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Mahjong

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Saki anime 3

TV Tokyo Saki anime image

Mahjong is a table game that uses tiles to form hands consisting of melds, like the card game gin rummy. (Gin rummy can trace its origins back to the mahjong that was played in China.) It's a four player game that combines the elements of calculation and strategy that is found in chess with the elements of risk assessment, observation skills, and especially luck that is found in poker.

Saki style mahjong

Main article: Mahjong in Saki
RealMahjong 1

Kouko Suehara struggling with the fictional universe

The mahjong played in the Sakiverse is the main variation of rīchi mahjong, a variation of mahjong that was developed in Japan. Thus, the mahjong played in Saki follows a real set of standard rules. However, the way the characters play is often different from the way it's played in real life because many of the girls possess supernatural powers, and because mahjong is a major sport in the Sakiverse. The main goal of the characters is to win the mahjong national championships.

Understanding the mahjong

Achiga-hen anime 2

TV Tokyo Achiga-hen background image

The Saki (anime) and the Achiga-hen side-A (anime) can be enjoyed without knowing much about mahjong. Paying close attention to the mahjong adds another layer of enjoyment. Knowing mahjong is more necessary when reading the Saki (manga) and the Achiga (manga). See the Mahjong in Saki page for an introduction to playing Saki style rīchi mahjong, an explanation of some of the early games played in Saki and Achiga-hen, and a link to an automated single player game.

Crunchyroll's Saki anime translator used mahjong terminology found in the European Mahjong Association's rīchi mahjong rules, which have since been revised.

Riichi mahjong rules

In rīchi mahjong, in addition to the melds, players need to meet another condition, which in is called a yaku. Yakus add richness and depth to the game but at the same time require some additional starting knowledge. When mahjong is not played with a computer, scoring by hand also requires additional starting knowledge.

Online mahjong

Rīchi mahjong is often played electronically. When playing any computerized version of mahjong, a player does not need to worry about game setup, moving tiles, scoring, and a lack of players.

Mahjong in other anime/manga

Main article: Mahjong in other media

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