Winter 2015 Online Mahjong Initiatives

Quick reminders of what is going on, since the completion of the Bugmoney tournament.

  • Light Mahjong Club: Info via reddit and IRC, Saturday January 24, 18:00 UTC and ongoing.
  • 2015 WAML Season 1: Info via website, wiki and IRC. Registration now open on the website, closing March 15, 23:59 UTC. Opponents will be assigned: times can be anything agreeable and played anytime until the deadlines.

Now since I will be running the WAML league activities, I would like to mention that this is totally unlike the 2012-2013 freeplay league that was running. This will resemble more the kind of performance and competitiveness that JPML and NPM Kyoukai leagues have, where everyone has an equal amount of games to play, promotions into higher leagues or demotions will occur and the awarding of dan rankings will occur through the accumulation of power points over the seasons.

If you are still relatively new to mahjong, we recommend that you both practice in lighter events like LMC and play Tenhou to acquire a ranked account. WAML has a soft cap of 1-dan for players seeking to join: players below this cap are subject to passing a pro-test. We are aiming to recruit players from around the world.

One warning is to be made: matches are your responsibility to set up. Refusal to use IRC or inability to play except during a single three hour block once every two weeks will result in potential action taken by the management. Players should be able to be present in the channel at the deadline should the group matches not be played by then in order to solve the problem.

We will keep recruiting up to March 15, but if we start getting 17+ players, we will form some groups for immediate playing into WAML Season 1. Stay tuned!

Edewecht 2014 tournament report, possible EMA rule changes

I (Simon) am very happy to have won the EMA 4-hanchan tournament at Edewecht, 2014-10-25.

Edewecht is considered the German mahjong capital. Many proliferous tournament players from Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark were competing. has the final rankings and a photo.

The lunch buffet was amazing, as was the cake! And we’ve had many friendly discussions.

Playing a tournament calls for a different strategy than online play. Tournaments have few hanchans, with prizes only for the top few. So, you wish to push ahead strongly. It is still often correct to defend and fold, but I’ve pushed some hands I’d have folded online.

Online play is evaluated over many hanchans, and average table placing/average scores matter. The strategical difference is even larger on, where dan-ranked players have to avoid fourth place at all costs.

The best example is from my final tournament hanchan, the 4th hanchan. Between the 3rd and 4th hanchan, I’m ranked 2/27 on the wall list, about 7,000 points behind Stefanie. Several more trail similarly closely. To maintain a chance at top-3, I pretty much have to win the last hanchan.

It’s South round, 3rd game, I’m oya. Table scores were approximately:
North: -17,000
Simon: -2,000
South: 6,000
West: 13,000

The South player has ponned 4 times:

3z3z3z 2z2z2z 5z5z5z 6z6z6z 0z

Tsuuiisou was unlikely from the player’s discards, so it’s a baiman. Nan is a double wind for this player.

I ignore it and push this iishanten:

8p8p8p 6p6p 4p4p 4s0s5s6s7s8s (6p is dora)

…to the following tenpai, then declare a riichi:

8p8p8p 6p6p 4p4p 0s5s5s6s7s8s (6p is dora)

With all four winning tiles still in the game, I tsumo a couple turns later for a sanankou oya baiman.

Dealing into the open hand would have meant I lose oya, finish the table as last player, and fall below rank 10/27. :-) In online play, especially while still in iishanten, I would have folded the hand.

Preparing a rules revision

I’m a committee member for revision of the EMA Riichi Competition Rules (RCR). Besides fixing errors and holes in the rules, we have competing design guidelines:

  • Should we do what the players want as a majority?
  • Should we do what is common in Japanese rulesets?
  • Should we do what is simplest from a game-rule-designing viewpoint?
  • Should we do what we, a small group of 7 Europeans, reason is best?

Between the hanchans in Edewecht, I was distributing a little survey, to find out what the playerbase wants. The survey was asking about these possible major changes:

Open tanyao (introduce, it’s a standard rule): players seem 50-50 split; open tanyao is likely to come
Red fives (remove, most tourney rulesets lack them): players seem to like red fives
Kuikae nashi (forbid swap-calling chii/pon): players like it forbidden
Ryanhan shibari (remove 2-han minimum, it’s uncommon in Japan): players like having it

I was only asking for personal preference here. I’ve removed any hint on the survey about what is Japanese tournament standard. The survey had several more questions for the less-proliferous rules like renhou, nagashi mangan, kiriage mangan, 3-second rule etc. My little website lists most discussion items, but the committee hasn’t decided on anything yet.

The Dutch players were conducting this survey a little earlier this month. Many of them would like open tanyao, but would like to keep the red fives. One reason might be that their club is called Red Fives Riichi. :-)

The committee is still gathering info (yes, it’s a year after it was founded) and will begin discussion in November. Sadly, not all committee members would like publicly visible discussion. I will relay interesting developments on IRC.

Best regards

Tenhou Event List for August


[Event Name] Theories from the Demon of Tenhou
[Description] Shibukawa Namba-pro (kyoukai) streams for Tenhou players
[Date] 16/08/2014 20:00 – 22:00
Demonic gameplay & game analysis
[Sponsor] Tenhou


[Event Name] Benikujaku Cup ~Let’s become at least a bit better than yesterday~
[Date] 23/08/2014 18:00 – 26:00
[Prizes] 1st: Event Ticket + Photo with 3 people at the event + Signed Coloured Paper Thing + 90 days of tenhou premium
2nd: Event Ticket + Benikujaku Original Goods + Signed Coloured Paper Thing + 90 days of tenhou premium
3rd: Event Ticket + Signed Coloured Paper Thing + 90 days of tenhou premium
4th-10th: Event Ticket + Benikujaku Original Goods + 60 days of tenhou premium
Event info (Japanese):
[Rules] 4 Player Hanchan, kui ari, aka nashi. Final score is your best run of 5 hanchans.
25,000 Start, 30,000 Return, Uma: 10-30
[Participation requirements] At least 3 days of premium needed to enter
[Tournament URL]
[Sponsor] Benikujaku

Guest List:

Osaki Hatsune
Oukawa Non
Mizuhara Akina – 3zu
Natsumi Hisako – こばまるくん
Sugimura Emi – 杉村えみ
Mizuki Eri – 水城恵利@雀姫
Higa Hidehito – 比嘉秀仁
Iichi Yuuta – 昆虫さん
Okubo Takahiro – おおがきらあ
Kihara Kouichi – 【罪歌】
Nagano Shouichi – 藍原☆延珠
Kurobuchi – 黒渕メガネ
Tsunakawa – なんなんだー
Tamon – 僕の鳥あげる

Hanamura Miyoko
Kurita Yasuhiro – おじお
Takatsuka Shigeki – 高塚茂樹
Kawakami Takashi – 東野川くん

Shimode Kazuhiro – μしもで
Muku Daijyuu – 椋大樹

Sakurako – さくらこ
Mechazetton – メカゼットン

Student Mahjong League:
Nonomiya Riichi – ハマー


[Event Name] Tenhou Meijinsen

[Date] 4th Tenhou Meijinsen Session 3 – 29/08/2014 20:00

[Hosts] Kobayashi Misa, Kouno Takashi (RMU), Nakagawa Shou (RMU)

[Participants] Kobayashi Gou (Mu)
Ishibashi Nobuhiro (Saikoui)
Ooi Takaharu (RMU)
Shibukawa Namba (Kyoukai)
Fukuchi Makoto (Jangoro kyoukai)
ASAPIN (First Tenhoui)
すずめクレイジー (Fourth Tenhoui)
太くないお (Houou table representive + Fifth Tenhoui)

[Rules] 4 player tonnansen, kuitan ari, 3 aka dora, sudden death nashi
30,000 start and 30,000 return, buttobi ari
Uma: 1st +50, 2nd +20, 3rd ±0, 4th -70


[Sponsors] Marchao
Mahjong mu

WRC Videos / 第1回リーチ麻雀世界選手権準の動画

The JPML Youtube channel has published a few videos from the WRC in Paris.  These are recordings from what was streamed on nicovideo (in better quality).

By the way, our Mahjong Wiki has some general info and statistics on the WRC and the results here.

Continue reading WRC Videos / 第1回リーチ麻雀世界選手権準の動画 Observer Report (WRC2014)

There has been a bit of a tradition in Europe to have someone write a report on what they observed in Mahjong tournaments in order to give an indication of what worked, what didn’t, and what needs to be improved in future tournaments. Here’s our version, unexpurgated, for your viewing pleasure. Continue reading Observer Report (WRC2014)

WRC results excluding finals


The first hanchan of the final has been uploaded here:

As far as the finals go, Hiroshi Yamai from Renmei won it in the end. Noriyuki Kiriyama from Kyoukai got 4th at the final table, behind Nishijima and Nishikawa from Renmei.