Game rules Hearts
Object of the game
- Hearts is a simple card game. With few exceptions, the objective is to take as few tricks as possible by always playing a lower card than your opponents. It is important avoid taking the queen of spades as this card is worth the most penalty points.
- A further objective is to collect as few hearts as possible.
- The player with the fewest penalty points wins.
- The game begins with a swapping phase in which each player selects three cards to pass on to an opponent.
- Immediately after the swapping phase, the player with the 2 of clubs leads the first trick. The remaining players then play their cards in a clockwise motion.
- In the game "Hearts" you must always follow suit; you must play the led suit whenever possible.
- Once all four players have played a card, the player who played out the highest card takes the trick. If a player cannot follow suit (and plays a different suit) then he cannot take the trick.
- The player who wins a trick will lead the next one. Players are only allowed to lead a trick by playing hearts once at least one hearts card has been played in a previous trick (due to the limited number of cards in this suit).
- The game ends and the points are calculated once all players have played out all of their cards.
- A penalty point is incurred for each heart won in a trick.
- The queen of spades is worth 13 penalty points.
- If a player collects the entire suit of hearts in addition to the queen of spades, then he or she will not receive any penalty points while all opponents shall receive 26 penalty points (known as shooting the moon).
- Accordingly, your aim is to avoid ending up with the queen of spades and to take as few hearts as possible OR to end up with all of the hearts and the queen of spades (which proves a difficult feat).
- If a player manages to win every single trick in a given round, then his or her opponents will all receive 52 penalty points.
- The player with the fewest penalty points at the end of all rounds wins.
Select the three cards you would like to swap by selecting them with your mouse. Then click the "swap" button to exchange them for others.Play a card by clicking on it.
The stopwatch displays the time remaining to complete your turn. Generally each player has 15 seconds to complete his or her turn. If the time limit is exceeded, a card will be chosen at random to be played. You will lose if the time limit is exceeded twice. In addition, the stopwatch displays whose turn it is.
You can click the "current score" button when playing in a multi-round duel to see a detailed overview of the preliminary results.
Sounds can be turned on or off by clicking on the speaker button.
You can chat with your opponents in each and every game of "Hearts".
To open the chat box, simply click on the speech bubble next to your avatar. Alternatively you can simply press the ENTER key.
The chat box contains a list of preselected messages and smilies that you can use to communicate with your opponents. To send one, simply click the one you wish to use.
- In the first round, cards are always passed to the left. In the second round, they are passed to the right. In the third they are passed across. In the fourth they are not passed at all. After the fourth round, the sequence is repeated.
- In the first round, players may not play hearts or the queen of spades unless that player who wishes to play them only has hearts and the queen of spades.
Computer opponents (Granny and Gramps)The game does not end if a player prematurely quits! Instead, the GameDuell Granny or Gramps will take that player's spot.
The GameDuell Granny and Gramps are computer opponents that can never win. They both play "without score" and will always end up in last place no matter how many points they actually earn. This makes the game even more thrilling for the remaining two/three players
Computer opponents may also be preselected when configuring a "Hearts" table, opening the door to two or three player games. As always, computer opponents can never win - the best, real player wins.
- Your most important aim is to keep from winning the queen of spades. Therefore you should try not to play the highest card in a trick until the queen of spades has already been taken.
- If you have the queen of spades, and fewer than four other spades cards, it is best to swap the queen of spades. The same is true for the king and ace of spades.
- Try to get rid of one specific suit as quickly as possible. If, for example, you have no more clubs then you will be able to get rid of your other high cards when clubs are led in a trick.
- If you have a lot of high cards, or many cards from a single suit, then it is perhaps a good idea to "shoot the moon", that is to take all hearts cards, as well as the queen of spades.