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California Jack
Rules for Card Games

California Jack, a variety of Seven Up, is a card game of the All Fours family and shares the same trick taking rules with them. As a point trick taking game, the objective is to win tricks with valuable cards in them including Aces, Tens and Court cards. California Jack is a card game for two people.

The Cards

A standard deck of 52 cards. Cards rank A, K, Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 in each suit.

Shuffle and Cut

To determine the trump suit, the deck is cut and then shuffled again before the deal.

The Deal

Each player is dealt six cards in batches of three, with the rest of the deck left face up in the middle of the table to form the stock.

The Play

The Non-Dealer leads to the first trick and thereafter the winner of the trick leads to the next.

The Rules

These non-standard trick taking rules apply:

  • If a trump is led, then the player must follow suit.
  • If a plain suit is led, then the player may either follow suit or play a trump.
  • If youíre not going to trump in, then you still have to follow suit, if you have a card of the suit led.
  • If you canít follow suit, then you may play any card. You donít have to trump in.
  • The trick is won by the highest trump played to it. If no trumps are played, the trick is won by the highest card of the suit led.

The Winner of the trick takes up the top card of the stock, while the loser of the trick takes the next card. Once the stock is exhausted, then players play out the last six tricks according to the same rules outlined above.

Scoring

One point each is awarded for:

Point

Description

Card

High

The player who has the highest trump

Ace of Trumps

Low

The player who wins the lowest trump in a trick

Two of Trumps

Jack

The player who wins the Jack of Trumps in a trick

Jack of Trumps

Game

1 point is awarded to the player who wins the Ten of Trumps in a trick

10 of Trumps

Points are awarded in this strict order: High, Low, Jack, Game.

Game

California Jack is played over several hands to a grand total of 7 points. If both players reach 7 points at the end of the hand, points are awarded in order High, Low, Jack, Game Ė and the player who reaches 7 first wins the game.

Variations

Shasta Sam is a variation on California Jack where the stock is left face downwards. The top card is faced to establish trumps. On each successive trick, the top card is faced upwards, with the winner of the trick taking the top card, and the loser of the trick taking the next face down card. Points are awarded in the same manner as for California Jack.


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