Mahjong Live Pastebin
Pastebin Source
plus new additions by me. Please help add stuff here by posting interesting mahjong stuff at the thread.


What exactly is Mahjong?
How do I play? What are the rules?
Strategy and News
Where to play the game solo and practice?
Where to play the game online?
Where to play the game in real life?
Counting Points
Media about Mahjong
Other links

What exactly is Mahjong?

Mahjong is a tile-based game most similar to a cross between Gin Rummy and Poker. It was originally created in China, but the popularity spread quickly, and nearly every single area in Asia has its own variant.

This pastebin is focused solely on the Japanese variation, most commonly known as "Riichi" or "Reach" Mahjong.

Contact information is down below. If there is a mistake in this guide, feel free to contact the email. The author is not always present in the Mahjong threads.

I don't know if the anon still lurks the threads, probably not he does. New additions can be added through the feedback system at the very bottom of the main page, or just posting it in the thread really.


How do I play? What are the rules?

Here are some various links to the rules.

A Beginner's Guide to Riichi Mahjong

A web guide to learning Riichi Mahjong. Includes handy links and pictures as well. Generally an all around good resource. It is not fully comprehensive, though, and is essentially a very brief "how to play video games/online". Once you brush up over those, if you find your knowledge lacking, or you really really like the game, you should definitely read up on the other rulesets there.

Fast and dirty guide to playing video game Mahjong from a /v/-anon

This is an incredibly short read and should teach you just enough to be a threat to someone while playing in a video game version, such as in Yakuza. You shouldn't rely on this as there is a lot, lot more to learn, but this isn't bad for a fast method.

Riichi Mahjong Guide (Video)

Video series teaching the basics of Mahjong. The author of the videos also has more advanced videos as well, talking about things like defense.

Japanese Mahjong Wiki (new)

A very in-dept and robust wiki about mahjong, covering a lot from Japanese terms used in the game to every specific rules you might encounter.

European Mahjong Association (EMA)

The EMA is the official tournament rules for Riichi Mahjong in the Europe area. They also tend to be the most popular ruleset to reference when people translate the game due to various factors. The rules here are more focused on tournament play, and thus will skip over various rules that you may see in other games.

World Riichi Competition (WRC)

The WRC is an attempt to standardize the English-speaker rules for Riichi Mahjong in tournament settings. It is not usually as popular as EMA, but will sometimes be referenced. The rules here are more focused on tournament play, and thus will skip over various rules that you may see in other games.

Riichi Rules around the World

This is a chart of all of the various different Riichi leagues and their viewpoints on the many optional rule points. This is meant for more advanced players who just want a quick list of differences between their chosen variant versus other official leagues. Please note, even if you are advanced, it is still best to view the most updated rules before playing.



Strategy and News

Once you learn the rules, here are some good resources to start you on the battle to become a better player

Moved at the Guides Section.



Where to play the game solo and practice?


"That flash game"

Best place to practice for beginners. Very simple. Has a list of Yaku on the page as well.


This is a single-suit variant. This will give your brain a very intense workout. Definitely not recommended for beginners still learning the game, but included for advanced players looking to become better.

Efficiency trainer

A simple app to help you work on your efficiency in discards. The app is simplistic and doesn't take a holistic view of the table. Rather, it merely measures how efficient your discard is by how many tiles it believes would improve your hand to tenpai, and nothing else. You have great efficiency if you can consistently score 95% or higher on this over several attempts.

Chinitsu Wait Trainer (new)

Similar to Bamboo listed above, but the page is entirely in Japanese. Just follow the guide written by an anon below and you'll be fine.

Blue button generates new hand and orange button shows answers. Top left determines number of tiles: either 7, 10, or 13. Below that is sorted or unsorted (sorted by default). Top right determines the suit (manzu by default)

Hitori Mahjong Simulator (new)

Entirely in Japanese, but the blog has instructions. Taken from the pathofhouou blog: Hitori Mahjong Simulator is a useful tool for getting statistics about the expected value or speed of a hand. It has some limitations, for example not considering calls, but you can still get good stuff out of it

Online Version - translation / instructions for inputting a hand


Mahjong Pretty Girls Battle

Don't laugh. While the prettyness of the girls is debatable, as well as the translation choices, this is a full Mahjong variant and a good way to practice. Comes with a billion rules which can be adjusted as well.

Mahjong Riichi Multiplayer

Mentioned only for completeness sake, it had a big ambition, but was rather buggy, of low quality, and has no players for online. The tutorial included in it was so-so. However, it seems to have had several updates that reportedly fixed many bugs. Not sure if recommended or not.

Saikyo no Mahjong 3D

A very cute but effective solo game for the PC that will run on toasters. You can select the different AI who will operate slightly differently. There IS an English version available to download SOMEWHERE, but it's patched, pirated, and easy to find. Downloading the old 2007 software would be illegal, anon.

Mahjong Club (new)

It's Saki the PC game, complete with interhigh tournaments, superpowers and cute girls. The superpowers can be turned off to make it a completely normal mahjong game, thankfully. It's the nicest looking (not the tiles, those are ugly) single-player pc game in steam out there.

Nintendo Switch

Japanese Mah Jongg

While they use the very questionable choice of the American variant's spelling, Japanese Mah Jongg is Riichi Mahjong, and while very simple and barebones, is an excellent way to practice against computers.

Additionally, it features a two-player split screen mode, with amusing and cute instructions to cut out a piece of cardboard to prevent screen-looking.

Touhou Unreal Mahjong

Touhou plus Mahjong. Chock-full of superpowers, cute 2hus and everyone's favorite mode, aotenjou! There's also an older windows version here, if you're interested in this and you don't have a switch.

Clubhouse Games™: 51 Worldwide Classics

Riichi Mahjong is just one of their many selections of worldwide classics. You can play with your friends as well!


Yakuza 0

The English version of Yakuza 0 retains it's Mahjong side game that used to be taken out in previous editions of the series. It is a likely place where some new comers may join in from. The rest of the game has little to do with Mahjong, though it does come recommended.



Very simple, free, in english, and has bots. Supposedly is efficient on the battery. Somewhat small though.

麻雀 天極牌 (Mahjong Tenkyokupai)

Really fun multiplayer mahjong that has offline and online, as well as a special 2 player mode where you can connect online with one other person and the other two positions are filled with bots. However, despite being offered on the English play store, the game is fully 100% in Japanese, and there seem to be no English guides.

Kemono Mahjong (new)

If the furry aesthetics doesn't make you do a 180 degree turn, or if you're a dirty Wanjirou main, then the app is not that bad. It's not free and there's no working apk floating around, so only mentioned for completeness' sake. Don't get it unless you're desperate for mahjong action and furshit.

If you have any recommendations for games, feel free to contact the author down at the bottom.



Where to play the game online?

Mahjong Soul

Japanese rooms:

A Chinese-made Riichi Mahjong game that recently came out for English and Japanese as well. The interface is fairly stylish, the music is pretty good, and it allows you to spam emotes from kawaii waifus. There is a gacha game attached to it so you can change out the waifus and their outfits, but everything relating to Mahjong itself is free and is working fairly well.

The Japanese and English servers have been merged, and now China is all alone.

There is an app version available for Android and iOS, if you're into that.


This is generally where most of the serious players tend to wind up. There is a "Tenhou English UI" extension that can be installed for Chrome and Firefox. The English UI only works for the HTML5 version of the game which can be found at A guide for the general interface and rules can be found here:

Most of the English speaking communities have agreed to use a specific room for friendly games. If you wish to play with other English speakers, you can go to lobby 7447:

Hime Mahjong

It has the same approach as Mahjong Soul, combining mahjong with gatcha. But unlike majsoul, the game is far kinder when it comes to it's gatcha system, with tons of free rolls (which you can use ro reroll for whoever strikes your fancy), cosmetics, and a mathematically higher chance of getting something useful. Sadly, it has no english translations as of this moment.

Still, the interface is pretty straightforward as long as you're familiar with how mahjong works. Yu can check out the Hime Mahjong Guide to get you started on playing immediately.

Also a flashy game made by Sega. Requires a client install. Also has a phone version, but may require side-loading an app. Game is fully in Japanese. Guide for install here:

Janryuumon - DEFUNCT

An old client-based online app. It was free-to-play, but then turned into pay-to-play during an update and almost all of the playerbase dried up overnight. Only mentioning because the P2P version can still be found in a search for Mahjong. DO NOT RECOMMEND.



Where to play the game in real life?

Clubs in North America

A link to most of the major Japanese Mahjong clubs for North America. This list is probably not fully complete, so you can always Google your town name + Mahjong for any results. Be sure to also check out any hobby or board game stores in your local area. If there aren't any groups looking, it probably wouldn't be hard to start one up.

Mahjong Clubs Around the World

This is a link to the list of clubs world wide. Which includes Europe and some parts of Asia, as well as the little lone club that exists in Sydney, Australia. Gambatte, Australia-kouhai.

A Parlor Abroad

Japan has parlors where you can go in and play pickup games of Mahjong, but the Japanese are not foreigner/otaku friendly. Be sure to read the above link for more information, and in fact you should probably spend at least 16 hours researching before heading in.

/mjg/ players map

A map of the /mjg/ anons in the thread. Not a very extensive list, and some of them aren't accurate locations (like that one penguin), but if you're very desperate for a mahjong buddy then try looking for an anon near your area. But most likely you won't find one due to fear of stabbings.

To add yourself to the map, fill out this google form.



Counting Points

This is one of the more tedious parts of mahjong. Of course counting points is automatically done for you in video games, but it's still an essential thing to learn for players wanting to get into the game seriously. Not only does it help you save face in irl games, you can also calculate what kind of hand you must get for that comeback. Riichi Book 1 has a good section on scoring techniques so go check that out first.

Japanese Mahjong Scoring Rules

The Japanese Mahjong Wiki has a good guide on scoring. Below is the translated cheat sheet from the page.

Maru-Jan Score Trainer

A more interactive way to learn scoring. The software in in Japanese and it only works for Windows, but the guide is very thorough in teaching you how to set it up.

Riichi Calc

A nifty android app to quickly calculate the score of your hands. Very useful if you aren't that keen in scoring and memorization bums you out.

Mahjong Scores Trainer by Horneds

Looks pretty but accordingly has some issues and shouldn't be trusted blindly.


This one's entirely in Jap, but it's a good resource

First one indicates riichi (立直), second either tsumo (ツモ) or ron (ロン), next the dora indicator tile (ドラ表示牌), and the last shows the uradora indicator tile (裏ドラ表示牌). なし means none. From there just choose from the dropdown answers below.



Media about Mahjong





Other links

Things that do not fit into the categories above can go here.

The Tibet Mahjong Teaching method

This is a method to teach new players how to play Mahjong. It has wildly successful results reported by the LAPOM who go and teach Mahjong at many anime cons, as well as reports from other people around the world, this author included. The link above is a very brief tutorial, but there are longer videos on the subject available (Part 1, Part 2).

No Fu Mahjong Teaching Method

From the writer of Hatkagi comes a mahjong teaching method that alledgedly "works great even on kids at the park". A slow crawl approach to teaching the game.

Regular Expression


You're addicted, right? You want ALL of the Mahjong threads now? Put in that regular expression into the filter rules and set it to "top". Anything with the word Mahjong or Riichi in it should float to the top.

Abema live Mahjong Matches

Every so often, they will stream live Mahjong games from professionals in Japan. According to some users, you need to have Japanese VPNs to actually watch this. Also please note that this is all in Japanese, so you should be able to understand Japanese Mahjong terms at bare minimum to really follow along.




"I'm in tenpai, and my opponent discarded my winning tile, but I couldn't win. Why not?"

"I'm in tenpai, and I'm definitely NOT in furiten, and I cannot win even if I draw the tile myself. What happened?"

In all variations of Japanese Mahjong, you MUST have at least 1 yaku in your hand in order to go out.




If something needs to be updated, I occasionally grace the /jp/ threads and will probably scroll through it at some point, but if you for some reason need to contact me, you can riichi me at ​ I remembered the joke that time, Anon.

This anon hasn't been around for a long time. Any new additions can be given through the site feedback or just talking about it in the thread.