OBJECTIVE OF MÄTÄPESÄ: The objective of Mätäpesä is to not win the last trick of the round.


MATERIALS: A standard 52 card deck, and a flat surface.

TYPE OF GAME: Trick-Taking Card Game 



Mätäpesä is a trick-taking game for 3 to 8 players. It is related to the game Cucumber. It’s a relatively simple game and can be used to show smaller children how to play similar, but more complicated card games.


To set up a player will be the dealer for the round. They will shuffle the deck and deal each player as many cards as they can to each player evenly. The remaining cards are placed face up for all players to see.

The cards are ranked with Ace being the highest and 2 being the lowest rank of card. The full ranking is Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2. The suit of the cards doesn’t matter in this game.


Mätäpesä is played over a single round but has no traditional end of the game. To start the game the player to the dealer’s left will play the first card of the trick. From then on, the winner of the trick will start the next one. 

When playing a trick in Mätäpesä the player who starts the trick may play any card they would like. The remaining players must then play a card that is the same or higher rank or they must play their lowest ranking card. The player with the highest-ranked card or the highest-ranked card played last. 

The cards played by players will remain in front of them. Anyone can look through other players’ cards when deciding what cards to play for their turn. 

The player to win the last trick loses the game.


There is no official scoring system to this game.


The game ends after a single round. The player who loses will deal for the next game.

Amber Crook
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