Games Trends from East to West

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There are many variations of the game of mahjong. The variant presented here is only one among others. The higher number indicates the east wind. The southerly wind is placed to the right of the east player, the west wind in front of him and the north wind to his left. The player placed in the east is the banker; he keeps this privilege as long as he wins. The introduction of the game of mah-jong in Chinese gaming circles was accompanied by many precautions, intended to prevent cheating in particular. ไพ่นกกระจอก (Mahjong)  is played with four players named after a wind, in order: east, south, west, and north. We operate by drawing lots the placement of the players, by throwing a couple of dice. When he loses, it is the last winner who in turn becomes an easterly wind, therefore a banker, and the other participants swap. The banker distributes coins, engages the party in case of dispute, moreover, and this is very important, his gains and losses are doubled.

The goal of the game of mahjong is to obtain the greatest possible number of points by forming, using the tiles, combinations, as one would do, in a card game such as poker for example.

1 – The pair, made up of two identical tiles.

2 – Three-of-a-kind or pung, made up of three identical pieces.

3 – The square or kong, made up of four identical tiles.

4 – The sequence or chow, formed of three pieces that follow one another in the same series (for example the 1, the 2, and the 3 of bamboos or the 4, the 5 and the 6 of circles, etc.


The tiles being dealt (14 tiles from east, 13 tiles in each hand from south, west and north), the banker “asks” for the highest honors, i.e. flowers and seasons Players who have flowers or seasons place them in front of them, face up, and replace them with as many pieces taken to the right of the breach (so that they always have 13 tiles in their hand). If, during the game, they are led to draw flowers or seasons, they will also display them in front of them, replacing them immediately.

• Is placed in the square enclosure represented by the Great Wall of China, a domino of his game that he wishes to discard, because it is hardly useful to him to make an interesting combination. He removes this domino by announcing his name (“2 of circles”, as one would say “2 of spades”, etc.), is then has 13 tiles (like the other players).

• The player to the banker’s right, ie south, plays second. He takes the first tile to the left of the breach and dismisses one of his pieces, which he considers unnecessary for the realization of an adequate mahjong combination. The spread tile is placed inside the square enclosure, and distinctly announced. Subsequently, the players will play one after the other, in a clockwise direction, each time taking a tile and discarding one, which he places in the enclosure.

If one of the players needs the discarded tile by another player to complete one of his combinations, he announces chow, pung or kong, depending on the combination in question. He then takes the discarded tile, displays the combination thus formed in front of him and discards one of his pieces. If he composes a square, he also takes an additional tile. The rules for chow, pung and kong are as follows:

• Only the player immediately to the right of the one who has just discarded can call chow.

• The other two players can ask for pung or kong, even if it is not their turn to play: in this case, the player (s) placed between the player who has discarded the piece and the player who asked for pung or kong pass their turn.

– When two different players ask for pung or kong at the same time, it is the one who is closest, to the right, to the one who has discarded, who plays.

• However, if the piece claimed by any player allows him to play mahjong, he has priority over all other requests (he can then, in this case and in this case only, announce chow, even if it is not to his turn to play). However, he must warn the players that he is going to make mahjong with the requested piece and he then gives the possibility to the players who are placed between the player who has discarded and him to play again.

• One can never claim a tile to constitute a pair except if it is a question of making mahjong.

When a combination is made using a tile taken from the wall, it is kept by the player on his ruler or in his square, except in the case of a square (in which case it must be exposed, in order to allow the player to take an additional tile). In this case, however, the exposed square is considered a hidden combination, from the point of view of the scoring (this is marked by turning over two of the tiles of the exposed square). On the other hand, a combination made using a spread (that is to say after a chow, a pung or a kong) must be exposed, face up, on the table. In the counting of points, the exposed combinations are worth two times less than the hidden ones: the players therefore have an interest not to expose their play.

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