"TRÈS"

Basis

This game challenges the precept that, in a two-player game, each player must play only one card to a given trick. In fact, the first player leads, his opponent follows and then the first player continues with a second card so he has

There is a slight resemblance to 'Voormsi', the national game of Greenland, but that game allows BOTH player to play two cards to each tricktwochances to win the trick against his opponent's one. The game is equalised by alternating the lead. Victory goes to the player winning the most points, each trick counting one point and with certain "key" cards qualifying for bonus points. The "key" cards are all theTwos, ThreesandFours.

Play

The

5His removed and the remaining51cards are shuffled and dealt alternately, starting and finishing with the non-dealer. Hence, dealer receives 25 cards to non-dealers 26 cards. Hearts are always trumps. (Remember that there are only 12 of them).Non-dealer plays first to the first trick and plays a second card after his opponent has followed. The highest card wins the trick. Thereafter, the lead alternates between the two players, irrespective of who wins the tricks. At the final trick, non-dealer will be on lead with two cards remaining to dealer's one card.

Following the lead to a trick, the second player must follow suit or, if void, either discard or trump.

If the second player is(i.e., he has played a cardwinningthe trick

which is superior to the led card),the first player must also follow suit

with his second card. He may trump or discard only if he is void.

If the second player is(i.e., he does not beat theloosingthe trick

led card), then thefirst player may play any card he likes, including

a trump, a discard or a card in the suit being played if he so wishes.

This is called the "renege" rule.

Scoring

A trick

1 point

A trick containing either a 2, 3 or 4

2 points

A trick containing any

twocards that are either a 2, 3 or 44 points

A trick in which

all threecards are a 2, 3 or 4. (In general, in such a trick, two of the "key" cards will have the same suit)8 points

A trick containing the 2, 3 and 4

of one suits16 points

A trick containing three "key" cards which all have

different suits: (E.g.,2H,2S,2D, or2H,3C,4D, or2H,2C,4D)16 points

There is an obvious incentive to capture tricks which contain "

key" cards and a player must be vigilant against presenting his opponent with chances of collecting 2 or 3 "key" cards in a single trick.Example of Play

A deal is:

Dealer (25 cards)

(West)Non-Dealer (26 cards) (East)

HA,J,10,8,7,4

HK,Q,9,6,3,2

CA,10,9,8,7,5,3,2

CK,Q,J,6,4

DK,J,9,8,7

DA,Q,10,6,5,4,3,2

SQ,J,10,9,8,5

SA,K,7,6,4,3,2

As usual, it is suggested that the reader copies the deal and follows the play.

1)East leadsJC, West plays theAceand East must follow suit. He throws in the6C, preserving the4Cwhich is a "key" card.West wins the trick, counting

onepoint.

2)West now leads the10C, overtaken by theQCand followed by the5Cfrom West.A

one-point trick to East.

3)To the third trick, East leads theKCand West plays the7C. Since East is winning the trick he can now play any card he wishes. Nevertheless, he opts for the4Cwhich is very vulnerable.A trick counting

2 pointsto East.

4)West now leads the8C. East could discard, but that would allow West to play one of his club "key" cards. Instead, East trumps with the2Hand West must play the9C.A trick counting

2 pointsto East.

5)East decides to shorten his diamonds. He plays theAce, followed with the7Dfrom West and the4Dfrom East.A

2-pointtrick to East.

6)West now takes the opportunity to lead theKD, followed by the5Dfrom East. West then reneges with the3C.A 2-

pointtrick to West.

7)East plays a little better by leading the6D, covered by the8Dand then the10D.A

one-pointtrick to East.

8)West plays9D, covered by theQueenand then followed by theJack.Another

one-pointtrick to East.

9)East has the upper hand, but his2Dand3Dlook vulnerable and he now has fewer trumps. To lead a trump would be foolish. West would follow with a higher card and East would then have played two trumps to West's one. Instead, East cashesAS, followed by the5Sfrom West. East then reneges with3DA

2-pointtrick for East.

10)West plays the2C.East could discard the6Sbut West would then play4Hto earn a 4-point trick. East considers that it is best to trump with theQHand West, now void in the led suit of clubs, is allowed to over-trump with theAH

A.2 pointtrick to west

11)East returns in-kind by leading the2Dand over-trumping West's10Hwith hisKingA

2 pointtrick to East.

12)West has high hopes of his4H. He plays theJH, East plays the6Hand West discards the8S.

One point to West.

13)East doesn't want his3Hto fall under West's4Hso he leads theKS, followed by the9Sfrom West and East can now renege with the3H.A 2-point trick to East.

14)West decides to remove East's top trump by leading the7H. After a reply of9H, West plays the8H. He preserves the4Hfor later.

One pointto West

15)The6Sfrom East is beaten by the10Sfrom West and East follows with the7S. This turns out to be a mistake by East, even through it restricts West to a one-point trick.

One pointto West

16)West plays theJS, followed by the2Sfrom East, so that West can renege with the4HA

4-pointtrick to West.

17)For the last trick, East must again loose 4 points; his3Sis beaten by theQSand he must then throw in his4S.

4 more pointsto West.

The final score is:

East:1+2+2+2+1+1+2+2+2 , gives15 points

West:1+2+2+1+1+1+4+4, gives16 pointsEast won more tricks but lost on points. If he had played

4Sunder the10Sat trick 15 he would have improved his position. It gives West an extra point in that trick, but then only one of the last two tricks counts 4 points to West, the other counting two. East could have managed a draw.Strategies

In general, the player dealt the best hand (I.E., high cards, most trumps) has the advantage, so the game should be played over several rounds to even out the luck of the deal. There is considerable scope for players with a good memory, since you should know exactly what is in your opponents hand. It is often the case

of "If I did this, what would he do?",with the object of setting up chances to take tricks with a high point value.The last trick is often crucial and there are some obvious positions which lead to high value tricks.

If the final position is:

West:

2S,East:4Sand3S,East wins16 pointson any lead.If the final position is:

West:

2H,East;3Dand3CWest wins16 pointson any lead by East.If the final position is:

West:

Back to Introduction2C,East:2Dand4D. East wins8 pointson any lead.

Last updated 9th January 2002