OBJECT OF SASKOP: The object of Saskop is to score 16 game points before the opposing team.
NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 4 players
MATERIALS: A modified deck of 52-cards, a way to keep score, and a flat surface.
TYPE OF GAME: Point-Trick Card Game
OVERVIEW OF SASKOP
Saskop is a point-trick card game for 4 players. The goal of the game is to score 16 game points before your opponents.
Saskop is a partnership game where teammates will sit opposite each other. It is also known as Lambapea.
The deck is modified to a 36-card deck. This is done by removing all cards ranked 5 and lower.
The first dealer is chosen at random and passes to the left for each new round.
The deck will be shuffled, and the player to the right will cut the deck. The dealer will deal each player a 9-card hand. This will deal out the whole deck.
After cards are dealt a player who only has 1 face card may lay it face up on the table and their partner may take it and exchange it for one in their hand. This card is passed facedown to their partner.
In some variations, a player who has no face cards may signal this to their partner by forming a steeple with their fingers. Though they should do this discreetly, so the other team does not see. However, this is not always legal so make sure to check before the game.
Card Ranking and Point Values
A trump suit is called during bidding (described below). Depending on what is called determines the ranking of cards for the round. There are two separate rankings for the trump suit and all other suits.
The trump suit ranks 6 (high), King of spades, King of clubs, King of hearts, king of diamonds, Queen of spades, Queen of clubs, Queen of hearts, Queen of diamonds, Jack of spades, Jack of clubs, Jack of hearts, Jack of diamonds, Ace, 10, 9, 8, and 7(low).
All other suits rank Ace (high), 10, 9, 8, 7, and 6 (low).
The cards also have values associated with them for scoring. Each king is worth 4 points, each queen is worth 3 points, each jack is worth 2 points, each ace is worth 11 points, and each 10 is worth 10 points. All other cards have a value of 0.
Bidding is used to determine the trump suit for the round and affects scoring. Bidding starts with the player left of the dealer and continues clockwise around the table. To bid a player may call a number 5 through 9 but must hold that number or more of potential trumps in their hand. It is guaranteed that at least 1 player will be able to bid 5.
Once a bid is made, the chance to bid passes around the table until 3 players pass. Once a player passes, they cannot bid again. Once a winner of the bid is determined, they will call a trump suit that they have cards equal to the number they bid in their hand.
After the trump suit is called, and it is not diamonds, then any player may override it and change the trump suit to diamonds. This override can be called anytime after the deal to right after the trump suit is determined.
If all 4 players pass with no-bid made, then the trump suit is automatically diamonds.
The game starts with the player left of the dealer. They may lead any card they wish to the first trick. All players must follow suit if possible, and if cannot, they must play a trump. If they hold not cards of suit or trumps, they may play any card. Each player must play a card to beat the highest card played so far if they can.
The trick is won by the highest trump played, or if not applicable, by the highest card of the suit led. One player from each team keeps the score pile face down. The winner of the previous trick leads the next.
Two signals are allowed in the game. They are blinking and calling emergency.
To use the blink signal, a player who will go second to a trick may look at their partner for guidance on what to play. If you look at your partner and they blink they think they will win this trick.
To use emergency a player will say emergency out loud. This is done when a player has only one remaining trump left, and it is either the 10 or ace. This informs your partner to play their highest trump to save your card.
After all 9 tricks are played the scoring can begin. Both teams tally their scores.
If a team wins all 9 tricks, they automatically win the game.
If no player called a trump suit, then the team that has 61 or more points scores one game point.
If a trump suit was called or overridden, then the scoring changes depending on the suit and the number of points scored. The trump caller will either be the bid winner or the overrider.
If the trump caller’s team wins with a score of 61 to 90 points, they score 4 game points if the suit is diamonds and 2 points for any other suit. If the trump caller’s team wins with 91 to 120 points, they score 6 points for diamonds and 4 points for all other suits.
If the opposing team (the non-trump callers) win with 61 to 90 points, they score 6 points for diamonds and 4 points for all other suits. If they win with 91 to 120 points, they score 8 points for diamonds and 6 points for all other suits.
If there is a tie of both teams scoring 60 points, no points are won, and the hand is redealt and played with the same trump suit and trump caller.
END OF GAME
The game ends when a team reaches 16 or more points. This team is the winner.