Happy Friday everyone! As you read this I am on a plane to a surprise anniversary trip (our 2nd wedding anniversary is on Monday). Viet has planned this trip all on his own, and I can’t wait for a nice little get away. I’ve got a post planned for Monday, but the blog will be quiet most of the rest of next week. I had hoped to plan some posts out for you guys in advance, but life’s been a bit crazy lately.
I will be all over instagram, so make sure to follow along on our adventures! Happy Almost June!
The 52 Card Games project is my first 52 Weeks project. I love card games, and I love learning new games and playing the games I love. For this project, I’m documenting a new card game each Friday. In case you’ve missed any of the 20 games I’ve featured so far, check out all of the previous 52 CARD GAMES.
This week’s game is a great poker alternative and works perfectly for large groups or parties. It seems complicated at first, but it’s easy to get the hang of:
In a Nutshell
Badugi is a poker-like game with four-card hands. There are rounds of betting and chances to exchange cards before the final reveal.
Unlike other games, in Badugi the winner has the lowest scoring hand. You may only count all four cards in your hand if you have no cards of the same suit or number/rank.
The dealer rotates clockwise along with a “small blind” (first player to the dealer’s left) and “big blind” (player to the small blind’s left). Small blind can be a single betting unit (e.g. 1 chip) and big blind should be twice the size of the small blind (e.g. two chips).
The dealer deals four cards to each player, clockwise, face down, one at a time. Players evaluate their cards before the first round of betting. The first round of betting is to determine who wants in on that round’s action or who is folding out front. The big blind is automatically in. All other players must put in two chips to continue playing and the small blind must put in 1 chip to play.
After the initial rounds of betting, there are three rounds where players can exchange cards with the dealer to try to improve their hands. After each round, there is a round of betting. Starting with the first active player to dealer’s left, and continuing clockwise around the dealer, each player states how many cards he or she wishes to exchange, discards that number of cards, and is immediately given an equal number of replacement cards face down by the dealer. Players can exchange any number of cards (0-4).
Winning the Round
In order to count all four cards in a hand, all the cards must be different in suit and rank. If a player has more than one card of a suit, or two or more cards of matching rank, only one card of the suits or ranks will count in the hand.
A four card hand with uniquely suited and ranked cards is called a badugi and is automatically higher than a three card hand or a two card hand.
If you had a 6 of hearts, 10 of hearts, 4 clubs, and a 8 of spades only one heart can count, so you would use the lowest heart, resulting in a three-card hand: 6 of hearts, 4 clubs, and 8 of spades.
An example of a badugi would be: Ace of diamonds, 2 of hearts, 3 of clubs and 6 of spades.
The rules for comparing hands are:
- Any hand with more cards beats a hand with fewer cards. So a badugi beats any three-card hand, which beats any two-card hand, which beats any one-card hand.
- Between hands with the same number of cards, compare the highest card. The hand with the lower top card is better.
- If the highest cards of equal sized hands are equal, compare the second highest card, and the lower card wins. If these are also equal compare the third highest card (if present), and then the fourth highest.
- If two hands have the same number of cards and the ranks of the cards are the same, the hands are equal. There is no ranking of suits.
There you have it! It’s a really fun game.
You can get the rules here.
Play on, players!!
See you later next week!