German Whist

this is a game for two players only, using a standard pack of 52 cards
cards ranked as : A (high) K Q J 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 (low) in each suit

with Jokers this game is named Honeymoon Whist


the players agree who should deal first, and the turn to deal alternates after each hand

the deal is 13 cards each, dealt one at a time

the stock of undealt cards is placed on the table, face-down except for the top card which is turned face-up and placed on top of the stock. the suit of this face-up card determines the trump suit for the hand


the play is in tricks and consists of two stages

in the second stage, when the stock is empty, the object is to win the majorityof the tricks

the first stage

in the first stage the players compete to win good cards from the stock to add to their hand

the non-dealer leads (plays the first card) to the first trick

a trick consists of one card played by each player from their hands

the person who plays first to a trick may play any card

and in the first stage the second player may play any card

if both cards are of the same suit, the higher card wins the trick

if they are of different suits the first player wins unless the second player played a trump, in which case the trump wins

when player wins a trick s/he must take the face-up card from the top of the stock and add it to his/her hand

the loser then takes the card from the top of the stock, without showing it to the winner, so that both players again have 13 cards in their hands

the top card of the remaining stock is turned face-up by loser. this does not change the trump suit - the suit of the card turned up at the start of the play remains trump until all the cards have been played

the two cards played to the trick are turned face down and set aside

the winner of the trick just played leads a card to the next one

the second stage

after 13 tricks have been played, there are no cards left in the stock. the winner of the 13th trick leads, and the play continues without replenishment until after 13 more tricks both players run out of cards

but this time player must put the card of the same suit if possible or trump. and only if no suit no trump in his hand then he can play any card

in this second stage each player keeps the tricks they won in front of them but with faces down, and whoever wins the majority of the 13 tricks of this second stage wins the hand - no scoring of cards' values in this game


some count all the tricks towards winning, rather than just the tricks in stage 2. the player who wins the majority of the 26 tricks wins, and if each player takes 13 the game is drawn

Honeymoon Whist incorporates the above variation and adds two Jokers to the deck


notice that tricks won in the first stage do not count towards winning the game; the sole aim in the first stage is to collect cards that will enable you to win the majority of tricks in the second stage. therefore you only try to win a trick if you judge that the exposed card on top of the stock is likely to be better than the card underneath it

for example if Heartsare trumps and the exposed card is the ♦5 you would definitely try to lose the trick, as the next card is likely to be better

even if the exposed card is average (say the ♠J when Heartsare trumps) you would not use a high card to win it, as all this would achieve would be to replace a high card in your hand by an average one