OBJECT OF ZECCHINETTA: The object of Zecchinetta is to win bids and collect stakes from other players.

NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 2 or more players

MATERIALS: A 40-card deck of Italian cards, chips or money for bidding, and a flat surface.

TYPE OF GAME: Banking Card Game



Zecchinetta is a banking game that is played by 2 or more players. The goal of the game is to win bids to collect stakes from other players. You can do this as a player or as the bank which revolves its way around the table.

This is a bidding game so if there are maximum or minimum bids players would like set into place, this should be done before the game.


The first dealer AKA the banker is random it then passes to the right for each new hand. The banker will then set a minimum and maximum bet that can be made on a card. The banker will shuffle the cards and any player may cut the deck. The deck is then placed face down in front of the banker.

The banker will then reveal the top two cards as the player cards. If they are the same rank the deck is reshuffled, and the cards are redealt. Once the cards are different in rank players may place bids on the cards.

After bets are placed the banker reveals the third card, and this is the banker’s card. if it matches either of the players’ cards the banker wins all bets placed. The bank is passed to the right and a new hand is started.

If the banker’s card differs from the players’ cards then the game can start.

Card Ranking

There is no ranking of cards. The only thing viewed is if a card is equal in rank, regardless of suit.


The banker starts the game by revealing another card from the top of the deck. One of four options will take place depending on the card’s rank. Either the card matches one of the players’ card, it matches the banker’s card, it’s a new card rank, or the card is a bad card (discussed below).

If the card matches either of the players’ cards the banker wins all the bets on the matching card. this card is discarded for the hand and all cards matching that rank become bad cards. the game continues if players still have cards with bets on them, but if no bets remain the hand is over.

If the card matches the banker’s card the banker loses and must pay a matched amount to all players’ bets. The hand is over.

If the card is a new card, or a fresh card, it is placed on the players’ side and players can make additional bets on it.

If the card revealed is a bad card, it is discarded, and a new card is revealed.


Once the hand has ended the bank passes to the right and the new banker starts from setup again.


The game ends when players wish to stop playing. It is a bidding game so players may cash out or join between hands. to ensure it is fair to all players, they should make sure they got an equal amount of chances at being the banker, since winning favors the banker.

Amber Crook
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