How to Keep Score in Pinochle

By Lynn Little

Pinochle is the name given to a family of card games. Pinochle is a trick-winning game that has many varieties. Here is a guide to basic scoring, which remains the same for Pinochle and its many variations.

Higher cards have scoring value when won in tricks. The following are the score value under the simplified point-count system: Each Ace and ten is worth 10 points. Each King and Queen are worth 5, while the Jack is worth 0.

Winning the last trick is worth 10 points. Under both the original and simplified count, the total number of points at stake is 250.

When a combination of cards or melds is played together, they are worth points. A Flush (A-K-Q-J-10) of trumps is worth 150 points. A royal marriage (King and Queen of trumps) will get you 40 points. A simple marriage, that is King and Queen of any suit, is worth 20 points.

Four aces, one in each suit, is worth 100 points. Four kinds, one from each suit, is worth 80 points while four queens from each suit is 60. Four jacks of different suits is worth 40.

The Queen of Hearts and the Jack of Diamonds (Pinochle) are worth 40 points. The 9 of trumps is worth 10. The first player to 1,000 points wins the game.

About the Author

Lynn Little has been a freelance writer for five years. She holds a communication degree from Mississippi State University and has worked in the television, radio, and newspaper business. Her work has appeared on several websites including Bella Online, where she is the Board Games Editor.