Knaves is a game for 2 to 6 players, but is best for three. The game is a hybrid as it gives credit for winning trick but is still characterized by the need to avoid certain penalty cards.
A standard deck of 52 cards. Cards rank A, K, Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2.
To win tricks for a score of one point each but to avoid capturing any Jacks. Points are subtracted for each Jack according to suit as follows:
If three are playing, deal 17 cards, one at a time, to each player and turn the last card face up for trumps
Left of the dealer leads first, and whoever wins the trick leads to the next. Normal trick taking rules apply. Follow suit to the card led, if possible. If you can’t follow suit, you can play any card. The trick is won by the highest trump played to it, if no trumps are played, the trick goes to the highest card of the suit led.
Each player scores 1 point for each trick, and loses points for each Jack he/she has taken.
The first to reach 20 pts over several hands wins the game.
If four are playing, deal 13 cards to each, and the last card turned up for trumps is not set aside but belongs to the dealer.
For 5 players, deal 10 cards to each player. The two undealt cards go to the winner of the last trick.