The objective of Tile Pai Gow is to take four tiles and form two “hands” that either total as close to nine as possible, or form one of 20 Ranking Pairs. Hand totals above 9 use the last digit (similar to Baccarat).


All tiles are shuffled and eight stacks of four are formed. Wagers are placed and 3 dice are rolled to determine who receives the first stack of tiles. Counting starts from the Banker (not necessarily the Dealer) and goes around the table from position 1 to position 6. If the dice total 3, the second position to the right of the Banker receives the first set of tiles and the others are dealt in counterclockwise sequence. If the dice total 9, then the Banker get the first set of tiles. Each playing position receives four tiles—all 32 tiles are dealt out even when there are less than six Players.

Once you have received your 4 tiles, you must decide on a high-hand and a low-hand. If you are unsure on how to rank your tiles, you can ask the Dealer to set your hands based on the House Ways. When you have decided, stack each hand face down in front of your wager. When all Players have made their decisions, the Bank turns over their tiles and forms their high and low hands. Once the Bank’s hands are revealed, the Bank turns over each Player’s hands. A comparison is made to determine wins, losses and ties.

A Player wins when his/her high-hand is higher than the high-hand of the Banker and the low-hand of the Player is also higher that the low-hand of the Banker. A Player loses when the Banker’s high-hand is higher than the high-hand of the Player, and the Banker’s low-hand is also higher than the low-hand of the Player. A Player ties when he/she beats either one, but not both of the Banker’s hands.

If the Player’s and the Banker’s hands both add to the same total, the highest ranking tile in the hand breaks the tie (each tile has an individual ranking – see Single Rank chart). The Bank wins all ties when the ranking tiles also tie. If both low-hands equal zero, the Banker wins that hand; individual tiles are not compared.

Winners are paid even money minus a 5% House commission.

A unique feature of Tile Pai Gow is that after each hand the Bank will be offered to the Players, beginning with the Player to the farthest right of the Dealer and continuing in a counterclockwise direction. Any Player can accept or pass the Bank. The Banking Player must be able to cover all bets made by the other Players and must have wagered in the previous round that the Dealer acted as Banker. The tiles are shuffled by the Dealer and placed in 8 stacks of 4 each.


In order to play Tile Pai Gow, it is necessary to know the ranking of tiles. The rankings do not follow a number sequence (i.e. highest to lowest) but are symbols. For example, the highest ranking tile is the 12, but the second highest is the 2 (see Single Rank Chart). The highest ranking hand in Tile Pai Gow is a combination of the 15th (white 2, red 4) and the 17th (white 2, red 1) ranking tiles. This pair is called Supreme (Gee Joon). The 2nd through the 12th ranking hands are the matched pairs (Bo), and the 13th through the 16th ranking hands are the mixed pairs (Chop Bo). The pairs rank in the same order as the individual tiles.

“Wongs” are the next highest ranked hand (17th and 18th). Wongs are a 12 (Teen) or a 2 (Day) matched with any tile with a point value of 9. “Gongs” are the next highest ranking hand (19th and 20th). Gongs are a 12 (Teen) or 2 (Day) matched with any tile with a point value of 8. The next highest ranking hand is a High Nine, which is a 12 (Teen) of a 2 (Day) matched with any tile which has a value of 7.

If none of the above rankings can be made, hands are formed by ranking tiles from 9 to 0. This is done by adding the tiles together. If the value of the two tiles totaled is a two digit number, the left digit is discarded and the right digit constitutes the value of the hand. For example, the tiles 8 and 11 added together make 9. The 7 and 6 makes 3.

These types of rankings are the most common in Tile Pai Gow. When the Banker and Player have the same ranking hand by number, the hand that has the higher ranking single tile will win in all cases except when the numeric value of the hand is 0, in which case all 0 ties go to the Banker. (See single rank chart).

The tiles 3 (2 white, 1 red) & 6 (2 white, 4 red) together make the highest ranking hand, the Supreme pair. If the tiles forming the supreme pair are used separately, the numeric total of the 3 (2/1) may be counted as 6, and the numeric total of the 6 (2/4) may be counted as 3.

Hints for setting up tiles

Always look for pairs fi rst. Don’t forget Gee Joon (2/1 and 2/4) and mixed pairs. Next, look for Wongs, Gongs and High 9’s which is a 12 or 2 tile with any 7, 8 or 9 tile. Two small tiles that total 7, 8 or 9 are always desirable. If none of the above can be found, average the tiles by playing the highest tile with the lowest tile. If possible always try and play the highest ranking tile in the low hand. And remember, if undecided ask the Dealer to set up the hand the House Way.

Please note that the house reserves the right to set the Dealer’s hands according to the House Ways at all times.

If you have further questions about Tile Pai Gow, a Table Associate will be glad to answer them for you. AADAC Toll-Free Problem Gambling Help Line 1-866-332-2322.

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