Card drafting games are games in which players pick cards from a limited subset, such as a common pool, to gain some advantage (immediate or longterm) or to assemble hands of cards that are used to meet objectives within the game. Saint Petersburg is a well-known card drafting game.
Games where cards are simply drawn from a pile are not card drafting games; drafting implies that players have some sort of choice and the ability to draft a card another player may want thereby denying them something they may have wanted. In Ticket to Ride, for instance, players may choose to draw cards from open display, so although most cards in a game are only drawn randomly, it still can be considered a drafting game.
The term "card drafting" can be applied to games in which players draft tiles or other similar objects instead of cards. The term "cards" here represents a collection of game objects that contain information on them relevant for gameplay.
Card drafting fan