Majiang (or Mah Jong)

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Majiang is essentially a card game like rummy, played with tiles instead of cards, and there is four of every tile as if one were to play with four decks of cards. There are three "suits": Dots (Circles), Barn (Bamboo) and Cracks (Characters). The four " winds": north, south, east and west, and the three "dragons": green dragon, red dragon and white dragon (blank). Plus a pair of dice.

o Circle suit - 4 sets of 9 tiles (36 pieces in all) numbered from 1 to 9. The picture on each tile shows the appropriate number of circles. Each circle is said to represent copper (tong) coins with a square hole in the middle.
o Bamboo suit - 4 sets of 9 tiles (36 pieces in all) numbered from ito 9. Each tile shows the appropriate number of bamboos except for the One of Bamboos which often is denoted by a sparrow or rice-bird. Each stick is said to represent a string (suo) that holds a hundred coins.
o Character suit - 4 sets of 9 tiles (36 pieces in all) numbered from 1 to 9. Each tile shows the Chinese symbol for the number represented. Each tile represents ten thousand (wan) coins, or one hundred strings of one hundred coins.
o Wind tiles -4 tiles for each of the 4 winds (16 pieces in all). The 4 winds are East, South, West, and North.
o Dragon tiles - 4 tiles for each of the 3 dragons (12 pieces in all). The 3 dragons are Red, Green, and White. Joseph Park Babcock introduced the term "dragon tile" in his 1920 book that introduced Mahjiang to America.
Majiang is a game for four players. The full set (ie four of every piece) is stacked on the playing table in the form of a "wall". In the basic form of the game, (played without any "jokers", or "flowers"), there will be 17 tiles laid side by side with another 17 on top to make a double tiered "wall".

Dice are thrown by the player leading the round to determine where to "break" the wall and begin drawing the playing hand of 13 tiles throws dice. The tiles are drawn four at a time until each player has 12 tiles in hand. In the final round, the lead player draws his 13th tile plus his first draw, which he will either keep or discard. After the other players have drawn their 13th tile, thus completing their playing hands, the lead player starts the round with his discard.

The play goes to the right. The next player may then draw from the "deck" or pick up the discard... If and only if the discard completes a "set" to "Chow".

The Object Of Play: to build 4 sets of 3 tiles each, which may be in a sequence from one suit, or a 3-of-a-kind; plus a pair (including the last tile drawn or picked up without discarding) to make a winning hand of 14 tiles.

1. Discarded tiles are out-of play if not used at the time discarded.

2. A discarded tile may only be picked up in turn if it completes a set of 3 tiles (Either a sequence or three of a kind)

3. A player may seize the discard out-of-turn if and only if he has a pair or three of the same in hand. He must shout "Pung" before the player in turn draws from the "deck". That is, one may" Pung" to complete 3-of-a-kind (or the full set of four). The play then starts again to the right of the players who "Punged". If the same piece is required for completing a hand by 2 or 3 players at the same time, the player who sits nearest to the player who discards it (counting counterclockwise in order) has the right to take it.

4. Sets make with a discarded tile must be placed face up on the table for all to see. Otherwise each player's hand is kept secret until the win.

5. A player may also "Pung" the final piece for a winning hand, at which point. He must shout " hula!" thereby ending the round.

6. A "Pung" is three of a kind, three identical tiles. A "Kong" is four of a kind, three identical tiles.

7. A "Chow" is a sequence of three tiles in the same suit. A player can claim the required tile only from the discard of the person to his immediate left. If a player is waiting for one tile to complete a chow in order to declare Mah Jong, he may chow that tile from any player, in the game.

8. A "pillow" is a pair, or two of a kind. In order to Mah Jong, a hand must contain a pillow.

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