Hearts is a trick-taking game for four players. But games with three to six players are possible. The objective is to avoid taking any cards of the Hearts suit during trick-taking.
The card game Hearts is popular all over the world, especially popular in English-speaking countries as well as Germany and France.
You will need a standard deck of 52 French-suited playing cards. The dealer first shuffles the deck and deals 13 cards to each player. The exact number of cards dealt to each player can vary, so it is important to agree on the specific rules before starting the game.
The player with the Two of Clubs starts the game by playing a card. The other players must follow suit if possible. If you are unable to follow suit, you may play any card in your hand, but you cannot win that trick then.
Cards in the card game Hearts rank from highest to lowest as follows: Ace, King, Queen, Jack, Ten, Nine, Eight, Seven, Six, Five, Four, Three, and Two.
The player contributing the highest-ranking card of the leading suit wins this trick and leads the next one. Playing continues until all tricks are played, which makes 13 tricks in case of 4 players.
At that point, it is time to score the round: Each Heart card captured in tricks adds a penalty point, to the respective player’s score. The round’s winner is the player with the lowest penalty score.
The game’s overall winner can be found with the lowest number of penalty points after an agreed number of deals. Alternatively, a predefined penalty score may be set, and when the first player reaches that threshold, the game ends.
If you enjoy games that involve trick-taking, feel free to check out our games at the Whist Palace and Pinochle Palace!