSpiderRedeal ButtonDoesn’t existExists

The redeal button is a crucial difference between Spider and Solitaire. In Spider, the redeal button allows you to deal cards from the deck again if you get stuck. This can be helpful if you’re close to winning and need a few more cards to complete the game.

In classic Solitaire, the redeal button doesn’t exist. If you get stuck, you have to restart the game from scratch. This can be frustrating, but it also adds to the challenge of Solitaire. Ultimately, it’s up to the player to decide which type of game they prefer.

However, many online versions of Solitaire offer a redeal setting if you’re looking for less difficult gameplay. 

8. Placement of Kings on Aces and Twos

 SolitaireSpiderPlacement of Kings on Aces and TwosKings are placed in their own piles.Kings are placed on top of the Aces and Twos.

In the game of Spider, kings are placed on top of the Aces and Twos. This has a few gameplay implications.

For one, it means that if you are trying to build up a sequence of cards starting with an Ace or a Two, you will need to move the King out of the way first. Additionally, it can make it more difficult to create long runs of cards since the Kings tend to break up sequences.

In Solitaire, on the other hand, the Kings are placed in their own piles. This gives you more flexibility when building sequences since you can simply move the King to the side and continue your sequence without worrying about breaking it up. Additionally, it makes it easier to create long runs since the Kings are not in the way.

9. Spaces Between Columns

 SolitaireSpiderSpaces Between ColumnsPlenty of space between the columns.Small spaces between columns.

In both Solitaire and Spider, the cards are arranged in columns. However, the two games differ in the amount of space between the columns.

In Solitaire, there is a single card in each column, with plenty of space between the columns. This allows for easy movement of cards between columns.

In contrast, Spider has multiple cards in each column, with only small spaces between columns. This makes it more challenging to move cards around and often leads to blocked moves.

As a result, Spider is generally considered more challenging than Solitaire.

10. The Stock

 SolitaireSpiderThe StockEasier to access buried cards.Impossible to access buried cards.

In the game of Spider, the “Stock” refers to the face-down cards that are not yet in play. At the start of the game, all cards are dealt into ten columns, and then the player begins to build these columns up or down in a suit.

However, once a column is filled up, it cannot be moved – meaning that any cards underneath it are effectively “trapped.” In contrast, Solitaire allows players to deal one card at a time from the stock, making it much easier to access buried cards and giving the player a lot more freedom in how they build their foundations.

As a result, Solitaire is a more straightforward and forgiving game than Spider.

11. The Placement of Aces

 SolitaireSpiderThe Placement of AcesAces are placed in the foundation as soon as they are dealt.Aces are placed in the tableau like any other card.

In Solitaire, the Aces are placed in the foundation as soon as they are dealt. This helps ensure that the player can make progress on their foundation even if they get stuck elsewhere in the game.

In Spider, on the other hand, the Aces are placed in the tableau like any other card. This makes it more challenging to build up the foundation and can often lead to blocked moves.

12. Difficulty Level

 SolitaireSpiderDifficulty LevelEasierMore challenging

Due to the numerous differences between Solitaire and Spider, the latter is generally considered more challenging. This is primarily because Spider has more restrictions on how cards can be moved, making it easy to get “stuck” without any possible moves.

Additionally, the placement of the Aces in the tableau makes it more challenging to build up the foundation, and the smaller space between the columns makes it harder to move cards around.

Ultimately, choosing which game to play is up to the player. If you are looking for a more challenging game, Spider is the better option. However, if you prefer a more straightforward and forgiving game, Solitaire may be better.

Want to increase your Solitaire winrate? Then read the article on best strategy tips that experienced players use in Solitaire.

13. The Number of Variations

 SolitaireSpiderNumber of VariationsMore variationsFewer variationsTable: Variations of the Solitaire and Spider card game.

While there are many variations of both Solitaire and Spider, the former generally has more. This is likely because Solitaire is a simpler game with fewer restrictions, making it easier to create new variations.

Some of the more popular variations of Solitaire include Klondike, FreeCell, and Pyramid. On the other hand, Spider has fewer variations, but the more popular ones include Two-Suited Spider and Four-Suited Spider.

14. Popularity Among Players

 SolitaireSpiderPopularity Among PlayersMore popularLess popularTable: Popularity of Solitaire and Spider

Both Solitaire and Spider are popular games, but the former is generally more so. This is likely because Solitaire is a simpler game that is easy to learn and can be played quickly. Additionally, the large number of variations available means that there is something for everyone.

In contrast, Spider is generally considered more challenging, and the smaller number of variations can make it less interesting for some players. However, the game’s popularity has been increasing in recent years, likely because it is a more challenging alternative to Solitaire.

Tips for Choosing the Right Game

Now that you know the critical differences between Solitaire and Spider, you can decide which game is suitable for you. As I mentioned, if you are looking for a quick and easy game, Solitaire is a good option. However, if you prefer a more challenging game, Spider is the better choice.

When choosing a game, it is also essential to consider the following:

The amount of time you have: Solitaire can be played quickly, while Spider may take longer to complete.Your level of experience: If you are new to card games, Solitaire may be a better option. However, if you are experienced, Spider may be more engaging.Your level of patience: If you are the type of person who gets frustrated easily, Solitaire may be a better option. However, if you enjoy challenging games, Spider may be more your speed.

Ultimately, the decision of which game to play is up to you. Whichever game you choose, I hope you have fun!
Pro Tip: If you need Solitaire tips and tricks, ensure you read The Complete Book of Solitaire and Patience Games by Albert H. Morhead on Amazon.com. It includes tips on how to improve your game and teaches you new strategies, including how to select the suitable variation for your skill level.

Author: Justin Lee