Step 4: How do I play the Game?

All tiles are arranged in the shape of a square wall. From the wall each player is dealt 13 tiles except the East Wind player who is dealt 14. The East Wind player discards a tile to start the game.

If you have already two or three tiles on your stake identical to the tile discarded by another player you can call out "pung" or "kong" (depending on what sequence you are trying to complete) and pick up this tile. Also if a tile is discarded by the player sitting to your left and you can make a sequence of three tiles (e.g. 3 - 4 - 5, a Chow) using this discarded tile, you can pick up the discarded tile as soon as it is placed in the middle. Provided no other player wants to use the same discarded tile for a better combination (see Rules), you can have the tile and the combination you have made with this tile must be displayed above your stake for everyone to see. Each time you pick up a tile you must discard a tile. This is to ensure that the number of tiles on your stake always remains correct (that is, you should have 13 at all times unless you are going Mah Jongg and then you will have 14 tiles).

The game continues by players picking up and then discarding tiles on their stakes. If none of the other players wants to pick up a discarded tile then the game continues with the player sitting to the right of the player who last discarded a tile. This player will now pick up a tile and must discard one of the tiles from his or her stake. You are allowed to discard a tile which you have just been dealt.

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