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Kevin Bonham
10-08-2004, 03:45 PM
I could have posted this in the bridge section but I probably would have got myself banned for trolling. :eek:

In the "Check, mates ..." thread Matt brought up the concept of misere.

Has anyone here ever played poor man's bridge, aka Five Hundred, and found that their games were being ruined by misere bids being too easy to make for their high points value?

I recall that at school a bunch of us got so annoyed by this problem that we revalued misere to 130 points (so that it overcalled 6NT but was overcalled by 7S) and open misere to 250 points.

shaun
10-08-2004, 04:59 PM
Not that I played it that seriously, but yes misere bids were far too common. I think the people I played with had another method of dealing with it but I can't quite recall what it was.

PHAT
10-08-2004, 05:18 PM
In the crib rooms of the Port Kembla Steel Works, misere is simply banned.

Kerry Stead
10-08-2004, 05:56 PM
I suppose it depends on the abilities of the players you are playing with - in theory, misere is about right in the bidding stakes ... just sometimes you have a freak hand, or the players you are up against don't know how to trouble the player who has called misere properly.
I've played some games where they were banned, simply because people would call them too often, and either fluke winning the bid, or have their hand busted within 3-4 hands, which made it a bit of a joke.

Rincewind
10-08-2004, 06:16 PM
I suppose it depends on the abilities of the players you are playing with - in theory, misere is about right in the bidding stakes ... just sometimes you have a freak hand, or the players you are up against don't know how to trouble the player who has called misere properly.
I've played some games where they were banned, simply because people would call them too often, and either fluke winning the bid, or have their hand busted within 3-4 hands, which made it a bit of a joke.

I agree and wish I could have banned misere at school but would have had trouble finding a four I had. The overcalling of misere definitely ruins the game for everyone and is more often than not a call for attention than an ernest belief in the (un)worthiness of their hand.

It's been many years since I have regularly played 500. Is the usual rule with misere that the bidder is denied the kitty?

Oepty
10-08-2004, 07:13 PM
I have played a bit of 500 and think it is a great game. I think misere can be called a little to much and I may have been guilty of that myself. One person I played with a bit was just a notorious overbidder, he hated not wining it, and would call misere quite alot. I have always played that misere gets the kitty.
Scott

Kevin Bonham
10-08-2004, 08:46 PM
It's been many years since I have regularly played 500. Is the usual rule with misere that the bidder is denied the kitty?

Yes. Ditto for open misere. Some of the players at our school were using a bid called "open misere without kitty" which overcalled everything, I can't remember what that was worth.

We found both that far too many misere bids were being called and also that a very high proportion of them (more than half) were winning, despite best efforts otherwise. Can't remember how many hands we were playing when this was happening (probably either 3 or 4) and I hope it wasn't just because we were all hopeless.

We'd often play 3-handed with no misere, successful bid required to go out, and a non-fatal back door, ie if you go below -500 you cannot bid but can still score points. That was real trench warfare, and would often go 40-50 hands before somebody won, because you had to destroy both your opponents at once to win.

Alan Shore
10-08-2004, 11:09 PM
Whenever I've played, the rule's been no misere.

But anyway, I prefer Hearts to 500 :P

Rincewind
10-08-2004, 11:58 PM
But anyway, I prefer Hearts to 500 :P

After learning Bridge I practically stopped playing 500 and taught all my 500 playnig friends Bridge, with varying degrees of success. I have still played the odd games over the years but it has been virtually cold turkey since around 1992. We generally prefer Hearts 500 too, although we refer to it by a less PC name.

Alan Shore
11-08-2004, 12:49 AM
After learning Bridge I practically stopped playing 500 and taught all my 500 playnig friends Bridge, with varying degrees of success. I have still played the odd games over the years but it has been virtually cold turkey since around 1992. We generally prefer Hearts 500 too, although we refer to it by a less PC name.

Which, hearts or 500? I also know 500 as 'Black man's bridge'. Personally I don't know how to play Bridge, never learned the rules! I have no problem with the PC really.. it's just an old term, not a slur and in these modern times people should realise that.

Rincewind
11-08-2004, 07:20 AM
Which, hearts or 500? I also know 500 as 'Black man's bridge'. Personally I don't know how to play Bridge, never learned the rules! I have no problem with the PC really.. it's just an old term, not a slur and in these modern times people should realise that.

Sory my last sentence was ambiguous. I meant a less PC term for Hearts. I've never heard 500 referred to as anything except 500, although I've heard people liken it to a poor-man's Bridge. Bridge is very similar to Bridge in concept, however Bridge provides a much greater opportunity for the players to exercise skill to improve their result.

Alan Shore
11-08-2004, 12:40 PM
Bridge is very similar to Bridge in concept, however Bridge provides a much greater opportunity for the players to exercise skill to improve their result.

????????

What's the non-PC name? Do tell! (PM if you can't post it)

Kerry Stead
12-08-2004, 06:25 AM
????????

What's the non-PC name? Do tell! (PM if you can't post it)

Methinks its Ricketty Kate ... but I am willing to stand corrected if wrong.

Bill Gletsos
12-08-2004, 04:32 PM
I 've heard it referred to by another name and the first word is Hunt.

Rincewind
12-08-2004, 05:23 PM
Methinks its Ricketty Kate ... but I am willing to stand corrected if wrong.

Close but no cigar. Bruce had heard the term but only used for the QS and not for the whole game itself. As a clue it could be construed as being racist and sexist in some contexts. Ricketty Kate is another name I'm familiar with and as far as I know one that is quite well-known too.


As an aside the standard scoring system seems to be

QS - 13 points
xH - 1 point
Total hand 26 point.
Making a clean sweep then all opponents get 26 points (a la misere I guess).

However, I usually play with the following scoring

QS - 10 points
JH - 5 points
xH - 1 point
Total hand 27 points
Making a clean sweep then all opponents get 27 points but I have also played a spite version where the player taking all point scoring cards can nominate a single opponent to get the 27 points.

In particular the JH being worth 5 does add a certain element to the play of the hearts suit which I think makes for a more interesting game. Also the QS is relatively devalued which doesn't hurt either.

Has anyone else played any variant (or variant scorings) like this?

ursogr8
12-08-2004, 07:59 PM
Ricketty Kate is another name I'm familiar with and as far as I know one that is quite well-known too.




FWIIW, I first heard the term ricketty kate in connection with the cricket from England, in the late 1960's. While the cricket was on (around 10.30pm) it was usual to have a variety show on the TV with local acts etc. When a wicket fell in England a doll, at the end of the announcers desk, would light up and shake. Then a booth announcer would give us the details of the fall of wicket. The doll was called rickey kate.

Doesn't sound like riveting stuff now.

starter

ursogr8
12-08-2004, 08:04 PM
Close but no cigar. Bruce had heard the term but only used for the QS and not for the whole game itself. As a clue it could be construed as being racist and sexist in some contexts. Ricketty Kate is another name I'm familiar with and as far as I know one that is quite well-known too.


As an aside the standard scoring system seems to be

QS - 13 points
xH - 1 point
Total hand 26 point.
Making a clean sweep then all opponents get 26 points (a la misere I guess).

However, I usually play with the following scoring

QS - 10 points
JH - 5 points
xH - 1 point
Total hand 27 points
Making a clean sweep then all opponents get 27 points but I have also played a spite version where the player taking all point scoring cards can nominate a single opponent to get the 27 points.

In particular the JH being worth 5 does add a certain element to the play of the hearts suit which I think makes for a more interesting game. Also the QS is relatively devalued which doesn't hurt either.

Has anyone else played any variant (or variant scorings) like this?

Barry

We play with the standard scoring system you list first above.
However, there is not quite anough edge to the game (not enough hissy fits by the losers), so we moved on after many years to SWITCH......like UNO but with 2 packs. Eventually settled on the Japanese rules of Mah Jong as being the best social game for 2 couples.

starter

Bill Gletsos
12-08-2004, 08:07 PM
Close but no cigar. Bruce had heard the term but only used for the QS and not for the whole game itself. As a clue it could be construed as being racist and sexist in some contexts. Ricketty Kate is another name I'm familiar with and as far as I know one that is quite well-known too.


As an aside the standard scoring system seems to be

QS - 13 points
xH - 1 point
Total hand 26 point.
Making a clean sweep then all opponents get 26 points (a la misere I guess).

However, I usually play with the following scoring

QS - 10 points
JH - 5 points
xH - 1 point
Total hand 27 points
Making a clean sweep then all opponents get 27 points but I have also played a spite version where the player taking all point scoring cards can nominate a single opponent to get the 27 points.

In particular the JH being worth 5 does add a certain element to the play of the hearts suit which I think makes for a more interesting game. Also the QS is relatively devalued which doesn't hurt either.

Has anyone else played any variant (or variant scorings) like this?

We have played with a 500 deck.
Use 60 cards excluding the joker and black 12's for 3, 4, 5, or 6 players.
With 7 players the all 63 cards are used.
The cards are ranked Joker, A, K, Q, J, 13-2.
As far as points are concerned the 2-10 of hearts are all their face value. The 11-13 plus J, Q, K are all worth 10 and the A is worth 11.

The Q of Spades is equal to 125, the sum of the hearts.
The Jack of diamonds is worth negative 100.
If you get all the hearts and the Q of spades then you score negative 250.

The dealer can specify if there is a pass or no pass and the direction of the pass left or right.
If there is a pass then you must pass 3 cards.

We have even played this with multiple 500 decks (normally 2).

This adds further complexity.
The dealer can now call as above or he can also call the additional option of "cancellation".

If the call is a "no cancellation" then if the same ranked card is played by two players the second card played wins the trick.
However in "cancellation" if same ranked cards are played then they Cancel each other out. The trick is won by the highest non cancelled card.
If the trick ends up "dead" e.g. a club is lead and it contains 10,10, 8, 8 of clubs, a J of hearts and an 7 of hearts then the hearts are won by the winner of the next trick. The player who lead in the "dead" trick leads again.

At times we have had as many as 12 people playing.
Under those circumstances we have on a few occasions played with 3 decks.

Brian_Jones
13-08-2004, 11:20 AM
In England when we were not playing bridge, we played a game called Solo (it sounds like 500) or Black Maria (sometimes called Chase the Lady). Does anybody know the original of some of these names? I guess Australia is influenced by USA more than England (yet again!)

shaun
13-08-2004, 04:03 PM
In England when we were not playing bridge, we played a game called Solo (it sounds like 500) or Black Maria (sometimes called Chase the Lady). Does anybody know the original of some of these names? I guess Australia is influenced by USA more than England (yet again!)

Solo is the short name for Solo Whist, which came after Whist (trying to improve the game) but pre-dated Bridge (which did a better job). It still exists in Australia but mainly as a social fund raiser (eg Whist Drive).
Black Maria is one of the many variants of Hearts. The main reason why Hearts has become the ubiquitous term is more to do with Microsoft Win-Blows than anything else.
500 is an invented game, developed by the American Playing Card Company in 1903 (IIRC) as a way to increase card sales. It's obvious roots are in the game of Euchre. Why it is so popular in Australia, and hardly played anywhere else, is a complete mystery to me.

Duff McKagan
30-06-2006, 03:52 AM
500 is a great game. I have no problem with misere. You just have to overbid or try to take the person down. This is where the real skill comes in. No problems with them losing 250 points if they don't make it :)
On another note, has anyone played the game Princes & Beggars or (the version that I know it by) Kings & A***holes? It has a ranking system, whereby the lowest player leads (at the start). The object of the game is to get rid of all of your cards, whereby you become the king! (or whatever the highest position is known as). Players in turn must follow the lead, by beating the card led, or passing. After all players have finished passing or no one can beat the card on the table, the person with that winning card leads once again. The last person to finish (i.e. still has a card) becomes the beggar, or street sweeper, or peasant :) The seating arrangement changes as to what position you finish up in. There is also a rule at the end of each hand, depending on the number of players, the peasant must pass his highest card dealt to him to the king and the king will swap it for any card they have. This may be 2 cards should there be a smaller number of players. The play of the game starting with the peasant can be a single card laid, or a double, triple, or quad, and each player following must reply with the same quantity, or pass. The game ends when a specified number of times a person has become the peasant, usually denoted by a word (e.g. A***hole would be 8 times, 1 for each letter) and this person becomes the loser and must perform some nominated task for the other players, as decided before the start of play. It's a great game.
Whist is also another favourite of mine.

Rincewind
30-06-2006, 09:38 AM
On another note, has anyone played the game Princes & Beggars or (the version that I know it by) Kings & A***holes? It has a ranking system, whereby the lowest player leads (at the start). The object of the game is to get rid of all of your cards, whereby you become the king! (or whatever the highest position is known as). Players in turn must follow the lead, by beating the card led, or passing. After all players have finished passing or no one can beat the card on the table, the person with that winning card leads once again. The last person to finish (i.e. still has a card) becomes the beggar, or street sweeper, or peasant :) The seating arrangement changes as to what position you finish up in. There is also a rule at the end of each hand, depending on the number of players, the peasant must pass his highest card dealt to him to the king and the king will swap it for any card they have. This may be 2 cards should there be a smaller number of players. The play of the game starting with the peasant can be a single card laid, or a double, triple, or quad, and each player following must reply with the same quantity, or pass. The game ends when a specified number of times a person has become the peasant, usually denoted by a word (e.g. A***hole would be 8 times, 1 for each letter) and this person becomes the loser and must perform some nominated task for the other players, as decided before the start of play. It's a great game.

There are several variants of such games and their main attraction is they are fairly tactical and therefore engaging for those with such a mind, and they can generally be played with any number of players greater than 2 (though the more the merrier) and so are great for groups of any number (especially odd numbers).


Whist is also another favourite of mine.

Thanks for the opportunity to use this chess quote...

There are two classes of people; those who are content to yield to circumstance, and who play whist; those who aim to control circumstances and who play chess - Mortimer Collins

Basil
30-06-2006, 12:45 PM
500 is a wonderful past time for hours of casual play. However, for a 15-30 minute escape, you'd be hard pressed to go past 'Cheat'.

Oepty
30-06-2006, 08:04 PM
500 is a great game. I have no problem with misere. You just have to overbid or try to take the person down. This is where the real skill comes in. No problems with them losing 250 points if they don't make it :)
On another note, has anyone played the game Princes & Beggars or (the version that I know it by) Kings & A***holes? It has a ranking system, whereby the lowest player leads (at the start). The object of the game is to get rid of all of your cards, whereby you become the king! (or whatever the highest position is known as). Players in turn must follow the lead, by beating the card led, or passing. After all players have finished passing or no one can beat the card on the table, the person with that winning card leads once again. The last person to finish (i.e. still has a card) becomes the beggar, or street sweeper, or peasant :) The seating arrangement changes as to what position you finish up in. There is also a rule at the end of each hand, depending on the number of players, the peasant must pass his highest card dealt to him to the king and the king will swap it for any card they have. This may be 2 cards should there be a smaller number of players. The play of the game starting with the peasant can be a single card laid, or a double, triple, or quad, and each player following must reply with the same quantity, or pass. The game ends when a specified number of times a person has become the peasant, usually denoted by a word (e.g. A***hole would be 8 times, 1 for each letter) and this person becomes the loser and must perform some nominated task for the other players, as decided before the start of play. It's a great game.
Whist is also another favourite of mine.

Emperor Scum is another name I have heard for the game
Scott

Duff McKagan
23-09-2008, 01:36 AM
Thanks for the opportunity to use this chess quote...

There are two classes of people; those who are content to yield to circumstance, and who play whist; those who aim to control circumstances and who play chess - Mortimer Collins

Was Mortimer Collins a member of the MCC?

Rincewind
23-09-2008, 09:10 AM
Was Mortimer Collins a member of the MCC?

If you mean the Melbourne Chess Club, I doubt it. The Mortimer Collins that I was quoting was a 19th century English novelist. As far as I know he never visited Australia.

However, he may have been a member of the Marylebone Cricket Club.