Sette e mezo

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Played around Christmas time, Sette e mezo is Italy’s take on Black Jack. Player’s try to get the highest possible score without exceeding 7½.

Players 2 or more
Equipment
Deck of cards with the 8,9, and 10 removed
Chips to use for wagers

How to play

All numbered cards are worth their face value. The Ace is worth one point. Face cards are worth a 1/2 point. King of Diamonds(or coins if playing with an Italin Deck) is wild.

Each player is playing against the dealer. Every player except the dealer stakes a wager. The maximum and minimum wager is decided by the dealer.

The dealer gives each player one card face down.

On the player’s turn he or she looks at their face down card. If player choses he or she may receive another card. If the player’s cards value is less than 7 1/2, he or she may continue to receive another card. If the player has cards that value over 7 1/2 points he or she “busts” and instantly loses the wager they made.

When a player decides that he or she does not want another card, they stand. The turn then goes to the next player.

The dealer plays last. He or she may take cards or stand. If the dealer busts he or she pay the amount wagered by the remaining players who have not busted. After the dealer stands, any player whose cards are equal or less than the value of the dealer’s loses the wager. Any player whose card value greater than the dealer wins his or her wager.

A player whose cards equal exactly 7 1/2 wins double his or her bet and becomes the new dealer.

When a player has been dealt a 7 then receives another 7 as his or her second card, it is displayed immediately and is an instant win

Unless a player wins with a 7 1/2 the deal does not change. The deck is also not shuffeled until it has run out of cards.

Pakkeleg

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Here is a game from Denmark to liven up your office Christmas party. So break out the dice and start grabbing gifts!

Players 5 or more
Equipment
1 dice
A watch
A small wrapped gift from each player
How to play

Each player brings a small wrapped gift, and all gifts are placed in the middle of the table.
Players take turns rolling the die. When a player rolls a six he or she choose a gift from the table. This continues until every gift has been taken from the table.

One player is chosen as time keeper. The players now take one turn rolling the dice as many times as he or she choses in a given amount of time agreed on before hand. When a player rolls a six he or she steas a gift from another player.

After each player has had a timed turned the gifts can be unwrapped

Meire dice

Here is a liars dice variation that only needs two dice to play. I would like to thank Liz at the blog Doing Denmark for bringing it to my attention.

Players 3 or more
Equipment
2 dice
Dice cup
Three chips or counters for each player

How to play

The first player rolls two dice keeping the result hidden from other players. The player then announces a combination of his or her choosing.

The cup and dice are passed to the next player. If he or she does not believe the call they raise the cup for all to see. The challenger loses if the last player’s call was correct. If the last player was incorrect the challenger wins.

If the player accepts the call, he or she looks at then rolls both dice keeping them hidden from the other players. After the player looks at his or her roll they must make a higher call than the last player. If after looking the player wishes to roll one more time they may, but they must not look at the dice after the new roll before making the call. The player may also chose not to look at the dice and repeat the same call or a higher one.

Ranks of calls

1 + 2: Meirer
3+1 little Meier
Pairs from 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 down to 1
6 + 5: 65
6 + 4: 64
63, 62, 61, 54, 53 etc. all the way down to 32

The losing players puts one chip into the pot. The last player with any chips is the winner.

Cuarenta

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This game is a great way to celebrate the Fiestas de Quito in Ecuador. Players try to be the first to earn forty points by capturing cards played on the table.

Players
2 or four playing as two person teams

Equipment
Deck of card with the 8, 9,and 10 cards removed

How to play

The dealer deals out five card to each player all at once.

If a player is dealt four of a kind this is an instant win

If a player is dealt three of a kind the player can call out “Ronda”, and earn four points.

The players in turn place a card face up on the table. If the card does not make a capture it remains on the table

A card makes a capture if it matches another card that is on the table or it’s numeric value match two or more cards on the table. If there are more than one potential captures on the table the player can chose which one they will make.

When making a capture any cards in a unbroken sequence higher than the player end card are also captured.

If a player captures,but fails to take all or part of a sequence capture that is available at the same time, his or her opponents may take the sequence cards for . There is no penalty for missing a matching or addition capture.

Capturing the card just played by the previous player by matching it is called a Caída. The player which makes the capture scores two extra points. If the first player after a new deal matches and captures the last card played by the dealer at the end of the previous deal it does not count as a Caída.

If a player clears the table of all cards, they recevies 2 points for a Limpia. If a player places a card down on an empty table, and the next player makes a caída on that card and captures it they would get a Limpia bonus and Caída bonus.

When all five cards have been played five new cards are dealt out and play resumes. This continues until the deck is exhausted.

When the deck is exhausted any remaining cards on the table are neither team’s. Then the captured cards are scored.

Scoring

The player or team with 20 cards scores 6 points. If a team has more than 20 cards scores they score one extra point card over 20. If both teams take 20 cards, then only the non-dealing team scores 6 points.

If a player makes a caída by capturing a card that was part of a ronda earns 10 points. The player must announce the capture and the rank of the card at the end of the hand. The bonus cannot be collected once the next deal has started

A team which has 30 or more points cannot score for rondas, or for capturing a card of the opponents’ ronda with a caída.

A team that has 38 points cannot collect for limpia. The player says “treinta y ocho que no juega” . The team can now only win the game by counting cards or with a caída.

However, a team has 36 points can still score 4 points for a caída and a limpia, thus winning the game.

The player or team who scores forty points first wins the game. The player or team that wins to games or chichas wins the match. If a player wins and their opponent has not earned at least 10 points they win two chichas. This is called a zapatería.

Tips

The unused cards from the deck are sometimes used to keep score instead of chips. Tantos are cards displayed face up and represents 2 points each. Perros are cards displayed face down and represents 10 points.

All the scoring cards start in a face-up stack between the players. Each player takes cards from the stack as he or she scores points. When a player reaches 38 points they return all their score cards and say treinta y ocho que no juega” .