Drinking Games

I found out quite quickly on arriving in Hong Kong that the social atmosphere is completely different to what I was used to in Europe.  Local style bars tend to revolve around drinking games, most famously 大話骰  (daai6 waa6 sik1) 定係幸運骰係唔係 the same game?  The lack of dance floors in most clubs with the exception of the odd small space in LKF and TST (the decline of the “Hong Kong Disco” is something which depresses me… I’m a decade too late), means that the night purely revolves around this, but the atmosphere is a good place to learn conversational Cantonese.

The general rule of 大話骰 is to guess how many of certain dice people have i.e. you call 3個5’s, assuming that under everyone’s pot there are a minimum of 3個5.  Each turn you have to go a minimum of 1 higher.  Lift the pot to make a call, if the other person is write you have to drink.  1 can equal anything unless someone calls it as **個一。

There are a few variations, and people sometimes play some other games that seem similar to poker but I’ve never been able to figure out how to play it when I’m drunk. The rules are the same though, you lose, you down your drink.

A good one which I learnt from a friend is to stack the ones in the centre of the table and pass on any doubles to the next person, they shake and do the same.  You win if you get rid of all of your dice, and lose if the dice tower falls.

Another good one is 五,十,十五,開 (“tai moi”). It’s simple, but surprisingly difficult when played at speed whilst drunk. I lose every time due to my thinking time.  There are a lot of varieties of this game including rock, paper, scissors variants.

If you’re planning on going out to local places with friends you need to learn these, or at least have a go when you get there.

There is also a game which seems to revolve around the McDonalds menu. I’ve asked around and I think it goes something like this, although I’m not entirely sure on the order, or what else is included:


jap6 dou3 heoi2 maak6 dong1 lou4


sik6 mat1 lan2 je5 hou2 aa1


syu4 tiu4 syu4 tiu4


maak6 waan4 gai1 maak6 waan4 gai1


hon3 bou2 baau1 hon3 bou2 baau1


ho2 lok6 aa1 ho2 lok6 aa1


2 responses to “Drinking Games

    • They’re a good way to learn numbers and response times with numbers. One thing I have problems with is listening to and quickly understanding prices in shops. I convert everything back to English instead of my braining understanding it in Cantonese completely. I need to remove that string where I think in English and speak in Cantonese. It should be thinking and speaking in Cantonese. I’ve found that these games are a good way to do it, and after a while you can think and speak numbers in Cantonese without any translation back and forth in your head.

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