Knock-out Whist
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Knock-out Whist

Knock out Whist is also known as Trumps in Britain, Rat, Reduction Whist and Diminishing Whist. A simple trick taking game, Knock out Whist is often taught to children or those unfamiliar to card games so that the concept of ‘tricks’ is made clearer. For this game, a pack of 52 cards is used, with the cards ranking high to low from A, K, Q, and so on, till 2. This game can be played by 2 to 7 players, with one player dealing seven cards each to the players in a clockwise manner. The topmost card that is on the pile of un-dealt cards will indicate the trump suit, which is turned face upwards.

The player to left of the dealer begins with the first trick of the game. Players have to play a card that is of the same suit in a trick, with the highest ranking card of that suit winning the trick. Tricks can be won if a trump card is played, provided the player has run out of the suit being played. The player to win a trick leads on to the next trick by playing first. After the first hand has been played, that is six cards remain with each player, a second hand is dealt. The game continues like this, till the pack is exhausted. The winner of maximum number of tricks in one game selects the trumps for the next hand. In case there is no dominant winner then the players who have tied cut cards to decide trumps. A player who has no tricks from the previous hand is knocked out, and is out of the game. However, there are certain exceptions to the rule of being knocked out. The first player to incur no tricks is not knocked out from the next game, but awarded the ‘Dog’s life’. The player with this tag gets only one card on the next hand, and is allowed to decide which trick to play it in. If this player does not wish to play a certain trick, s/he simply taps on the board. This player will not necessarily have to begin the trick, even if s/he is on the immediate left of the dealer. There is only one Dog’s life allotted to players during the game, but if two or more players take no tricks on the same deal and they did not using a Dog’s life before, will get one each. Players who do not take any tricks in the later deals are knocked out immediately.

If a player with a dog’s life manages a trick with the one card, the player on the left leads the next trick and the dog’s life player is dealt a normal hand next time. The dog’s life player is treated like any other player in case this happens. The player who survives all the rounds is the winner, or if there are several players till the end, one who wins the tricks on the final hand, wins the game. The game of knock out Whist is a great ‘tricks’ game for beginners, and it can be enjoyed by veteran players as well.
May 6, 2008, 8:46 am

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