Scopa (the italian sweep), is one of the more popular card games in Italy. There are references about this game 16th century, and it seems that the escoba (the spanish sweep) is a subsequent change of the scopa.
If you already know the rules of the escoba, you will learn quickly to play scopa by reading directly the differences between both games
This is a Spanish card game.
The Spanish pack has 40 or 48 cards distributed in four suits: oros (golden coins), copas (glasses), espadas (swords) and bastos (sticks); the picture cards are sota (jack,10), caballo (horse,11), and rey (king,12). Most games are played with the 40 cards pack (pictures and cards from ace to seven), but some of them need also eights and nines.
Two or three players may take part individually at Scoba; it may be also played by pairs, between 4 or 6 players.
The version that we offer is valid for 2, 3 or 4 players
The objective is to get a determinated number of points, fixed before starting the game. There must be played as many hands as necessary until some of the players reaches that score.
The dynamic of the game entails in taking cards from the table, according to the rules further explained.
How the game goes on
The first dealer is randomly selected.
The dealer shuffles the cards, gives the pack to the player in his left to cut it, hands 3 cards to each player starting by his right and finally puts 4 cards face up in the center of the gaming table.
Play the cards
">the leader makes the first move; every move entails in using one of the cards in the hand. If that card has the same number of one of the uncovered cards on the table, the player collects both cards in a little pack that may be increased in following turns.
If there is not any card on the table with the same number, and only in this case, the player must take a group of cards whose sum equals the value of the played card.
When making the sums players should take into account the puntuation of each card: ace, two, three, four, five, six and seven counts like their index (1,2,..7); sota(10), knight(11) and king(12) count repectively 8, 9 and 10.
If there is not any group of uncovered cards with teh same sum of values, the player has to place the played card faced up on the gaming table, next to the other uncovered cards.
When one of the players takes in his turn all the uncovered cards on the table it´s said to make an scopa (broom); this is pointed out by crossing up face one of the cards in his own pack.
Turn goes counterclockwise, each player uses one of his cards in his turn, and movements are repeated until they discard. Then, the dealer gives again 3 cards to each of the players, and the cycle is repeated until the pack is finished.
Every hand the dealing changes to the next player to the right.
When the hand finishes (all the cards of the pack are been dealt and moved), the last player who has joined 15 points takes the remainding cards in the center of the table.
When the hand is finished, the players proceed to count the obtained cards in order to update the scoreboard, using the following rules:
- One point for each scopa obtained bay each player.
- The player with the 7 of golds, (sette bello) will sum one point.
- Primiera: there is one point for the player who gets the highest amount according to the following rule: sevens are worth 21, sixes 18, fives 16, fours 15, threes 14, twoes 13, aces 12 and picture cards 10; the values of the four best cards of each player (or pair) is summed, and the player with highest value is the winner of the primiera. If there is a draw, nobody sums any point.
- The player with the highest amount of golds (denari) will sum one point. If there is a draw, nobody sums any point.
- The player with the highest amount of cards will sum one point. If there is a draw, nobody sums any point.
When one of the hands is finished and one or more of the players reaches the required amount of points to finish the game, the player with the highest score wins the game. If there is a draw, new hands are played until the draw is broken.
Playing by pairs
When 4 players take part in the game, the game is always played by pairs. In this case, the players of both pairs are placed in alternate positions.
The rules are the same; the only aspect that has to be taken into account is that, in order to determine the score in every hand, the cards got by both players of the each pair are count together.
Differences between escoba and scopa
If you already have played escoba, you will learn quickly scopa by reading the differences between both games:
- The main difference is the rule to take the cards: instead of summing 15, the value of used card must be the same of the sum of the cards taken from the center; if there is one one card with the same value, the priority is to take that card.
- It is forbidden to leave on the table any card that may be used to take some other cards from the center of the table.
- There is not any point for the player who gets the highest amount of sevens, but for the best primiera, that entails generally in getting the highest amount of sevens, and the highest amount of sixes if there is a draw.
- When there is a draw counting cards, golds or primiera, nobody gets any point.
Play online with some other players
Play by yourself: individual scopa
Play by yourself: scopa by pairs
Card Games web site
Acanomas: Escoba (Scopa)
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