THE BASICS OF COINCHE
Whatever the card game being played, you will need a deck of cards…
In coinche, a deck of 32 cards is what you need: from the 7 to the Ace in each suit (Diamonds, Hearts, Spades and Clubs).
Belote coinchée is played by four players divded into two teams of two.
The aim of each deal is to make a contract.
The aim of the game is to be the first team to reach a total of 1501 points.
One deal is made up of two main phases called “the bidding” and “the card play”.
How a game of coinche progresses
Bidding and dealing of the cards
The bidding phase determines the team that must fulfil a contract on the deal.
Unlike classic belote, the dealer (designated randomly) has to deal out all 8 cards to each player straightaway.
Once all the cards have been distributed, the bidding phase begins…
The players take it in turns to speak, always counterclockwise and starting with the player to the right of the dealer. Each player must say whether he is passing or accepting.
A player who wants to accept must announce the level of his contract as well as the trump suit. Example: 80 Clubs.
The value of the contract corresponds to the number of points the player and his partner commit to making in order to win the deal. The minimum bid starts at 80 points.
The strain of the contract sets the trump suit for the rest of the hand.
Remember the order and value of the trump cards:
In the trump suit, the Jack is worth 20 points, the 9 is worth 14 points, the Ace is 11 points, the 10 is 10 points, the King 4 points and the Queen 3 points. The 8 and 7 do not win you any points.
Remember the order and value of the non-trump cards:
In No-Trumps, the Ace is worth 11 points, the 10 is worth 10 points, the King is 4 points, the Queen 3 points and the Jack 2 points. The 9, 8 and 7 do not win you any points.
On each other player’s turn, they can overbid. An overbid is made at the level of 10 more points than the previous bid.
If there is an overbid, another round of bidding is made in order to validate it (or not).
The highest bid is “capot”. The team announcing it has to make every trick on the hand.
BID AT NO TRUMP OR ALL TRUMP
A particularity of coinche is that the players can also choose to bid No-Trumps or All-Trumps. Some changes need to be taken into account.
As the name indicates, when you play a game in “No-Trumps”, there are no trump cards for the tricks.
It is therefore not possible to ruff with a trump or to announce “belote and rebelote”.
The values of the cards in No-Trumps are as follows:
The Ace counts 19 points, the 10 counts 10 points, the King counts 4 points, the Queen counts 3 points, the Jack counts 2 points, the 9, 8 and 7 count 0.
Conversely, when a deal is played in “All-Trumps”, all cards are considered trumps.
It is therefore not possible to ruff with a trump here either.
The players can announce up to four belote rebelotes and score up to 80 extra points.
The values of the cards in All-Trumps are as follows:
The Jack is worth 13 points, the 9 is worth 9 points, the Ace is 6 points, the 10 is 5 points, the King 3 points and the Queen 2 points. The 8 and 7 do not win you any points.
COINCHE AND SURCOINCHE
When a bid is announced by a player, an opponent can decide to “coinche” when it comes to his turn to speak.
This means that he thinks that the accepters will not make the number of points they just bid.
The accepter and his partner may also “surcoinche” if they do not agree and think they will be able to make the contract they have committed to.
Coinched and surcoinched contracts do not bring in the same number of points at the end of the game.
Note that it is no longer possible to overbid if there has been a coinche, except for capot. If someone surcoinches, the bidding round ends immediately.
The play of the cards
ANNOUNCEMENTS IN COINCHE
Once the level of the contract and the strain have been fixed by the winner of the bidding, the game can begin.
In the first round of the bidding, each participant can declare an announcement as he is playing his card.
The announcements correspond to the combinations that can be made with a certain number of cards (squares or sequences). They allow each team to win extra points.
Here are the different combinations of possible announcements and the total number of points they bring in:
Four jacks count 200 points, four 9s count 150 points, four aces count 100 points, four 10s count 100 points, four kings count 100 points and four queens count 100 points.
A sequence of 5 cards in the same suit and in the order 7, 8, 9, 10, Jack, Queen, King, Ace is worth 100 points.
A sequence of 4 cards in the same suit is worth 50 points.
A sequence of 3 cards in the same suit is worth 20 points.
After the first trick, when the first card of the second trick is played, we move on to the “resolution” or “reveal” of the announcements. The one who has the best announcement scores the equivalent number of points straightaway.
Special case: value of squares in a no-trump contract
When the contract has been determined as No-Trumps, meaning that there is no trump suit for the deal, the value of announced squares is as follows:
Square in No-Trumps
Square In no-trump
Four aces count 200 points, four 10s count 150 points, four kings count 100 points, four queens count 100 points, four jacks count 100 points and four 9s count 100 points.
Once the points for announcements have been counted up, the play of the cards goes ahead according to the same principles as in classic belote.
As a reminder:
– The values of the cards vary between the trump suit and the other suits.
– You must play a card in the same suit as the one led or ruff with a trump if you do not have any.
– The strongest card wins the trick.
– When the led suit is a trump, the players must play a higher trump unless they do not have one or their partner is currently winning the trick.
End of the deal: how do you count up the points in coinche?
The deal ends when the 8 tricks have been played.
The counting of points for each team must now be carried out.
In this calculation, these should be counted:
The value of the cards.
– The announcements.
– The 10 of der: the team that won the last trick gets 10 bonus points.
– Belote and rebelote: 20 extra points are awarded to the team that announced “belote” and “rebelote” when playing the King and Queen of Trumps.
– Capot: the team that won all 8 tricks on the deal wins 250 points.
– The general: if just one player has won all 8 tricks on the deal, his team scores 350 points.
In coinche, the points are all rounded to the nearest ten.
Example: 95 points get rounded to 100, whereas 94 get rounded to 90.
Be careful: you cannot make your contract by rounding up to it. If the contract set by the team that accepted is for 100 points and they get 99 points, the contract is down.
In order to win the round, the team that accepted must fulfill one of the two following conditions:
• Reaching a number of points equal to or over the contract they bid at the beginning of the game.
• Scoring a higher number of points than the opposing team.
When that is the case, they score the total number of points that they achieved, as well as the level of their contract.
The defenders score the number of points they got.
Note that if the winning team makes a capot (whether or not they said it during the bidding), they also score their opponents’ points. We say that the announcements have “changed hands”.
If the contract was coinched or surcoinched
The team that accepted scores:
• 160 extra points (or 250 points if there was a capot)
• Their announcements
• Belote and rebelote
• The level of their contract
• Their opponents’ announcements
Coinche multiplies this total by 2 and surcoinche multiplies it by 4.
The other team does not score any points (except the final 20 points from belote and rebelote).
Failed coinche game
If the team that accepted does not fulfil the winning conditions described above, they go down in their contract.
They score 0 points (except for the possible 20 points for belote and rebelote).
The opposing team scores:
• 160 points for taking them down
• Their announcements
• Belote and rebelote
• The level of the accepter’s contract
• The accepting side’s announcements
If the contract has been coinched or surcoinched
This is all multiplied by 2 if it has been coinched or by 4 if it has been surcoinched.
END OF GAME
The first team to reach 1501 points wins the game.
If the two teams exceed this number at the same time, the team with the highest score wins.
If the two teams are equal, they must play one final game as a decider.
You can also find the official rules of classic belote and belote contrée on our funbelote.com site!
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