That's all I have to say.
On the Japanese PS Home there is a lounge under the Nippon-Ichi（日本一）space on the world map; a small, dark room with two cardgame platforms. I see a lot of North Americans/Europeans going there often and then whining in English about how they don't know how to play. For the record, I myself am from North America and my knowledge of Japanese is intermediate at best, yet I familiarized myself with the game just after three tries.
At first I didn't know what was going on, but when I got into it, I got HOOKED! This game is super fun and very enjoyable! You should try it, and I'll tell you how.
This is my guide of this particular game, which I personally wrote. I can't post it on the official PSN forums because 1) I was banned from there and 2) I don't want to expose my region hopping in official PS forums so as not to have my account suspended on the whole PSN, so I'm writing my guide here. Hopefully it'd be of some help to others (Note: Please credit me/link to this post if you are using the info from here. Thanks!).
Anyway, even after I figured out the rules, I still didn't know what the game was actually called until I asked my Japanese friends on PS Home, and that's how I familiarized myself with it.
The game is a fun card game called "Daihugou/Daifugou" (だいふごう, or 大富豪 in Kanji), meaning "very rich man." It is very popular in Japan but barely known in the West. Those who know it call it "Japanese poker," but it's not the same as poker. After playing a few times, I managed to fully understand the guideline of this game, so I wrote them down to share them with everyone else.
Rules and Procedure:
- The basic rule of the game is that, in order to win, you need to get rid of all the cards that you have. Whoever gets rid all the cards first takes first place and becomes the だいふごう, or "very rich man."
- There has to be at least three players in order to play this game.
- When the game starts, you get a random collection of cards.
- There is a card "hierarchy," but it's different than the one in the West. In this particular hierarchy "3" is the lowest. And so it goes this way: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, Jack, Queen, King, Ace, and 2, with 2 being the highest. (I will get to "Joker" later).
- Each person takes a turn to use the cards, starting with the game initiator.
- Whatever card is put in, you have to "top" it with a "stronger" card. Meaning if the other player put "5", you need to put "6" or above. If you can't top the card/cards, you must skip your turn (or "PASS").
- If the card(s) you put it is "un-toppable" by other users, you clear the platform and get free reign to put in whatever card(s) you want.
- You can put in 2 cards or more if they are of the same "value" (i.e. two "5" cards, three "Jack" cards.. etc). If someone else put in two cards, you need to top that with two cards of equal but higher value.
- You can also put in multiple cards of "rising value," for example: "3", "4" and "5". However, there are rules to that:
1) It has to be three cards minimum.
2) The values of the card have to be "immediate/sequential." For example, 6, 7 and 8, NOT 6, 7 and 9
3) The cards have to be of the same shape (diamond/ace/heart/spade) and same colour (red/black). That is to say, if you have, for example, "9, "10" and "Jack," and all of them are red and diamond, you can use them. This particular type of card combination is rare, which means if you have it and use it, others might not be able to top it, which insures you free reign in your next turn.
- With regards to the quantity of cards used: you can ONLY use the same quantity of cards put on the table. For example, if someone put two cards together, you have to top it with two cards ONLY, not three, nor one.
- Also, you need to match the type of combination of cards, so if someone put three cards of equal value, you have to use three cards of equal value that are higher than the ones on the table.
- With regards to card of "rising value," the highest card in your combination must be higher than the highest one put on the table.
- As I said, you can use more than one card (i.e. two or three cards) depending on the circumstances. If you win a turn, the table is cleared and you have free reign, and if you have the proper combination, you can put down up to four cards or more.
- However, when you use four cards or more, you invoke a Kakumei（革命）, or a "Revolution." In a Kakumei, the tides are turned, and the hierarchy of cards is completely inverted. That is to say, "3" becomes the strongest card, and "2" (along with Jack/Queen/King/Ace) becomes the weakest. So in a Kakumei if someone puts in a card of a certain value, you have to top it with a card of a lesser value (This goes for multiple card combinations as well).
- This is based on the idea that the "poor man" revolts and overthrows "the rich and powerful," making the poor "3" the strongest and the rich and royalty (i.e. "King and Queen") the weakest.
- In this lounge, during a Kakumei in the game, there is a huge red 革命 written on the top right corner of the screen. This should let you know when it's a Kakumei.
- However, the revolution can be countered during a Kakumei. This is called "Kakumeigaeshi"（革命返し）or "counterrevolution." This nullifies the Kakumei and the rules go back to normal. This is done the same way a Kakumei is done, i.e. by using four cards or more.
- The "Joker":
- The Joker is the strongest card out there. It cannot be topped.
- Kakumei or not, the Joker does not lose its status as the most powerful card, and it still cannot be topped.
- The Joker acts as a wildcard as well for any "card combination". So, say you want to put in three cards but the maximum you can do is only two cards (for example, you have only two "8"), if you have the Joker you can add it to the combo to make it three cards, and it would also be "untoppable". People usually use the Joker if they have a possible three cards combination and want to add a fourth card to invoke a Kakumei (or nullify one, whatever).
It's not as complicated as it may seem. It's actually quite fun and easy to figure out if you play it a few times. I've beaten so many people in this game, and that's keeping in mind that the Japanese are really good at card games, so the challenge element is definitely there and it adds to the fun.
There are a few notes I would like to add about this particular JP PS Home game:
- The game "initiator" refers the "first person" to join that game; he/she gets to decide when to start the game. If that's you, wait until at least two more people join, and once that happens, press "X" (there should be a sign in the bottom right side of the screen) to start the game. Don't make people wait.
- The game can host up to six players. However, the more people there are, the less amount of cards each person will end up with, which lessens the chance of having powerful card combinations.
- When it's your turn but you do not have the card(s) to put in, please press "square" to skip (pr "PASS"), don't make people wait.
- When a game starts, the initiator (first person there) takes the first turn and gets to cast the card, the second person to join gets to be next, and so on. In other words, in the beginning of the game the turns are based on the "joining time".
- However, once a game is over, the order is changed: the loser (or person who finished last) gets to cast the cards, and person who finishes before the last person gets to be second, and so on, with the winner taking the last turn.
- If you are a winner of the game, sometimes you get a "60 second" notification on the screen. Don't worry, this "warning" basically says that you need to get rid of one of your cards. So if you get it, press "x" and take advantage by removing one of your cards. This mostly happens if there is an "odd number" players, or when it becomes one if a player leaves.
- If you need to refresh your memory on the rules of this game, there is a "mini guide" at the corner of that lounge (the bookshelf). The pictoral guide should give you some insight if you can't read Japanese. However, that guide is not as detailed as this one
Tips and Etiquette:
- Let's start with the etiquette. The Japanese are very formal so you should follow suit out of courtesy, though this is not set in set in stone. This is not part of the rules, it will not affect the outcome but you should do it anyway out of common courtesy.
- When joining a game (not just this one, but any game on JP PS Home), start by saying the formal greeting Yoroshiku （よ ろしく）(Do the same to anyone else who joins). Either type this on the on-screen keyboard if you know Hiragana, or press L1, and choose「あいさつ」(3rd option), and under that list choose 「よろしく」(4th option). Alternatively you could say Hajimemashіte（はじめまして） (same list, 1st option).
- When one of the players win, you can:
- applaud (press R1, then「楽しい」(3rd option), then「拍手する」(1st option on that list).
- or just say Ometedou! (おめてどう!), which means "congratulations!" (L1, choose 5th option「気持」then 2nd option on that list「おめてどう!」）
- or both
- While you start the game standing, people normally just sit down. This is the formality, and this is how the game is normally played. besides, the camera zooms in once the game starts so you should be in view of other players. To sit down, press R1 and choose the 5th option「その他」and then the 6th option「座る」.
That's the guide. Feel free to use it/distribute it as you see fit, but please credit me if you distribute it. Enjoy the game, and Ganbatte kudasai!
Also, if there are any factual, orthographic or grammar errors please let me know! Thank you!