Euchre is a game that requires speed and decisiveness on the part of its players. It uses a deck of 24 playing cards, the cards from 2 to 8 being left out, although 32-card variants (with the sevens and eights included) are also played. There are four players, divided into two partnerships. Each player is dealt five cards; the remaining four cards are placed in the center on the table, and the top card is flipped face-up. Starting with the dealer's left, each player decides whether they want to call the center card as trump, or whether they should pass. If the center card is called trump, the dealer picks it up and discards. If all four players pass, each player is now given the opportunity to call another suit as trump. If all four players pass on this round, depending on the rules you're playing with, the hand is cancelled and a new one is dealt, or the dealer is "stuck" and must choose a trump suit.
In non-trump suits, the order is the normal A-K-Q-J-10-9, but in trump the highest card is the jack, while the jack in the other suit of the same color counts as the second highest trump. The jack of trump is called the 'right bower', while the other jack is the 'left bower'. The name probably comes from the Dutch boer, which means 'farmer', but is also the name for the jack. The goal is for the team who called trump to take three tricks out of five. If a team does so, it scores one point, or two if it takes all five; if their opponents take three or more, they score two (this is called a euchre). First team to ten points wins. Score is usually kept using the six and a four, using one card to cover up the other so that the correct number of pips are showing.
Many variations exist in this game. Some rules allow a player to "go alone" or "call a loner" when calling trump; his partner sits out that hand, and if the lone player takes all five tricks, he gets four points, however, if he is euchred, his opponents take four points. Needless to say, this should only be considered if a player is dealt a phenomenal hand. Some rules allow a player to call "blind double loner" as a last-ditch effort before a hand is even dealt; the top card in the center automatically becomes trump, and the game is played by normal loner rules, except 8 points are awarded instead of four.
Many variations of Euchre are widely played in the southwestern counties of England, where it is common for a pub to have its own team which takes part in competitive league matches with other teams. The most common form of the game played in the UK is one where a twenty-five card deck is used; the deck consists of A-K-Q-J-10-9, with an extra card called the 'Benny'. This card, usually a joker card or the two of spades, is the highest trump no matter which suit is called. Should this card be the one turned over by the dealer, the dealer must decide which suit to call trumps before looking at their own hand. The bidding then continues as normal.