Suits and values

Suits and values – the tricks of the world’s most popular card games

Card games are not only in Germany, but worldwide a popular pastime or are played professionally at tournaments. The following guide deals, among other things, with card game classics, such as poker, blackjack or Doppelkopf, their color symbolism, valence as well as tricks and tricks. In addition, lesser-known card games in Germany, such as Black Frog, Red Frog or Hanabi are also highlighted.  

In card games there are four suits, which, depending on the game, differ in their valence.

Skat, Poker and Doppelkopf will now be examined in more detail.

Symbolism of the suits: from Asia to Europe

How we perceive colors always has something to do with our cultural background. For example, the colors of the card game, red and black, have different symbolism in different cultures.

In Asia, the color black symbolizes power, money, but also deep thought, lack of hope and gloomy mood. Black is not a color of mourning in Asian culture, but is rather associated with profession as well as power and money.

Red represents life and is the color most associated with happiness among Asians. Joy, love and growth are symbolized by red. Red also conveys energy and can ward off evil forces. In addition, red represents the highest Yang color and symbolizes the element of fire in Feng Shui. In Japan, however, red is also associated with aggression and danger.

In European countries, the color black is symbolic of mourning, death and depression, and worry. In France, black is also associated with jealousy. Red, just like in Asia, also symbolizes love and fire in Europe. In addition, red in European countries can also be associated with passion, with danger or aggression. In France, red also stands for shyness and in Portugal for war.

In the card game, however, there are not two suits available, as many might think when looking at the black and red cards, but four. Clubs, spades, hearts and diamonds are each counted as a separate suit. This is due to the fact that the suits of the card game have changed several times throughout history. Early card games in Europe, for example, were red, green, yellow, and black, according to the article “Black and Red on Twisted Paths.” Card games originally came from Asia and within Europe from Italy to Germany. But in this country, probably no one could do anything with the symbolism of the Italian cards and a new symbolism was developed. For example, in Germany at that time there was the acorn, which was black, the foliage, which was green, the heart in red and the bell in yellow. 

Ranking in Skat: Excursus: Color Game

Ranking in Skat: Excursus: Color Game

The color game is the most frequently played game in Skat. The basic value of the game is determined by the color of the game. In the color game in Skat, the following basic values are assigned to the individual colors:

  • Hearts: 10
  • Diamonds: 9
  • Clubs: 12
  • Spades: 11

There are always 11 trumps in a suit game. All seven cards of the suit in question and the four Jacks are counted. The Jack of Clubs is the highest trump, followed by the Jack of Spades, the Jack of Hearts and finally the Jack of Diamonds. This is followed by the cards of the announced trump suit.

Ranking in poker: Excursus: Examples of poker hands

In poker, too, there is a certain ranking that decides whether you win or lose. The best poker hand is the royal flush, a straight flush with the ace as the highest card value.

This is followed by the straight flush, i.e. five ascending cards of one suit. One level below that is the four of a kind. This is four cards of the same value, for example four Jacks. The full house, three cards of the same value combined with a pair, is the next poker hand in the ranking, followed by the flush, which is five cards of one suit. In the following PDF you can see all poker hands including explanation.

Doppelkopf Order of trumps: Excursus: Special rules

In Doppelkopf, each card has a certain point value, regardless of whether it is a trump (Queen and Jack of all suits as well as 10 of Hearts and Ace, King, 10 and 9 of Diamonds) or not and also regardless of its ranking order. There are many special rules of the popular card game Doppelkopf.

The Cowardice Rule

The Cowardice Rule

  This increases the risk of players with particularly good hands. If a team, whether Re or Kontra, scores more than 210 points, but has previously announced neither “Re” nor “Kontra”, then the points scored after normal counting are credited to the opposing team.

The game with the joker

In some doubleheaded hands there is a joker. In the game with the Joker, the Joker is the highest trump in all games in which the Queens, Jacks and Duels are also trumps. If a game with nines takes place, a nine of diamonds is replaced by the joker. The joker then counts as zero. In a game without nines, the king of diamonds is replaced by the joker, which then counts for four points. An additional trump in the game is thus in the case of Clubs, Spades and Hearts solos.

Kings of Diamonds as Foxes

  If Kings of Diamonds are foxes, it is possible that during the game it must be decided whether it is more important to stab the suit with the Ace of Diamonds or to bring home the fox, i.e. the King of Diamonds. Both preferences fall on one card when the aces of diamonds are the foxes.

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