Briscola Chiamata – Card Games That Don’t Suck

  1. Italian here. You sure you using the 10 card? Italian card decks have cards ranging from 1 (Ace) to seven, then soldier, knignt and King. The more valuable card is usually the Ace followed by the 3s. Then descending King, knight, soldier, 7 to 2 (skipping 3)

  2. Another name for this game (which I think sounds way cooler) is "Amico del Giaguaro" which translates to "Jaguar's Friend".
    The guy winning the initial bid is the Jaguar for that round and its secret parter is the friend.

  3. Could you please not use the word "Trump". Can you come up with another term. Personally Id like to use a synonym for "Trump" in many card games.

  4. I'm enjoying this series but this game in particular seems too complicated for a card game. It's got a lot of little rules that aren't easily accessible and the smaller deck and deck order doesn't feel intuitive.

  5. Hey! Nice video! Something I don't get is, when you played your 5 of spades, then everyone will know that you are his secret partner no ? 😛

  6. This game is very similar to the Portuguese card games "Sueca" or "Bisca". Although these take away the secret partner part of this game, they are played with only 4 players with variations available for 3 or 2 players.

  7. Quinns, I love you, but as someone of Italian decent, your pronunciation of Briscola was killing me. The accent should be on the first syllable, not the second. i.e. it's pronounced BRIS-co-la and not bris-CO-la

  8. "In Italy the numbers eight, nine and seven don't exist."

    …Because "7 8 9". C'mon! How could you miss such a golden opportunity for such a stupid joke! I am disappointed in you guys. I watch these videos for the stupid jokes. 😛

    On a more serious note, trick taking and an auction? This is really not a game for me, alas.

  9. One of the best things that come out in just a few rounds of this game is the emerging dynamic: in a couple of rounds players find out that another factor for choosing to win or not is what is the caller position relative to the winning player. Usually it is said that making the caller go last in a round is a "traitor" move, and the same can be said for playing an high value card as first or second player when the caller is last. But what if the caller is first? then loading the trick with points as second or third player is clearly a "non-traitor" move, because you have an higher chance that somebody else than the caller gets the points.

    This may seem articulate but it's quite clear once you played a couple of rounds, and when everybody has this knowledge it enables another layer of the game: if the traitor has a strong hand he will play in a very open and obvious manner, but if not or unsure of the caller hand quality he can try to bluff and play a very neutral game, raking up just the amount of points needed for his team to win.
    On the other hand (and this works way more than you can imagine with good player) a non-traitor can bluff it out and make the caller dump all of his points on him!

    Trivia: another name for this game is "Briscola al due", which means "Briscola till the 2", usually shortened to just " al due", since you find out quite fast that if the caller calls something higher than a 2 his team will win very easily. Most of the game will start with a call between 62 and 66, with some extreme calls to 70 points if the caller has a great hand or not even reaching 2 if everybody has terrible hands (which is rare).

  10. 5-handed Sheepshead (popular in Eastern Wisconsin, USA & Germany) is a trick taking game with hidden roles.

  11. Toepen is a fun trick-taking game too. My family used to play it and turned it into a drinking game.

    And at school we played a variant where there was a winner instead of a loser. I think we played up to 20 and the last one to stay under won. And IIRC we added the rule that each round you had to predict how many tricks you'd take, and if you incorrectly predicted the amount of tricks you'd take in that round, you would get an extra point.

    I can translate the rules if you'd like. I don't remember us playing with whistling and standing up. But we did use the white laundry and dirty laundry rule to trade in a terrible hand.

  12. This game reminds me of Napoleon, which I highly recommend to anyone that wants to play a fun trick taking game

  13. Briscola is pronounced with an emphasis on the "bris" part. So it would be BRIS,cola. Also Bastarda is most likely close to "Bastard".

  14. This sounds like the best game yet! A trick taking game where you care about who, specifically is taking these tricks not just the leader.

  15. If for some stupid reason, for any card game, I'd served the cards clockwise, my Grandad would have refused to play. No joke.
    Of course I'm Italian 😂

  16. Great great game if you have 5 players. Only variants I know is to have the trump suit caller be the last to play in the first hand (slightly easier for the caller).

    Also normal Briscola (2 player game) and team Briscola (4 player) are good but without the secret team mechanics; you play with 3 card in hand, trump suit is the same as last card of the deck.

  17. Fun fact: "Chiamata" here is "called" in the sense of calling out (for your bid and the secret ally) — as in "calling your shot". :p

  18. I went to a highschool with a lot of italians. We used to play briscola every lunch in the cafeteria. I never knew this version, but I actually invented a variant of this game so that 5 people could play. Very trippy watching this and realising that something I came up with is actually a variant of an existing game. In mine you just bid points, and then you name a card. So if you had the ace, you would probably want to name the three. The reason I came up with this mechanic is to make it fair that one team only had two, so I added the ambiguity of not knowing who was on the bidders team. So weird how similar that is to the game you are showing in this video!

    Sorry if this sounds made up, but its honestly not. Anyways, thanks for another great card games vid.

  19. so wouldn't it make sense for this game to remove the King,Queen & Jack and leave the numbers in then you know the rankings alot easyer? since it's just the highest number then ACE at top

  20. @ShutUpShow hi, today I was watching your card games episode and I wonder if you are going to do an episode on this card game

    It's one of the most liked games in Latin America and it absolutely doesn't suck(only problem is can only be played in pairs)

  21. I like how they allow the dismissal of the counter-clockwise rule. Historically, a lot of these games became more complicated simply so vets could have an inherent advantage over newbies, kind of like how your sister CHANGES THE RULES OF CHESS HALFWAY THROUGH!

    (This is also why so many card games have a ranking order that somehow defies the ordinal numerics of the cards.)

    I'm excited to try this one out!

  22. Italian here.
    Some insights:
    – the rank are one/three/king/queen/jack/7/6/5(so on) in italian briscola. The 10 IS the king, the threes are worth a lot because in italian cards the drawings for the threes feels “important” for some reason
    – you can play a variant with no rank but only points. Who win the auction can choose freely the “secret partner card”, and you score points (for the final scoring) based on the points bet in the auction. We played this variant as a social deduction – with “trust me I’m not the enemy” and “let me take this round for me pls”
    – you CAN play with 6. Deal all the card except 4. The one who wins the auction (the point variation) takes the 4 left out and discards 4 (the 4 discarded are part of the scoring of the “team”) and then chooses the “partner card” – granted, it’s more luck based and briscola chiamata shines in 5 player

  23. Really liking this series. Do you guys think that at some point we could get a dice games that don't suck series?

  24. This is incredibly close in rules for sheepshead, with a modified deck, the exact same point structure, weird suit ordering, and hidden roles. Sheepshead plays with a 30 card deck, has more trump, has a set trump set, you have to follow suit, and also the partner is always the person with the Jack of diamonds. I highly recommend ya'll check it out.

  25. My family bought a deck of cards when we were on holiday in Spain to play with and we were confused when it only had 40 cards. We made it work but didn't know it was a thing. Suits are also different (cups, swords, coins and something else). I still have the cards as a souvenir so I think I'll bring the deck out again to have a go at this.

  26. Damnit! Now there's basically no chance you'll recommend Koenigrufen :'( (especially since it requires a deck with a trump suit, to be fair!) It also has the excellent feature of the hidden team.

  27. We learned to play this in my Spanish class in high school as briscas bastardas, a Spanish game, using some real naipes our teacher purchased in Spain. It proved to be so popular that students would come to his class over lunch to play in an impromptu league. ¡Qué chévere!

  28. PLAY SKAT NEXT!!!!!!! Similar gameplay (card values and trying to get 61+ points and 1v2 against bidder)
    My favorite game for 3 players!!!!!!

  29. This is eerily similar to Napoleon, so much so that I wouldn't be surprised if the guy who invented Napoleon said "let's play briscola but with a full deck"

  30. I'd played a variant of this before, but tying the partnership to bidding instead of it just being a called card after the bid is a great move. I'll have to keep this in mind.

  31. Quinn's looks very much like he belongs in a drug movie from or about the 70's/80's, like Scarface or Fear and Loathing…

  32. What I'm wondering is why there's this auction at the beginning. Why is it relevant that you bid a five instead of a four, aside from influencing who your teammate is? Are you bidding with anything?

  33. What's the point in betting? Why not just call out 2 right away? If you're not actually wagering any cards, why not start with points wagering?

  34. You should look into the game escoba (spanish name) or scopa (italian name)
    I learned it from a Spaniard, but most references I've found use the Italian name. It's a really great card game!

  35. Waking up to find that Quinns is a Briscola connoisseur like any other old old man is priceless <3 .
    I am surprised you didn't build any pun on the cheesiest name of 5p briscola: "amico del giaguaro" —>"the jaguar's friend

  36. I personally find even more attractive than briscola chiamata a similar game called Tressette, which can be played in 2, 4 or 5 players. The auction and the secret buddy are present only in the 5 player version. The main interesting variations with respect to Briscola Chiamata are: each round, the players must respond with the same suit played by the first player and the ranking of the cards is different from their point value, since 3 >2>Ace>10> 9 and so on, but ace is worth 1 point and 7,8,9,2,3 are worth one third of a point.

  37. Bello there. The name of the game in my region is also 'jaguar's friend, which is a pretty better name 😀

  38. Some of those rules remind me of Doppelkopf (some more of Schafkopf). Also a great cardgames that are very popular in Germany, along with Skat, you could discuss.

  39. I might have missed this but did you explain what the purpose of the bid at the beginning is? I get the extra points to winonce you get down to two, but why would you bid a higher number like a 10? Why would you not bid? It doesn't sound like you actually pay anything for these bids.

  40. Italy here, you're missing an important gameplay mechanic: every card you play is accompanied by swearing, bloodcurdling profanity, angry gesturing and general drama

  41. If you lose track of your deal when dealing out an entire deck (e.g. 13 cards each to 4 people for a 52 card deck) you can fix the mistake by starting with yourself (the last card that would be dealt) and going backwards. You'll run out of cards just as the two deals meet in the middle.

  42. Another great trick taking game similar to this is , Singaporean Bridge!
    Basically its contract bridge with hidden allies!

  43. This game is very similar to Sueca (traditional Portuguese team-based trick-taking game). The card values are very similar, but it plays with 2 teams of 2 (total four players) and plays in silence (the way you play the card on the table can be used to give signals to your partner, but you must be careful not be obvious to your opponents). You should do a review on this (I can help).

  44. This game is so similar to the slightly more complicated Sheepshead. The hidden partner really makes the game pop.

  45. This game sounds super interesting, but the bidding part has me baffled. What are you bidding? What's to stop the first person to bid 2 and steal the opportunity to name an ally card? Its not like you lose a card or points or anything like that when you bid, right?

  46. It is counter clockwise because if you deal clockwise some granpa at the table when you are learning this (or any card game) will hit you with his cane.
    And he'll hit to hurt you, not in a friendly way.

  47. Nice to see a traditional Italian game popularized! Next you may want to look at "Scopa" and "Machiavelli" (this one even uses international cards)

  48. In my playgroup, if you play this clockwise, people yell "what games is this!" at you until you go counter clockwise. Also the name of this game is not birscola chiamata, it is BRISCOLA!!!!! exclaimed with as much enthusiasm as possible.

  49. In some areas of Italy this game Is called "giaguaro", jaguard in italian, because the secret teammate Is called the jaguar's friend, which in italian Is a way of saying that someone Is double playing

  50. Another card game with a similar hidden-partners mechanic is Zhao Pengyou (Looking for Friends). Interestingly, Zhao Pengyou is played with two decks — whoever plays the called card first becomes the partner, creating additional interesting mechanics.

  51. == Folklore Club ==
    You're missing some important rules. Swearing and blasphemies are a must. You call it Briscòla (stress on the o), but it's Brìscola (stress on the i).

    From "Bar Sport", popular comedy book from Italian author Stefano Benni: "Briscola is a simple game. Your opponent slams on the table a card, and you have to slam another one HARDER. Good players are able to break from 15 to 20 tables per game. It is appropriate, before slamming a card on the table, to make that card wet with a bit of saliva. Cards can take their characteristic crumpled up shape and the hardness of a rock. In many bars, to shuffle a deck of cards, we use a kneading machine. When a card is too old, it becomes hard and heavy, and if you're not well trained, it's better if you use some work gloves."

    Anyway, as already comment elsewhere, a Briscola deck is with A, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, J, Q, K. And the order (don't ask why we don't know either) is (from lowest to higher): 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, J, Q, K, 3, A.
    There are some variants on the auction itself. I find very funny calling directly points (e.g: 65!). The one who wins the auction can call a card (e.g. 5 of Spades. Spades becomes the Trunk, and the player with the 5 of Spades is the secret partner). You now must reach that many points. You can even call yourself (you call a card that you already have). This way there is no secret partner and a lot of more confusion on the table. If you win this way and you're keeping track of the points, this round your points are doubled.

    BTW: This applies to any game. In science, there's a method to calculate vectors called "Fleming's right-hand rule". Going counter-clockwise seems the right way to do it since you got a normal vector from the table surface as a result. I'm very uncomfortable with clockwise games and every time I can't remember specific rules, I deal cards/take turns counter-clockwise

    Last but not least. I have to go, but I don't know how late I am since we don't have clocks around here 😛

  52. i dont get the bidding, whats the difference between bidding 8 or 2 and 120 points, what keeps me from just always bidding the highest thing when i want to play`?

  53. Should do one on lost cities. Can easily play with a normal deck, aces are the cities, and face cards are the multiplier.

  54. As an Italian, I would also recommend "scopone scientifico", which you can find in the "variations" section here
    I wouldn't bother with the base game of scopa

  55. Kinda looks like a tarot card game ^^ (Huge deal in France :/)
    I wonder how much the game feel is different from Briscola

  56. I play a version of this called napoleon. you use a 52 card deck and the highest bidder gets to swap out the last 2 cards (50 dealt) then they declare their partner (usually the highest trump they dont have)

  57. I don't understand the purpose of the bidding phase. Besides picking the leader of the round, it seems to have no consequence. Seems like you should start at the 60-120 point bidding from the start.

  58. le jeu de tarot (French Tarot) is another game that, at five players, is a similar game with the hidden traitor (partnership) mechanic at five players too, with similar rules except using a 74-card tarot deck (1-10, Valet(Page), Chevalier(Jack), Dame(Queen), Roi(King) plus 0-21 of a trump suit), follow-suit, forced overtrumps, and different point evaluations.

    zhao pengyou (Looking for Friends) also employs hidden partnerships in a slightly interesting manner: it uses 2 or more decks of cards (3 at 8 players, 4 at 12, …), and the declarer calls out which card(s) joins their partnership: "first Ace of Hearts and second Black Joker", for example.

  59. wow, this is very similar to the 5-payer french tarot game. speaking of wich, you should make an episode on french tarot 😉

  60. I didn't now Italian card games were on the the table if that's the case they you should do videos on a the slandered rules of Briscola as well as Scopa both are the go to Italian card game.

  61. Do scopa and scopone next, but a word of advice, if you want to play ITALIAN card games then you use ITALIAN cards, not a French deck with cards removed. French cards suck and you can't slap them down on the table aggressively like the Italian cards which are thicker and more durable

  62. In Portugal we call it "sueca italiana" better translated by Italian briscola. Instead of the 3 we use the 7 as the briscola. Don't know why the alteration but it seems like your 10, that was made to the scoring seems more natural. The deck doesn't have 8 9 10.

  63. Italian from Modena (near Bologna, northen Italy) here. Locally this game is known as Jaguar (Giaguaro) and is slightly different. After the cards have been dealt, players look at their cards and decide if, given their hand, could possibly win. Then, thay start bidding (in order) how many points they're SURE to make to win, starting from 60; others, in order, have to bid higher or quit. For example, if you have many high card of the same suit, you'd be saying "I win with 78" or something. Of course you can also bluff to push others over their actual potential, but they could withdraw from the bidding and leave you to fulfill an insane goal.
    After that, the person who bidded higher is known as the Jaguar. He ONLY THEN chooses a card to call (usually a high card he misses from the suit in his hand), for example "I call the King of Spades", and the suit of the called card is the trump suit; the person who has this card is the secret ally, known as the Amico del Giaguaro (Jaguar's friend), and the game follows as explained in the video. The Jaguar and his ally win if they make at least the amount of points bid at the beginning. It's worth noting that you always call a card you don't have, as having no ally is stupid and a certain loss, and grants no bonus.
    Is also worth noting that those who win get one point each in the overall score, and the game ends whenever (see further down), making who has more points the winner.
    There's also a special rule where if you have a REALLY good hand you can call for 120 points (which is the maximum amount), in which case you can call TWO cards of the same suit, potentially having two allies. Because you need to make ALL the points to win, the other players' objective is now to win at least one hand worth any points, and they instantly win if they do so.
    Since here in Italy basically anyone above the age of 12 knows Briscola, and as many carry a (very worn out) deck with them most of the time (at school, in the office, in the purse…), Briscola is just seen as a simple timekiller game to play between breaks or while eating in a bar or drinking beer in a pub, certainly not something to set an evening apart for. The basic game can be played in two or four (or in three, but everyone agrees it sucks), so Jaguar is basically just a modified version of Briscola to allow play for five people (any number above five and other games are preferred); it's barely felt as a different game really.
    Also, I confirm as many others have said that the Italian deck has four suits, Bastoni, Spade, Denari, e Coppe (Wands, Swords, Coins, and Cups) and numbers that go from Ace to 7, followed by three figures (Page, Knight, King), with the Ace having a value of 11 and the threes having a value of 10 points (but with the 3s being more powerful the the Aces during the hand). They are known as "Spanish type Italian cards deck" (due to various hystorical reasons), but are commonly just called "Carte da Briscola" (Cards for Briscola), just to give you and idea on how identified with this game this deck is (even thought many many other games can be played with them). Its nuanced rules (no talking during the first turn, always draw cards in the correct order, etc) are very crystalized and not following them is seen as an offence. Even the cheat signs for communication are codified (a small kiss for an Ace, and many others).

  64. hmm i don't really get 2 things :
    1.) what is the bidding at the start useful for? if it doesn't go below 2 all you've done is change the number of the possible ally and you are the start player for giving nothing? because what is the difference between having a 10 or a king called?

    2.) so what happens if at the start you end up bidding for "2 and 68" which means you need 68 points to win.
    then there is a space (60-68 points) where none of you win?

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