British Rules
A gentle introduction to the game
The Game
Examples of sets and advice about where to buy them
Mah-Jong sites, their content, and an indication of how interesting it is
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Built walls


Each player then builds a wall,

two tiles high and 18 tiles long.  

Build the Walls

The wall symbolises the Great Wall of China.  

The four walls must touch

to prevent dragons or evil spirits entering !

The walls are pushed together as shown in the photograph.

It’s actually of no consequence - just one of the formal ceremonies that gives Mah-Jong its character.

Each wall is then moved to the centre of the table until they meet.

The Game


The Aim of the Game

       General Strategy


Preparing to Play

       Distribute the Tallies

       Determine who is N, S, E, and W Wind

       Determine the Prevailing Wind

       Shuffle the Tiles

       Build the Walls

       Break into one Wall

       The Kong Box

       Deal out the Tiles

       Select out any Flower or Season Tiles


Playing the Game

       Starting the Game

       Collecting Sets

       Special Hands

       Obtaining a New Tile

       Claiming the Discarded Tile

       Flower and Season Tiles

       Concealed Sets

       Converting a Pung to a Kong

       One for Mah-Jong

       Robbing the Kong

       Finishing the Game


Variations of Play

       The Goulash

       The Game for 2 Players

       The Game for 3 Players

       The Game for 5 Players

       Suggested Rule


Shuffle the Tiles

Put all the tiles (minus any blank and joker tiles) on the table, face down. The players who are North and South winds then shuffle, or “wash”, them.

When East Winds thinks that the tiles have been shuffled enough he says  Pow !  (meaning “Start”).

The shuffling is called “Twittering of the sparrows”, from the distinctive noise it makes.

Mah-Jong literally means “The game of the sparrows”.

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© 2008   Peter Gregory
© 2008   Peter Gregory
Text - The Game
Overview and page links
Preparing to Play