OBJECT OF CÖCH: The object of Cöch is for your team to score more points than the other team.
NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 4 players
MATERIALS: A 40-card Cucco deck, a way to keep score, and a flat surface.
TYPE OF GAME: Trick-Taking Card Game
OVERVIEW OF CÖCH
Cöch is a 4-player trick-taking game. There are two teams of two with partners sitting across from each other throughout the game. The goal of the game is for your team to score most of the game points. Players score points by winning certain cards in tricks.
The first dealer is chosen at random and will pass to the right at the beginning of each new round. The dealer will take the deck and shuffle it and deal each player 10 cards in total, 5 cards at a time, anticlockwise. The game begins as soon as players all receive their hands.
Card Rankings and Points
There are two suits of cards in the deck. There are figure cards and joker cards. Each set contains a pair of 10 cards, so 20 of each suit. Cards in the figure suit are marked with a Roman numeral, marked 1 through 10. They rank in numeric order from 1 (lowest) to 10 (highest).
The suit of jokers is marked with different illustrations to show which card is which. The ranking order from lowest of Matto also known as the Fool, Mascherone also known as the Great Mask, Secchia or the Bucket, Nulla or Zero, XI Osteria or Inn, XII Gatto or Cat, XIII Cavallo or Horse, XIIII Bragon, XV Cucco or cuckoo, and finally the highest-ranked joker the Brescia or Lion.
The cards also have point values attached to them. Figures 5 through 9 are worth ½ a point. Figure 10 is worth 1 point. The jokers XI, XII, XIII, XIIII, XV, and the Lion are also worth 1 point each. All other cards have no value associated with them. There are 19 possible points in the deck.
In Cöch there are no trumps, so each trick is always won by the highest played card of the suit led. In the case of two highest cards of equal value the first card played would win.
The game starts with the player to the right of the dealer and continues from them anticlockwise. The first player will lead any card they wish. Other players must follow suit if able and if not may play any other card. The winner of the trick, as described above will lead the next trick. This continues until all tricks are won. When a player wins a trick, they collect all cards a part of the trick and place them in a facedown pile next to them for scoring later.
Once all tricks are won and the round is over players can combine piles with their teammates and begin scoring. The team with 10 or more points has scored the majority and has won the round.
If the teams tie with 9 and a half points all cards are rescored under a different scoring rubric. 5s and 10s are worth no points. 1s, 4s, and 6s are worth 1 point each. 2s, 7s, and 12s are worth 2 points each. 3s, 8s, and 13s are worth 3 points each. 4s, 9s, and 14s are worth 4 points each. 15s are worth 5 points, and the Lions are worth 6 points each. This means there are now 82 points available the player who scores 42 or more is now the winner. Another tie results in no winner at all.
END OF GAME
The game is won by the team who scores the majority of the available points.
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