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Whist Rules

Players: 4, as 2 teams

Summary

Whist

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The Deck and Dealing

Whist uses a standard deck. Each player is dealt a hand of 13 cards. The last card dealt is turned face up and determines the trump suit, before being taken into its owner’s hand.

Play

Playing tricks follows the standard rules. Tricks can be led with any suit.

Scoring

A team scores 1 point for each trick won after the sixth trick. E.g winning 8 tricks scores 2 points.

Winning

The team which reaches 5 points first wins. The target score can also be set to 7 or 9 points.

Variations

Fixed Trumps

The options for selecting the trump suit are:

Bid Whist

Players are dealt 12 cards each and the remainder forms the kitty. Each player can declare their bid for the round, consisting of the number of tricks over 6 they intend to win (between 3 and 7) and one of three options: downtown, uptown and no trump.

Each player must bid higher than the previous player, or pass. No trump bids are considered higher than other bids of the same numerical value. If all other players pass, the last player must bid.

At the start of play, the winning bidder must name the trump suit or in the case of no trump, either uptown or downtown. They also pick up the kitty and must then discard an equal number of cards (which can include cards just picked up). These discarded cards count as the first trick won for the bidder’s team. They also play the first card. Other players must follow suit, if able.

If the bidding team meets their bid, they score points equal to their bid. If they did not, their bid is subtracted from their overall score. The opposing team cannot score points.

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