After the Gerber Convention was devised, many bridge players began to apply it in their bidding auctions because is conserved so much bidding space to exchange additional information. They discovered that the convention had several drawbacks and decided to alter the convention. One variation is the Roman Gerber, which was adopted by many partnerships. Other partnerships devised a modification of the Roman Gerber variation, and this modification was used in the Romex Bidding System, appropriately called Romex Gerber, which has many similarities to the Lillois Blackwood. The advantage of this modification was the fact that the certain pairs of Aces could be identified by the partnership, and therefore the location of the Aces.
The different responses for the opener are as follows once responder has initiated Gerber:
Opener > Responder > Meaning
- 1 NT – 4 clubs – Romex Gerber conventional method per partnership agreement.
- 4 diamond – Shows 0 or 3 Aces.
- 4 hearts – Shows 1 or 4 Aces.
- 4 spades – Shows 2 Aces of the same color, either both Black suits or both Red suits.
- 4 NT – Shows 2 Aces of the same rank, either both Major suits or both Minor suits.
- 5 clubs – Shows 2 Aces of the same shape, either both Pointed suits (Spades and Diamonds) or both Rounded suits (Hearts and Clubs).
Depending on the response to the Ace-Asking bid, the King-Asking bid would begin by bidding one step higher or using a relay bid except No Trump, and the responses are similar to Roman Gerber. Using this modification, if the response were 5 Clubs, then 5 Diamonds would be the King-Asking bid, with the responses being step responses as in Roman Gerber, i.e. First Step equals no Kings, Second Step equals 1 King, Third Step equals 2 Kings, etc.
Since the auction is progressive and the bidding sequences become dependent upon the responses, it is necessary that both partners become attuned to the alternate bidding procedures possible to show certain controls. They must have a functioning partnership agreement, which can carry the magnitude of this progressive and changing bidding auction. It is of the utmost importance that a written partnership agreement be established to handle these features of the Roman Gerber convention.