It’s been a while since the last news post (and post) so let’s jump straight in:
Message from Benjamin Boas
Benjamin wrote the following message to the Osamuko facebook group and asked if we could crosspost:
Recent efforts to spread riichi all over the world have been wonderful to see, particularly Daina Chiba’s book, the first publication for players who have advanced beyond an introductory level.
I’m posting this image to remind people that ever since the early days of international competition, major figures in the Japanese world have been supportive of efforts to spread the good word about riichi. The best example of this is Kyoichiro Noguchi, founder Takeshobo (publisher of Kindai Mahjong), who probably did more than any single person to promote serious competitive Mahjong at an international level. There are many others who donated significant time and resources in the “early” days, including Ichiro Tanioka, Hirokazu Baba, Ryan Morris, and Alban’s Chiyuki Funakoshi.
I encourage leaders of future projects similar to Daina’s to reach out to people like the above, if only to let them know of the community’s progress. They will appreciate the information and if they are in a position to help they probably will.
Daina Chiba’s Riichi Mahjong book
Daina Chiba has wrote an excellent free mahjong strategy book. I highly recommend everyone to read it! http://riichi.dynaman.net/
Tournament in Rochester, New York and other American activities
There will be a mahjong tournament in Rochester in March. Deadline for registering is the 28th of February and it’s just $35 to register, which is really cheap for a mahjong tournament! Visit http://mahjong-ny.com/2016-rochester-riichi-open/ for more information.
The USPML will be running a booth for the 3rd year in a row at PAX east. Badges are sold out but if you already have one, make sure to check it out!
Yenpress had licensed Saki as a digital only release in July 2015. The first volume was released late Decemember. While the translation is shaky regarding mahjong terms, it’s a good idea to support it as this could lead to more mahjong manga being licensed! Volume one can be purchased on the various platforms listed at http://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/none/Saki-Vol-1/9780316354943/?yen for $2.99/£2.49
Muteki no Hito
Joining the small number of mahjong manga outside of Kindai Mahjong is Muteki no Hito by the author of Liar Game and One Outs, Shinobu Kaitani. The series is being serialized in Weekly Shonen Magazine which also serialized Legendary Gambler Tetsuya from 1997 to 2004.
On the popular online mahjong game “Jansen” there are 9 people who have achieved the highest rank, “Janseni”. The record for achieving this rank is 2403 games, until the mysterious player （≧Ｍ≦） (Pronounced “M”) achieves it in just 320 games, without a single 3rd or 4th. Jansen’s creator, V Line, suspicious of M’s feat, issue a 3 million JPY reward for information on M’s cheating method”
Jansen and V Line are obviously based on Tenhou and C Egg. Most of the Janseni have just 1 less game than their Tenhoui counterpart with just one exception, the 2nd Tenhoui （≧▽≦） (known as “Mark2”). This is the 2nd manga currently serializing that features Tenhou, the other being Tetsunaki No Kirinji
EMA Riichi 2016
The European Mahjong Association has released an update to their Japanese mahjong rules.
The main changes since the 2012 edition are listed here:
Red fives have been removed
Tanyao (All Simples) can be an open hand
Renho (Blessing of Man) is a mangan, not a yakuman
Dai suushii (Big Four Winds) is a yakuman, not a double yakuman
A hand with 13+ fan is scored as a sanbaiman, not a yakuman
The 3 second timing rule is removed
Swap-calling is not allowed
Temporary furiten ends when the player draws or claims a tile
Five counters implies two yaku: the rule is removed
Abortive draws are not allowed
Nagashi Mangan is not allowed
Uma is changed to 15,000/5,000/-5,000/-15,000
Chombo penalty in a tournament is 20,000 points deduction after uma
Penalty rules are slightly more lenient in some cases
Differences to World Championship Rules 2015
Multiple winners are allowed
4-30 is not rounded to mangan payment
Timing rules differ; EMA: pung takes predence over chow
Riichi bets at game end go to the winner
It seems like these rules have caused some controversy, specificity the removal of nagashi mangan, abortive draws and red fives. I’m partiality to blame for the removal of abortive draws (in the WRC rules at least). My reasoning is that in timed games on non-automatic tables, when an abortive draw happens too much time is wasted in tournaments that already have difficulty finishing games in the allocated time.
Nihon Pro Mahjong Kyoukai’s Tenhou League
Nihon Pro Mahjong Kyoukai have started a weekly online league on Tenhou for their pros.
Name Tenhou ID
Koichi Kihara 【罪歌】
Suzuki Tarou (P)鈴木たろう
Toru Yajima (P)矢島亨
Tetsuya Tachibana (P)橘哲也
Tehyon Kim wakajisi
Hiroyuki Ogawa (P)小川裕之
Kazuo Kondou どんよく
Futame Daisuke じみいっＺ
Masahiro Okamoto 麻雀商人くん♪
Shunsuke Kikuchi ちくき
Fumio Ezaki Karauma
Aoi Bungo (P)豊後葵
Mika Mizuguchi 水口美香
Nami Tajima たじまなみ
Akina Mizuhara みかん太
The league is streamed on Nihon Pro Mahjong Kyoukai’s official Niconico channel http://ch.nicovideo.jp/channel/ch2579466 every Tuesday at 11AM JST, and uses Tenhou’s base rules with red fives. More info and rankings can be found on Nihon Pro Mahjong Kyoukai’s site: http://npm2001.com/channel/
With the popularity of esports rising, the Zen Nihon Mahjong Kyoukai (All Japan Mahjong Asscioation/AJMJA) ran an experimental stream at the e-sports SQUARE in Akihabara, the event is viewable on Youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QNp2t5LZ1AI