OBJECTIVE OF TWENTY TWO: Be the last player remaining in the game

NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 2 – 6 players


RANK OF CARDS: (low) 2 – Ace (high)

TYPE OF GAME: Trick taking



Twenty Two is a last trick card game in which players are trying to avoid capturing the final trick of the round.  The player that does take the final trick keeps their card as a point card.  As players earn 22 points or more, they are eliminated from the game.  The last player remaining is the winner.


 Twenty Two uses a 52 card deck.  Each player draws a card to determine the first dealer.  Highest card deals.  For the following rounds, the loser deals, and the number of cards dealt is determined by the card the loser played to the last trick.  If there are not enough cards in the pack to deal out the correct amount, simply deal out the deck evenly.  Leftover cards will be used for the discard.

Deal seven cards to each player on the first deal.


Beginning with the player on the dealer’s left, each player has the opportunity to discard a number of cards from their hand and draw that many from the remainder of the deck.  A player is not required to discard.  A player can only discard up to what is available in the deck.  This means that if the deck runs out of cards, some players may not be able to discard at all.



Player seated to the immediate left of the dealer leads the first trick.  They may lead any one card or a set of the same card.  For example, the player can lead with a 7, or they could lead with a Q,Q.  Following players must play the same number of cards that were led, and they have two options for play. First, following players must play a card or set of cards equal to or greater than the highest value card or set of cards in the trick.  Or, players must play the lowest card or set of cards from their hand.  When playing a set of cards, only the trick-leader must play matching cards.  Following players can play any cards as long as they play the same amount and the cards chosen meet the requirements for their turn.


Player 1 leads the trick with a 7.  Player 2 chooses to play a 7 as well.  Player 3 plays a 10 to the trick.  Player four does not have a 10 or higher, so they play a 2 (there lowest card) to the trick.  Player 3 captures the trick with the 10 and leads.

Player 3 leads the trick with a 6,6.  Player 4 plays a 6,7.  This is a fine move because the 6 is equal to Player 3’s 6, and the 7 beats Player 3’s second 6.  Player 4 must now beat the 6,7.  They are unable to do it, so they play their two lowest cards – 4,5.  Player 1 plays a 8,9 which captures the trick.

Player 1 leads the next trick with a J,J,J.  Player 2 plays a J,Q,Q.  Player 3 plays a 2,2,3.  Player four captures the trick with a Q,K,A.


A player must leave at least one card in their hand when leading a trick.  For example, if the player’s hand only contains 5,5,5, they can only play 5,5 to lead the trick.  There must always be one card available for the final trick.


Each player will play their final card to the trick, and the player with the highest card takes it.  They keep their card and add it to their score pile.  If there is a tie for the highest card in the trick, all players keep their cards.  The rest of the cards are shuffled back into the deck.  The final trick-winner deals the next hand.


Throughout the game, players will collect score cards when capturing the final trick.  These cards are placed in their score pile.  Once a player accumulates 22 points or more, they are eliminated from the game.  They deal the next hand and then bow out from the table. 

Aces = 11 points

Jacks, Queens, and Kings = 10 points

2-10 = points equal the number on the card


Play continues until one player remains.  That player is the winner.  If the final round ends with every player earning more than 22 points, it is the player with the lowest score that wins the game.

Mark Ball
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