Original Card Games by David Parlett

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SNEAK


If you've got it, flaunt it. If not, bluff it.

Players 2-7   Cards 52 or 104   Type Win cards by bluffing

In this not very serious game you collect cards until you think you either have a winning combination or can bluff opponents into believing you have one. Different things happen depending on whether you "sneak" by playing a combination face down or "flaunt" by playing it face up.

Cards
Two or three players use a 52-card pack ranking AKQJ1098765432 in each suit. Five or more use two such packs shuffled together (104 cards). Four can use either one or two packs as preferred.
Deal
None! Each player deals in turn, but all the dealer has to do is shuffle the cards very thoroughly and stack them face down where everyone can reach them.
Object
To bluff and challenge your way into winning more cards than anyone else.
Play
Dealer's left-hand neighbour goes first and the turn to play passes always to the left. On your turn to play you can do one of three things:
  1. Draw the top card of stock and add it to your hand. This is all you can do on your first turn.
  2. Play a card or cards from your hand face down to the table. This is called sneaking and is an attempt to win cards by bluff. If nobody challenges (see below), you win these cards without showing them and add them to your winnings pile.
  3. Play from your hand a card or card combination face up to the table. This is called flaunting and is an attempt to win cards by force. If nobody challenges or beats them (see below), you add these cards to your winnings pile.
Note. Whether you sneak or flaunt, you mustn't lead a number of cards greater than anyone can match. For example, you may not lead a three-card combination if nobody else currently holds more than two cards.
Card combinations ("combos")
A combo is two or more cards of the same rank, suit or sequence played together. Only combos of the same size (that is, containing the same number of cards) ever compete with one another. Combos beat one another as follows, from highest to lowest:
Challenging a sneak
If you sneak (lead face down), anyone can challenge you by playing the same number of cards face down. If nobody challenges, you just add those cards to your winning pile without showing them. Otherwise, when all are ready, you turn them face up, and each challenger in turn, passing to the left, does likewise. In either case, if the highest card or combo is tied, then it is the tied card or combo played last that wins.
Challenging a flaunt
If you flaunt (lead face up), anyone can challenge you by playing the same number of cards face up. If more than one person announces a challenge, they must reveal their challenging hands simultaneously. Note If a straight flush is led, it can only be beaten by a higher straight flush. But if it is played to someone else's lead of a straight or a flush, it counts only as a straight or a flush - it doesn't beat them by virtue of being a straight flush. As before, ties are always broken in favour of the card or combo played last in rotation from the left of the leader.
The turn to play
No matter who wins a challenge, the turn to play always passes to the left of the leader. It does not pass to the winner.
Endgame
When the last card has been drawn from stock, sneaking ends, and all further leads must be flaunted (led face up). The last player left with any cards in hand wins them without competition. Everybody scores 1 point for each card they won. The player to the left of the previous dealer shuffles the cards for the next round of play.
Game
Game is 100 points if played with a single pack or 200 points if played with two.

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