OBJECTIVE OF NICARAGUAN PEDRO: The objective of Nicaraguan Pedro is to be the first team to reach 52 points.


MATERIALS: A 52-card deck, a way to keep score, and a flat surface.

TYPE OF GAME: Trick-Taking Card Game



Nicaraguan Pedro is a trick-taking card game for 4 players. These 4 players will split into two partnerships of 2 players and teammates will sit opposite of each other.

The goal of the game is to reach 52 points. Teams do this by bidding on how many tricks they think they can win in the round and winning certain point cards.


The first dealer is chosen at random and passes to the left after each round. The dealer will shuffle the deck and deal each player a hand of 7 cards. Then the bidding round can begin.

Card Rankings and Values

Nicaraguan Pedro has two different rankings, one for the trump suit and one for non-trump suits. For Nicaraguan Pedro, the trump can change each round, this can change the cards in the rankings. The 5 of the suit that is the same color as the trump suit is also considered a trump card. So, if hearts are trumps, the 5 of diamonds is also a trump.

The ranking for trump suit is Ace (high), King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5 (the one of the suit), 5 (the one of the other suit of the same color), 4, 3, and 2 (low). The other suits follow the same ranking of Ace (high). King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5 (when applicable), 4, 3, and 2.

Nicaraguan Pedro also assigns certain cards with values for scoring. The only cards worth points are of the trump suit. The Ace of trump is worth 1 point, the jack of trump is worth 1 point, the ten of trump is worth 1 point, the five of trump is worth 5 points, the other 5 of trump is also worth 5 points, and the 2 of trumps is worth 1 point.

The Ace, Jack, 10, and 5s are scored by the players who win the cards in tricks. the 2 is scored by the players who were dealt the card at the start of the game.


The bidding starts with the player to the dealer’s left. They can either bid or pass. If bidding a player will get only one bid. The bid can be a minimum of 7 tricks or a maximum of 14. Players are bidding for the chance to call the trump suit.

If all three previous players pass the dealer must bid at least 6.

The winner of the bid will call the trump suit. Then each player will discard face down any cards from their hand they do not want. The dealer will then deal the other three players enough cards to refill their hands to 7 cards. The dealer will then look through the remaining cards in the deck and through other players’ discard piles. They may exchange any cards from their hand for the cards they looked through.


Each team is trying to win the tricks containing the point cards. The team that won the bid will also need to win at least the number of tricks they bid to score their point cards.

The player who won the bidding round will start the game and from them players clockwise in order. The player will lead any card they wish. Other players must follow suit if able, if not able they may play a trump or any other card they wish. Tricks are won by the highest trump played, or if not applicable, by the highest-ranked card of the suit led. The winner of a trick will lead the next.


Once all tricks have been played out players will score their tricks. The players who did not win the bid will score any points acquired through cards regardless of whether the other team completed their bid.

If the bidding team completes their bid, they will also score all points won during tricks, but if they did not complete their bid, they will lose points equal to those won in tricks.


Teams keep cumulative scores over several rounds and the first team to 52 points wins the game.

Amber Crook
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