OBJECT OF KLOEPPER: The object of Kloepper is to be the first player to score 30 points.


MATERIALS: A modified deck of 52-cards, a way to keeps score, and a flat surface.

TYPE OF GAME: Trick-Taking Card Game

AUDIENCE: Teens, Adults


Kloepper is a trick-taking card game for 4 players. The goal of the game is to be the first player to score 30 points.

Players play in partnerships, but these change each round depending on who has what cards.


The deck must be modified first by removing all cards 8 and lower. This leaves a deck of 24 cards.

One player will agree to keep score and the player to their left will be the first dealer, proceeding clockwise for each new round. The dealer will shuffle the deck and deal each player a hand of 6 cards. This is done in batches of 3 cards at a time.

Players who hold the two black queens will be partners. The other players will also form a partnership. If only one player holds both black queens, they may either appoint a partner be calling for the ace of any non-trump suit or go at it alone. If they decide to go alone the other three players will form a partnership for the round.

Card Ranking and Values

The ranking for the game is different for the trump suit and non-trump suits. Trumps consist of the two black queens, all jacks, and the diamond suit. They rank the queen of clubs (high), queen of spades, jack of clubs, jack of spades, jack of hearts, jack of diamonds, ace, 10, king, queen, and 9 of diamonds (low).

The non-trump suits rank Ace (high), 10, King, Queen, and 9 (low). The suits also rank clubs (high), spades, hearts (low).

There are also values associated with cards for scoring. Aces are worth 11 points, 10s are worth 10 points, kings are worth 4 points, queens are worth 3 points, jacks are worth 2 points and 9s are worth nothing.


The game starts with the player left of the dealer. They may lead any card and the following players must follow suit if able. If not able to follow suit you may play any card including trumps. The trick is won by the player who plays the highest trump if applicable, if not then by the player who plays the highest card of the suit originally led. The winner of the trick takes it into their score pile and leads the next trick.


At any time before the second trick, a player who holds a black queen may knock. This means they will attempt to win all the tricks. A non-queen player may also knock in response to state they will win at least one trick. This will affect scoring later.


After the round partnerships will tally their scores. If the black queen partnership scored at least 61 points they gain 2 game points, or 6 if a player went alone. If they score at least 91 points they score 4 points, or 12 points if a player went alone. If they won all the tricks, they score 6 points, or 18 points if they went alone.

If the non-queen partnerships scored at least 60 points they score 2 points, or 4 points if the other team went alone. If they scored at least 61 points, they earn 4 points, or 6 if the other team went alone. If they scored 91 points or more, they score 6 points, or 12 if the other team went alone.

If knocking occurred the scored will differ. If the black queens were successful, they score 12 points, or if they went alone 30 points. A player who goes alone though and doesn’t succeed, causes the other team to score 30 points.

If the other team also knocked and they succeed in taking at least one tick they score 24 points, but if they fail the black hearts score 24 points instead of 12.


The game ends when a player reaches 30 points. If multiple players reach 30 points in a round additional rounds are played until one of the players comes out ahead.

Amber Crook
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