Japanese Mahjong


Everything You Need To Know About Japanese Mahjong

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Japanese Mahjong...

This site began its life as the Internet's only place where the Japanese three-player variation of mahjong was discussed in English.

But whatever the merits of the three player game, it only has a regional following concentrated predominantly in the Hiroshima area whereas traditional Japanese "four-player" mahjong (aka "Riichi Maajan" or "Reach Mahjong") is played throughout the whole Japanese archipelago.

Japanese mahjong is distinguished by certain features such as the Riichi rule, and the methodical placement of discard tiles in a row one after the other in front of each player.

The Japanese game, like mahjong elsewhere, admits of a great deal of variety. In that way, mahjong is similar to bingo, in that there are a number of different games that utilize the same pieces. The key to enjoying mahjong is flexibility; flexibility as to the rules you play by, and flexibility in your style of play during a game...

I hope to post more information about traditional Japanese mahjong in due course, along with an extensive overview of the numerous local variations to the rules and a section on Japanese mahjong terms.

If you are looking for Japanese mahjong sets and accessories please check my Japanese-Games-Shop.com website. I also post items on the Tripleclicks garage sale site. Just enter "mahjong" in the search field to see what's on offer.

Like Mahjong, Roulette also has it's own specialised vocabulary, learn more now.

What's New?

Japanese Mahjong Shop Has Moved: Japanese mahjong sets and other mahjong goods are now available at http://www.japanese-games-shop.com/games/japanese-mahjong/.

Japanese Mahjong Glossary Page: Japanese Mahjong has its own specialized vocabulary. The plethora of terms can be quite confusing to the beginner so I have set up a page here dedicated to explaining both the basic and the more advanced or optional terminology.

If you play Japanese mahjong computer or tv games you may find the vocabulary section helpful.

27th April 2011

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Japanese 3-Player MJ

Three-player mahjong is a fast-paced Japanese variation
of the classic Japanese version of Mahjong. As such, it is an excellent gambling game.

Three-player mahjong is often played in the mahjong parlours of Hiroshima, but it is not a common feature of the mahjong scene in most other parts of Japan.

As the name suggests, "three-player mahjong" is a game for three players whereas traditional Japanese mahjong is a four player game.

However, four or even five players can participate in a game of three-player mahjong, just as three or five players can participate in the standard four-player game.


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Page last modified: 14th June 2012