Buck Euchre is a variation for four players. Variously known as ‘Cut Throat’ or ‘Dirty Clubs’, what sets this version apart from other games of Euchre is that there are no fixed partnerships – each player plays for themselves. Additionally, Buck Euchre there is a penalty for any player who does not win a trick.
Take a standard deck of English playing cards and remove all the cards 8’s and down. This will give you a deck of 24 cards; A, K, Q, J, 10, 9 in each suit.
In any off-suit, cards rank:
For a call of ‘No-Trumps’, cards rank as for the off-suit, A, K, Q, J, 10 and 9.
Deal and play are clockwise, and the deal proceeds to the left at the end of each hand. Each player is dealt 5 cards, in batches of two and three. The next card is turned face up and placed on top of the remaining deck.
Call or Pass
If the upturned card is a club, then clubs are trumps without further discussion. Each player is obliged to win at least one trick or suffer the penalty.
If the upturned card is not a club, then beginning with the player to the Dealer’s left, each player takes it in turn to either order the Dealer to pick it or they can pass. If the card is ordered up, then that suit becomes trumps. The Dealer takes the card up to his hand and discards another face down. If all players pass, including the Dealer, the upturned card is turned face down, and beginning with the player to the Dealer’s left, each player takes it in turn to either pass or name a trump suit. A player may also elect to make a call of ‘No Trumps’. A player can name any suit trumps, except the suit that was turned down. As soon as trumps is established, the player who called it becomes the ‘Maker’ and is committed to winning at least three of the five tricks.
If all players pass, and no game is called, then the hand is thrown in and the deal proceeds to the left.
Staying in or Dropping Out
Once a trump is established or a game of no-trumps called, beginning with the player to the Maker’s left, each player must state whether they are staying in or dropping out. If you drop out you take no part in play and you avoid the risk of incurring a penalty for not winning a trick. Anyone who stays in must take at least one trick or suffer the penalty.
Left of the Dealer leads first, and thereafter the winner of the trick leads to the next.
Standard trick taking rules apply:
In Buck Euchre, each player starts with 25 points. Points for wins are deducted, and points for losses added. Thus the first player to reach or go below zero wins the game.
Each player is subtracted one point for each trick taken in the hand.
If anyone takes all 5 tricks, they immediately win the game.
Other Variations of Euchre
Euchre – The Standard Rules
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