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The Oriental Mind Games Pack [Game]

4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

Mar 2007
Be prepared for a complex battle of wits as you take on opponents in some of the toughest card and board games in the world. "The Oriental Mind Games Pack" contains all you need to get to grips with five centuries-old versions of chess and poker and their many variants. Played by ancient emperors and mighty warriors in the Far East and Asia, these are not games involving luck or chance - instead, they call on clever strategic planning in order to outmanoeuvre the opposition. Learn how to play Chinese Chess, a game often quoted as being the most popular board game in the world, Hanafuda, a challenging Japanese card game, the chess-type game of Shogi from Japan, or Chaturanga, one of the oldest known versions of chess. The pack comes with full instructions on how to play these and more and is ideal for families, providing people of many ages with endless hours of exciting entertainment. "The Oriental Mind Games Pack" contains all the boards, playing pieces and accessories needed to play the games featured - Chinese Chess, Hanafuda, Shogi, and Chaturanga, plus many variants. The accompanying 128-page book includes full instructions on how to play the games, with strategy hints and tips on how to improve your game. It also includes information on the games' history and origins.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product details

  • Game: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Carlton Publishing Group; Box Pck Br edition (Mar 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847320082
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847320087
  • Product Dimensions: 22.4 x 22 x 4.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,886,620 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I'll tell you now, there's some truth to Jack Nicholson's character in The Shining, so it's probably a good thing that I'm not a grumpy, alcoholic git. I haven't slept with any ghosts yet either, but hey, never say never. I'm English - with a selection of crunchy European bits - but I've often spent years at a time wandering the world. At the moment though, I'm back living in London.

When I'm not writing, I'm likely to be busy publishing via Ghostwoods Books, gwdbooks.com. Excellent novels are always welcome -- submission guidelines are on the gwdbooks website.

I twitter assorted random lunacy as @ghostwoods. Drop by and say hi!

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Great Introduction to Oriental Games 24 Nov 2009
I bought this pack for one reason, really: the Hanafuda deck of cards. I was searching for a deck and I stumbled upon this.

The Hanafuda deck is nice, though there's nothing fancy about the card backs, the design follows tradition nicely. Unfortunately, they don't have a separate case of any kind (the expectation being that they'll always stay in the box, presumably).

The chess pieces are, disappointingly, on thin punch-out card which can be fiddly to handle - especially for games such as Shogi. Had the pieces been on punch-out board as opposed to cheap card, I'd be giving this product 5 out of 5. However, the boards themselves are sturdy and practical (though the Xiangqi board has been illustrated; I would have preferred just a traditional look).

The book provides a nice background about each of the games. Already a keen player of Shogi, I was pleased to see the section on Shogi discuss the other variants, even if you can't technically play them with the 9x9 Modern Shogi set provided, but it certainly whets the appetite for newcomers.

My only qualm with the book comes from the fact that sometimes it isn't entirely clear how a game is intended to be played. For a lot of the games, such as the chess games, a description of how the pieces move is sufficient; most of us know how chess works. However, when it comes to the Hanafuda games I feel it's not immediately obvious. I had to look up the rules online and then, looking back at the text, could see what they meant. Some examples of play could have been good here.

Overall, this is a brilliant introduction to these games and I heartily recommend it to anyone with an interest in games. The Hanafuda deck is great as is (albeit sans box), but you may want to invest in some proper 'oriental' chess sets if you intend to play them regularly.
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