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How to Play 500 Card Game

Updated: Feb 15, 2024
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The game called 500 is an expanded version of Euchre, where the first team to reach a total score of at least 500 points is the winner.

In 500, players are dealt 10 cards each instead of the usual 5 in Euchre. Unlike Euchre, there’s no trump card turned up; instead, the trump is chosen by the player willing to bid for the most tricks. Additionally, the deck size is modified so that all cards are dealt to players except for a “kitty” of three cards, which can be used by the highest bidder.

In this article, we’ll explain the rules and equip you with the knowledge to become a formidable player in no time. Let’s dive in!

1. Game setup

Form 2 teams, each consisting of 2 players. This means there will be a total of 4 players in the game. Organize the teams so that each teammate sits across from the other.

To prepare the deck, remove the lowest numbers of each suit (2, 3, and 4 from both black suits, as well as the 2 and 3 from both red suits). Retain all Aces down to the 5 in both black suits and the 4 in both red suits. Keep a Joker. Now, the deck contains 43 cards. Deal 10 cards to each player, and place the remaining 3 in the center of the table.

2. Objective

The objective of the game is to be the first team to reach 500 points. To do this, teams need to win tricks during the game and fulfill bids they make at the beginning of each hand.

3. Card Rankings

Card rankings depend on whether the card is the trump suit or not.

In the trump suit, the order from highest to lowest is:
Joker (Best Bower), The jack of trumps (Right Bower), The jack of the same color (Left Bower), Ace, King, Queen, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4.

In non-trump suits, the order of cards from highest to lowest is:
Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4.

4. Bidding

The bidding phase in the 500 card game is where players or teams compete to make bids, indicating how many tricks they believe they can win in the current hand. Bids are based on the strength of the player’s hand and their confidence in their ability to achieve their bid. Here is how it works:

  • Determine the trump suit. The trump suit holds superiority over all other suits in the game. To determine the trump suit, assess your hand of cards to identify the suit in which you possess the most and highest-ranking cards. The player who wins the bid will have the authority to designate the trump suit for the hand.
  • Decide on the number of tricks you can win. Your estimation of achievable tricks hinges on the number of cards you possess in a particular suit. Bidding can range from a minimum of 6 tricks to a maximum of 10. Winning a trick necessitates playing a card with a higher value than the other three cards played by fellow players. If you lack confidence in your hand, you also have the option to pass.
  • Place your bid. It’s important to note that each bid must exceed the previous one. Additionally, players have the option to bid “no trumps,” indicating that the Joker serves as the sole trump card. This bid is only made by the player holding the Joker.
  • Take the pot if you win the bid. The highest bid claims the three cards from the center of the table. The winner of the bid then must discard the three least advantageous cards face down onto the table. The suit of the winning bid becomes the trump suit, signifying its superiority over other suits. These three cards, referred to as the “kitty” or “pot,” are now part of the bid winner’s hand.

5. How to play

After the bidding phase, it’s time for the actual game to begin. Each player will play a single card and the rest need to respond with their best strategy in mind.

  1. Play a card. At the start of a trick, you can lead with any card from your hand, placing it face up on the table for all players to see. It’s generally advantageous to play higher-value cards to increase your chances of winning the trick. This strategic move enhances your prospects of securing the trick and accumulating points.
  2. Clockwise, the next player plays a card. Following the lead of the winning bidder, the player to their left initiates the next move by placing a card of the same suit as the lead card. This sequence continues clockwise around the table until all four players have contributed a card to the trick.
  3. Play the leading suit if you have cards of that suit. When it’s your turn and the lead suit is in your hand, you’re obligated to play a card of that suit. This rule applies even if you possess a trump card that could potentially secure the trick. For instance, if the lead suit is Hearts, you must play any Hearts cards from your hand. If you hold multiple cards of the lead suit, prioritize playing a card with a higher value than those already played.
  4. Play a non-leading suit if you don’t have cards of that suit. If you don’t hold any card of the lead suit, you can play any other card, including the trump suit. If neither a trump card nor a card of the lead suit is available, the card you play serves as a discard option. In this situation, play a card with a low value to dispose of it strategically.
  5. The highest card wins the pot. Once each player has placed their card on the table, the winner of the trick is determined by assessing the cards played. If only one player played a trump card, they won the trick. In cases where multiple players played trump cards, the highest-ranking trump card wins the trick. If no trump cards were played, the highest card of the lead suit emerges victorious. The player who wins the trick collects the cards and places them face down in front of them to tally the number of tricks they’ve won.
  6. The winner leads the next trick. The player who triumphed in the previous trick becomes the leader for the subsequent trick, laying down the first card. Another round goes on, as each team strives to win as many tricks as they can to achieve the number of their initial bids. This sequence repeats until all players have played all cards from their hands. Once this is time, it’s time to count the score and determine the winner of the game.

6. 500 Scoring

Use a scorecard to calculate the points in each hand. The scorecard tells you how many points are awarded for each different suit and their bid number.

If you successfully win the bid and fulfill the number of tricks you committed to, you add that number of points to your score. If you win the bid but fail to win the correct number of tricks, you subtract the scorecard’s value from your total score.

For instance, if you bid 6 Spades and successfully win all 6 tricks with Spades, you would add 40 points to your score.

Conversely, if your bid was 8 Diamonds but you didn’t win all the tricks, you would subtract 280 points from your score.

To win the game, a team must be the first to reach 500 points. If a team’s score falls to negative 500 points or below, indicating a loss, the game ends.

Learn more about Scoring in Euchre with our easy, comprehensive guide.

Mastering the 500 card game requires patience, strategy, and a love for the thrill of competition. The journey toward becoming a formidable 500 player is both rewarding and endlessly enjoyable. So shuffle the deck, and let the games begin!
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This product is intended for people over 18 years of age for entertainment purposes. This game includes in-app purchases. Practice or success in social casino gambling does not imply future winnings in real money gambling and gambling in general.

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Copyright 2024 All rights reserved

This product is intended for people over 18 years of age for entertainment purposes. This game includes in-app purchases. Practice or success in social casino gambling does not imply future winnings in real money gambling and gambling in general.