Top 5 Plain-Trick Card Games for Players of All Skill Levels
Are you feeling bored and want unique card games to play with your friends that require special skills? Luckily, there are plenty of card games perfect for all levels, such as plain-trick card games! Fortunately, we have an exciting collection of plain-trick card games to fill your night with laughter and delight! Read on as we highlight our favorite five titles you can play with your family and friends during your free time!
Compelling Plain-Trick Card Games for Everyone
Elevate your trick-taking experience with plain-trick games designed for players of all skill levels. Everyone can play this game if you’re familiar with the basic trick-taking rules! If you’re ready, let’s get started with our meticulously crafted list below:
Whist is a top-rated game that comes in different variations, such as Minnesota Whist, Whist 22, and Knock Out Whist, to name a few. Like many trick-taking games, Whist is played by partnerships of two teams with two players.
The ranking is A (high), K, Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 (lowest). The dealer begins by giving each player (starting from his left) one card facing down until they reach the last card, which becomes the trump. The dealer will eventually pick up the trump card once it’s their turn to play the trick.
The trick-taking begins on the dealer’s left, and they play a card that other players must follow (suit). Whoever has the highest trump wins the trick. After that, the points are calculated. Odd tricks (in excess of six) are one point for the winning team. The game ends if one team wins five points.
Yes, you might think this game shouldn’t be on the list since it’s a trick-avoidance game. However, you can’t deny that it has the same principles as plain-trick games. Instead of taking tricks, the players will avoid them like a plague using the same elements as most plain-trick card games.
To play a game of Hearts, remember the basics below:
- Players must be meticulous with counting their cards, especially among competitive players.
- Hearts cards are equivalent to 1 point, while the Queen of Spades is equal to 13 points.
- During the game, players aren’t allowed to play a card from the Hearts suit or the Queen of Spades unless they don’t have a card that’s the same as the previously played card.
- Players with the lowest points accumulated wins.
A famous German trick-taking game for three players is Skat. It was introduced in 1840, and it’s believed to be a combination of Schafkopf, Tarot, and l’Hombre. The German cards use different suits, such as Spades = Leaves, Clubs = Acrons, and Diamond = Bells, with only Hearts remaining.
Jacks are always the top trumps in this order: Clubs, Spades, Hearts, Diamonds. The rest are non-trumps: A, 10, K, Q, 9, 8, 7. Therefore, Jack of Clubs is the highest and seven is the lowest. The game begins with three cards dealt to each player, two in the middle (skat), and four to each player again. The bid is a value available within the game, with the lowest being 18. Whoever doesn’t pass a bid is the declarer.
The play begins with the player to the dealer’s left, and they’ll play their card. Whoever has the highest card in the suit is determined as the winner after all cards are played. Once done, the score is calculated based on how many tricks each player and team takes. The declarer’s team can win if they take 61 points, while the opponents win if their scores combine to at least 60.
An old-age plain-taking card game invented in the 16th century is Pique. It’s designed to be played by two players, and it’s France’s national game! It’s played using a deck of 32 cards, called the piquet pack or piquet deck. Aces is considered the highest, while seven is the lowest for ranking.
What makes it unique is that players can win the game not only through tricks but also by sets, suits, and sequences. The dealer is determined by selecting a random card from the deck, and the player with the lowest card is the dealer. Once done, the dealer will shuffle the deck and give each player 12 cards face-down in three sets. The remaining eight cards are the stockpile.
- Sets, sequences, and suits: Players can get points by making certain combinations. The non-dealer will declare their highest cards in the same Suit. The dealer will reply No Good, Good, or Equal, depending on their ability to beat it. The player who ends up having the highest number wins the equivalent points. After that, the non-dealer will declare how many cards they have in a Sequence, usually three or more cards. The winner will be determined the same way as suits. Finally, Sets are determined by how many sets they have, usually three or four, to be declared.
- Trick-taking: Once suits, sequences, and sets are determined, Pique becomes a classic trick-taking game. The non-dealer begins playing the first trick, and the next player follows.
- Scoring: Scores are calculated based on how many tricks the players took and the points they received from the sets, suits, and sequences. The player with the most points after six rounds wins.
The last game on our list is Bridge, usually played by two teams with two players sitting across each other. It’s so popular that it’s played at clubs and tournaments all over the world.
Each game uses a standard deck of cards, with each player receiving 13. The trick is played by the leader, which is determined through bidding, and the player with the highest bid is called the trumps.
Other basics to remember:
- There are 13 tricks per deal.
- Players must follow the suit of the first played card unless they have none of the same suit, which is when they can play other cards.
- The player who played the highest-rank card during the deal wins the trick.
- Ace is the highest, and two is the lowest in rank.
The ultimate goal of Bridge is not exclusively to take the most tricks in one deal. It’s more like successfully estimating how many tricks a partnership can take. Try the game by downloading a free mobile app, and you’ll understand its principles!
Improve Your Trick-Taking Skills with Plain-Trick Card Games
Thanks to these plain-trick card games, you won’t have difficulty finding a suitable match for two or more players! No matter your skills in playing cards, there’s always something interesting that will keep you hooked and challenged. Try the ones above, and you’ll spend hours mastering them!