TENNESSEE FOR TWO



OBJECTIVE OF TENNESSEE FOR TWO: Be the first player to earn 300 points or more

NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 2 players

NUMBER OF CARDS: 45 card Rook deck

TYPE OF GAME: Trick taking

AUDIENCE: Adults


INTRODUCTION OF TENNESSEE FOR TWO

Tennessee for Two is a two player trick taking game that uses a modified Rook deck.  In this game, players will bid to see who determines the trump suit and attempt to win enough tricks to meet their bid.  Points are earned for capturing tricks and count cards. A draw phase also occurs after every trick.

THE CARDS & THE DEAL

 From a standard Rook deck, remove the 1’s, 2’s, and 3’s.  They will not be used.  The Rook is considered the highest trump card at all times.  Shuffle and deal eleven cards to each player. Deal five cards face down to make the nest.  The rest of the cards become a draw pile.  Turn the top card over so that one card is visible alongside the draw pile.

THE PLAY

BIDDING

Beginning with the non-dealer, each player bids to see who gets to determine the trump color for the round. The highest amount of points available for each round is 160.  Players bid based on how many points they think they can capture if they determine the trump color.  The minimum bid must be at least 60 points, and bids must be divisible by 5.  The following bid must be higher, but the player may also pass if they cannot make a higher bid.  The highest bidder determines the trump color for the round.

NEST EXCHANGE

The winner of the bid is allowed to exchange up to five cards with the nest.  Count Cards are not eligible for the exchange and must remain in the player’s hand.  Once the exchange is complete, the nest is removed from the game.

BEGIN PLAY

The player opposite of the bid-winner leads the first trick.  They may play any card from their hand. The following player must play the same color if they can.  If not, they can play any card they want.  The highest card in the color that was led or the highest trump card takes the trick.

THE DRAW

The player that captures the trick gets to draw first.  They may either draw from the top of the draw pile, or they may take the face up card.  The player that lost the trick takes the opposite card.  Once both players have drawn, the top card of the draw pile is flipped over and placed alongside it.  Play like this continues until the draw pile is gone.  Once that occurs, players finish the game with the eleven cards in their hand.  

SCORING

The Rook is worth 20 points.  Each captured trick is worth 2 points.  14’s and 10’s are worth ten points each.  5’s are worth 5 points each.

The player that won the bid must meet or exceed it in order to earn any points.  If they fail to meet or exceed their bid, they earn zero points for the round regardless of the cards they captured.  

The player that did not win the bid earns points for each trick and count card they captured.

WINNING

The first player to earn 300 points or more wins the game.

Mark Ball
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