There are five different suits with 12 cards each: 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 7, 8, 9.
The number of triangles on each card shows how many points it is worth when you win the card in a trick. 1s and 9s are worth zero points, 6s and 7s are worth two points, and all other cards are worth one point each.
The 60 total cards are dealt out evenly to all the players.
Players bid to become Chief or Vice. You can think of these as the head of two teams. They will be the ones to decide trump.
When it is their turn, players can bid by taking one or more cards from their hand and placing them upright in front of them for everyone to see OR the player can pass. If a player passes on one turn, they can still bid if it comes back to them. Bidding ends when all players have passed consecutively. Cards used during the bidding phase remain visible to other players but are still considered part of the hand during play.
Chief is determined by the player who has the greatest number of cards showing. As the bidding goes around, players can only raise one card more than whatever player currently has the most cards showing. For example, if the tentative chief has 2 cards showing, other players cannot show more than 3 cards. Once a player has 3 cards showing, another player may show 4 cards. A player may pass multiple times and then put down any number of cards in one turn, as long as it doesn't break the previously stated rule. If the bidding ends with a tie for Chief, then the hand is not played; and there are negative points for the challenger and positive points for any others that are tied for Chief.
Vice is the person with the second most number of cards showing (Chief being the person with the largest number of cards showing). However, a tie is decided differently. If there is a tie in the number of cards for Vice, then the position goes to the person who has the highest number on their card. If there is still a tie, then the next highest card is compared. If there is still a tie for Vice when all showing cards are compared, then there is no Vice and no Vice trump.
Selecting Trump and Partner
After the Bidding phase, the Vice selects the Vice Trump. Then the Chief selects the Chief Trump. Finally, the Chief selects their partner.
In a five player game, there are two people on the Chief team and three people on the Vice team. Five player games are considered the best because
- in four player, it would be two against two giving a strong advantage to the Chief's team
- or in six player, two chief players and four vice players makes it much harder for the Chief's team.
There is an option in the game setup for six people, where the dealer doesn't play thus enabling five players to play the hand even when there are six people included in the game.
Cards that are trump (as nominated by the Chief and Vice) form a single trump suit, with the Chief's trump higher than the Vice's trump. Cards that belong to both the Chief's and Vice's trump are the highest cards in the trump suit (the double trumps).
For example, the Vice nominates red cards as trump and the Chief nominates 7s. The trump suit will be the red 7s as the highest cards (double trumps), followed by the 7s in other colors (they no longer belong to the suits of their respective colors), followed by the remaining red cards from highest to lowest.
- After the first card is played in a trick you must play a card of the same suit if you can (follow suit).
- If a trump card is the first card played you must play any trump card if you can.
- The highest card of the color led wins the trick, unless a trump card was played - in which case the highest trump card wins.
- If multiple cards of the same rank are played as highest cards the first equal card wins
First, each player scores the points on the tricks that they won individually.
The chief's team then add their scores together and compare it to the bid to calculate the team bonus.
If the chief's team made their bid, they get bonus points as shown on the table (based on how many cards were in trump).
If the chief's team failed their bid, the points are:
- The chief loses 10 points for the number of cards overbid
- The chief's partner does not gain or lose any bonus points
- Everyone not on the chief's team gains 5 points for the number of cards overbid