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Bouré, also commonly known as Boo-Ray, is a gambling card game primarily played in the Acadiana region of Louisiana in the United States of America. The game's closest relatives are probably Spades and Poker; like many regional games, Bouré sports a large number of variant rules for both gameplay and betting considerations.

Table of contents
1 Rules
2 Variations
3 Related Link


The game is played with a standard 52-card deck; aces are high. With four players, everyone is guaranteed fresh cards if they draw replacements; with more, it may be necessary to use previously-discarded ones, so five or six players is considered the practical limit of single-decked Bouré.

After every player antes, the dealer passes out five cards to each player, one at a time. They flip their own fifth card--the last dealt--and the suit of that card is considered trumps. As in Spades, this suit beats all others; a 2 of trumps is "higher" in rank than an Ace of any other suit.

After the deal, each player (starting with the one to the dealer's left and continuing clockwise) states their intent to play. Many variants require an additional ante at this point Those who are not playing in the hand fold, and those cards are collected by the dealer for possible use if the main stock runs out.

Once every player has stated their intent, the dealer asks those still in the game (in the same order as before) how many new cards they desire. They can take any number from zero to five; their discards go in a separate pile, and the dealer hands them as many new cards as they discarded. If the main stock is depleted before all the players have been serviced, the dealer shuffles the "folded" hands and deals those; if that stock is depleted as well, the discards are shuffled and used.

Once everyone, including the dealer, has either folded or completed their redraw, the game begins. The nearest leftmost player to the dealer starts by playing any card from their hand (with few exceptions); rules of play are as follows, and a lower-numbered rule overrides any higher-numbered one.

  1. You must play to win. This goes beyond simply 'playing a higher card;' if you know that no one else has any trumps, and it is your turn to lead, you must play trumps if you have them.
  2. You must play on-suit if possible, even if your highest on-suit card will not beat the highest card in play. Even if a trump has been played on a non-trump lead, if you have a card of the suit led, you must play on that suit.
  3. You must play a trump if you have no on-suit cards. You still must play to win; if the only trump played is a 3, you hold the 3 and the Ace, and you do not have the lead suit, you must place the Ace.
  4. If you have neither any cards of the lead suit nor any trumps, you may play any card. This is an off card, and is effectively lower than the 2 of the lead suit.

The winner of a given round, or trick, collects the cards and places them face-up in front of them. They then lead with another card. Play proceeds until all five tricks have been completed.

Deal then passes to the left.

There are complex rules about forced plays; a simple example is when someone has just taken their second trick and holds the Ace of trumps in their hand. Since the Ace of trumps is unbeatable, they must play it as their next card. Similar occurences are when a player has taken one trick and has both the Ace and King, or (more complex) the Ace, Queen, and Jack. While the rules themselves are simple in theory, the details about forced plays can make Bouré challenging for even the skilled player.


Variations in the rules of Bouré abound, possibly due to its nature as a regional game. Perhaps the most common is the introduction of a pot limit, which caps the total amount a single bouré or renege can cost a given player. Another common point of dissent is whether a player who holds trumps but not the lead suit should be forced to play a trump if they cannot beat a higher trump already on the table; while the general consensus seems to be that they must, groups of players are known to not follow that particular detail. Punishments for misplay range from simple retraction (good for new players), retraction-and-renege, or just a renege, which can lead to the misplaying individual attempting to bouré one or more other players. The default ante amount is understandably variable, and the second ante is fairly common.

Related Link