How Do You Play Pinochle?


Quick Answer

Pinochle is a game played with a special deck and two players. The Pinochle deck includes a total of 48 cards, including eight each of aces, kings, queens, jacks, 10s and nines. Unlike a standard deck, each suit has two of each card instead of one.

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Full Answer

  1. Shuffle the deck

    Before the game can begin, the deck must be shuffled. The second player then cuts the deck.

  2. Determine who will deal first

    Each player reveals a top card from the deck. The player with the highest card rank will deal first. If two or more of the cards have the same rank, players need to shuffle, cut and draw again.

  3. Deal the cards

    Cards are dealt three or four at a time, alternating players until everyone has 12 cards. Once completed, the top card of the deck is revealed as a trump card. The remaining cards are placed down, covering half of the trump card.

  4. Score points

    Players get points for collecting tricks, which are the rounds won by playing the highest card of a lead suit or a trump card, and making melds, which are certain card combinations. The goal is to get more points than the other players in order to win. After each trick, players replenish the cards in their hand by drawing top cards from the deck.

  5. Play to a certain number of points

    There are two ways to complete a game. Players can choose to play until one of them has 1,000 points or until the players run out of cards to draw. The player with the most points from tricks and melds wins.

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