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       xskat - a card game for 1 to 3 players.


       xskat  [-display|-d  display]  [-geometry|-g geometry] [-font|-fn font]
       [-iconic|-i] [-title|-T string] [-name prog] [-fg  color]  [-bg  color]
       [-bt  color]  [-mark  color]  [-3d] [-2d] [-3dtop color] [-3dbot color]
       [-mb  button#]  [-keyboard  number]   [-tdelay   seconds]   [-fastdeal]
       [-slowdeal]  [-help|-h]  [-frenchcards]  [-french4cards] [-germancards]
       [-german4cards] [-color] [-mono] [-color1  color]  ..  [-color4  color]
       [-large]  [-small] [-up] [-down] [-alt] [-seq] [-list|-l file] [-alist]
       [-nlist] [-tlist] [-log file] [-dolog] [-nolog] [-fmt] [-unfmt]  [-game
       file]   [-briefmsg]   [-verbosemsg]  [-trickl2r]  [-notrickl2r]  [-lang
       language] [-start player#]  [-s1  number]  [-s2  number]  [-s3  number]
       [-ramsch]    [-noramsch]    [-ramschonly]    [-sramsch]    [-nosramsch]
       [-skattolast] [-skattoloser] [-kontra] [-nokontra] [-kontra18]  [-bock]
       [-nobock]     [-bockramsch]    [-bockevents    number]    [-resumebock]
       [-noresumebock]   [-spitze]   [-spitze2]   [-nospitze]    [-revolution]
       [-norevolution]   [-klopfen]   [-noklopfen]  [-schenken]  [-noschenken]
       [-hint] [-nohint]  [-newrules]  [-oldrules]  [-shortcut]  [-noshortcut]
       [-askshortcut]   [-irc]   [-noirc]   [-irctelnet  program]  [-ircserver
       hostname]  [-ircport  number]  [-ircchannel   name]   [-ircnick   name]
       [-ircuser  name]  [-ircrealname  name]  [-ircpos number] [-irclog file]
       [-irclogappend] [-irclogoverwrite] [-auto #ofgames] [-opt  file]  [-pk]


       XSkat  lets you play the card game Skat as defined by the official Skat

       Up to 3 players may be simulated by the computer.

       After starting the game a mouse click or ESC/F1 will bring up  a  menu.
       Other  useful  keys are: Space, Return, Tab, Cursor left/right/up/down.
       The rest of the game controls should be fairly obvious.

       An introduction to Skat can be found at


       In the following descriptions, the  player  starting  XSkat  is  called

       -display display name
       -geometry geometry specification
       -font font name (default: 9x15 or 10x20)
       -title window title
       -name application resource name
       -fg foreground color
       -bg background color
              The usual X toolkit options.

       -bt color
              The color of dialog buttons.

       -mark color
              The color of the marks that indicate
              who is forehand (during bidding),
              who is the Soloist,
              which card the computer would play,
              or the keyboard focus
              (default: red or black).

       -3d    Use a 3D look for dialogs (default).

       -2d    Use the old, flat style (default on monochrome screens).

       -3dtop color
              The color used for the lines around the top and left sides of 3D
              buttons (default: white).

       -3dbot color
              The color used for the lines around the bottom and  right  sides
              of 3D buttons (default: black).

       -mb menu button
              The number of the mouse button that brings up the menu (default:
              0 = any button).

       -keyboard number
              Define how much of the user interface may be controlled  by  the
              keyboard.  The number has the following meaning:
               0 : Nothing.
               1 : More (default).
               2 : Everything.

       -tdelay seconds
              Specifies  how  long the last trick will be visible.  A delay of
              more than 10 seconds means that the trick will be removed  after
              pressing  a  mouse  button.   In  multiplayer  mode  the largest
              specified value is used (default: 0.7).

              Deal the cards without any time consuming animation.

              Deal the cards slowly (default).

       -help  Show a short help text.

              Play with French suited cards.

              Change the colors of diamond and spade to orange and  green,  so
              that the 4 suits have easily distinguishable colors (default).

              Use German cards.

              Change  the  color  of acorns to brown, so that the 4 suits have
              easily distinguishable colors.

       -color Use colored cards.  If there are not  enough  colors  left,  the
              number  of  colors  used  to  draw  the  cards  will  be reduced
              appropriately (default).

       -mono  Use b&w cards.

       -color1 .. -color4
              Redefine the colors of the suits diamond, heart, spade and club.
              Selecting  -french4cards  overrides  the  colors for diamond and

       -large and -small
              Select the size  of  the  main  window  (default:  as  large  as

       -down  Sort cards downwards (default).

       -up    Sort cards upwards.

       -alt   Sort cards in alternating order.

       -seq   Sort cards in sequential order (default).

       -list filename
              The   file   for   saving/restoring   the  game  list  (default:
              $HOME/.xskat.lst or ./xskat.lst if  HOME  isn’t  set.   For  IRC
              games: .irc instead of .lst).

       -alist Alternative form of listing.

       -nlist Normal form of listing (default).

       -tlist Listing with tournament scoring.

       -log filename
              Turn  on  automatic  logging,  i.e.  append logs of all games to
              filename (- means stdout).

       -dolog Turn on automatic logging  (default  file:  $HOME/.xskat.log  or

       -nolog Turn  off automatic logging (default).  Logs of individual games
              may still be saved during the game.

       -fmt   Write formatted log files, i.e. use backspaces  for  underlining
              and boldface.

       -unfmt Write unformatted log files (default).

       -game filename
              Read  predefined  games  from  filename  (-  means  stdin).  Not
              available for IRC play.  See also section FILES below.

              Indicate who is forehand (during bidding) and who is the Soloist
              by displaying a small mark on the back of the cards.

              Additionally  print  out  everyones  position  and what is being
              played (default).

              Put down the cards of a trick from left to right (default).

              Place the cards corresponding to the players positions.

       -lang language
              Currently    available:    English    and    German    (default:
              $LANG/$LANGUAGE is tried first. Then: see Imakefile/Makefile).

       -start number
              The player who starts dealing cards (default: 2).

       -s1 number
       -s2 number
       -s3 number
              Change the playing strenght of the computer players.
              s1  corresponds to the left computer in single player mode or to
              the one and only computer in two player mode.
              s2 corresponds to the right computer in single player mode.
              s3 is only useful with -auto.
              The number must be between -4 (weak) and 0 (default).

              Play a game of Ramsch when all players pass.
              The following rules are currently implemented:
              The Skat remains face down until it goes to the  winner  of  the
              last trick (or to the loser of the game, s.b.).  The amount lost
              is the number of card points taken.  If two players tie for most
              card  points,  they  both lose.  If all tie, the score is 0.  If
              one player takes no tricks (a virgin) the  amount  lost  by  the
              loser  is doubled.  Someone taking all the tricks (forced march)
              wins 120 points.

              Don’t play Ramsch (default).

              Play Ramsch each game.

              Play Schieberamsch instead of simple Ramsch.
              The rules are:
              Each player in turn, starting with Forehand,  may  pick  up  the
              Skat  and discard two cards face down.  It’s not allowed to pass
              on jacks.  The score is doubled each time a player doesn’t  pick
              up the Skat.

              Don’t play Schieberamsch (default).

              At the end of a Ramsch game the Skat is awarded to the loser(s).
              This will increase the loss.

              The Skat goes to the winner of the last trick (default).

              Allow opponents to say ’Kontra’ which doubles the score  of  the
              game.  The Soloist may reply ’Re’ to double the score again.

              Disallow Kontra (default).

              Only an opponent who said at least 18 may say ’Kontra’.

       -bock  Play a Bockround after some special event.  The score is doubled
              in the next 3 games.   If  an  event  causing  a  new  Bockround
              happens   before  the  current  Bockround  is  over  or  several
              Bockround  events  happen  at  the  same  time,  the  number  of
              Bockrounds still to play is increased appropriately.

              Don’t play Bockrounds (default).

              Play  a round of compulsory Ramsch after each Bockround.  Before
              a game of Ramsch begins, each  player  in  turn,  starting  with
              Forehand, may declare to play Grand Hand instead.  After a Grand
              Hand the same player deals again  because  this  game  does  not
              count towards completing the Ramschround.

       -bockevents number
              Specify the events that cause a Bockround.
              (1) A game is lost with 60 points.
              (2) A successful Grand Hand.
              (4) A successful Kontra (opponents win).
              (8) A game with Kontra & Re.
              (16) A player’s score ends in 3 equal digits.
              (32) A player’s score is a multiple of 100.
              (64) A game value of +72 or more.
              (128) A game value of +96 or more.
              Add  up the numbers in parentheses to specify the desired events
              (default: 0).
              A Kontra where the Soloist said Re but lost counts as one  event
              not two (events 4 and 8).
              To  check  a  player’s  score,  the  current  listing options of
              player1 are used (events 16 and 32).  A score that is a multiple
              of 1000 counts as one event.
              The  game  value (events 64 and 128) is the normal value without
              considering any doubling caused by Ramsch, Kontra or Bock.

              Resume  unfinished  Bockrounds  after  quitting  and  restarting
              XSkat.   The  number of games to play is read from the game list

              Don’t resume Bockrounds (default).

              Allow the Soloist to declare Spitze.  This means that  the  last
              trick  must be made with the lowest trump to win the game.  This
              will be indicated to the other players by displaying the  lowest
              trump.  The game multiplier is increased by 1.  It’s not allowed
              to say Spitze in a Grand with 4 jacks.

              Declaring Spitze increases the multiplier by 2.

              Don’t allow Spitze (default).

              Enable a special variation of Null ouvert.  After the  Soloist’s
              cards  are  exposed the opponents can look at each other’s cards
              and rearrange the cards between their two hands in any way  they
              wish  before  the  start  of  the  play.  Revolution is worth 92

              Don’t allow Revolution (default).

              During a Ramschround you may knock (klopfen) at the beginning of
              a  game  to  indicate  that you think you won’t lose.  This will
              double the score of the game.  Klopfen is not  possible  if  you
              don’t pick up the Skat in Schieberamsch.

              Don’t allow Klopfen (default).

              If  the  opponents  decide  at  the  start of the play that they
              cannot defeat the Soloist, they can give up.  This  is  done  by
              selecting  Schenken  from  the  main menu during the first trick
              when it’s your turn.  If the Soloist accepts, the  score  is  as
              though  the  game  was  won  simply.   The Soloist can insist on
              playing on, but in that case has to make the opponents Schneider
              to win.  The score in this case is as for an announced Schneider
              (the multiplier is increased by 2).  If the Soloist goes on  the
              opponents  can schenken again, giving the Soloist the Schneider.
              The Soloist can accept Schneider or insist  on  playing  on  for

              Don’t allow Schenken (default).

       -hint  Put a mark over the card the computer would play.

              Don’t show computer hints (default).

              Use the official rules of 01/01/1999:
              Lost Hand games count double.
              The Grand Ouvert multiplier is 24.

              Lost Hand games count simple.
              The Grand Ouvert multiplier is 36.

              Always  finish the game when the remaining tricks will all go to
              one side.

              Play each trick.

              Ask whether a shortcut should be taken (default).

       -irc   Play via Internet Relay Chat.   This  option  will  establish  a
              connection  to an IRC server where you can join other people for
              a game of Skat.
              How it works:
              Start XSkat from an xterm. Wait until the server has printed the
              welcome  message.  You are now on channel #xskat where new games
              should be planned.  Everything you type into the xterm  will  be
              sent  to everyone else on this channel. After you have found one
              or two other players and agreed upon the name of a  new  channel
              (say  #xskat123),  you  should  type  /join #xskat123.  When all
              players are on the new channel, exactly one player has  to  type
              /go (or /go2 if there are only 2 players) to start the game. Now
              you can play and talk.

       -noirc Don’t use IRC (default).

       -irctelnet program
              Specify the program that will be used  to  connect  to  the  IRC
              server.   If  you  are sitting behind a firewall, a program like
              rtelnet must be used and you may have to  set  $SOCKS_SERVER  to
              the name of your firewall host (default: telnet).

       -ircserver host-name
              Select  an  IRC server near you! (default: $IRCSERVER or irc.fu-
    , if not changed in the Imakefile/Makefile)

       -ircport number
              The port of the IRC server to connect to (default:  $IRCPORT  or

       -ircchannel name
              The channel to join initially (default: #xskat).

       -ircnick name
              Your IRC nickname. If your nick is already used by someone else,
              a different nick will be generated automatically.  Some  servers
              allow  a  nick  length  of  30, others limit it to 9 characters.
              (default: $IRCNICK or $IRCUSER or $LOGNAME or xskatNNNN).

       -ircuser name
              Your user/login name. Note: most servers don’t like  faked  user
              names (default: $IRCUSER or $LOGNAME).

       -ircrealname name
              Your  real  name (default: $IRCNAME or the entry from the passwd
              file or ’XSkat player’).

       -ircpos number
              Select your position relative to the  other  players.  Positions
              are  numbered  clockwise 1, 2 and 3. Player 2 will start dealing
              if not specified otherwise with -start or /start.  If you  don’t
              specify your position or there is a conflict with someone else’s
              choice or you give an invalid number (3 in  a  2  player  game),
              this  will  be fixed automatically. Choosing the right positions
              is important if you want to continue  with  a  saved  game  list
              (default: 0 = I don’t care).

       -irclog file
              Everything  sent  to or received from the IRC server is saved to
              this file (- means stdout).  It  may  be  useful  for  debugging
              (default: $HOME/.xskat.ilg or ./xskat.ilg).

              Append output to the log file.

              Overwrite existing log file (default).

       IRC commands:
              /nick name, /nick - change or display your nickname.
              /who - is on the current channel ?
              /list,  /list  string  -  show  all channels that match the word
              xskat or the specified string.  This  will  take  some  time  on
              networks  with  a  large number of channels.  Trying to stop the
              listing will terminate the program.
              /pos number - see -ircpos.
              /bell - toggle the alarm bell. When on, the bell will ring  each
              time  someone joins your channel or sends a message to you.  The
              bell is off initially.
              /quit - terminate XSkat.
              /sync - if messages get lost due  to  a  net-split  (or  because
              someone  left  the  channel during play), XSkat will detect this
              and in most cases should be able  to  synchronize  automatically
              (within  30  seconds)  after  the  connection  is reestablished.
              Typing /sync will try this immediately.
              /quote command args - for those who know what they are doing.
              The following commands are only useful for the player  who  will
              start  the game by typing /go because that player will determine
              the rules of the game.
              /default - set the official rules.
              /ramsch, /sramsch, /skattoloser,  /kontra,  /bock,  /resumebock,
              /spitze,    /revolution,    /klopfen,    /schenken,   /oldrules,
              /bockevents, /alist, /tlist, /start, /s1 - change the  rules  of
              the  game.   All  of  these  require  an  argument  (a number or
              True/False) just like the resources with the same name.
              /rules - show the current rules to everyone on your channel.

       Notes: The version numbers of all participating programs must be equal.
              Most  options  cannot  be changed during the game.  Options that
              can be changed are not saved to a file.
              The game list can only be cleared during bidding  or  when  it’s
              your  turn  to  play  a card.  There is a different default game
              list for IRC games (see -list).
              It’s possible to type into the xterm or the game  window  (which
              is  recommended),  but changing input sources in the middle of a
              line won’t work.
              If you want better input line editing and a split screen try the
              program ssfe.  It is used like this: ssfe -raw xskat -irc
              You can omit -irc when you specify any of the other IRC options.

       -auto #ofgames
              Three computers play the specified number of games without human
              interaction.  The resulting scores are printed.
              With  this  option,  no resources are read, and the game list is
              saved only if -list is specified.

       -opt filename
              The  file  for  saving/restoring  all  interactively  changeable
              options   of   all   players   (default:   $HOME/.xskat.opt   or
              ./xskat.opt).  Command line options take precedence over options
              specified   in   this  file  which  in  turn  override  resource
              specifications.   This  may  be  changed  with  the   useoptfile

       -pk    If  you  want  the computer to deal a Good Hand every time.  (as
              requested by Petra K.)  Alternatively, pressing F6  three  times
              will  result in a Good Hand for the next game.  Does not work in
              multiplayer mode.

              Specifies the display of the second and  third  player  (but  is
              ignored  for IRC games).  The player@ part may be omitted if the
              alias resource is set on display.


       Command line options take precedence over resource  specifications  for

       geometry, font, title, foreground, background
              The usual X11 resources.

       mark   (see -mark).

       button (used for 2D buttons, see -bt).

              (used for 3D buttons, see -bt, default: a shade of gray).

              (used  for  3D  dialogs,  see -bg, default: a different shade of

       3d     True or False (see -3d and -2d).

       3dtop  (see -3dtop).

       3dbot  (see -3dbot).

              (see -mb).

              (see -keyboard).

       tdelay (see -tdelay).

              True or False (see -fastdeal and -slowdeal).(#)

       cards  0, 1, 2 or 3 (see -frenchcards, -french4cards, -germancards  and

       color  True or False (see -color and -mono).

       color1 .. color4
              (see -color1 .. -color4).

       large  True or False (see -large and -small).

       down   True or False (see -down and -up).

       alt    True or False (see -alt and -seq).

       list   (see -list).(#)

       alist  True or False (see -alist and -nlist).

       tlist  True or False (see -tlist and -nlist).

       log    (see -log).(#)

       dolog  True or False (see -dolog and -nolog).(#)

              True or False (see -fmt and -unfmt).(#)

       game   (see -game).(#)

              True or False (see -briefmsg and -verbosemsg).

              True or False (see -trickl2r and -notrickl2r).

              (see -lang).

       start  (see -start).(#)

       s1, s2 (see -s1, -s2).(#)

       ramsch 0, 1 or 2 (see -noramsch, -ramsch and -ramschonly).(#)

              True or False (see -sramsch and -nosramsch).(#)

              True or False (see -skattoloser and -skattolast).(#)

       kontra 0, 1 or 2 (see -nokontra, -kontra and -kontra18).(#)

       bock   0, 1 or 2 (see -nobock, -bock and -bockramsch).(#)

              (see -bockevents).(#)

              True or False (see -resumebock and -noresumebock).(#)

       spitze 0, 1 or 2 (see -nospitze, -spitze and -spitze2).(#)

              True or False (see -revolution and -norevolution).(#)

              True or False (see -klopfen and -noklopfen).(#)

              True or False (see -schenken and -noschenken).(#)

       hint   True or False (see -hint and -nohint).

              True or False (see -oldrules and -newrules).(#)

              0, 1 or 2 (see -noshortcut, -askshortcut and -shortcut).

       irc    True or False (see -irc and -noirc).(#)

              (see -irctelnet).(#)

              (see -ircserver).(#)

              (see -ircport).(#)

              (see -ircchannel).(#)

              (see -ircnick).(#)

              (see -ircuser).(#)

              (see -ircrealname).(#)

       ircpos (see -ircpos).(#)

              (see -list).(#)

       irclog (see -irclog).(#)

              True or False (see -irclogappend and -irclogoverwrite).(#)

       opt    (see -opt).(#)

              True  or  False  (default:  False).   This  is  a  resource  for
              multiplayer mode (but not for IRC).  It is ignored for  player1.
              If  set to True, the contents of the option file, which is owned
              by player1, are used.  This means  that  you  may  end  up  with
              someone else’s preferred settings if player1 used this file in a
              different multiplayer game.

       alias  The player’s real name (max. 2 words of 9  characters,  default:

       Only player1 may specify the resources marked with (#).

       Filenames starting with ~/ are interpreted correctly if HOME is set.


       An example of a file specifying predefined games:

       # The following block specifies the distribution
       # of cards for player1, 2, 3 and Skat(0).
       # A 10  K  Q  J  9  8  7
         2  2  2  2  2  0  3  3  # Diamond
         2  2  2  2  2  3  3  3  # Heart
         1  1  1  1  1  3  3  3  # Spade
         1  1  1  1  1  0  3  3  # Club
       # The following is not the same game !
       # Player numbers rotate 3 -> 2 -> 1 -> 3
       # (and depend on the start option).
         2  2  2  2  2  0  3  3
         2  2  2  2  2  3  3  3
         1  1  1  1  1  3  3  3
         1  1  1  1  1  0  3  3
       # Repeat the above games forever.
       # The following lines take effect only
       # when you delete the ’repeat’.
       random_seed 123456 0 2
       # Specifies the random number which determines
       # card distribution for all following games.
       # The second number lets you skip that many
       # games in the sequence.
       # The third (optional) number defines
       # who will start dealing cards (see -start).
       # An additional L or R following this number will
       # rotate the cards left or right.
       # The random_seed will be shown in game logs
       # to allow easy replay. Just type:
       # echo random_seed 123456 0 2 | xskat -game -


       There  are  no  official rules for the variations Ramsch, Kontra, Bock,
       Spitze, Revolution, Klopfen and Schenken.

       If executing  xskat  player@otherhost:0  on  yourhost  gives  an  error
       message  you could try the command xhost yourhost on otherhost to grant
       yourhost access to otherhost’s display.

       If you replay a game with your own cards,  it  doesn’t  matter  whether
       ’Forehand changes’ is set to ’yes’ or ’no’.

       Some  versions  of  telnet  have a bug, that prevents them from reading
       input from a pipe correctly.  See README.IRC for a fix or put this into
       your ~/.telnetrc:
        set echo off
        set escape off
        set rlogin off
        set flushoutput off
        set interrupt off
        set quit off
        set eof off
        set erase off
        set kill off
        set lnext off
        set susp off
        set reprint off
        set worderase off
        set start off
        set stop off
        set forw1 off
        set forw2 off
        set ayt off

       Leading   blanks   are   important!    Change   the   irc  server  line


       Gunter Gerhardt

       The latest version is always available at

       This program is free software; you can redistribute it freely.
       Use it at your own risk; there is NO WARRANTY.

       Redistribution of modified versions is permitted
       provided that the following conditions are met:
       1. All copyright & permission notices are preserved.
       2.a) Only changes required for packaging or porting are made.
       2.b) It is clearly stated who last changed the program.
            The program is renamed or
            the version number is of the form x.y.z,
            where x.y is the version of the original program
            and z is an arbitrary suffix.

       Card images used with permission by
       Spielkartenfabrik Altenburg GmbH, Marke ASS Altenburger
       Leipziger Strasse 7, 04600 Altenburg, Germany

                                   May 2004