hist-games: New Reconstruction of Primero

John McLeod john at pagat.demon.co.uk
Tue Oct 15 05:49:54 PDT 2002

On Mon, 14 Oct 2002 Jane & Mark Waks <Jane & Mark Waks <waks at attbi.com>>
>Okay, time to jump into the fray with this. After years of being not
>quite happy with any of the extant reconstructions, I've tried my hand
>at reconstructing Primero.
>Anyway, folks should feel free to play around with them, and offer
>commentary. They're at:
>       http://www.waks.org/game-hist/game-recon-primero.html

I think you have done an excellent job. There are a few doubtful points
that I would like to ask about. 

1. You write (about phase 1): "Pass -- you may optionally discard one or
two cards ...". Does 'optionally' mean that you can also simply pass and
do nothing? If so, your reconstruction differs in this respect from
Suzuki's, but I did not see anything about this difference in your
'Rationale' section.

2. You write: "The rule about getting around to the last player deserves
a clarifying example. Say you have players A, B, C and D. A Passes; B
Vies; C and D both Pass. A now must See the bet, even if he doesn't have
much of a hand."

But it seems that a player who passes, instead of vying, seeing or
folding, must have another opportunity to vie, see or fold on the next
round. So in your example, A is not really the 'last player', since B
and C have not yet had a chance to see or vie on the basis of their
improved hands. According to your rules, A should be able to fold now,
forcing D to see if C also folds. 

Alternatively, since a player is allowed to pass once after someone has
vied, A can also pass again, and will then be forced to see on the next
round if C and D both fold. 

3. I don't quite understand the following rule in your phase 2: "When
vying, if the bid is numerus or supremus, you must exchange one or two
cards." When are these cards exchanged? Presumably after the player
bids. It is strange that in phase 2 there is the possibility of both
vying and exchanging cards in the same turn, whilst in phase 1 you can
only do one or other of these.
John McLeod                      For information on card games visit       
john at pagat.demon.co.uk           http://www.pagat.com/

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