Riichi quick reference guide

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Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Kreeblah » Tue Aug 17, 2010 4:26 am

A while back, I wrote a quick reference guide for riichi mahjong both to help learn the rules myself and because I wasn't really happy with any of the English-language ones out there (the other ones I found focus on learning the rules initially instead of being a quick reference guide, omit things, and/or include house rules and aren't always clear that they're non-standard). Thing is, I haven't really run this by too many people (just one person, actually), so I was hoping that somebody here might be able to offer me some feedback on it regarding rules or clarity, as some friends of mine are interested in trying riichi after having played Chinese classical for a bit. The formatting isn't great, but I wanted to keep it in plaintext, as that's really the lowest common denominator for, well, anything.

As far as what needs improvement content-wise, I could probably stand to make things a little clearer in parts, but I've been referencing it for so long myself that I'm not sure where those parts might be (I'm hoping I haven't gotten anything seriously wrong). The area I'm least confident in, though, is the yaku, since finding any sort of agreement on the Internet about what some of them should be worth or what sort of transliteration to use for their Japanese names is difficult, so that's probably where it could use the most improvement. Anyway, if anybody would be willing to check it out and offer some suggestions regarding how to improve it, that would be really awesome. I figure that if anybody would be able to tell me I'm doing something wrong, it would be people here. :)

My quick-reference guide can be found at http://www.automatonstudios.com/misc/Ri ... gRules.txt

Thanks!

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Hat_hair » Tue Aug 17, 2010 8:49 am

It's not a mahjong issue, but when talking about dice, I would say "Two six-sided dice" rather than "2d6". Not everyone understands that kind of notation, and there's little point explaining it when you're only using it once.

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Kreeblah » Tue Aug 17, 2010 9:31 am

That's actually a good point. I changed it to just "2 six-sided dice". Thanks!

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Shirluban » Tue Aug 17, 2010 7:04 pm

Setup
Determine Seating / Determine Starting Dealer
That's one way among many others, and I don't think this one is standard (remember you complained that other guides "aren't always clear that they're non-standard" :lol: ).
It's a bit confusing to talk about a white dragon tile since it's not used. Readers will think they missed a part.
Set Up Walls / Break the Walls / Assemble Initial Hands
It's not compulsory, but one or two picture will help.
East player seems to forget to take his/her 14th tile.
Distribute Chips
"The bonus plus the total number of points all players start with combine to yield the total number of points in the game (see scoring)"
I didn't see to what the "see scoring" refers.
Anyway, I'll just say "The bonus plus the total number of points all players start with equals 120,000." It's simpler and standard.

Play
You should really NOT use the term "set" to talk about three identical tiles. In common English literature, it's called "pon". If you prefer to use a more correct word, use "koutsu".
"Set" is wildly used as a generic word to designate either a chii (shuntsu), a pon (koutsu), or a kan (kantsu).
Temporary Furiten
"-Unlike regular Furiten, players in temporary Furiten may win by taking any player's tile which is not the one the player is in temporary Furiten for"
:shock: Donno were you see that :shock:
Riichi
"-A player may declare Riichi when in Tenpai with a closed hand (no tiles have been stolen to form the hand) AND when the hand is containing at least one Yaku"
No, a player can declare riichi with no other yaku than riichi.
Drawing a Hand
"-After the penalty payment, if the dealer successfully claimed Tenpai or if no players successfully claimed Tenpai, a bonus round is performed as though the dealer won"
No, if no one is tenpai, the deal moves.
Conditions for a Null Hand / Conditions for a Null Hand leading to a bonus round
You should merge theses two chapters.
Bonus Round (Renchan)
"-During the fifth bonus round and beyond, a winning hand must contain at least two Han, although it may have only one Yaku"
Add: "dora are not counted for the two han requirement".
Chi
"The pair used in the run". You mean: "The two other tiles of the run".
"The left-most tile of the run is oriented horizontally and the other two vertically"
I would have said: "The stolen tile is put on the left-most side of the run and is oriented horizontally, while the other two vertically"
Pon
"-If multiple people attempt to Pon the same tile, the first player counter-clockwise from the discarding player succeeds"
"-This form of stealing can be overridden by another player calling Kan, or Ron on the same tile"
:evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil:
Please, please ... if more than one player claims the same tile for pon/kan, it means there is at least 5 identical tiles. It's impossible!

Kan
"Alternately, if the tile drawn at the beginning of a player's turn is the fourth identical tile..."
In fact, even if you draw an other tile, you can declare a kan.
But you can not declare a concealed/promoted kan on a turn if you didn't draw (i.e. when you claim a chi or pon).

"-If multiple people attempt to Kan the same tile, the first player counter-clockwise from the discarding player succeeds"
That's even worse:
1) player A discard a 1-bam ,
2) player B have 1-bam 1-bam 1-bam in his hand and so claims kan,
3) player C have 1-bam 1-bam 1-bam in his hand too, and claims kan,
4) player D ask who is lying or if someone is cheating.

"Move the next tile in the live wall to the right side of the dead wall"
You mean: "Move the last tile..."
"Note: The Kan serves as a set for the purposes of determining a legal hand unless the hand explicitly requires it to be a set"
True, but no hands requires to have koutsu and not kantsu.

Rounds
"If modern rules are used and the end of the South round is reached with no player having a score equal to at least 25% of the players' total initial hand values plus winner bonus, a West round is played"
What?! Why did you not just say "a score equal to at least 30,000 points"?
Ending the Game
"Optional rule: If arranged before the game, after bonus payments are made the fourth player pays the winner a pre-agreed upon bonus and the third player pays a smaller pre-agreed bonus to the second player, often 9,000 and 3,000 points"
AFAIK, only the EMA use a so small uma.
I'm not sure you can set-up a japanese mahjong software to use this values (AI Majong can't).
Chombo
"Too many tiles in a player's hand"
For me (and EMA), the penalty is a dead hand, not a chonbo.

-------------------------------------
I didn't read the Scoring section and below yet, so my comments stops here for now.
Last edited by Shirluban on Tue Aug 17, 2010 11:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Total starting points are 4x30000, not 30000.
Cats don't do タンヤオ (tan-yao) but タニャーオ (ta-nya-o).
World Riichi Championship Rules
Comparison of riichi rules around the world

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Kreeblah » Wed Aug 18, 2010 4:43 am

That's really good stuff (and I have no idea how some of those things made it in there; I can only assume some of them were editing errors). I'll have to fix them tomorrow, though, since it's a little late tonight for me. Thanks for letting me know about what you've found. :D

Do you happen to know the standard way of determining the starting dealer, though (if there is one)? That method was what seemed to be it from what I was able to find, so I'm not really sure what it should be.

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Senechal » Wed Aug 18, 2010 11:59 am

I think Sylvain's post did most of the critical reading needed to demonstrate that this needs both more work, a rewrite, and research.

However, a set is fine in English to describe a group of three identical tiles that are not yet melded (your other options are triplet, "three-of-a-kind", there aren't many other options than that). There is no perfect glossary to mahjong yet because no one in English is translating stuff consistently.

But there are more problems just by reading what was quoted, so I'll make sure you do your homework before commenting further.

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Kreeblah » Thu Aug 19, 2010 4:10 am

Well, the rewrite I definitely agree with. This is far too wordy and I know I could cut a good chunk of that out. Before I do that, though, I was hoping to make sure that there weren't any glaring errors and, uh, yeah . . .

I made most of Shirluban's changes, though I'm going to have to see what I can find about other methods for determining seating/initial dealer and I'm going to give it another read through over the next couple of days. I think I'm going to stick with "set" for now and I added a clarification that I'm using "group" to mean any sequence of three tiles, triplet, or kan. The alternatives just seem like they would get to be unwieldy after a while.

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Barticle » Thu Aug 19, 2010 1:08 pm

Hi Kreeblah, welcome to the site. :)

I've seen your guide before - you were discussing it on a forum, a thread about the Koizumi manga I think?
Kreeblah wrote:The area I'm least confident in, though, is the yaku, since finding any sort of agreement on the Internet about what some of them should be worth or what sort of transliteration to use for their Japanese names is difficult, so that's probably where it could use the most improvement.
I'm afraid I don't have time to go through the whole file but here are the yaku/man names for you including a few variants... I did spot a couple in your doc that needed fixing.

(apologies for quick/crude copy 'n' paste from one of my own guides, I've deleted the descriptions and examples to save space)

Yaku

立直 / リーチ [riichi]

断么九 [tanyaochū]
タンヤオ [tanyao]

役牌 [yakuhai]
飜牌 / 翻牌 [fanpai]
風牌 [kazehai]

平和 / ピンフ [pinfu]

門前清自摸和 [menzenchin tsumo hō]
門前ツモ / メンゼンツモ [menzen tsumo]

一発 [ippatsu]
リーチ一発 / 立直一発 [riichi ippatsu]

混一色 / ホンイツ [honitsu / honiisō]

一盃口 / イーペーコー [iipēkō]

対々和 [toi-toi hō]

三色同順 [san shoku dōjun]
三色 / サンショク [san shoku]

七対子 / チートイツ [chii-toitsu]
にこにこ / ニコニコ [niko-niko]

一気通貫 [ikkitsūkan]
いっつう / イッツー [ittsū]

混全帯么九 [honchantaiyaochū]
チャンタ [chanta]

清一色 / チンイツ [chinitsu / chiniisō]

三暗刻 [san ankō]

河底撈魚 [hōtei raoyui]
ホーテイ [hōtei]
ハイテイロン [haitei ron]

純全帯么九 [junchantayaochū]
ジュンチャン / 純チャン [junchan]

海底撈月 [haitei raoyue]
ハイテイ [haitei]
ハイテイツモ [haitei tsumo]

嶺上開花 / リンシャンカイホー [rinshan kaihō]

ダブルリーチ / ダブル立直 [daburu riichi]
ダブリー [daburii]

小三元 [shō san gen]

混老頭 [honrōtō]

三色同刻 [san shoku dōkō]

搶槓 / チャンカン [chankan]

二盃口 / リャンペーコー [ryanpēkō]
ダブルイーペーコー [daburu iipēkō]

三槓子 / 三カンツ [san kantsu]

Yakuman

国士無双 / コクシムソー [kokushimusō]
国士 [kokushi]
十三么九 [shiisanyaochū]

大三元 [dai san gen]

四暗刻 [sū ankō]

字一色 [tsūiisō]

小四喜 [shō sū shii]

緑一色 [ryūiisō]
オールグリーン [ōru guriin]

清老頭 [chinrōtō]

地和 [chiihō]

大四喜 [dai sū shii]

九蓮宝燈 [chūrenpōtō]

天和 [tenhō]

四槓子 / 四カンツ [sū kantsu]

If you want to stick with pure ASCII plain-text replace ū with "uu", ō with "ou" and ē with "ei".

PS If you're wondering about the odd sequence, they're in order of frequency - Riichi most common, Sū Kantsu very very very rare.

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Barticle » Thu Aug 19, 2010 1:23 pm

Shirluban wrote:AFAIK, only the EMA use a so small uma.
I'm not sure you can set-up a japanese mahjong software to use this values (AI Majong can't).
Most video-games use combinations of 0, 5k, 10k, 20k and 30k.

Mahjong Fight Club is more flexible - you can specify the amounts in multiples of 1000. 1st from 0 to +30k, 2nd -10k to +30k and 3rd -30k to +10k, then 4th is set automatically to balance the other three. So you could apply the EMA's 3-9 uma in a free game, but under the "fight club" rule-set it's fixed at a lightweight 0-5.

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Kreeblah » Wed Aug 25, 2010 6:08 am

Barticle wrote:Hi Kreeblah, welcome to the site. :)

I've seen your guide before - you were discussing it on a forum, a thread about the Koizumi manga I think?

Yaku Info
Yeah, that's almost certainly where you saw it. I haven't shown it to many people because I do want to make sure it's accurate and make it easier to read before actually giving it to people to reference. I'm more than a little embarrassed about the errors that were pointed out above, but I haven't had the chance to do a full read-through again, unfortunately (I'm getting ready to move on Saturday). I did, however, take your suggestions on the yaku naming and ordering, so thank you for those. Ordering by frequency seems as reasonable a way to go to me as any. :)

I did do some checking, though, and I found another method of determining the initial seating and dealer, so I'm hoping somebody can tell me whether this one is a bit more common:

A Method to Determine Seating and Starting Dealer
-Shuffle one tile of each of the four winds face-down and line them up next to each other
-Place an even numbered tile on one end of the row of winds and an odd tile on the other
-Any player rolls the dice and counts off counterclockwise around the table, starting with himself or herself as one
-The player who the count lands on rolls both dice, notes whether the total is even or odd, and then counts counterclockwise around the table again
-The player who this count lands on draws the tile closest to the even or odd tile buffering the winds depending on whether the total was even or odd
-The next player counterclockwise draws the wind next to the one that was just drawn and this continues until all four winds are drawn
-The wind drawn is a player's initial seat wind
-East stays seated and the other players move to take their assigned seats

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by burke » Wed Aug 25, 2010 6:33 am

Kreeblah wrote:I did do some checking, though, and I found another method of determining the initial seating and dealer, so I'm hoping somebody can tell me whether this one is a bit more common:

A Method to Determine Seating and Starting Dealer
-Shuffle one tile of each of the four winds face-down and line them up next to each other
-Place an even numbered tile on one end of the row of winds and an odd tile on the other
The even and odd tile should be shuffled in as well, before being placed to either side. Shirluban gave detailed instructions in this thread.

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Barticle » Wed Aug 25, 2010 10:34 pm

Kreeblah wrote:I did, however, take your suggestions on the yaku naming and ordering, so thank you for those. Ordering by frequency seems as reasonable a way to go to me as any. :)
Well, it's most common to list them by Han value, although this Wikipedia article uses a categorized list which has its merits.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_Mahjong_yaku

If you list them by frequency though beginners can focus on learning the most common/useful ones first.

Incidentally the yaku and yakuman are two separate lists. If they were a single merged list then they'd overlap a little - specifically the San Kantsu yaku would come midway down the yakuman section.

(Hope the move goes okay BTW!)
burke wrote:
Kreeblah wrote:-Shuffle one tile of each of the four winds face-down and line them up next to each other
-Place an even numbered tile on one end of the row of winds and an odd tile on the other
The even and odd tile should be shuffled in as well, before being placed to either side. Shirluban gave detailed instructions in this thread.
I've seen both variants illustrated in books.

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by b4k4ni04 » Thu Aug 26, 2010 6:18 pm

Frequency! Brilliant! *moves to add that to his Yaku List*

Hmmn, I'll probably have five categories : Always, Situational; Uncommon, Rare, Never.
Hunh, 2 groups, always vs sitational and Common, Uncommon, Rare, Never. *Can we tell I'm still in brainstorming mode?* ^^;.
〜〜〜星空が最高の舞台/カラスたちカーカーと鳴くよ/いつも思うよ いつ寝てるんだろ〜〜〜 I'm sorry teh b4k4 is lost to GlDeMo please try again later *bzzt* 〜b4k4

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by burke » Thu Aug 26, 2010 6:42 pm

Barticle wrote:
burke wrote:
Kreeblah wrote:-Shuffle one tile of each of the four winds face-down and line them up next to each other
-Place an even numbered tile on one end of the row of winds and an odd tile on the other
The even and odd tile should be shuffled in as well, before being placed to either side. Shirluban gave detailed instructions in this thread.
I've seen both variants illustrated in books.
As have I now, when I looked more closely through my books.

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Re: Riichi quick reference guide

Post by Torgo » Fri Aug 27, 2010 1:02 pm

b4k4ni04 wrote:Frequency! Brilliant! *moves to add that to his Yaku List*
This table I made might help you with that: http://mahjong.wikidot.com/analysis:combinatorics

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