La Scopa

La scopa come from Italy and Spain, and is traditionnally played with italian or spanish cards. In Spain, it is called escoba, and is also well known in North Africa where it has many other names.
In the playroom, normal cards have been used for sake of simplicity.

Game rules

La Scopa can be played with 2to 6 players. We play with a 52 cards deck where figures are removed. We therefore have 40 cards going from ace to 10.

At the beginning of the game, the dealer puts 4 cards visibles on the table, then deal 3 cards to each player.
When nobody hasn't cards anymore in his hand, the dealer again deal 3 cards to each player, until the deck is empty.
Since the deck contains initially 36 cards, there are 6 distributions of 3 cards when playing with 2 players, 4 with 3 players, 3 with 4 players and 2 with 5 and 6 players. When playing with 5 players, 5 cards are returned on the table at the beginning of the game instead of 4, and the last deal comprises 4 cards instead of 3.

One play one after eachother, beginning next to the dealer. At your turn, choose a card to play, then :

Note: In this game, the value of ace is always only 1 and is therefore the weakest card.


When all cards have been played, one proceed to the scoring :

The central card of the game is of course the 7 of diamond. In addition to be worth 1 point alone, it also contributes to win points in all other categories. The secondary objective of the game is to collect a maximum of cards, especially diamonds.
If there is a draw between two players for a category, for example two players own each two 7, then no point is given for that category.

When one play on a real table, a scopa game is generally played until someone reach 11, 16 or 21 points. Additionnally, the winner is only declared if he wins by at least two points against his opponents. The game keeps going as long as he wins by only a single point or if the game is draw.


If a player can collect all remaining cards on the table during his turn, he mades what is called a scopa and immediately wins a bonus point. The next player has of course no choice but putting a new card on the table, since there is none to collect.

Options and variants


In this variant, the card you are playing together with one or more cards of the table must sum up to 15 unstead of being simply equal in order to collect the later. For example, by playing a 6, you can collect a 9, or a 4 and a 5.

Other rules don't change. This variant allow for slightly better strategies than classic game.


IN this variant, no card is put on the table at the beginning of the game, and the deal is different :

Some players estimate that this version offer better strategy than classical game. Note that scopone and escoba variants can be combined.

Inverted or muerto

In this mode, all the points you obtain are in fact given to other teams. The goal become then to avoid making scopa, taking diamonds or simply any other card.
This variant has been suggested on the forum and you would be surprised to see how much the game become radically different compared to the ordinary one!

This mode can be combined with others. It works better when scopone escoba is also activated.

Manual trick selection

IN this mode, the computer no longer automatically choose for you what cards to take from the table. You can choose yourself what you want, and, in particular, you have the possibility, or the risk, to make a mistake.

If you notice that one of your opponents made a mistake, you can catch himeby pressing space. You must do so before the end of the next turn. Catch someone else give you 2 points, but be careful, call for mistake when there is none may cost you one point.

Keystroke summary