Should I pick-up Mahjong?

If anyone here’s played mahjong before, would you say it’s a fun game, at least for a westerner like me with no experience? I started Go after I read Hikaru no Go so It only makes sense that I start Mahjong after reading Akagi.


Do what you enjoy doing.

Since this is leisure for most of us, it should be fun or relaxing. It should do what you want such an activity to do.

I’ve seen Mahjong played, and think it could be a fun way to spend time with others.

I used to try to do many different things and ended up not doing any well. I’ve started dropping things that I haven’t made time for. This means I get more time to write programs for fun, and to play Go.

Back to where I started, if the learning is enjoyable, then go and learn the new thing.

When you a looking for a Go game, this will still be the place to find it.


I’d say it depends on how easily you can find 3 other players willing to spend 3-4 hours on a game session. If that’s not a problem, mahjong can be quite fun. :slight_smile:


Mahjong goes hand in hand with gambling so unless you’re a fan of that as well…Otherwise I think it’s fine. Not a player though. The countless winning combinations to remember was a turnoff. I have played Zynga poker but I can’t say the rush for winning is the same as winning real money. Likewise, unless you’re willing to bet real money, you’ll have to settle for virtual mahjong which might not be as exciting.

PS. Your logic of having to pick something up is so flawed that I won’t bother commenting why. I just hope you don’t read any perverted manga,


Lol, I wanted to keep my original post short, but what I meant to say was that I found both games interesting after reading from their respective mangas.

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I really do not like games of chance, so Mahjongg would not be my thing at all, but if you think you would enjoy it it’s almost certainly worth trying.


Yes, try mahjong solitaire. It is easy then classic mahjong. I like this game Online Mahjoing Solitaire


If you haven’t already learned some other mahjong variant, I recommend finding a club following Mahjong Competition Rules (MCR). It’s as the name implies a competition game which is designed to be enjoyable and complex without involving betting. When I used to play, there were some online mahjong servers that supports that rule set as well.

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its not countless. i will compare it go Gin. you arrange your tiles to 3 tiles combinations. the rundown of the game is quite simple.

what is more complicated is the scoring. depending on different rules, the scoring combination ranges from about 4~5 basic patterns to about 10~15 slightly more sophisticated patterns.

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Mahjong is same as a card game. In places like Chengdu ( China) it’s very popular so you can meet people and have fun time together. It’s an easy game which often comes with betting small money.

Only problem is the rules, they are so many variants that you better check which one your partners are used to play.

One nice feature that both games share when played offline is the pleasure you can take in the physical game pieces. The clacking of the mahjong tiles when shuffling them or when rearranging or discarding your tiles is akin to the clack of Go stones on the board. And just as in Go, when a player wants to emphasize the power of a particular move, he or she might play the tile or stone with extra force.


I played a moderate amount of Mah-Jong in my youth. As @violaine says, there are a lot of rule variants. My circle of gaming friends and I compiled them into a rule set that I typed up and distributed (back in the stone age, via typewriter and ditto machine). It was a fun game, which I would liken most closely to Canasta. But the rule complexity is excessive, I think, so it doesn’t have the wonderful elegance of go.


There are many forms of Mahjong. The four players agree on the stakes and a set of rules before their game. Compared to GO, Mahjong is a piece of cake. :grin:

It pays to remember the tiles the other three players discard to establish what they would need to win. Provided the stakes are low, it is a social game for friends to get together and play for fun rather than monetary gain. A game of chance, it calls for minimal technique.

Mahjong was popular amongst the Chinese - even kids knew how to play. But now its place has been usurped by digital games. :roll_eyes:


One of the advantages of the MCR is that you put your discarded tiles out in ordered rows, so you don’t need to memorize who discarded what.

Mahjong is essentially easy to start, but maybe difficult to be a real master.
Thare are many variations of rules though. To get hands on, there is a really handy website to go.

If this is an advantage or not, I dunno :slight_smile:
It can be part of the fun to remember, and if any strategy at all, what tiles ppl discard is essential so if you play often you could remember easely.

Mahjong general thread? :D

There are sometimes mahjong streamers on Twitch, even English-speaking ones.

I don’t know any good mahjong channels on youtube, though.

I like playing Riichi mahjong occasionally but it’s pretty hard to (feel you) get better at the game. Unlike go you can’t really be sure if you played sloppily or it was just a bad luck streak :frowning:

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@bugcat must’ve far surpassed this level