Solo Whist is a trick taking game for four players. Each player is ultimately playing for themselves, but the alliances will shift from deal to deal. A standard 52 card pack is used, with cards ranking (from highest to lowest): A K Q J 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2.
At the beginning of the game, the cards are shuffled by the dealer and then cut. The cards are dealt in packets of three, followed by a single card, so that everybody has 13. The final card to be dealt to the dealer is turned face up to determine the trump suit.
In subsequent deals, the cards are only shuffled if the last bid was an Abundance or higher. If not, the cards are simply gathered up, cut, and dealt.
Beginning with the player to the dealer's left, each player may bid a contract or pass. Once a player has passed they are out, except for one case: the player to the dealer's left can bid Cop if the only other bid has been Prop.
|Prop||1 unit||1 point||The bidder proposes to win at least 8 tricks with another player who must bid Cop, with the turned up card as trump.|
|Cop||The bidder accepts a Prop to win at least 8 tricks, with the turned up card as trump.|
|Solo||1 unit||1 point||The bidder aims to win at least 5 tricks, playing alone with the turned up card as trump.|
|Misère||2 units||N/A||The bidder aims to lose every trick, playing alone with no trump suit.|
|Abundance||3 units||2 points||The bidder aims to win at least 9 tricks, playing alone with a trump suit of their choice.|
|Abundance in Trumps||3 units||2 points||The bidder aims to win at least 9 tricks, playing alone with the turned up card as trump.|
|Misère Ouverte||4 units||N/A||The bidder aims to lose every trick, playing alone with no trump suit. After the first trick, the bidder's hand is placed face up on the table.|
|Abundance Declared||6 units||N/A||The bidder aims to win all 13 tricks, playing alone with no trump suit. The bidder will lead to the first trick.|
If all players pass, the cards are gathered together, cut, and dealt by the next dealer.
If one player bids Prop and all others pass, that player may either change their bid to a Solo or higher, or pass and redeal as above.
A bid of Abundance in Trumps is used only to overcall a bid of Abundance.
The player to the dealer's left leads to the first trick (except possibly in Abundance Declared, where the declarer leads).
A player must follow suit if they can, but can play any other card if not.
A trick is won either by the highest trump card played to the trick if any, or if there are none, by the highest card of the suit led.
After each deal, the scoring is settled as per the bidding table above. In a bid of Prop & Cop, the payment is made between a defender and a declarer, e.g. if the bid is made, each defender pays 1 unit to a declarer (plus any extra points for overtricks). In any other bid, the declarer is paid by all three opponents if they win, or they pay all three opponents if they lose. E.g. if the bid is Solo and the declarer wins, they are paid 1 unit by each defender (plus 1 point per overtrick). If they lose, they pay 1 unit to each defender (plus 1 point per undertrick).
Overtricks and undertricks are counted after winning or losing, e.g. in a bid of Solo, taking 5 tricks is a win with 0 overtricks, whilst taking 6 tricks is a win with 1 overtrick. Taking 4 tricks is a loss with 0 undertricks, and taking 3 tricks is a loss with 1 undertrick.
Main differences from other rulesets
The basic unit payment can be set in the table options. The default is 5 points. This means that each overtrick in a Solo is worth 1/5 of the contract value.
Overtricks and undertricks in an abundance are both worth 2 points.
If all players pass, the cards are gathered together, cut, and redealt in the same fashion (i.e. as 3-3-3-3-1).
Abundance Declared is played with no trump suit.