Hunters Gambit

A common card game across Garlan, originating from the The Carnelian Coast.


The Carnelian Coast is itself a pirate port, and pirates are often known for the gambling ways. Invented by the swashbuckling crew of the Sunken Maiden, the game was initially designed to catch out would be cheaters - though as with all pirates, life finds a way, as do the cheaters.   It picked up popularity on the coast in 301 AS, and began to spread from port to port, following the less than savoury pirate crews wherever they went. Eventually, the game became popular among the average sailor, who then passed on their knowledge of Hunters Gambit to traders, who took the game to big landlocked cities across the globe. Would the people still play today if they knew the Gambit was invented by pirates? Probably. Afterall, some people will do anything for an extra bit of coin.


Hunters Gambit is split up into multiple phases.   The first phase is called the 'opening round'. Every player is dealt four cards, after which the player right of the dealer, or the player who took the pot last game, makes the opening bet. The other players can then match the bet or raise it, but no player may fold in the opening round.   The second phase is called 'the first switch'. Here, each player passes one card to their left, and one card to their right. Once the cards have been passed, players once again make their bets, starting from the person right of the dealer. During betting, players can either check (which must be the same as the final bet placed in the opening round if it is the the first player calling the check), raise the bets, or fold.   The third phase is the 'second switch', and is played almost identically to the first switch. However, after the cards have been swapped, but before betting takes place, a fifth card is dealt to each player. This is known as dealing the full stakes.   The final phase is called the 'hunters switch' and again is played identically to the first switch. Players cannot fold during the betting phase of the hunters switch.   Once the final betting has been concluded, players reveal their cards, starting from right of the dealer and going right around the table. The player with the highest 'stakes' win the betting pot. In the event of the draw, the dealer splits the pot equally between the drawing players.

Components and tools

Typically the game requires a deck of 52 normal playing cards and the players themselves require enough money to place their bets.


At least 4 people are needed to play the game - one to act as the dealer, and the other s to actually participate as players. Typical games of Hunters Gambit tend to have a maximum player limit of 8, although there have been known to be occasions where games have contained more than that number.

Cover image: Garlan world cover by SunlanceXIII


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