top of page
  • Admin

How To Play Mahjong: A Beginner's Guide to Learn the Basics

Mahjong is an ancient Chinese game that has been around for centuries. Mahjong games require skill, strategy and luck, and people of all ages can enjoy them. For those new to Mahjong, it can be overwhelming at first. But with some knowledge and practice, anyone can learn to play this enjoyable and challenging game.

This beginner's guide will provide a comprehensive overview of Mahjong's basic rules, strategies and etiquette, giving you the confidence to start playing and mastering the game. With this guide, you will be well on your way to becoming a Mahjong master in no time!

how to play mahjong

The Basics: Tiles, Sets and Melds

The first thing to know about Mahjong is the essential components of the game. In Mahjong, the players attempt to build sets of four tiles called melds. These melds are made up of three or four tiles of the same suit or, in some instances, tiles with the same numerical value. The tiles that make up the melds are called suits, and there are four of these: bamboo, circles, characters and winds.

Each suit has 11 tiles, numbered one through nine, with four additional tiles featuring dragons, flowers and seasons.

When playing Mahjong, the players start the game by building walls of 17 tiles. These walls are divided into four quadrants; each player draws 13 tiles from the wall. The players then can make melds from the tiles they have drawn, as well as any tiles that the other players discard.

The Rules of Mahjong

Once you understand the basics of Mahjong, it is better to familiarize yourself with the rules. The goal of Mahjong is to be the first player to make a meld of four tiles. Players must form sets of three or four tiles with the same suit or numerical value and special melds called pungs and kongs. Pungs are sets of three tiles, while kongs are sets of four tiles.

Players can also score points by collecting unique combinations of tiles, such as a pair of dragons or flowers. The winner is the player who collected the most points at the end.

Once the player has made a meld, they must make a discard. This is the tile they have chosen to discard from their hand. The other players then can take the discarded tile and use it to make a meld.

Mahjong Strategies for Beginners

Once you have the basic rules of Mahjong down, you can start to develop your own strategies for the game. One of the most important strategies to remember is to pay attention to what tiles the other players discard.

This way, you can anticipate what tiles they may be looking for and can try to complete a meld with those tiles.

Another strategy is to try to collect unique tiles, such as dragons, flowers and seasons. These can be used to score additional points. You should also be aware of the tiles in your hand and look for ways to make melds with those tiles. Finally, it is essential to remember that luck plays a role in Mahjong, so try to stay positive and not be discouraged by a few wrong hands.

Scoring and Payment in Mahjong

When playing Mahjong, it is essential to understand how to score and pay for the game. The Mahjong game winner is the one with the most points at the end of the game. Points are awarded for each meld and particular tile a player has collected. The other players must then pay the winner based on the number of points they have earned.

The payment system in Mahjong can vary depending on the region and house rules. Generally speaking, the payment system is based on a point-based system, where players must pay a set amount for each point they have earned. Depending on the game, this can range from a few cents to a few dollars.

Mahjong Etiquette

When playing Mahjong, it is crucial to follow the proper etiquette. This includes being respectful of the other players, keeping the game organized and following the proper rules. It is also important to know the game's etiquette when discarding tiles. Players should always try to discard tiles that benefit the other players and not discard tiles that could help them win the game.

Finally, it is important to remember to be patient while playing Mahjong. The game can be long, making it easy to become frustrated. If you become frustrated, take a break and return to the game with a fresh perspective.

Different Variations of Mahjong

Once you have a good understanding of Mahjong's basic rules and etiquette, you can start to explore the different variations of the game. There are many different variations, including Chinese Mahjong, Japanese Mahjong, Hong Kong Mahjong and Mahjong Solitaire. Each of these variations has its own rules and strategies, so it is important to familiarize yourself with them before playing them.

In addition to these variations, many online versions of Mahjong are also available. These online versions often have additional features, such as different difficulty levels and special rules.

Tips for Mastering Mahjong

Once you have a good understanding of Mahjong's basic rules and etiquette, there are a few tips that can help you become a better player. The first tip is to keep practising. The more you play, the better you will become at the game. It is also a good idea to play with experienced players, as they can offer advice and tips on how to improve. Finally, staying focused and keeping track of the tiles in your hand is important. This will help you anticipate the moves of the other players and make better decisions.

How to Play Mahjong Online

There are many online versions of the game available for those who want to try their hand at Mahjong but need the opportunity to play in person. These online versions allow players to play against each other from the comfort of their own homes. These games often feature different levels of difficulty, as well as special rules and features. Players can also find tutorials and guides to help them learn the game and improve their skills. If you love to play mahjong online, you can visit , we will guide which online casino Singapore games are the best to play for Mahjong online to win real money.


Mahjong is an enjoyable and challenging game for people of all ages. With a little knowledge and practice, anyone can learn to play Mahjong and become a master in no time. This beginner's guide has provided an overview of Mahjong's basic rules, strategies and etiquette, giving you the confidence to start playing and mastering the game. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and start playing!


bottom of page