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Mao is a card game often played by CTYers. The first rule of Mao is, "You may not discuss the rules of Mao." It is up to players to figure them out. To complicate the matter, different people play with different variations of the rules, frequently causing great confusion.

The history of Mao and its origins are thus:

Many refer to Mao Zedong as the origin of the name of Mao. He was a Chinese dictator. His leadership was famously known to his people, but his laws were also unknown to the people, yet they all still had to follow them. This is similar to Mao the game, in that new players do not understand the game or the rules and are forced to learn them to survive. This is why some new players have called this "that Communist game."

Some people consider it proper to tell new players that the object of the game is to get rid of all cards; others feel it is okay to tell them the general method of playing cards. Regardless, the best way to learn how to play Mao is to watch other people playing it.

There are some sites (search for it on a search engine) that describe a fictional game of Mao to learn how to play. This, for instance, is certainly not real.

There would be more here on the rules of Mao, but Rule One forbids it.

In CTY Lancaster 19.1, Mao was submitted as an activity request by a hall that became very attached to the game. The hall was very surprised to see the activity on the list one day the next week.