How to Play Tripoley Games

By Alan Kirk

Tripoley is a card game that is combines aspects from the games of president, rummy, poker and 500. The goal is to win as many chips as you can and to eliminate your opponents from the game. The player with the most chips at the end of the game is the winner.

Organize a group of friends. Tripoley requires two to nine players.

Provide 50 playing chips to each player. To limit the number of chips, you can use different colors to represent different amounts.

Direct each player to place a single chip in each of the 13 chip holders on the tripoley tray. The tripoley tray has chip holders for each of the four aces on the corners. In the center it has holders for each card in the suit of hearts from the ten through the ace. There are also holders in the center of the tray for a combination of the king and queen of hearts in one hand, a combination of the eight through 10 in a single suit, the pot, and the kitty. These are all commonly referred to as the money cards.

Deal out a number of hands equal to the number of players plus one. So if there are nine players, the dealer should deal 10 hands. It's OK if some of these hands have one more card than others.

Allow each player to look at his hand. Each player except for the dealer must play the hand he is dealt. The dealer can choose to discard his hand if he wishes and pick up the extra hand. After picking up the extra hand, the dealer cannot take his original hand back.

Ask the player to the left of the dealer to play his lowest black-suited card from his hand. This will be from the suits of clubs or spades.

Instruct players to take turns playing the next highest card in that suit. Whichever player has the next highest card in that suit can play it; turns do not have to rotate in clockwise around the table. At times there will be a situation when no player has the next card in the ascending sequence. In this case, the player who played the last card can play the lowest card in his hand that is the opposite color of the last card he played. If a player does not have a card in the opposite color, he can play the lowest card in his hand of the same color as the card he played last.

Continue playing using the rules in step 7 until one player is out of cards. The play of the hand is now over, and that player collects the chips in the kitty on the tripoley tray.

Instruct each player to pick up the cards from her hand again. Each player who has a money card can then collect the chips from the chip holder for that card on the tripoley tray. If multiple players have an eight, nine and 10 from the same suit, they split those chips. The chips remain in the holders of any cards or card combinations that players do not have for the next hand.

Ask each player to form his best five-card poker hand from the cards in his hand. The player with the best poker hand wins the chips that are in the holder on the tripoley tray labeled "pot."

Instruct each player to place one chip in each of the 13 chip holders on the tripoley tray to start the next hand. If a player does not have enough chips to put in each holder, she may choose which holders to put individual chips in. A player can play the next hand as long as she has at least one chip to add to the tripoley tray. If she has no chips, that player is eliminated from the game.

Repeat steps four through 11 until one of the following happens: all players but one are out of chips; a predetermined amount of time for playing the game has been completed; or a predetermined number of rounds of tripoley have been played.

References

About the Author

Alan Kirk has been writing for online publications since 2006. He has more than 15 years' experience in catering, management and government relations. Kirk has a bachelor's degree in business management from the University of Maryland.