I visited earlier this year. How do all the night market games work? One looked like pinball/pachinko, there was some mahjong tile game and a goldfish catching one? Don’t know if the goldfish one was a game or if it was just for kids to catch a goldfish to keep.
It was interesting seeing people of all ages playing the pinball/pachinko game.
The game that uses mahjong tiles isn’t mahjong at all, but bingo. After you pay you can choose a certain number of tiles, usually around 13, then you just turn them over and match them to the board. A bingo gets a prize. You usually pay 100nt for maybe 5 tries.
I slowly turn over each tile, cheering myself on when I get a good draw, and acting sad when I don’t. Purely for dramatic fun.
If you end up with 聽 (“ting” - need only 1 more tile for a bingo) the proprietor will often give you a couple more tiles to keep trying. However, if you bingo on the extra tiles you won’t get a big prize but maybe a free chance to play again or something.
The good proprietors will turn over the unused tiles at the end of the round to show you that the game is fair.
I don’t get the claw machine craze either.
Over in Taichung they are pretty popular, and a lot of locals tell me that they often drop a lot of money to play. Apparently there are tricks to make it easier to get the prize
We had a fantastic Italian restaurant near us (quite the find in Taiwan), but it closed due to lack of trade and high rent. The owner told us the rent was 73k a month. It’s now a claw grabbing thing place. HTF do they make profit on rent like that?
I hate those machines. They are a cancer overtaking my neighbourhood one empty space at a time. Just ban the ugly things already, uber got banned but these things are ok? Uber got banned but full building window covering ugly ass advertising is ok?? Depressing.
I’ve seen quite a few claw machine places being staffed and run by individuals who appear not to be geared towards children’s entertainment, rather Taiwanese mafioso type. Just an observation. Who knows, maybe this is just an urban legend for Taiwan and its all innocent stop gap real estate strategy.
But I really am curious how money laundering would work with claw machines. Any ideas? Maybe its not money laundering, but some other illegal operation like a front of some sort.
By the way, that would make for a very interesting thread…Taiwan Urban Legends. Someone get on it!