OBJECT OF 4-PLAYER NAPOLEON: The object of 4-Player Napoleon is to be the first player to reach a set score.


MATERIALS: A standard 52 card deck, a way to keep score, and a flat surface.

TYPE OF GAME: Point-Trick Card Game



4-Player Napoleon is a point-trick card game playable by 4 players. The goal of the game is to be the first player to score enough points to win.

Players should determine the score that will end the game.


The dealer is chosen at random. They will shuffle the deck and deal each player a hand of 12 cards each in clockwise order. The remaining 4 cards are left face down in the center as the blind. The dealer passes to the left for each new deal.

Card/Suit Ranking and Scoring Cards

The ranking is traditional with Ace (high), King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, and 2 (low).

There are also a few cards that beat cards of the trump suit but remain a part of their suit. The ace of spades is the highest-ranking card of the game and beats all other cards. The Jack of the trump suit is the second-highest ranked card, and the third is the jack of the same color as the trump suit.

To give you an example of this we will same hearts are trumps. Hearts rank Jack, Ace, King, Queen, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, and 2. Diamonds rank Jack, Ace, King, Queen, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, and 2, and the other two suits rank the same.

Some cards are used for scoring and players will be trying to win in tricks, these include the Aces, Kings, Queens, Jacks, and 10s of each suit.


After the cards are dealt each player will have a round of bidding to participate in. Players may bid in any order. A player will have the option to bid higher than the previous highest bid or pass. Once a player passes, they are out of the round of bidding.

A bid consists of a number 11 through 20 and a suit. The lowest bid is 11 and the highest is 20. To bid higher you must increase the number. The number is the number of scoring cards you will win in the round and the suit will be the trump suit.

If all players pass with no bids the cards are collected and redealt by the same dealer.

Once 3 players have passed the remaining player is the Napoleon and will now make his partner.

The Napoleon calls any cards that they do not hold, and the holder of the card will be their partner. They do not reveal themselves but will become revealed through the game.

The dealer will then deal the last four remaining cards to each player. Each player should have a hand of 13 cards.


The Napoleon leads the first trick. They may lead whatever card they choose. The following players must still follow suit if able and may play whatever they wish if they cannot. 

There is also an additional rule of twos that is used. The ruling is that if all the cards played to a trick are all the same rank, the 2 of the suit becomes the 4th highest ranked card.

The trick is won by the ace of spades if applicable, then by the jack of the trump suit, then by the same colored trump, and then by the highest-ranked trump, and finally by the highest card of the suit lead. The winner of a trick collects, and score cards and discards the remaining cards. they will also lead the next trick.


After the round is finished players tally their score cards. Scoring varies, but below are the options.

If Napoleon’s team wins the napoleon scores 3(4, or 1 point for other variations) points, their teammate scores 1(2 or 1), and the other players lose 2(3 or 1) points each. If the Napoleon’s team lost, the napoleon loses 3(4 or 1) points, their teammate loses 1(2 or 1), and the other players score 2(3 or 1) points each.


The game is played until a player reaches a predetermined score. They are the winner.

Amber Crook
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