Rules for the Card Game Scum

By Wendy Travolta ; Updated April 12, 2017
Scum challenges users to discard cards quickly.

The card game Scum!, also known as President, Bum, Landlord, and Capitalism, challenges each player to discard his dealt cards before his opponents. The first player to discard his hand earns the President title; a round's President earns more points than other players. The last player to discard his hand earns the least points and is appointed Scum. The first player to reach a designated point value wins.

Beginning Play

Each player draws a card from the shuffled deck to determine his respective rank within the game. The President holds the card with the highest number value, and sits at the table's forefront. The Vice President holds the second highest card, and sits at the President's left side. Middle Class players follow in descending card value order. The Scum player, holding the lowest-valued card, occupies the last available seat at the President's right side.

Round One

The Vice President shuffles the deck, distributing all cards among players. The President casts his first card, and play moves clockwise. The next player must discard a card whose value trumps its predecessor's; if he cannot, he forfeits his turn. The first player to get rid of his hand becomes the new President. The second player to discard becomes Vice President, and the last player to go out becomes the new Scum.

Round Two

Round Two plays out similarly, except the Scum player must trade his two highest cards to the President, who gives the Scum two cards of his choosing. The Vice President trades one card with the player sitting next to Scum. In a game with four or fewer players, the President and Scum exchange only one card, and the Vice President and Next to Scum players do not trade.

Scoring

Players tally points after each round. The President receives a point total equal to the number of players. Each succeeding position receives one less point per round. Scum receives only one point. In a game with four to six players, the first person to acquire 40 points wins. In a game with six to 12 players, the first person to acquire 60 points wins.

Additional Rules

If a player discards two (or three, etc.) card during his turn, the next player must discard two (or three, etc.) cards bearing a higher point value. Each deck also contains a Wild President or President card. Playing a Wild President card immediately ends the round; the Wild President holder becomes the new President.

About the Author

Based in New Jersey, Wendy Travolta has been working as a professional freelance writer since October 2009. Her areas of expertise include holistic health and wellness, natural beauty and fashion.