Mahjong Parlors

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patomaru
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Mahjong Parlors

Postby patomaru » Fri Jan 23, 2009 12:28 am

This is more of a request,

First, Kamimura-san please write your next column about manners. Your first was very interesting and I would love to hear more.

Second, I am really interested in trying to go to a parlor, but having never been to one I am a little nervous on what to expect and how to go about it. I would love to see a column on the topic, talking about not just manners, but also protocol and maybe average costs (how much money should I expect to lose) and stuff like.

Thanks again

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby Tom Sloper » Fri Jan 23, 2009 6:12 am

4649おねがいします。

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby oxoboxo » Fri Jan 23, 2009 7:05 am

Hey, I think I can help you if you live in Japan :laugh:
Jansous/雀荘 or Mahjong parlors are usually found in most towns, ranging from the big ones like Shibuya, Shinjuku, Tokyo to the smaller towns like Kichijoji and what-not.

Most parlors are Furii/フリー, which doesn\'t mean free, but a rate is involved, usually something like \'Ten-go,\' which means for every 1000 points, its 50 yen. (The term for a free game is No Rate/ノーレート.)That means, you can lose money ranging from 2000-6000 yen. This is if you play with strangers or with the store clerks; you don\'t have to pay anything other than the cover rate if you bring three other players and just play on your own table. If you still want to gamble but with less money, Ten-ni or Ten-san is pretty popular, usually the worst you can lose is 1000 or 2000 yen respectively.

Parlors usually hire professionals (mainly girls) to play on appointed days, and for a higher fee you can play with them. Also, to this day, I have yet to find a non-smoking parlor so be aware that smoking are mah-jong go together in Japan!

One specific recommendation I can give you is this Jansou called \'Zoo\' which has locations in Ikebukuro, Shinjuku, Tachikawa, and Kichijoji. The cover rate for an hour is only 300 yen and 120 yen if you\'re a student!

The reason why most people would go to parlors instead of playing at home is that most have the automatic shuffling tables that make the walls. Actually, nowadays they even have machines which already give you your hand AND reveal the dora!!! Also, aside from drinks, some parlors even serve noodles, curry, and other foods as well! It\'s definitely a must to just experience it.

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby dwillems » Fri Jan 23, 2009 1:33 pm

Jenn also wrote a great column about this a while back:

http://www.reachmahjong.com/home/index. ... &Itemid=36

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby HotelFSR » Sat Jan 24, 2009 11:09 am

What happens if you are playing with strangers/employees but need a little help with scoring or are slow at it?

I\'m so used to the computer that I\'m slow at figuring out the final score in real life, especially since I have not memorized the payout tables.

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby Benjamin » Sun Jan 25, 2009 2:57 am

Patomaru, where do you live? Depending on your location, people can probably recommend you a good parlor.

If you\'re anywhere near Shibuya, I\'d recommend going to a place called shibuton (shibuton.jp). It\'s a \"no rate\" parlor which means that you don\'t actually bet money. Instead, your game fee differs based on how well you did in that game. So whoever gets 1st place pays 200 yen, 2nd place 300 yen, etc. They\'re very beginner friendly, and all you need to play is knowledge of the basic yakus. They\'ll help you with everything else.

That being said, I hear there\'s a very interesting parlor about to open near Hachiouji...

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby Benjamin » Sun Jan 25, 2009 3:01 am

HotelFSR wrote:What happens if you are playing with strangers/employees but need a little help with scoring or are slow at it?

I\'m so used to the computer that I\'m slow at figuring out the final score in real life, especially since I have not memorized the payout tables.


Most places that are student-friendly will help beginners score hands. Even though they\'re money games, opponents are usually very friendly and will help you score. They\'ll even correct you if you make a mistake.

And, not to criticize, but I really hope that you in particular memorize those scoring tables :) I think you\'ll start to think differently about the yaku/scoring system when you do.

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby HotelFSR » Sun Jan 25, 2009 11:29 am

Ben: what I meant was I haven\'t memorized every single number. I do know the 30 and 40 Fu columns for Normal and Dealer wins off by heart, and I know all the limits off by heart.

I understand how the limits and such impact the scores you aim for... I don\'t see how this affects any of my views on topics like Menzen Tsumo and such!

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby Benjamin » Sun Jan 25, 2009 1:15 pm

oxoboxo wrote:Also, to this day, I have yet to find a non-smoking parlor so be aware that smoking are mah-jong go together in Japan!


There a bunch of these. Google "kin en jan sou" (forbidden-smoking-jansou). There\'s even a chain called ma-chao (all in katakana) that has quite a few locations, including Shinjuku and Kyoto(!?)

Ive also heard of a chain called Fairy, but I haven\'t been there yet.

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby deJENNerate » Mon Jan 26, 2009 2:30 pm

Thanks for the call to action Ben!

Fairy is a non-smoking parlor in Shinjuku run by Yoko Watanabe and our good friend Katayama-sensei (the writer of Miiko) also can be found there from time-to-time. They have .5 rate there and it\'s right below babii, one of the biggest casino-style parlors in Tokyo.

A new branch of Fairy, also non-smoking is planning to open in Hachioji in February! As soon as all the details are confirmed I\'ll be sure to put all the info up here, but I will be running it along with a capable manager from one of the rumi-aki chains. This will be the first true non-smoking chain.
Also, since I\'ll be there 4-5 times a week you can feel comfortable coming in and playing no matter what your Japanese or Mahjong levels are. (^.^)v I\'m always happy to help out.

Ma-chao has a few non-smoking branches (I\'ve only been to Shinjuku) but they have another branch on the chuo-line (I think in Koenji) that is actually a smoking parlor. The Shinjuku one is great though. We used to have meet-ups there with Ryan every week.

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby patomaru » Wed Jan 28, 2009 1:27 pm

Lot of great links and stories guys thanks.

Ben, it is me Patrick, we met two weeks ago in Tokyo at the bloggers\' meet up. As I said then, I live in the middle of nowhere in Fukui-ken, but really want to try going to a parlor. I decided I would try as soon as a get to the orbs in Fight club or out of the kyuus in tenhou. Despite being obvious, not having thought about it until reading the responses to this tread, I guess I really need to memorize the scoring charts too. When I play with my friends here, we always ignore the fu which makes scoring much easier. I guess I will have to re-remember the real way. Stupid friends and electronic scoring.

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby Benjamin » Wed Jan 28, 2009 3:57 pm

Hey Patrick,

Glad you found the website!

Memorizing the chart\'s a good thing, and you should do that sometime, but you don\'t need to know it *all* to be a good player. A good first step is to memorize this much smaller table:

has pinfu/is open-- 1000 2000 3900 8000 (1500 2900 5800 12000)
is closed & no pinfu -- 1300 2600 5200 8000 (2000 3900 7700 1200)
7 pairs -- xx 1600 3200 6400 (xx 2400 4800 9600)


90% of the time this is accurate.

(The first number is for 1 yaku (han) the second for 2, etc. The numbers in parenthesis are for dealer.)

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Re:Mahjong Parlors

Postby oxoboxo » Wed Jan 28, 2009 10:27 pm

Thanks Jenn and Ben for the info! Some of my friends have been wanting to go back to a parlor, but can\'t stand the smell of smoke.


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