How to Play Corona Solitaire

By Dan Fletcher

Corona Solitaire is a fun solitaire game, requiring skill, planning, and patience. There are decisions to make throughout the game, but you may not know if the game can be finished until the very last card. It is quite an obscure solitaire game, but those that play it find it immensely fun... in fact, it's one of my personal favourites, and I can't stop playing!

The aim is to build 8 ascending suit sequences in the foundation stacks.

The opening tableau is maed up of 2 decks, and consists of:

  • 8 foundation stacks, which are all empty,
  • 12 manoeuvre stacks, each with 3 face-up cards, and
  • a talon, with 68 face-down cards.

Cards can be moved in the manoeuvre zone if they are the same suit and 1 less in rank. So a 7 of Diamonds can be played onto an 8 of Diamonds, and a Queen of Spades can be played onto a King of Spades. Kings cannot be moved in the manoeuvre zone at all.

When a manoeuvre stack becomes empty, a card is automatically taken from the top of the waste pile. If the waste pile is empty, a card is automatically taken from the talon.

Clicking the talon will move a single card to the waste pile. You can only cycle through the talon once.

Only a single card can be moved at any time, and stacks can not be moved as a whole.

Whilst the rules seem simple, the game itself is quite complex, often requiring considerable planning. In particular, deciding when exactly to clear a stack can have a huge impact on the game, because it changes what cards you currently have in play. It often pays to hold-off on clearing a stack, so that a more valuable card is put into play.

At the start of the game, it helps to look for inversions. This is where a card is obscured by the same suit but higher rank. For example, a 2 of Diamonds underneath a 7 of Diamonds. Inversions can make the underneath card hard to expose, and not paying attention to them can cause games to become unsolvable. It often pays to try and move inversions where possible, so in the example above, it would be beneficial to move the 7 of Diamonds onto an 8 of Diamonds, to get access to the 2, rather than put a 6 of Diamonds onto the 7.

If you play solitaire, or like a challenge, then give Corona Solitaire a go... I'm sure you'll love it!

Dan Fletcher is a developer at dogMelon. They make Classic Solitaire, a fun pack of Solitaire Card Games for Mac, Palm, and PC. Classic Solitaire includes many great solitaire games, including Corona Solitaire, and Spider Solitaire. [source]

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Last Update: December 20th, 2013