You can find details on multiplayer versions here: How do multiplayer games work?
You can open up a game round by clicking on the button ‘New Game’. You decide who is allowed to play on the table, how high the stakes are per point, up to which limit you would like to play for and how many players (3 or 4) can take part. Of course you can also join a round already opened by another player.
It will be shown on the right side of the table which player's turn it is, the remaining time to take your turn as well as the stake and your credit. You will also be able to view the move that is required next and which trick is currently being played. The sole player is marked by a yellow hand signal. You can view the amount of points that each player has achieved so far below the player names. You have the possibility to chat with your fellow players through the chat function.
It is played with 78 cards. The basic suits hearts, diamond, spades and clubs each contain 14 cards with increasing value. Ace, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, jack, knight, queen and king.
Also there are 21 trump cards and the special card 'Excuse' (The Fool). Particularly valuable are the lowest (1) and the highest (21) trump as well as the Excuse. These 3 cards are known as the 'ends' (Les Bouts) and they are the most valuable when adding the points achieved and they decrease the score that has to be reached to win a game.
The Fool (L'Excuse)
The Excuse never wins tricks (except in case of a Pousse) but can always be played without having to follow suit or trump. If the Excuse is the first card of a trick the suit of the card played next counts. Whoever plays the Fool can keep the card even if he doesn't win the trick. The player, who has won the trick will receive a card with the value 0.5 from the tricks of the player who played the Excuse as compensation. If this player hasn't taken a trick yet the card will be displayed openly until this player has won his first trick and the card will then be shifted. If the Excuse is played in the last trick the player who has played the Excuse won't get it back. Instead the Fool will go to the winner of the trick.
If 3 players participate in the game each player receives 24 cards, with 4 players everybody receives 18 cards. 6 cards build the stock pile and will be placed in the middle of the playing field. This stock pile ('chien' = dog) will be used in different ways depending on the bidding.
If a player only holds 1 trump card (inlcuding the Excuse) the cards will be shuffled and dealt again.
Bidding takes place successively anti-clockwise. Every player can only bid once. Bidders can be outbid by players, who haven't bid yet. If all players pass the cards will be shuffled and dealt again.
The following bidding is possible:
Petite (Small) - points x 1
The sole player can use the chien cards to improve his hand and discards 6 cards afterwards. The sole player cannot pick up trump cards or kings. If you hold too many trump cards/kings to comply with this rule you can also discard trump cards but no kings or ends. The discarded trump cards will be shown to the other players. The chien will be added to your tricks at the end of the game.
Garde - points x 2
This game is the same as Petite but outranks Petite in bidding.
Garde sans le chien (Guard without the kitty) - points x 4
The chien will not be turned over and the cards will be added to the tricks of the sole player. The game counts fourfold.
Garde contre le chien (Guard against the kitty) - points x 6
The chien will not be turned over and the cards will be added to the tricks of the opponents. The game counts sixfold.
The player, who announces the highest bid is the sole player and tries to win the game by collecting enough points with his tricks (cf. scoring).
Before the first card is played the following additional bids can be made:
If you have lots of trumps and declare 'Poignée' you can score extra points depending on the number of trumps you hold. The accounced trump cards will be shown to the other players after the bidding. The party that wins will collect the points not the party that has accounced the bid.
- Plain: 13, 20 extra points
- Double: 15, 30 extra points
- Triple: 18, 40 extra points
- Plain: 10, 20 extra points
- Double: 13, 30 extra points
- Triple: 15, 40 extra points
- Plain: 8, 20 extra points
- Double: 10, 30 extra points
- Triple: 13, 40 extra points
The button 'Poignée' is only visible to you if you hold enough trumps to announce a Poignée bid. You have to click on the button before you play your first card. As soon as the first card is in the middle of the playing field the button disappears.
If one party wins all the tricks this is called Slam, which is worth 200 extra points. If you announce a Slam before playing the first card it will be rewarded with 400 extra points if you win. If you lose, 200 points will be subtracted from your score. You can only announce a Slam if you were the highest bidder and you hold the highest trump (21) because you cannot play a Slam without this card. If you hold the Excuse you can still win the Slam if you take all the tricks and play the Excuse as the last card. In this case the Excuse takes the trick.
Petit au bout
If you take the last trick with the trump 1 you will be awarded 10 extra points. You will receive this bonus if you play a Slam with the Excuse and take the penultimate trick with the trump 1.
With French Tarot you have to follow suit, trump and trick. You also have to play the suit which was led. If you have no cards of this suit you must play a trump. You have to take the trick if you hold a higher trump then the one in the middle of the playing field. If you cannot take the trick you still must play a trump. If you have neither cards of this suit nor a trump you can discard a random card.
The game is played anti-clockwise. The winner of a trick plays the first card of the next trick. If it's your turn your cards will be slightly discoloured and the cards than can be played will be slightly brighter than the others. By clicking on a card you move it to the centre of the playing field.
You can view the last trick taken by clicking on the concealed pile of cards of the player who took the last trick.
End of the game
After every round winnings and losses will be settled up and you can decide whether you wish to play another round or leave the table. In case of a draw another round will be played automatically.
The sole player has to reach a certain amount of points with his tricks. His/her opponents will try to hinder his success. The card total to be achieved depends on the number of ends the sole player has taken with his tricks:
- with 3 ends: 36 points
- with 2 ends: 41 points
- with 1 end: 51 points
- Without ends: 56 points
The following card values apply:
- 21, 1, The Excuse (ends): 4,5
- Kings: 4,5
- Queens: 3,5
- Knights: 2,5
- Jacks: 1,5
- Others: 0,5
- Overall score: 91
The overall score will be calculated as follows:
[(25 + D + P) *M] + H + C
- D: the difference between the points taken with your tricks and the value that has to be reached according to the list above.
- P: Bonus for the last trick taken with trump 1 (Petit au bout)
- M: Multiplier depending on the bidding
- H: Bonus for announcing Poignée
- C: Bonus for announcing Slam
If the overall score contains half points these will be rounded up. Example: A sole players wins against 2 players. He has 0.5 points more than he needs. According to the calculation above the player will be awarded 25.5 points (25 points for the won game, 0.5 points extra). The opponents lose 26 points, the winner gets 52 points.
The score calculated will then be subtracted from the loser and awarded to the winner. A sole player playing against 3 opponents receives these points 3 times or has to deliver them to the opposing party.