First published donkey's years ago in Games & Puzzles magazine (No. 61), Twyst derives from a five-player game called Squint that appeared in my book "Original Card Games". I recently played it again and decided it could do with some simplification, as follows. (For the five-player equivalent, see Squint.)
When all are ready, twist the bid-cards face up. These determine the contract to be played and who is or are the contractor(s), if any, by the following means:
Win 7+ tricks at no trump (solo) Any Ace Win 7+ tricks with trumps (solo) K, Q or J of your proposed trump Win 7+ with trumps and a partner Numeral 3 - 10 of your proposed trump* Misère: win 0 tricks at no trump (solo) Any Deuce * Note: The higher the numeral, the more confident you should be of your bid, and vice versa.
a. All different ( ). Whoever put out the highest numeral plays a Twist Solo. The bid suit is trump and the bidder aims to win more tricks than any other individual player. (This make it possible to win with as few as four tricks, provided the others split 3-3-3.) If the same highest numeral is put out by two or more players, the soloist is the eldest of them.
b. Two of one suit (e.g. ). The two who put out the same suit play a Trump Duo. Their suit is trump and their aim is to win at least as many tricks as indicated by the higher of the two numerals - i.e., from 7 to 10. However, if both numerals are lower than Seven, they must win at least as many tricks as the sum of both numerals - i.e. from 7 (if 3+4) to 11 (if 5+6).
c. Two each of two suits (e.g. ) Each pair who put out the same suit are partners in a Plain Duo. This is played at no trump and is won by whichever side wins 7 or more tricks.
d. Three or four of a suit ( and any other). The game is a Nemo. Everyone plays for themselves at no trump and the aim is to win tricks that do not contain any card of the suit bid (in this case ).
* Ten points for each trick won by the opponent who took most.
Contract Target Score if win Deduct if lose Ace solo 7+ at no trump 20 per trick won 20 per trick lost Court solo 7+ in suit 15 per trick won 15 per trick lost Twist solo most in suit 10 per trick won 10 per trick beaten by * Misère 0 at no trump 150 150 Trump duo as per bid-cards 10 per trick won 10 per trick lost Plain duo 7+ at no trump 10 per trick won 0 Nemo win clean tricks 10/20 per clean trick** 0