Hokm

Hokm

Hokm ( _fa. حُکْم) is a version of the card game Whist played in Iran with four players competing against each other in two teams. It is similar to spades, but there is no bidding, and trump is declared every hand.

Gameplay and Mechanics

Arrangement

The players are organized into two teams of two players each, sitting opposite each other. Players must keep their hands secret from all other players, including their team-mates.

electing "Hâkem" & Teams

There are different method used for finding the "Hâkem" and team-mates at the start of each match (set of 7 games).
* Deal one card to each player. The player with the highest value card becomes "Hâkem", the trump-picker. The player with the second highest becomes his/her team-mate. In case of tie re-deal. This method is the least popular one.
* Deal two cards to each player. The player with the combined highest value cards becomes "Hâkem", the trump-picker. The player with the second highest cards becomes his/her team-mate.
* Deal one card to each player and continue to do so until 2 Aces are dealt. The player who receives the first Ace becomes "Hâkem", the trump-picker. The player who receives the second Ace becomes his/her team-mate.

Dealer

Dealer would be the person sitting to the left of the "Hâkem".

Playing

Partners sit opposite each other. 5 cards are dealt to each player, in groups of 5; dealing and play proceed counter-clockwise. "Hâkem" picks trump ("hokm") for that hand, based on the suits he's holding at that point (hearts/"del", spades/"pic", clubs/"gishniz" or "khâj", diamonds/"khesht"). 4 cards are then dealt out to each player, and then once again 4, so that each player is holding 13 cards and there are none left over. "Hâkem" leads any card of any suit. Your play must follow suit if able, and any card is legal if you can't follow suit. Highest card of suit led or highest trump takes trick, and trick-taker leads next hand. The goal is to be the first partnership to win 7 tricks (half of thirteen, rounded up). If claiming team makes 7, on the next hand "Hâkem" remains the same. If the opposing team makes 7, "Hâkem" becomes the player directly counter-clockwise from "Hâkem".

coring

Claiming team makes 7+ tricks: 1 point
Claiming team makes 7+ tricks plus opponents get zero tricks: 2 points

Opposing team makes 7+ tricks: 1 point
Opposing team makes 7+ tricks plus claiming team gets zero tricks: 3 points

A match is played to 7 points.

NO GAME IS FINISHED UNTIL THE WINNING TEAM IS WINNING BY 2 POINTS. EX. IF THE GAME GOES TO 6-6 THEN THE WINNING TEAM WILL HAVE TO GET TO 6-8 UNTIL THEY CAN WIN, OR 7-7 -> 7-9, ETC.

Official Champion

Nima Kooch is the world undisputed hokm champion. He started his reign in the game from a very early age. He has won the world hokm championship several times. For more info on his Hokm career you can check out the following website: www.nimakooch.com

trategy

Strategy is different from spades, in that you want to win your tricks early and can't depend on high trumps to necessarily win before the other team gets 7 tricks. Even partnerships with the A through 9 of trump can get shut out . There is a lot more hidden information than spades or bridge, since only one player announces a suit (with an implied 7 trick bid). Also, you can easily be fooled if you are Hâkem by the initial 5 cards, considering you have yet to see most of your hand.

In Iran the game is played by everyone, especially old men, con artists, gamblers and gangsters. Traditionally in money games no conversation or eye contact is allowed, which makes signalling conventions a lot more important than in spades.

Glossary

Hâkem
Person who picks the trump.

Cot
One team makes 7+ tricks plus opponents get zero tricks. Winner scores 2 points.

Hâkem Coti
Opponents of Hâkem makes 7+ tricks plus Hâkem team get zero tricks. Winner scores 3 points.

External links

* [http://www.geocities.com/pasurbazi/Hokm.htm Hokm] fa icon
* [http://www.pagat.com/whist/hokm.html Rules of Card Games: Hokm]
* [http://alijsh.googlepages.com/en_hokm.htm Hokm]
* [http://www.hokmgame.com/ Play Hokm Online]


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