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Treason

Contributed by Tom Retter (tomretter@yahoo.com), who writes:

Treason is a new card game which I have invented myself. It is based on whist and unlike many whist games is probably best suited for 3 players. All 52 cards in a regular pack of cards are used.

The objective

The three players play individually, all trying to beat each other. The objective of the game is to have the most tricks at the end of the game, the player who does so wins a 'game', after every game the deal rotates and the player on the dealers left leads first. Once a player has won two games he has won the rubber. Matches can be played for any amount of rubbers, decided at the start of every match.

The play

17 cards are dealt to each of the 3 players, with one card left over. The remaining card is placed face up for all players to see, and the suit of this card becomes trumps.

The player left of dealer leads a chosen card and play goes round to the rules of whist, there is therefore a maximum of 17 tricks to be won. However the main aspect of the game is that if a player wins a trick which contains any of the 4 queens, regardless of if it was played by themselves or not, that player loses all the tricks he had won up to that point. He does however get to lead off for the next trick, as does any player who wins the previous trick.

Tactics of the game

As the game is new, and has been played very little, the tactics are still in their early stages, one of the great aspects of the game is that players can make up and try unproven tactics, and see how the other players respond. However, in the games short history some special names have been given to certain moves, one of the most used names is a Kirby, this is when a player discards his queens early, and therefore not losing tricks later in the game. A Kirby is often used when a player has many trumps, or cards above the value of queens (kings and Aces).

Another interesting tactic named after the inventor of the game is the Retter, which is when trumps or high cards are played early in the game. This is very defensive play and prevents the winning of tricks later on, this is good when opponents hold their queens back for later play, and is good in low scoring games.

Suggestions from players of the game are that you should play the game like hearts, and others say you should play as normal whist, however both ideas have obvious problems.


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Last updated 5th January 2002