Best Games to Play: Mahjong

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Mahjong is one of the most popular and well-known games in the world, especially in China (where it is THE dominant game to play). It got even more attention in the past couple of years from the famous Crazy Rich Asians movie scene between Rachel Chu and her would-be mother in law.

Up until a couple of weeks ago though, I had never actually played mahjong. I knew what mahjong was of course, but I had no idea about the rules or strategy behind the game. After playing it for the first time though, I can see why mahjong is such a popular game.

Mahjong is a game that is super easy to learn, and you can likely understand the game after 10-15 minutes of playing. Another great thing about playing mahjong is that the games are quick, which means you can play it over and over on the same day. If I had to estimate, I would say that mahjong is about 25% skill and 75% luck, so it is good in the sense that anyone can win. While good/experienced players might have a bit of an advantage, it is not significant enough that beginners cannot win.

I just played mahjong for fun, but I can also see how it makes an especially good gambling game. There are certain plays in mahjong that can supposedly earn you more money, in addition to trying to win each round. Also, since there are so many tiles and different winning combinations, each player can take a unique path to winning (while also not knowing whether their opponents will be going for the same winning strategy). All in all, it is a really interesting game that I would enjoy playing more in the future!

Mahjong Recommendation Rating: 4

This post has now been updated to reflect a new ratings system that I have implemented, which is scored as follows:

1: Something worth checking out if you have time

2: Something that is a hit for some people, but not a must for everyone

3: Something worth prioritizing if interested

4: Something worth making time to check out

5: An absolute home run, worth going out of your way for


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