Mahjong

Mahjong is a traditional Chinese game, played by four people around a square table. The game is played with tiles rather than playing cards. The aim is to collect sets of tiles according to the number and type shown on the face of each tile. A player takes and discards a tile each turn and the first player whose hand consists entirely of a legal set or sets goes out or goes "Mah Jong". The game is effectively the same as the card game Rummy, in fact. For what always appears initially to be a very complicated game, Mah Jong is remarkably simple when reduced to its basics and it is only the accompanying rituals and complex scoring that change this. One of these rituals, the process of shuffling the tiles at the start of the game, is known as "The twittering of the sparrows", presumably because of the accompanying noise. Learning to play is easy, learning to win, however, is the tough part! There is only one way to learn to win: Play, play again and then play some more!