Mahjong rules


Mahjong is a game of skill, intelligence, calculation and luck – and
is usually played by four people. The game originated in China, and is
used for gambling purposes in many countries. The Chinese word
literally means "hemp general". In English, the name often takes on
variations such as Mah Jong, Mahjongg, Majong or simply M-J.

The game pieces or tiles and scoring rules used in Mahjong differ
slightly, depending on regional variations. However, the game play in
general is very similar in all versions of Mahjong: players compete to
build sets including the highest point value.

The object of the game of Mahjong is to build complete suits (usually
of threes) from either 13 or 16 tiles. The first person to achieve
this goal is said to have won the game. The winning tile completes the
set of either 14 or 17 tiles.

The more common types of Mahjong include:

Chinese Traditional Mahjong – oldest type of Mahjong; introduced to
America in the 1920's.
Hong Kong Mahjong (also Cantonese Mahjong) – most common form of
Mahjong; very similar to the Chinese Traditional
Japanese Mahjong – most common Mahjong found in Japan, and can also be
seen in video/arcade games; Japanese Mahjong uses riichi and dora
Western Classical Mahjong – descendant of the version of Mahjong
introduced to America in the 1920s; uses the Wright-Patterson rules.
American Mahjong – form of Mahjong standardized by the National Mah
Jongg League; has the greatest divergence from traditional Mahjong,
with the introduction of Joker tiles, the Charleston, as well as melds
of five or more tiles, and eschewing the Chow and the notion of a
standard hand.
Other variants include Fujian Mahjong (with Dadi Joker), Taiwanese
Mahjong (each player would have 16 tiles), Vietnamese Mahjong (with 16
different kinds of joker), and Filipino Mahjong (with Window Joker).
In Japan, Mahjong arcade machines have been developed which can be
connected to others over the Internet, allowing play against computer
or human opponents.

In the interest of changing Mahjong from an illegal gambling game to
an approved 'healthy sport', a new set of rules were published in
1998, now referred to as International Tournament rules. The rule
principles are: no gambling – no drinking – no smoking. The governing
bodies of Mahjong now often host exhibition games and tournaments.

In 2002 the first World Championship in Mahjong was organized by the
Mahjong Museum, the Japan Mahjong Organizing Committee and the city
council of Ningbo, China. One hundred players participated, mainly
from Japan and China, but also from Europe and the United States. Miss
Mai Hatsune from Japan became the first world champion.

In 2005, in the Netherlands, the first Open European Mahjong
Championship was held, with 108 players. The first prize was won by
Masato Chiba from Japan.

The popularity and demographic classification of Mahjong players today
differs from country to country. However, Mahjong culture is still
deeply ingrained in the Chinese community. Chinese movies have always
included scenes of mahjong games. Mahjong Movie is a subgenre of
Chinese gambling films that focuses on Mahjong games and over-the-top
tile-playing skills – the movies are often released during the Chinese
New Year.

A set of Mahjong tiles differs from place to place, utilising at least
136 tiles usually and 144 most commonly, although sets originating
from America or Japan will have more. Mahjong tiles include:

Circle suit – named as each tile consists of a number of circles; each
circle represents copper (tong) coins with a square hole in the
Bamboo suit – named as each tile (except the 1 Bamboo) consists of a
number of bamboo sticks; each stick represents a string (suo) that
holds a hundred coins.
Character suit – named as each tile represents ten thousand (wan)
coins, or one hundred strings of one hundred coins.
Wind tiles – East, South, West, and North.
Dragon tiles – red, green, and white.
Flower tiles – typically optional components to a set of mahjong
tiles; often contain artwork.
When setting up the board to play Mahjong, shuffling of the Mahjong
tiles is needed before piling around the table. All players throw
three dice and the one with the highest total would be the dealer.
Players pick up their own tiles after rolling the dice.

Scoring in Mahjong involves points, and when gambling with Mahjong
scores are often directly translated into sums of money. Poker chips
are used in transaction throughout the playout.

Points are obtained by matching the winning hand and the winning
condition with a specific set of criteria, with different criteria
scoring different values. The points obtained may be translated into
scores for each player.

A player wins a Mahjong round by creating a standard mahjong hand.
Some variations may also require that winning hands be of some point
value. A full game of Mahjong ends after 4 rounds.

1 comment:

  1. Mahjong is an oldest tiles game, which is played with a set of 136 or 144 tiles. The basic rules of this game are similar to those of rummy.I always enjoy playing Mahjong Games with my friends.Nice blog. Thanks for sharing.