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Love That Joker

Contributed by Ross Powell (ross_powell1@excite.com), who writes: "I first introduced my friends at work to "Oh Hell!" about a year ago, and we have come up with a variation that adds some surprise and humor to the game (as if it weren't humorous enough already) that others may enjoy: Jokers."

Add two distinguishable Jokers to the regular deck, one being designated High, the other Low. These Jokers are considered wild, and can be played virtually at any time on any trick. Either joker can be played as being of higher rank than the Ace of any suit, or lower than the 2, at the player's discretion. This adds a greater element of chance, especially in instances where you might be bidding on an Ace of a suit and someone else will play their Joker to be higher, or when you are trying to avoid a trick by leading the 2, and someone plays their Joker "under" it, rather than playing a higher card.

There are some stipulations to the use of Jokers:

  1. The Joker must be declared a certain value when it is played, such as "This is the High trump" or "This is the Low Diamond".
  2. In the case where both Jokers are played with the same designation on the same trick (for example both are high clubs or both are low spades), then for the purpose of deciding who has won the trick, the High Joker ranks higher than the Low Joker.
  3. If a non-trump is led and you can follow suit, you cannot play a Joker declaring it to be a trump. (Although you could declare it to be the High of that suit which then makes it vulnerable to being trumped by another player...)

Also, on the rare occasion that a Joker is turned over to indicate trump, there is considered to be No Trump, except for the other Joker. With than in mind, the other Joker is NOT required to be trump, but it is the only card that CAN be trump. Again, the Jokers are wild cards, and can be played at any time on any trick, with only rare exceptions.


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Last updated 8th January 2002