There are 7 popular types of Chinese cards. Today’s posts features the most popular one called 四色牌, or Four-Colour Cards.
A full pack consists of 112 cards – 28 of red, green, white and yellow. Sometimes, 5 additional Joker cards are added.
Games with these cards were mostly played by Hokkiens and Teochews.
Common games included 四色 (Four-Colours, 2 to 4 players), 什湖 (How Many Points, 2 to 4 players), 添将 (Replacement General, 2 to 4 players), 四色正 (Four-Colours Standard, 2 to 4 players), 大符 (Big Tag, 2 to 4 players), 小符 (Small Tag, 2 to 4 players), 十二支 (12 Sticks, unlimited players), etc.
There are many variations in size and design of the cards. However, the core types of cards remain the same, with 8 different characters – 帅／将 (General), 仕 (Official), 相 (Magistrate), 炮 (Canon), 马 (Horse), 车 (Vehicle), 卒／兵 (Soldier).
There are many, many variations of cards, each used by different groups of people. This album will feature some of these variations.