OBJECT OF MALILLA: The objective of Malilla is to be the first team to score 35 points to win.


MATERIALS: A modified deck of 52 cards or a 40-card Spanish deck, a way to keep score, and a flat surface.

TYPE OF GAME: Trick-Taking Card Game



Malilla is a trick-taking card game for 4 players. The goal of the game is to achieve 35 points to win before your opponents.

This game is a partner game. Teammates will sit opposite of each other.


If you are modifying a deck to play with remove all the 10s, 9s, and 8s. this leaves you with a 40-card deck.

The first dealer is chosen randomly and passes to the right for each new deal. The deck is shuffled and the player to the dealer’s left may cut the deck.

The dealer then deals each player a hand of 10 cards one card at a time. The last card, which is dealt to the dealer is dealt face up to determine the trump suit. If the card has a point value associated with it the dealer’s team scores that many game points when the card is revealed unless this would win them the game. If it would win the team the game, it cannot be scored till the end of the round after the points for the round have been scored. If neither team has won after points for the round are scored, then the points for the dealt trump may be scored.  

Card Ranking and Values

The ranking for this game is 7(Also called Mililla) (high), Ace, Rey (King), Horse(Queen), Sota (Jack), 6, 5, 4, 3, and 2 (low).

The cards have values associated with them for scoring. 7s are worth 5 points, aces are worth 4 points, Reys are worth 3 points, Horses are worth 2 points and Sotas are worth 1 point. All other points do not have a point value.


The game starts with the player to the right of the dealer. They may lead any card they wish to the trick. The following players must follow suit if possible, and if their opponent is winning, they must, if possible, beat them. If you are unable to follow suit, you may (or must if an opponent is winning) play a trump. If you do not have/are not required to trump you may play any card of any suit. You cannot, however, play a non-trump 7 to a trick if its suit has not been previously led to a trick.

The trick is won by the highest trump played, if applicable. If no trumps were played, the trick is won by the highest-ranking card of the suit of the originally led card. the trick is collected into a score pile and the winner leads to the next trick.


Once all tricks have been played and won the points are scored. Players will tally the total value of all their won cards and also earn an extra point for each trick that was won. The team that scores more than 35 points will subtract their point total from 35. The remaining value is how many game points they earn for the round; the other team scores nothing.


The game ends when a team reaches or exceeds 35 points. They are the winners.

There are two special wins called Capote and Zapato.

A Capote happens when a team wins all 10 tricks in a single round. They automatically win by earning all 35 points needed in a single round.

A Zapato happens when a team reaches 35 points to win while the other team still has a score of 0.

Amber Crook
Latest posts by Amber Crook (see all)