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Euchre

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A trick taking game played with two teams of two sitting directly across from each other. Variations of Euchre are played in North America, including parts of Canada and the United States. In the U.S. Euchre is played primarily in the Midwest, and in the eastern states a version of the game is known as Bacon. It is a popular game within the US Navy. It is also played in Australia and New Zealand. Play with your friends for a fast paced exciting game or a more thoughtful relaxed game.

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Objective:

Euchre is a trick taking game and the object of the game is to score the most points. The goal of each hand is to win at least 3 tricks.

To Deal:

At the beginning of the game the dealer is randomly selected. During the game the deal continues around the table clockwise. The player to the left of the dealer plays first and play continues clockwise around the table. The player that wins the trick leads to the next trick.

Euchre uses a deck of 24 cards consisting of A K Q J 10 9 in each of the four suits: hearts, diamonds, clubs and spades. This is a game for four players with 2 sets of 2 partners sitting opposite of each other and five cards are dealt to each player. The remaining cards are placed face down on the table in front of the dealer and the top card is turned face up.

Game Play:

Before play begins a trump suit must be made.

Making Trump is the process that determines the trump suit and which team are the "Makers" who must win three tricks. First each player in turn, beginning with the player to the dealer's left, has the option of ordering up the up-card's suit as trump or passing, for example:

  • The player to dealer's left may either pass or order it up
  • If the first player passes, the dealer's partner may either pass or order it up
  • If the first two players pass, the player to dealer's right may either pass or order it up
  • If all three other players pass, the dealer may either pick up the up-card, making it trump, or turn the card face down on top of the pile and passing
  • If any player orders up the up card or if the dealer picks it up, the suit of the up-card becomes trump, and the dealer adds the up-card to their hand and discards a card face-down on top of the pile.
  • If all four players pass, the up-card is turned face-down, and there is a second round in which players have the option to make any suit trump, except the suit of the up-card.
  • Again the player to dealer's left may either pass again or name a suit. If the first player passes the second may name a suit or pass, and so on.
  • If all four players pass a second time the hand is canceled and the next player deals. Unless the game is “Stick the dealer” then the dealer must make trump.
  • The trump making process ends as soon as someone orders up the up-card or calls a suit as trump (rather than passing). The team with the player who makes trump is known as The Makers, they must win at least 3 tricks to score a point, and the other team is known as The Defenders.

Going Alone occurs when any player who is naming trump believes they can win all 5 tricks they may call Alone. When a player goes Alone their partner does not play, but they still must win 3 tricks to score a point. However, if the win all 5 tricks they score 4 points rather than the 2 points scored if both partners playing together win all 5 tricks.

Once trump has been made actual game play begins:

  • If all four players are in the game, the play begins with the player to the dealer's left leading to the first trick. If a player is playing alone, and the first person to the dealers left is the partner who is sitting out, then the person to that player's left leads first.
  • Any card may be led, and each player in clockwise order must follow suit by playing a card of the same suit as the card led if possible. A player who cannot follow suit may play any card.
  • For purposes of following suit the Left Bower is considered to belong to the trump suit and not to any other suit.
  • The trick is won by whoever played the highest card of the suit led, unless a trump was played, in which case the highest trump wins. The winner of each trick leads to the next trick.

The trump suit consists of 7 cards and the ranking from highest value to lowest value is as follows:

  • Right Bower (the jack of the trump suit, if clubs is trump it is the jack of clubs)
  • Left Bower (the other jack of the same color as the trump suit, if clubs is trump it is the jack of spades )
  • Ace
  • King
  • Queen
  • Ten
  • Nine

Scoring:

  • If the Makers win 3 or 4 tricks they score one point.
  • If the Makers win all 5 tricks they score two points.
  • If the Makers take two or less tricks they are said to be Euchred, and the Defenders score two points.

If a member of the Makers' team is playing Alone and wins all 5 tricks, the team scores 4 points instead of 2, if they win 3 or 4 tricks they score one point, and if they get Euchred the Defenders score 2 points.

Winning:

The first team to reach 10 points wins the game.

Power Cards:

  • Trump cards are the highest cards, for example a 9 of trump beats an Ace of non-trump.
  • The right bower or the jack, of the trump suit, is the highest card.
  • The left bower is the jack of the same color as trump, is the second highest card, and can only be beat by the right bower.

Modified on 10/26/16 from Wikipedia

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