Guide to playing online Mahjong
How to play Mahjong in India
In the world of gaming and gambling there are some games which don’t need a mention and are games of the masses. Then, there are some casino games which require high rollers or a good skill set.
However, somewhere between these lines are games which have a loyal player base. These games are very popular because it clicks with the masses, yet they are unique in every sense.
Needless to say, not every gamer or gambler would be aware of such games and having the knowledge of such a game up your sleeve will give you an edge over the commoners in the world of gambling. One such game is Mahjong.
Don’t fret, I am not asking you to visit the casinos in Goa to learn about it. You will be glad to know that you can play Mahjong online. We at G2G have all the info you will ever need to be an expert at Mahjong.
From Mahjong websites to online casinos in India where you can play Mahjong for real money, we have taken care of all that for you.
What is online Mahjong?
Mahjong is basically an ancient Chinese game. To a person who is not of Chinese ethnicity, it becomes evident about the game’s ancient nature from the tiles and their artwork.
Traditionally, it was played between four players. The players would get points based upon the tiles in their hand. These points were given monetary values based upon mutual agreement and payout would then be defined.
But that was the traditional way. Online Mahjong is much more simplified and exciting to play. The real essence of this game is best enjoyed online as it caters to the person of a non-Chinese ethnicity as well. We Indians too have had board games as such in the ancient days of glory. Playing at online casinos in India allows you to enjoy the game over any platform you want.
You can play the game while munching at a fast food joint on your phone or even when you are travelling in the metro to your office. The game does not need to be downloaded to your device and you can play it straight on the web.
Don’t worry about the data pack as it hardly takes any data and it can even run smoothly on 2G as well.
There are many more benefits of playing online but you need to be aware of scammers and fake websites and for that purpose, G2G has done the hard work for you and we present you with a list of the best websites available where you can savor this game in a responsible manner.
Where can I play Mahjong for money?
Talking about websites, in this world of the internet, not everything is as good as it looks. It’s like the old saying which goes as all that glitters isn’t gold. Same is with these websites.
You want to play Mahjong, you want to play it online at your ease and you also probably want to make money out of it This is a win-win combination; you have fun while you play, and you also end up making some cash but how to ensure that its legitimate for cash gambling.
Generally, good authentic websites have a strict login process which you need to complete before being able to play the game. It would involve you to register at the website with:
- Real name & date of birth
- Phone number
- Valid bank credentials
Some websites will also require you to provide authentic govt id as proof to your legally valid age and residence.
These will be cross-checked with you over email and probably a phone call to ensure its really ‘you’ and only then will you be allowed to log in to the portal with your unique id and password and maintain a ‘wallet’ with real money and be able to partake in online Mahjong sites for real money.
But why is all of this required?
Now, you might be lured into logging in to some other internet casino provider in India providing internet Mahjong but what if you win an amount which is not delivered to you and rather goes somewhere you can’t track.
Now, we all aren’t net geeks and we all know how it is in our country. You will never want to be in that soup. Hence, it is required to provide authentic and correct information so that every penny which you spend or earn can be tracked to its source.
For this, you will need to do a lot of research and analyze the websites and do what not but no this is not a nightmare. Luckily though, I have already done this daunting task with and can now present to you a list of authentic online casinos in India where you can enjoy Online Mahjong free of any tension.
You won’t find this list anywhere else on the web. Go ahead and visit Google if you don’t trust me. But as you can see, there are not many casinos which fall into these criteria
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The basics of Mahjong
Mahjong is one of the handful old ancient games which are surviving to this day in all its glory and more. Like I said it’s traditionally Chinese. This game is a delicate balance of skill, strategy and has an element of chance. It does not remind of other table games like Roulette or Sic Bo. It’s unique.
This game is played with a set of 144 tiles. These 144 tiles are divided into divided into 36 “Bamboos”, 36 “characters”, 36 “Circles”, 16 “Wind tiles”, 12 “Dragon tiles” and 8 “Flower tiles”. Each player gets 13 tiles. These tiles are based on Chinese characters and symbols.
If you didn’t know yet, Mahjong requires a high level of concentration and skill.
Each player will draw and discard a tile on their turn. They will need to keep doing this until they can form a legit hand using the 14th tile to be able to form 4 sets and a pair.
The rules of how to draw a tile, how to rob a tile from another player and how to use the numbered and the royal tiles like dragons and winds, how to form the melds etc are generic in nature and have been discussed in detail in this article. However, with slight twists here and there are many variations of this game popular in Asia and southeast Asia.
Is it legal to play Mahjong in India?
There was a public gaming act in 1867. We are heading towards the 21st century now. Needless the say the lawmakers in 1867 did not even know what a mobile phone is, let alone worry about the internet.
But yes, they sure did know about land-based gambling. So, to basically put it in simple terms, the laws are old and outdated, but they do exist. Fortunately, the laws cover only land-based gambling.
Online gambling is not covered under these laws and it’s safe to state that no one has been prosecuted for online gambling. One might argue that in the “Information Technology Act of 2000” the government has some power over the online market, but then again, this was a very generic law and has no mention towards online casinos or gambling as such.
You can read more about gambling rules in India in our article, Is it legal to gamble online in India?
You will need to know about the rules of the game before you venture out to the open sea of online casinos for Mahjong. You will also need to create an account with one of our suggested websites to ensure you can play the game online for better understanding. You might need to add and withdraw money and for that we have you covered in this article.
The main objective of this game is to be able to remove all mahjong tiles from the board before time runs out.
The goal is to get a mahjong which means a hand of 4 sets and a pair or a special hand out of the 14 tiles in your rack. In Mahjong terms it means collecting Chows (3 consecutive tiles of the same suit), Pungs (3 identical tiles of the same suit) and Kongs (4 identical tiles of the same suit). This is essentially the Hong Kong version of Mahjong I am discussing. The Japanese version is a bit more complex and played with 136 tiles. You can only remove those tiles which are free means. By the word free I mean they are not touching any other tile on the left or right.
Points and their respective monetary value are mutually decided before the game commences.
Points are obtained by comparing the winning hand to various winning conditions. Each winning condition has a specific set of criteria. Different criteria have different point values associated with them.
Even though the rules change only subtly across various versions of mahjong, it will be good to read about the rules in detail at separate articles below.
Mahjong is a game of a high level of skill and concentration. To be able to strike it hard in Mahjong you need to have a good eye and good deceptive skills.
Traditionally you would have four players sit according to their tile shuffled amongst them and the person on the east would be the dealer.
Nowadays a simple roll of dice decides the dealer. Before every turn the player needs to allow the other players to choose if required the most recently discarded tile. The person who can utilize a discarded tile to complete a Mahjong wins by displaying a winning hand of 14 tiles.
Interaction with other players: You need to be able to not just read your own hands, but just like in the game of cards understand what the other player has in their hands. Based upon that you need to make the right move whether to go for the big hand or the smaller ones.
Making a Big hand usually ends up in sacrificing speed and aiming for a high score. The best strategy here can only be analyzed by judging the hands of all the four players. You can bluff a player in thinking you have a small hand and letting him for the time taking big hand which can buy you time.
The “Honor Triplet” has fewer options for combinations. It can combine with:
- Mixed One-Suit
- Mixed Lesser Terminals
- or kong the fourth tile for 5 points…
…but in general, it doesn’t combine well with other things. Instead, two identical sequences are the pattern which easily combines with others. It combines with tier 1 patterns for a hand of 15 to 25 points.
In the beginning of the game, after throwing away the guest winds and the terminal numbers, it’s usually a good idea to start with throwing the value honors which others have already discarded.
The key, however, is to understand which strategy to apply to what variation of the game and for that you can go through the articles below to the strategies and variations of Online Mahjong in greater detail.
In this game the players mutually decide the monetary values of the points before the game begins. On the online version the monetary values of the points are pre-decided.
Each variation has different point structure. Let me for this instance explain the Singaporean Mahjong scoring rules.
Let us say for example that the four players decide on the monetary value as 1S$ for 1 point in winning hand. Also, the player who discards a tile which is used by the opponent to utilize in a winning hand has to pay double the agreed payout.
For a 1point winning hand the payout would look like:
|POINTS||Losing players pay||Guilty player pays||Winning player takes|
|5 (max limit)||S$16||S$64||S$64|
And in the event that the player who won also happened to draw the winning tile himself.
|POINTS||All players each pay||Winning player takes|
|5 (max limit)||S$32||S$96|
For a full list of all bets and payouts check in the detailed guides below.
Variations of the game
There are several types of Mahjong which are played worldwide. Essentially the Cantonese version which is also referred to as the Hong Kong version is most common.
The oldest version is the classical Chinese version.
The Japanese use the Japanese Mahjong which has slightly different from the classical version of the game. It is similar to what is used popularly in Japanese video games. Each player starts with a score variable between 20000 and 30000 represented by a series of bars. These basically are representative of the Chinese tiles and are available in four denominations 10000, 5000,1000 and 100.
When a player runs out of bars the game ends and the player leading in score wins.
The Singaporean Mahjong has similar rules to the classical Chinese Mahjong except for the fact that it uses an extra set of tiles. It consists of 148 tiles and has an additional Animal tileset. There are 19 stacks for the dealer (East), the player opposite to the dealer (West) also has 19 tiles. The other has 18 tiles each.
The Dead wall is made up of 15 tiles.
The American version or the version which will be basically of interest for us Indians is the version where these Chinese symbols have been numbered down. In the year 1917 Joseph P. Babock who was working for the Standard Oil learnt the game of Mahjongg and introduced it to the outside world.
Playing Virtual or Live
Online Mahjong is a completely different experience compared to real Mahjong with live physical players in person. It completely depends upon your taste as to how would you like to play the game in the online casinos in India.
Though there aren’t any virtual Mahjong by which I mean that there is a live dealer dealing out tiles to you over the internet in a studio with cameras located at specific angles to stream you the live feed as if you are right there in person.
You can however easily play it online amongst four ‘live’ real players. These players can be your friends or anonymous players but real humans.
When you play live Mahjong online over the internet, you are basically connected to a room where the game elements are controlled by registered and approved software and randomness is also defined and authorized by authorities to determine pure randomness.
There is no fraudulent activity and you can enjoy the game at your leisure and ease. All you will need is a good enough internet connection and an account at one of the online casinos offering Mahjong. Just be sure to check which casinos have the best payouts before you register for an account there. Also, check for good promotional events such as sign up bonuses when you register.
Play Mahjong for real money vs. free
Mahjong might tempt you to hit the www and go to register at a casino but with a game having so many variations and types I think it will be in the best interest to first analyze which variation suits you the most.
Luckily, we at G2G have listed approved internet casinos with online Mahjong which allow users to play for free to get a feel of the game. You don’t have to stake a wager or register an account, but you can play for free to get a feel of the game. Understand the game rules.
Always remember to check if the online casino has good promotional events, nice payouts and accept Indian rupees. The casinos listed by G2G are internet casinos where you can play Mahjong with Indian rupees and they also have customer support to cater to the Indian fan base.
Mahjong, as you must know by now, is a game of skill and it is best advised to sharpen the blade before you go slashing on online casinos for real money in India.