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Tonk from Black Company
This rendition of the rules by John P. Speno.

Tonk is a card game played with a standard 52 card poker deck based on the card game played in Glen Cook's Black Company series of fantasy books.

The game:

  1. Shuffle a standard deck
  2. Payoff amount is agreed upon. Note: it can go up to 2x payoff
  3. Deal 5 cards to each player
  4. Each player finds the value of their hands
  5. If the sum of the cards is less than or equal to 15, or greater than or equal to 49, that player has Tonk and must declare it.
  6. If no other players claim Tonk, then player who has declared it must be payed double the payoff by each player.
  7. If more than one player has Tonk, the game is a draw, and a new hand is begun.
  8. Tonking out can only occur after a deal. Once regular play has started, no one can get a Tonk.
  9. Play proceeds to the left of the dealer.
  10. On a players turn, their are two fundamental options:
    1. Attempt to win the game by going down.
      • The player dropps his hand on the table and proclaims the current value of said hand.
      • If that player's total is the lowest, then that player wins and each other player must pay the winner the normal payoff amount.
      • If the player who went down does not have the lowest valued hand, then he must pay double the payoff to each of the players who have lower or equal totals than he and the other players do nothing and pay no one.
    2. If the player does not 'go down' he takes either the top card on the draw pile or the top card on the discard pile.
  11. If a player has
    • A book of three or four of a kind
    • A run (a straight in the same suit) of three or more cards
    • Or cards that fit into runs from other players
    he can drop those cards out of his hand, thereby reducing the total value of his hand.
  12. The cards dropped out in this manner are placed on the table in front of the player so that the other players can see any run to which they may add cards to.
  13. The player ends his turn with a discard.
  14. If at any time during his turn, the player has no more cards in his hand, he wins and all other players must pay him the payoff amount.
  15. This sequence proceeds until someone wins the game.

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