Hatsumi (Rock) vs. Sae (Paper) vs. Nodoka (Scissor)

This is a companion to my episode review for the Vice-Captain Match. Just to balance it out.

I have a feeling that people are seriously overestimating Hatsumi. There is this thought that without Sae there, she would seriously lopside the score. And while, I have fun with the hypothetical potential scores and hyping her up in my recent post (yakuman user are fun) ^^

I don’t believe that she’s as overpowered as some people are claiming her. That taking out Sae will lopside the match. In my defense to that, if they need to take out Sae, they should take out Nodoka as well.

Because though, Hatsumi is unlucky that Sae is in her match. Hatsumi is similarly lucky that Nodoka is in it.  Seriously, the three of them are almost the rock vs. paper vs. scissor recreated.

Let’s start with Hatsumi. There seems to be some misunderstanding with her power.

Anyway, we already know that her power is based on “kimon” or the “devil’s gate”  The gate that brings misfortune.

When sited in the North, she’ll start attracting East and North tiles.

Ok. Everyone gets that. But, did you guys know that Hatsumi has to call those sets? 

*Note: The directions feels weird. See sf’s comment below.

Anyway, Hatsumi needs to call. She needs to make a mini-devil gate sets of north tiles and east tiles in the northeast corner. Its what the old pro called a double kimon. This is what starts the attraction of the south-west tiles to her.

But, this is also one of her weakness.

That inherent need to call.

This is the reason why the counter strategy against her is so simple. To not drop north or east tiles. Because if her opponents doesn’t drop those, she won’t be calling anything. Of course, she can call a set of kan. But, contrary to what Saki has led us to believe, having kans in your hands isn’t normal.

Thus, if no one drops the north or east tiles, that Hatsumi needed to call, the chance of her forming her yakuman is slim. Perhaps 1 out of 4? lol

And now that is out of the way, here is the power interaction and why they are rock, paper and scissors in my mind.

Power interaction 101 

Hatsumi > Nodoka 

Due to Nodoka’s adherence to digital. She have a high chance of dropping the north and east tiles while Hatsumi is in the north seat. There isn’t anything we can do about that. Its a weakness of her power.

Yes. power. Contrary to what  Nodoka believes. She is firmly occult in my mind. If you need an example of someone who takes digital mahjong so hard that they broke into the other direction. Exhibit A: Nodoka.

Sae > Hatsumi 

As Hatsumi is Nodoka’s kryptonite, so is Sae to Hatsumi. This is because Hatsumi is probably the best type of power user for Sae. Has limited number of shots and telegraphs her attack. ^^

And now the other end of the power interaction. We haven’t seen this much. I have a feeling that Ritz is saving it up for later matches.

Nodoka > Sae 

This is hypothetical. But, based on this comment.

“I couldn’t feel any offensive aura, or any power for that matter, She just won. Almost like she’s a machine or something, like she’s not even human.”  

One of the thing that made Sae effective is because of her monocle *cough* power scouter *cough*. So what happens if its ineffective on Nodoka like the above statement suggest?  

She won’t know when to apply her power sealer.

Beside that, Sae’s power is a debuff. And debuffs have a history of not working on Nodoka because of her inherent disbelief in supernatural.  ^^ 

So there you have it. Rock, Paper and Scissors. In terms of hax, the Vice-Captain Match is actually pretty balanced.

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7 Responses to Hatsumi (Rock) vs. Sae (Paper) vs. Nodoka (Scissor)

  1. sf says:

    One more random note (this time directed at you :D) : in the image above (about the direction), north should be under and south should be above. Remember that the mahjong directions are different from real life directions. So, when Hatsumi is North, she will put her melded sets on her right, which is "North East" (but not real life North East)
    (I'm the one who currently sub this series in my language and a mahjong enthusiast, so you can say I'm quite sharp)

    And I really like your opinion about rock-paper-scissors – very interesting! (Triple hax = balanced, lol)

    • Wow this is interesting.

      …. And apparently I'm playing mahjong wrong in real life. lol
      This is what happens when my friends and I start playing due to anime. ^^

      And now to my paint mobile!
      Edit mode on!

  2. Katreus says:

    It gets a little ridiculous if you want to change half the match's players though. You might as well ask well, what if we also replace Kinue with Mairu? Well, I guess Mairu now owns that match without Sae or Nodoka. (…? Do we get anything out of this thought exercise now that 3/4 of the players are changed?)

    There's the saying that a story based on something else should really only have 'one unicorn in the garden.' Here, that would be 'Sae is replaced with a generic opponent', probably in the vein of the other VCs, and the question becomes: does Hatsumi dominate without Sae there to seal her hands? We ask this because we wish to understand if Hatsumi can be dominant or have done well in that match without someone dropped in spec. with a power that nullifies her impact. As above, I don't know what you'd get out of asking if Hatsumi would do well if you drop her in an almost completely different matchup composition or how you would be able to compare this to canon to gain any meaningful insights.

    BTW, I think the answer to the question would almost clearly be yes because, of course, without Sae, Nodoka's tendency to drop single winds and disregard of occult combined with the low probability and thus, low EV of Hatsumi gaining a yakuman means that in actuality, Hatsumi's going to be in iishanten or tenpai of yakuman often in her North opportunities.

    • … I think there is some misunderstanding. I don't want to change half the players, I just want to show that Hatsumi has some weakpoints herself. And as much as she was limited with Sae there. She was also boosted because Nodoka is. If I want to look at Hatsumi in a native environment, I'll make this match Hatsumi vs. 3 normal.

      And regarding the one unicorn problem. That's the point of this post.

      If you take Sae out. Hatsumi will inevitably win because Nodoka has a really bad compatibility with her. If you take Hatsumi out of the equation, I feel that Nodoka might win because Sae's hax will probably do nothing on her. And if you take out Nodoka, Sae's sealing will be perfect and Hatsumi will probably get no yakuman at all.

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