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Spades

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A trick taking card game where spades is always trump, hence the name. Spades is from the Whist family and was created in the United States sometime in the 1930s, in Cincinnati, Ohio. It became widespread during WWII, as a game played by the U.S. military, the troops carried it to other countries and then brought it back to their hometowns after the war. Spades is a common internet game which has increased its popularity and helped to create common rules.

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Objective:

Spades is a trick taking game where spades is always trump. The object of the game is to score the most points. The object of each hand is to make the best bid for the cards dealt and then win the bid without going over.

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.

Spades uses 1 standard decks of 52 cards. Currently, this is a game for 4 players, playing in 2 teams of 2, with partners sitting across from each other, and 13 cards are dealt to each player.

Game Play:

Bidding– Each player bids the number of tricks they believe they can win. The player to the left of the dealer starts the bidding and bidding continues in a clockwise direction around the table, ending with the dealer. A bid of "zero" is called "nil" and the bids by each player are independent, which means each player is responsible for their own bid. However, the partners scores are the same.

Bidding Nil– Players may bid ‘nil” which means they are not going to take any tricks. If they are successful they win 100 points, but if they take 1 trick or more they score -100 points.

The first player to the left of the dealer plays first. They may lead any card they wish except trump, unless they only have spades in their hand. Play continues around the table in a clockwise direction. All players must follow suit if they can and if they cannot they can play any card including spades. Once a player has played a trump on another players lead then trump is considered broken and spades can be led anytime. If a spade leads then all other players must follow suit if they can. The player who plays the highest value card, of the suit that was led, wins the trick unless another player trumps it then the highest trump card wins. The player who wins any given trick leads the next round. Play continues until all players have played all of their cards.

Scoring:

Player’s receive 10 points for each trick that they bid and win, for example, if a player bids that they can take 5 tricks:

Player Bids
Tricks Won
Score
Sandbag
5
5
50
5
4
-50
5
6
50
10
nil
0
100
nil
1 or more
-100
1 or more

Sandbags or excess tricks are worth nothing unless a player accumulates 10 of them, then they are worth minus 100 points. Therefore, there is a penalty for under bidding your hand.

Winning:

The first team to reach 500 points wins the game.

A team reaching -500 points loses the game.

If there is a tie then the game ends in a tie.

Power Cards:

Spades are always trump and the highest spade played wins the trick, for example a 9 of spades beats an Ace of any other suits.

Modified on 10/26/16 from Wikipedia

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