October 9, 2023
Skills Retains All Aces in IIT Delhi Study on Rummy

Skills Retains All Aces in IIT Delhi Study on Rummy

Anyone who has regularly played the game of rummy knows two things for certain – getting a joker can be a total game-changer and the game itself requires a strategic mindset. A recent study by the Indian Institute of Technology – Delhi, has concluded that both poker and rummy are games of skill. 

Rummy is one of the most popular games in India with a growing online presence full of passionate players. Crores of people regularly log in to their favorite rummy apps to play the game they love. Not only do they have fun, but they also get exciting prizes if they win. 

However, there’s always been a debate amongst people on whether rummy is a game of chance or if it requires an actual skill set. This has long been contested despite the ruling by the Supreme Court of India in 1967 which stated that rummy was clearly a game of skill and not chance. Even during the announcement of GST Policy for Online Gaming in August 2023, this issue cropped up again and many experts gave their opinion on how the tax structure should be different for a Game of Skill and Game of Chance.

What the Study Reveals

The latest study which was published in arXiv was conducted by Tapan K. Gandhi, Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering, Cadence Chair Professor of AI and Automation, IIT Delhi. He along with his team studied a group of people who had played between 30 and 100 games each. These people also had extensive experience playing 2-player and 6-player rummy games. 

The research team also noted that the longer someone plays the game, the better they get at it. That’s because the player will be seasoned enough to know how to maneuver within the game and set themselves up for success. The study stated, “We found that both in poker and rummy, the skill variables improve as the users play more games. This is a precursor that the mean of the winning rate as the user plays more and more games is not zero, which implies that long-term success cannot be considered a random phenomenon.”

Game of Skills or Game of Chance?

Players of the game know that they make extensive progress the more they play the game. Everything about rummy requires a strategic mindset. Top-skilled players will conduct a risk analysis before dropping from a game and they even have strategies when it comes to choosing what type of tables they join at the start of the game. Additionally, only skilled players will know which cards have to be discarded. There is also some level of mathematics involved as players need to know the sum of the value of cards they possess. When seasoned players win games and tournaments, it’s because of their expertise and experience. As the adage goes – it’s  practice that makes them perfect.  

But the skills one learns playing rummy go well beyond the cards they are dealt. In fact, the same study from IIT Delhi has also stated that playing rummy and poker can actually enhance the soft skills of the person playing the games. These games help people develop abilities that will be beneficial to them in any social setting. 

Talking about this, Professor Gandhi noted, “Throughout our research, we were presented with compelling cases that made it clear that these sports indeed require a level of innate understanding that aided in building the cognitive abilities of the players. Not just limiting the skill aspect to the sport, we also noticed that the player’s softer skills, like that of understanding social cues, taking decisions under high-pressure situations, memory retention, amongst others, advancing throughout the time they were playing consistently.” 

So, if you want to become good at rummy, it’s important to hone your skills by practicing regularly and with as many people as possible. But more than that, playing the game itself may end up helping you during unexpected moments that life throws at you. And, that’s how you emerge a winner.