Game Rules


The cards are dealt clockwise starting from the dealer’s successor (to his left), each player receives a pack of three cards, then another set of two.
After the four players receive the first five cards, the remaining cards are left face down except the card on the top, which is turned face up.

As soon as a player has accepted the card, the remaining cards are dealt:

  • 2 cards for the player who took the card
  • 3 cards for the 3 other players


The biddings are made in two rounds. During the first round each player must either pass or accept the card face up.
Doing so will set the cards of the same suit than the face up card as trump. If every player passed, another round is made.

The players can propose one of the remaining colour suits as trump, but must take the face up card.

If none of the players chooses a trump, the cards are reshuffled and a new round begins.
The player after the forehand becomes the new forehand.


Following the trump selection the forehand begins the game. The next player must follow suit. If a trump is played, the players must not only follow suit, but also play a higher value card than the previous player.

Note: A player must also play a trump, if they can’t follow suit and the opponent is winning the trick.

Undertrumping and overtrumping : If a player can’t follow suit and the opponent has already played a trump card, they must either play a higher value card of the trump suit (overtrump) or give a lower card of the trump suit if they can’t overtrump (undertrump).

However, if the partner is winning the trick, a random card can be played.

The highest trump card wins the trick. If no trump is played, the highest card of the played suit wins the trick. The following ranking applies: Jack, 9, Ace, 10, King, Queen, 8, 7 (for the trump suit) and Ace, 10, King, Queen, Jack, 9, 8, 7 (for the other suits). The player, who takes the trick, begins the next.


To score the points for a game, the team of the player who accepted the face up card must score more than the other team. Generally, this means a team needs to score at least 82 points as there are total 162 points in the game. However, bonus points won from Belote might be taken into account.

For each trick won, the total number of points within the trick is awarded.

  • Belote
    If a player holds the trump Queen and King, he/she can call « Belote ». As the first of these cards is laid, the player calls « Belote ».
    As the second is played, « Rebelote » is called. Twenty bonus points are awarded to the team.

The following applies for the trump suit:

Jack20 Points
914 Points
Ace11 Points
1010 Points
King4 Points
Queen3 Points

The following applies for the other suits:

Ace11 Points
1010 Points
King4 Points
Queen3 Points
Jack2 Points
90 Points

Sevens and Eights always give 0 points, no matter the suit.

The points from the tricks are totaled up for both teams. An additional 10 points are awarded for the last trick. If all of the tricks are won by the same team (Capot), 90 additional points are awarded (a total score of 252 or 272 with belote).
If the team, which called the trump suit, wins, the total points won by both teams are added to give a grand total. If the other team wins, the team receives all of the trick points. If this is the case, the losing team wins no points.

In order the bid to be successful the team must win more points than the opponent.

The team that reaches 501 points first wins.

If both teams reach 501 points (or cross the line of 501 points with equal score) in the same round, another deal is made in order to determine the winner.

Classic Belote and Coinche with Declarations

Another variation of the classic French Belote and Coinche is to play with declarations.A player who has these card combinations and announces them when playing their first card (regardless of whether the card is included in the combinations or not), may earn their team the respective points:

Three card sequence of same colorTierce20
Four card sequence of same colorQuarte50
Five card sequence of same colorQuint100
Four of a kind (10, Q, K, A)Square100
Four nines (9)Square150
Four jacks (J)Square200

The card order for sequences is: 7; 8; 9; 10; J; Q; K; A.

If the same card is part of a Square and a sequence (tierce, quarte, quint), the player chooses which to announce.

If both teams announce sequences, premiums are given only to the team that announced the higher sequence. If both sequences are of equal length, higher is considered the one that contains higher rank cards. If both sequences are equal, than neither team receives premiums.

If both teams announced Squares, premiums receive only the team who’s Square rewards more score (trump color).

Premiums for card sequences are given even if the other team has a Square.


Coinche is a variation of the classic game Belote. The main differences between Coinche and the classic Belote are:

  • The game is played until one team reaches 1000 points. If both teams have 1000 or more points and they have the same points value, the winner is the team that won the last round.
  • The game starts with the distribution of 8 cards to each player, which on the contrary to classic Belote, allows the strength of the hand to be known immediately.
  • The announcements start from 80 to 160. The highest possible announcement is the “Capot”, which signifies that the team must win all of the tricks of the round.
  • When a bidding is made, the next player can make an announcement, which is at least 10 points higher than the previous one.
  • If an announcement was already made by the opposing team the other one can declare “Coinche”. This means that a player from the opposing team announces that the other team will not make their proposed contract.
  • The first team than has the ability to “Surcoinche” if they are certain that they will achieve their set objective.
  • “Coinche” multiplies by 2 and “Surcoinche” by 3 the value of the contract.
  • If an opponent bids “Coinche”, you can say only “Pass” or “Surcoinche” The auction ends when 3 players pass or player bids “Surcoinche”.
  • If “Coinche” bid is successful the bidder wins points for all the cards in the game (162) + his original bid x2. However if it is unsuccessful the opposing team gets points only for the tricks won + their original bid x2. If “Surcoinche” bid is successful the bidder wins points only for the tricks won + the original bid x3. If it isn’t successful though the opposite team wins points equal to all cards (162) + the original bid x3. In both cases the losing team gets 0 points.