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Any other fans of REAL Mahjong games?

10-20-2011, 09:33 AM
#1
Joined: Feb 2009
Location: Saratoga, CA, USA
Posts: 11,775
Any other fans of REAL Mahjong games?

Hey Gang,

I've lately been on a weird Mahjong kick and I don't mean the tile matching game, but the real 4 player game I think best crudely summed up as "Asian Gin Rummy"

If you simply search for "Mahjong" in the AppStore the results are usually pretty depressing with the VAST majority being simply the tile matching games and of the few that are of the actual full game, most were in Chinese/Japanese only.

What I don't think I fully comprehended until getting into this search is how different each country's take on Mahjong is. While they all share the basic concepts of making sets of 3/4 of a kind or runs of 3, the size of your hand and how points are scored for the winning hand can really vary.

Here is my current top 3 (all are localized in English):

Mahjong Mobile (Japanese rules)
iGame 13 Mahjong (Hong Kong rules)
iGame 16 Mahjong (Taiwanese rules)

All three are nicely localized to English (complete with the Westernized tile sets with the character suit having numbers and the winds having the corresponding letters). They also had nicely detailed English rules, detailed statistic tracking, and very competent AI (big requirement for me).

Tim "Lord Gek" Jordan, Game Consultant
Twitter: LordGek
GameCenter, iTunes: Lord Gek
My iTunes Reviews
10-20-2011, 10:20 AM
#2
Joined: Sep 2011
Location: In your dreams
Posts: 379
I remember a thread like this from you already... Was it deleted or what?

On thread: I have no idea about what you mean by "real" Mahjong... My mother plays that tile matching Mahjong a lot..

Openfeint: littlezoe2
GameCenter: LittleZoeee
Currently Playing: Ghost Trick

10-20-2011, 10:55 AM
#3
Joined: Feb 2009
Location: Saratoga, CA, USA
Posts: 11,775
Quote:
Originally Posted by littlezoe View Post
I remember a thread like this from you already... Was it deleted or what?

On thread: I have no idea about what you mean by "real" Mahjong... My mother plays that tile matching Mahjong a lot..
Yeah, I killed it earlier but am trying it again.

As far as I can tell it goes something like this.

The game Mahjong, a very ancient game developed in China and plays sort of like a 4 player game of Gin Rummy (try to go out first by getting all of your cards in sets of "3 of a kinds" or "same suit sequences").

Also I believe very ancient is the spin-off game of Mahjong Solitaire which uses those same tiles to construct pyramids and other shapes that the single player then tries to disassemble by removing unblocked matching pairs.

Over the years, especially here in the west with computerized versions of the Mahjong games, the Mahjong Solitaire became far more popular and developers decided to drop the "Solitaire" part of the name and simply call their games "Mahjong".

So now if you ever see a game called Mahjong it isn't clear if they mean the full game or this solitaire spin-off. Heck, one of the bigger Mahjong titles from Activision, "Shanghai Mahjong", attempted to do both the full game and the solitaire game all in one package but when it soon became clear the vast majority of the players really only wanted the solitaire version, in later incarnations it become just a suped up version of the solitaire version of the game (like you see from them in the AppStore now).

Tim "Lord Gek" Jordan, Game Consultant
Twitter: LordGek
GameCenter, iTunes: Lord Gek
My iTunes Reviews

Last edited by LordGek; 10-20-2011 at 11:01 AM.
10-30-2011, 10:07 AM
#4
Joined: Oct 2009
Posts: 1,714
Have you also tried MahJong Nagomi? I tried the lite - seems pretty good, some options, including english ;-). I may pick up the HD version at some point as the lite has limited gameplay. The regular version is on sale until 31st (wish they put the HD version on sale - I'd rather play Mahjong on that).
10-30-2011, 10:12 AM
#5
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 912
Oh yes... how I hate those 'matching tiles' mahjong games! I have yet to seriously search for a good mahjong game in the appstore but the only one I have, 'hongkong mahjong' is rather decent.
10-30-2011, 11:42 AM
#6
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 3,088
Not a big fan of Mahjong, but it does piss me off that pretty much 99% of the games in the App Store that say they are "Mahjong" games are actually that lame "matching tiles" ripoff that is not the real "Mahjong" games.

Betas: Victory Day, Victory March, Zombwich, Mission Europa, Shadow Era, Slice It!, Baseball Superstars 2011, Queen's Crown, Aralon: Sword and Shadow, Zombie Runaway, Third Blade, Tower Defense: Lost Earth
10-30-2011, 12:49 PM
#7
Joined: Dec 2009
Location: Italy
Posts: 2,916
These type of games are a little...how to say...BORING !!!

I love this world!
10-30-2011, 02:57 PM
#8
Joined: Feb 2009
Location: Saratoga, CA, USA
Posts: 11,775
Quote:
Originally Posted by foxmulderino View Post
These type of games are a little...how to say...BORING !!!
To each their own, I find driving and musical rhythm games pointless myself.

Tim "Lord Gek" Jordan, Game Consultant
Twitter: LordGek
GameCenter, iTunes: Lord Gek
My iTunes Reviews
10-30-2011, 03:20 PM
#9
Joined: Feb 2009
Location: Saratoga, CA, USA
Posts: 11,775
Quote:
Originally Posted by secondtime View Post
Have you also tried MahJong Nagomi? I tried the lite - seems pretty good, some options, including english ;-). I may pick up the HD version at some point as the lite has limited gameplay. The regular version is on sale until 31st (wish they put the HD version on sale - I'd rather play Mahjong on that).
I've only held off on this one do to one reviewer's comment about a nasty bug with going out they never addressed...but then again this might be an issue only with this player.

Tim "Lord Gek" Jordan, Game Consultant
Twitter: LordGek
GameCenter, iTunes: Lord Gek
My iTunes Reviews
08-08-2013, 07:34 AM
#10
update?

I'd like to revisit this thread. Currently looking for a real Mahjong (not matching) game with following requirements:

1) not matching, duh
2) english supported
3) great AI
4) suitable for beginners
5) aesthetically well done (iGame Mahjong 16 mentioned above doesn't cut it)
6) preferably variable local rules with explanations
7) hopefully $2 or less
8) I can find it by searching!

Last edited by rocklobster; 08-08-2013 at 07:37 AM.