OBJECT OF 5-CARD LOO: The object of 5-card Loo is to win bids and collect stakes from other players.

NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 5 to 10 players. 

MATERIALS: A standard deck of 52 cards, chips or money for bidding, and a flat surface.

TYPE OF GAME: Rams Card Game



5-card Loo is a Rams card game. The goal of both is to win as many tricks as possible so you can win stakes.

Players should determine before the game begins how much a stake will be worth.


The first dealer is chosen at random and passes to the left for each new deal.

For 5-card Loo, the dealer places 5 stakes into the pot, and deals each player a hand of 5 cards. the remaining cards are placed facedown next to the dealer and the top card is revealed to determine the trump suit.

Card Ranking

The ranking 5-card Loo is Ace (high), King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, and 2 (low). There are trumps suits that rank over the other suits. In 5-card Loo the jack of spades is special, called Pam. It ranks highest out of all cards, beating even the ace of trumps.


There are special hands in 5-card Loo called flushes. A flush is 5 cards all of the same suit, or 4 of the same suit and Pam. They rank flush with pam, flush of trumps, then flush of high cards. The player who holds the best flush before or after exchanging cards may “looes the board”. If this is declared the player is deemed to win without playing and is payed by any player not holding pam or a flush.

After flushes are settled announcements are made. Each player will either fold or play, starting with the player left of the dealer. Each player playing may discard any number of cards which are redealt to them by the dealer from the stock.

After announcements are made the game starts with the player closes to the dealer left that is playing. A player may lead any card. if a player leads the ace of trumps, they may call for Pam to be civil. This means the player may not play pam unless it is their only trump. If pam is led, all players must play a trump if possible.

Following players must always attempt to win and follow suit if able. If not able, then they must play a trump, also trying to win if possible. If neither are possible you may play any card you wish.

The trick is won by the player with the highest trump, or the highest card of the suit led if there were no trumps. The winner of the trick leads the next and must lead a trump if they have any.


In 5-card Loo each trick earns the winner a fifth of the pot. Anyone who does not win any tricks must pay an agreed upon number of stakes to the pot after payouts.


The game ends when players wish to stop playing. There is no set number of rounds, though each player may want to be dealer an equal number of times, so it is fair to all players.

Amber Crook
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