The fun and interesting game Mahjong has a rich history. Although the story about the game’s origins is unclear, some people relate it to the Qing Dynasty. In contrast, some believe Confucius invented it.

Experienced Mahjong players tend to have a sharp mind. But calling oneself a master of this game is not justified until they have seen all the facts.

Below are three incredible facts about the Mahjong game:

Mahjong Interesting Facts

Mahjong Tile Game is World’s Favorite Pastime

If you know the Mahjong game, you probably have grown up playing it and understood its basics by watching your parents play it. Or maybe you recognize the blue, red, and green tiles after seeing popular movies such as Crazy Rich Asians or The Joy Luck Club.

But did you know that this game has been the world’s favorite pastime for centuries? Regularly playing the Mahjong tiles game improves focus and offers other health benefits. For this reason, many purchase a Mahjong game set so they can play every chance they get.

How to Play Mahjong Depends on Where You Play

Mahjong was popular throughout Asia and, in more recent times, has become a worldwide phenomenon. But different regions have their own rules and scoring system for the game.

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Many people widely play Hong Kong and Cantonese-style Mahjong games. But there are also Japanese, Taiwanese, and American versions. You can also check the Mahjong Competition Rules or Official International Rules to know the standard for tournaments.

Playing Mahjong Can Improve Cognitive Function

A study has revealed that playing the Mahjong dimension game for 12 weeks can improve brain function, including memory and planning. In addition, it increases the ability to do daily activities much more effectively.

What are the Origins of Mahjong?

The Mahjong history goes back to the 1800s, when it became popular in China. In no time, the game captured people’s eyes worldwide. The Mahjong matching game was started by exporters who brought it to America. Only the rich and elite played this game initially, but it was talked about everywhere in America.

In fact, Americans believe this game connected them with the modern era as it originates from Asia. In some regions, the game is also treated as a performative activity, where white women play this game after getting dressed in costume.

As the game was widely accepted throughout the globe, its popularity decreased in China. It happened because the officials there believed that if lower-class people regularly played this game, they would get smarter.

This game was banned around the 1940s because it appeared like gambling. But later, in 1985, the prohibition was lifted, which made it garner excess popularity.

What is the Mahjong Game?

Here’s a quick look at what is the game mahjong:

To start the game, the players must pick a dealer. For this, players will shuffle and deal with the four winds face-down and clockwise.

Compared to the earlier versions, the modern version is much simpler. Players can easily pick a dealer by rolling a dice.

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The game proceeds with players using 34 face-down tiles to create a wall. The wall must be two tiles high and 17 tiles long. The selected dealer rolls a dice and separates many tiles from the right side of the wall.

The dealing starts from the left of the tiles. That means each player gets 13 tiles, but the dealer gets 14 tiles. The players must arrange their tiles properly so no one sees them. After the dealer has discarded one of their tiles, the game starts from the left.


While playing the Mahjong board game, the players can freely choose whether or not they want to claim the recently discarded tiles.

Priority is given to the players who use the discarded tile to complete Mahjong. The player claiming the discarded tile must reveal a winning hand of 14 tiles.

Failing so makes the other player claim that discarded tile to complete a pung. It’s a rule that the player must say pung before revealing the matching tiles.

For instance, the recently discarded tile was two bamboo. If the player claims the discarded tile and already has two more 5s of bamboo, they can call it a pung. Then the player must turn the completed pung in the face-up direction. Players must discard a different tile when passing the game to the right.

But if no one claims the recently discarded tile, you can claim it only when it completes a chow for you (chow is three consecutive numbers in a row). After saying chow, turn the tiles face-up to claim a chow.

If the discarded tile is not helpful, you are free to take a tile from the wall. You are not allowed to take any other tiles from the table.


Mahjong is one of the most engaging board games out there, and if you want to try it out, you do not need to buy a board. To play Mahjong for free online, visit Mahjong online.