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Foxtrot

or "American Pishti"

This game is based on the Turkish Card game, Pishti. It has been significantly altered to make for more interesting play and simplicity. Rules devised by Ed Vasicek

Chart of Points

Each Foxtrot (pishti)10 points
Double foxtrots
     2 Jacks20 points
     2 Tens20 points
Each 1010 points
Most cards5 points
Each Ace1 point
Each Jack1 point
Queen of Spades-20 points
(Since a double deck is used, there are two!)

A FOXTROT is made when there is only one card in the pile and it is matched by another card of the same value. In this game, suits are not relevant except for the Queen of Spades. The strategy is to capture 10's, get Foxtrots, and avoid the Queens of Spades, as well as obtaining other point cards.

The pile (anywhere from one card to a large number) may be taken by matching the value of the last card played or with a Jack, but it is not a foxtrot unless there is only one card in the pile when it is matched. If there is only one card in the pile and it is taken by a jack, this is not a foxtrot (unless the first card was a jack taken by a jack, then that is a double foxtrot).

Players

2-6

Cards

A double deck of standard cards (104 cards or two 52 card decks). For a group larger than 6, add a third deck, etc.

Object

To accumulate the most points by taking "tricks," avoiding tricks that have negative point value (when Queens of Spades are involved). Game ends when an agreed upon point value is reached (e.g., 150, 200, 300, 400 points, etc.).

The Play

Dealer shuffles cards and deals each player 8 cards. After players have their cards, a card is turned over from the stock and placed alongside it. No more cards will be drawn from the stock until the next deal.

If the first player can match this upturned card, he takes the trick and makes a Foxtrot. He moves the Foxtrot into his pile, face up (keeping Foxtrots face up helps distinguish them from other cards when tabulating points later on). A Foxtrot can only be made when there is only one card down and the player matches it.

If the player does not take the trick, the next player adds to it until someone finally takes the trick. A player may take a pile at any time by either matching the last card played or with a Jack, which always takes the pile. He is not required to play cards that would take the pile (which is a good strategy when the Queen of Spades is in the pile). If a player takes a trick that is not a Foxtrot (as will be true more times than not), the cards are placed in his pile face down.

After a trick is taken, the next player begins a new pile by throwing down a card. If there are any cards left at the end of the hand, the player who took the last trick takes it (this can be a strategic time to get rid of a Queen of Spades).

At the end of the hand, the person to the dealers left takes the stock and deals out another eight cards and play continues as before. Depending upon the number of players, there will likely not be enough cards left to give each player 8 cards. In that case, players are dealt an equal number of cards and whoever takes the last trick of the hand receives the leftover cards.

When the deck is depleted, players tabulate points as per above. Put all Foxtrots in one pile, all 10's in another, all Aces and Jacks and Queens of Spades. The player who has the most cards receives 5 bonus points.

The deck is then reshuffled and play resumes. This is a very simple game to learn and a lot of fun.


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Last updated 11th February 2004