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Mighty - card game

Mighty is a card game invented in the 1970s by Korean college students. Mighty is mostly played by Korean students, and also by some groups in North America. It is usually played by five people, but the number of cards can be modified so that it can be played by anywhere from 4 to 8 players. It is a point-trick game with bidding. It is similar to the card game Spades, but has more rules and, therefore, more strategies in playing. Mighty is also similar to Rook and Japanese Napoleon (not to be confused with British Napoleon).


The objective of Mighty is to capture as many "face" cards in one team as possible. There are a total of 20 face cards - 10, J, Q, K, and A of each suit. Though 10 does not have a face on it it is still considered a face card.


Mighty is played by 5 players, but the number of cards can be modified so that 4 people can play. For 5 players, a total of 53 cards (a standard playing card deck and one joker) while for 4 players, a total of 43 cards (a standard deck and one joker - with two red 3's and all 2's and 4's removed) are used instead. Every player receives 10 cards, and 3 cards are placed in the middle. If a player does not receive any face cards (or only one 10), he or she may call a misdeal, and the cards will be shuffled and dealt again.


At the start of the game, each player can choose to either pass or bid by calling a number (starting at 13, going all the way up to 20), then the name of a suit (heart, diamond, spade, clover, or none). The number represents how many face cards the player expects to win at the end of the game, while the suit determines which shape will be the trump suit, or giruda. Typically, a player bids on the suit they have the most of.

The player who calls the highest bid becomes the "President" and takes the three cards at the center. Then, the President substitutes any cards he does not want with the cards in his hand and places three cards back in the center. The President then declares who their "Friend" is by stating the name of a card the Friend should be holding. For the remainder of the game, the Friend and the President are in a team against the other players. Typically, the president should call "Mighty-Friend" meaning that the player holding the Mighty card is the Friend, though the president may also call "Joker-Friend" or any other card. Additionally, the president may choose not to call a Friend at all.

Upon receiving the three cards, the President may choose to change their bid; if they choose to change the trump suit, they must raise the number bid by 2.


For the first trick, the President puts down the first card. Every card that follows must be the same suit as this first card unless the card is a Mighty or Joker, or if the player does not have any cards of that suit. If a player does not have any cards that match the suit of the first card, he may put down a card of any other suit instead. The first card of the game cannot be the trump suit.

At the end of every trick, the player who put down the card with the highest value takes all the face cards of that trick. The value of the cards in any given trick is hierarchical in the following fashion:

  1. Mighty
  2. Joker (unless forced out using Joker caller)
  3. Trump suit card (Ace is highest, 2 is lowest)
  4. Matching suit card (Ace is highest, 2 is lowest)
  5. Non-matching suit card or forced-out Joker

In the case of No-trump, the values are so:

  1. Mighty
  2. Joker (unless forced out using Joker caller)
  3. Matching suit card (Ace is highest, 2 is lowest)
  4. Non-matching suit card or forced-out Joker

At the end of any given trick, all players should have the same number of cards in their hand.

Since there are two teams in any Mighty game, the face cards of each team are collected and combined at the end of every game and counted. If the President and Friend win, the players who lose must each pay the two winners, while if the President and Friend lose each of them must pay the members of the winning team. In the case of 5 players, the President pays or wins two times more than the Friend.


Many of the terms used in Mighty are derived from other trick-taking games.


A trick is a sequence of cards put down by all the players. The player who has the highest card wins all the cards in the trick.

Boss Card

The highest card of the trick is called the Boss card. (e.g. if the trick is K, 4, 7, Q, 3 - players state that the trick is "K-boss")

Special Cards


The Mighty is most powerful card in the game, and is typically represented by the ace of spades. However, if president chooses spades as the trump suit, the Mighty is the ace of diamonds instead.


The Joker is the second most powerful card and, when placed, entitles the person who played it to all the cards. When played as the first card, the player must state what suit the Joker represents. If a Mighty is played in the same trick as the Joker, the Mighty takes priority.

Joker caller

The Joker caller, sometimes known as the "Ripper," is typically represented by the three of clubs unless if the trump suit is also clubs, making the joker caller is the three of spades instead. When the Joker caller is played, whoever holds the Joker must play it during their turn. Alternatively, the player holding the Joker may play the Mighty card instead, if he or she holds it.

President (Ju-Gong)

Before start the game, players declares points and Giruda. Who declares highest points be a president.

Friend (Partner)

At the start of the game, the President states the criteria (the card the Friend must be holding) for one person to be his friend. The Friend and the President are on the same team, and work together in trying to collect as many face cards as possible. The Friend is unknown to both the President and the other players at the start of the game, but becomes publicly known when he or she puts down the criteria card.

Trump suit (Giruda)

Before choosing the President, players declare the trump suit or most powerful suit for the game along with their bid. After the President is chosen and he has received his three cards, he may also choose to change the trump suit (as long as he also raises the bid by 2).