Twenty nine card game is popular across much of the northern part of India, including Bombay and West Bengal, and also in Bangladesh and Nepal.
29 is usually played by four players in fixed partnerships, partners facing each other.
32 cards from a standard 52-card pack are used for play. There are eight cards in each of the usual “French” suits: hearts, diamonds, clubs and spades. The cards in every suit rank from high to low: J-9-A-10-K-Q-8-7. The aim of the game is to win tricks containing valuable cards. The values of the cards are:
Jacks 3 points each
Nines 2 points each
Aces 1 point each
Tens 1 point each
Other cards (K, Q, 8, 7) no points
Deal and play are clockwise; the cards are shuffled by the dealer and cut by the player to dealer’s right. Four cards are then dealt to each player, one at a time.
Based on these four cards, players bid for the right to choose trumps. Each bid is a number, and the highest bidder undertakes that his or her side will win in tricks at least the number of points bid. The player to dealer’s left speaks first, and subsequent players, in clockwise order, may either bid higher or pass. The minimum bid allowed is 16 and the maximum is 28 (assuming that the point for the last trick is not counted). If any player bids, the auction continues for as many rounds as necessary until three players pass in succession. If the first three players pass, the dealer is forced to bid 16, which ends the auction.
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