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Bridge, Poker, Canasta...

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The only card-game I enjoy is Bridge. Like many card-games, there is an element of luck and an element of skill. Bridge is a variant of whist, which is much simpler. In bridge, the rules have been designed to lessen the effect of luck, and to make winning not so much a question of "what cards you got and how well you played", but "how well you played with the cards you got".

In some card-games, a lot of the skill is in bluffing: establishing a pattern of play; then, as a sudden exception, using that to beguile your opponents. Bridge too has an element of such feinting, and it is fun to use it occassionally. However, bluffing is not key to the game. Some amount of memory is required, but not an exceptional amount. The primary skill is very much like problem solving.

On each deal, one team has won the opportunity to "solve the puzzle". Parts of the "puzzle" are hidden, but not too much: enough to require thinking about probabilities, but not so much that it becomes "mostly luck".

Does anyone else here play bridge? What about other card games? Any favorites?

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Hold 'em and a little Omaha H/L are the ones I play for the strategy element. My father, two brothers, and I invented a game for when we just want to have some fun and relax the brains a little. It's quite silly, actually. It's called "mucho cardo" and it's basically 11-card stud. :P Quite the trip.

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Yes, it's almost impossible; like looking for Esperanto speakers! I tried playing online a few times, but it isn't so much fun playing with random strangers.

My senior year in college, I lived in a suite in the dorms with 4 other guys. At the start of the year, three of us were avid bridge players. My experience is that 3 bridge players are like a free radical in chemistry: they fly around, looking for other people to convert into bridge players. Within a month, all five of us were avid bridge players, and we played a *lot* that year. (In fact, I'm fairly sure that excessive bridge playing was a contributing factor to one of the guys flunking out of college the following year.)

The prior year I played a fair amount of poker, mostly because my roommate at the time liked to drink, play poker, and bluff badly. I didn't like him much, so I played poker with him and took a lot of his money.

I'm also fond of hearts, spades and a rather odd game we called "High School".

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Texas Hold'em. I play in a local league. For anyone interested in league play that doesn't have something like this in their area, it's quite fun.

We play in local bars, usually the nicer ones, not the dives. Registration is free, all tourneys are free. There is no money involved in actual play so that gets ABC off their backs. All they expect is that you patronize the business while you are there, buy drinks, buy food, etc. The establishment pays the league coordinators a fee, much like they would pay a band, to bring in business. It has worked really well so far, and there is some place to play just about every night.

Players vie for points and placement. Points accumulate throughout the season with the top 100 people getting to compete in a final tourney. Nightly games award gift certificates to the top 3 spots. The final tourney usually awards a paid poker cruise for the winner. Not bad for "free" poker.

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Ooh, I love card games!!!!! And board games, for that matter. And most other kinds of games, too.

My favorites are Pinochle, Euchre, and Canasta. My grandma taught me how to play Bridge when I was younger, but I never really got into it. No matter how much explaining she did, I always ended up confused....

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Canasta: now there's a game I like, but haven't played for a long time. I especially used to play the two-person version a lot, which is convenient if you can't find four people to play. (In the two-person version I played, you draw two cards but discard only one.)

I've never played bridge, but in the past I played another game that also involves bidding in which one "contracts" to take a certain number of tricks: "five-hundred". I think its rules are simpler than bridge, although there is an interesting twist in that the cards of the trump suit are ranked differently than those of the other suits. And five-hundred also has a good two-person version.

I also used to play hearts a lot.

Edited by Jay P
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  • 8 months later...

As I wrote in my introduction, I have played bridge since I was 6, that means 13 years now. I have never played rubber (I don´t even know whether it is called this way :) ), I play just duplicate bridge. It is not as hard to find a partner in Czech Republic, because there are not many players here so I know nearly everyone, who play it regularly. ;)

If you have a problem to find a partner and still like the game, there is a possibility to play bridge online for free:


But to be sincere, I don´t like online bridge because there are many weird people and I like to chat between the games and meet the people too, and this is what the online bridge lacks.

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I don´t like ..online bridge because there are many weird people and I like to chat between the games and meet the people too, and this is what the online bridge lacks.
Yes, it isn't as much fun playing with strangers. Also, a quarrelsome post-mortem is fine with a friend but not so fine with a stranger.

I have pals around the US who play, but getting everyone online at the same time (most are people with families) is nearly impossible.

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My favorite card game to play is War (just kidding). I like to play spoons, where there's only 4 spoons in the middle and five players, and once two cards come up of the same value, everyone tries to grab a spoon. It's not intellectually challenging, but man it can be a great adrenaline rush.

There's also a another card game where you move these pegs around a board after you've scroed. . .and when you score you count out "fifteen-two, fifteen-four, fifteen-eight, etc.". . .it's really fun I just can't remember the name of it :)

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  • 7 years later...

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