Game : If we learn how to be stupid ? The Durak
Durak! English meaning : stupide, idiot. Russian cards game very popular in Russia, and all the Central Asian countries, which were before a part of the USSR.
One of the most interesting game I have ever played with cards, with the French Tarot ( not to read future, but a real game ! )
Interesting in the way that there is a lucky part as all the cards game, but a strategy and logic aspect.
Goal : To the the fastest to empty our hand.
The "durak" term is the name of the loser, the one who will be the last to empty his hand.
Main rule : There is an attack, that a defender has to defend correctly until the end. Else, he will lose. The attack is made by the closest neighboor at the right and left of the defender.
Number of player : As much as you want. If more than 7 players, it is better to play with 2 cards' deck
How to play : The dealer ( the "durak" of the previous game ) give 6 cards to each player, by dealing them 1 per 1 or 2 per 2. The deck has to be shaken each new game.
As soon as the cards have been distributed, the first of the remaining deck is shown, and stay shown, at the bottom of the deck. It is now the last card which will be picked, and every one can see it. The color of this card ( spade, heart, diamond, clum ) is important, as it indicates which color will be the powerful one during the next game.
NB: Cards classification : The smallest is the 2, and going up to Ace.
The "powerful cards" follow the same logic, but whatever of those cards is higher than the cards of the other simple colors. It means that if Spade is powerful, a 3 of spade is bigger than an Ace or a King of heart or diamond.
Cards should not be shown to the opponents, but can be checked at anytime by each player.
The durak of the last game start. He attacks the next player, by putting a card on the table. Defender has now to defend, by putting a card of the same color, higher than the attacker's. If he cannot, he can put a "powerful card" if he has in his hand. In the following case, attacker put a 9 of heart. In order to defend correctly, defender has to put a heart, higher than 9, or a spade, which is the powerful color during this round ( queen of spade visible). Defender put a jack of heart, this is correct.
If the defender cannot defend, he take the card on the table, and do not play. Next play will play.
If he can defend, and he does it correctly, the 2 attackers can continue to attack, by adding any other card in their hand, with the same value ( number) as those already on in the game.
If we continue the game displayed above, un jack has defended on a 9. Players attacking can now put any other 9 or Jack in their hand. 2 new cards are attacking. Defenders has to block them all, if he doesn't want to get everything in his hand. You can see a correct defense on the picture. Attackers can still play, if they have any 9, Jack, but also 10 and king. And so on...
If the defense is correct, and the attackers cannot/don't want to play anymore, the cards which were played are burned, and are out of the game until the next round. Defender become attacker, and the trio who was playing is going one person further in the game loop.
Before the next step starts, players which played cards has to check their hand in order to have 6 cards minimum. If not, they have to pick cards until reaching the amount of 6.
Players, defenders or attackers without any distinction, can decide to attack or defend if they want to. A player which can defend can decide to not defend. He will get the cards on the game in his hand, and will pass.
A player which can attack, can if he wants be passive, in order to keep the cards he has, to a better move later.
When each new first card is played on the table, if the defender has a card of the same value ( same number), he can play it, and it will change the attack, to a transfer to the next player. This one will have to defend 2 first cards, without any possibility of transfer.
For example, here, the first player attacks with a 9 of heart, and the defender but a 9 of clum. It transfers the roles to the next player. Defender become attacker, and the second attacker become defender. The two 9 has to be blocked.
It is possible to put 1,2,3,4 cards at a time, if so many cards are already in a player's hand, with the same height.
If a player has 3 kings, he can attack directly with 3 kings, that the defender has to block completly
In the following example, a player has two 4 in his hands. He attacks with those 2 cards. Defender defends with a 6 and a 7 of the requested colors. The 2 attackers can keep attacking, with 4,6,7 in their hands. One of them had a 7 of clum. Good defense with a queen of clum. If any attacker has a queen ( or a 4,6,7), he can play. A queen of spade is played. Defender has to put something higher. It could be either a king, an ace, of spade or a powerful card. Here heart is the powerful one ( card visible under the deck ). Correct defense has been done. Finally, a player has a second queen in his hand, and decide to play it also. Defender cannot play the color, but he put a heard, to block it.
Now, this is an important time in the game. 5 cards have already been defended. It means, in the case the defender has only 6 cards at the beginning, if he defends correctly a new next one, he will win. Else, he will have all the cards played, back in his hand.
A player has attack with an ace. To defend against an ace is only possible with a powerful card. If the defender has, as a last card, a powerful one... Victory!
If any player attacks with the ace of heart during this game, the defender cannot defend as it is the most powerful card of the round.
But in case of the defender has the ace of heart, he can defend for sure correctly one card during all the game. But a 2 of heart is also enough to defend on the ace of diamond which is currently attacking.
It is forbidden to attack the defender with more cards than he has in his hand.
As long as the deck is not existing anymore, players are emptying their hand as fast as possible. It is necessary in that case to combine correctly cards, in order to put out of the game as much cards as possible at each turn.
As long as the deck is still existing, there is only one way to win : To defend correctly with the 6 cards or more in a hand, in a row.
If a round achieve, and 5 cards only have been played, the defender will have to pick 5 new cards, in order to get the minimum requested.
Picking card order :
First attacker is picking the cards he needs. Defender is picking after. Second attacker is picking last.
More commonly, Players pick number of cards they need, in the way of the game.
As long as a player win, other have to continue, in order to make like a classification, and to see who's the Durak, the loser
I think I explain all the details... Enjoy!
Oh, and as it is often the confusing aspect when players are beginners, here are the 2 main rules:
-Attackers can only play value ( numbers) already in the game
-Defenders can play only a value higher than attacking cards, of the same color. Only exception : Powerful card can play over all the other cards, without any importance of value, except between powerful cards together.