Learning how to play games from other regions, how other countries play, and how different cultures enjoy their pastime is always awesome.
So, when I came across Brisca, I couldn’t wait to find out more, and it quickly became one of my all-time favorite card games.
Brisca is a Spanish trick-taking card game that can be played with between two and four players.
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So, let’s go!
Brisca Card Values
Before we get into the details of how to play Brisca, I’ll quickly walk you through the card values of this Spanish card game so you can understand before we get started.
- Seven to Two: 0 Points
- Jack: 2 Points
- Horse: 3 Points
- King: 4 Points
- Three: 10 Points
- Ace: 11 Points
First, each player is dealt three cards, one at a time. This should be done in a clockwise rotation. Remember to shuffle the deck before you begin.
It’s up to you how you pick the dealer; you can select randomly, or we always like to choose the person with the next upcoming birthday. However, after the first round, the winner of the previous round will be the dealer.
The rest of the cards should be placed in the center, face down, with the top card flipped over next to it for everyone to see.
Rules and How to Play Brisca Card Game?
The player sitting to the dealer’s right is the first to take their turn. Once they’ve revealed the first card from their hand, the rest of the players can take turns.
Now, you don’t need to be concerned with matching suits or playing trumps.
The person to win the trick is whoever has the highest trump or highest suit.
Whoever wins the first trick is the first person to draw a new card from the deck, followed by the rest of the players. This person is also the first to take their turn in the next round.
The first player now plays any card from their hand, and the rest of the players follow, as they did in the first round.
Whichever player has the highest trump always wins the round, but the person with the highest card suit wins in the case of no trump card.
The game continues like this until no cards are left in the middle of the table, which means the more players you have, the fewer rounds there will be and the shorter the game.
1. Swapping Cards
There are times when you can swap out the face-up card in the middle of the table. You can do this with a seven of the same suit, and only if the center card is a Jack, Horse, King, one, or three.
Another instance where you can do this is if you have a 2 of the same suit as the trump, and the trump is either a 4, 5, 6, or 7.
There are some other rules regarding swapping, though. You can only perform a swap if you have already won a trick. You must also make sure you make the swap before playing a card.
You can only perform one swap per turn.
The scoring process is simple: using the card values I mentioned earlier, at the end of each round, the points of the cards won in each trick are added together, and the player with the highest amount of points wins.
If you’re playing with four players, then you’ll have played the game in teams of two, meaning to score at the end, you’ll need to total the amount of both player’s points to get the final value.
3. Playing in Teams
If you have been playing in teams, there are a few sneaky hints and tips you can use to communicate. Since players aren’t allowed to show each other their cards, you can find other ways to let your partner know what to do next.
You should be careful, though; you don’t want to let your opponents catch you passing signals.
If you wanted, you could even discuss your secret actions with your partner before you start, but below is an idea of some of the signals you can use.
- Make assertive eye contact to ask your partner for a hint at what cards they have.
- Stick your tongue out if you have a Jack of Trump.
- Pout if you have a King of Trump.
- Raise your eyebrows if you have an Ace of Trump.
- Wink if you have a Three of Trump.
- Yawn to let your partner know to play a points card that does not match the trump.
Let’s Wrap Things Up
So, that’s how you play the Brisca card game, a simple game that requires minimal strategy but keeps everyone on their toes. I hope this has opened your mind to participating in games from other cultures. Once you’ve mastered this game, you might want to explore other games, such as those played in Japan.