Playing MahJongg Online – tips & kvetchs

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Ok, I’m not even Jewish, and I want to kvetch!  Playing on line can be frustrating. I just logged off playing several games.  But it can also be fun and fruitful.  So, I want to share some insights and let you know that a set of videos is on it’s way about the online game.  So if you have some things you want us to cover, by all means tell us!

First and foremost, let me say, to those of you who are not yet MahJongg players, this is not an online matching game.  I am talking about true MahJongg play online.  I am aware of and have played at two sites, one more than the other.  I play regularly at the National MahJongg League’s membership site.  And there is also MahJongg Time.  I can’t say statistically which is more popular, but I prefer the NMJL’s site and will be focused mainly on that.  If you are an “expert” on MahJongg Time email me and let’s interview you to add your perspectives.

Each player has a “moniker” or in the old days in CB land – “a Handle” (oh my gosh, does anyone even remember that analogy?).  I am going to keep mine secret right now so I can kvetch anonymously.

Don’t get me wrong, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you play on line, IF you like to play fast and if you like competition or if you are very computer literate and want to be able to play MJ anytime you want without trying to find a local game.

One of the things I like is that you can get to learn the card really quickly when it first comes out.  I am almost able to play without the card and it’s just the end of April.

But ah, here comes my complaint:  when you do not have 100 games played yet, your “rank” tells everyone you are <100 games.  Therefore, many players think you are a newbie and don’t want to play with you.  As of this date I am only at 80 games and yet this is my 4th year of playing in there.  But what if you are a newbie?  How frustrating it can be for someone when people join your table and then leave because you don’t have 100 games.

Another complaint:  Why harass players to play faster???  Some players are just rude, others use it as a strategy to shake up a player, and still others are just worried they won’t finish on time and it will hurt their “completion score”, which impacts who will play with you!  Whew!

Here’s the rub on that:  how can you get new players to grow the site if you are not welcoming?  Don’t you want to grow our wonderful game?   If it’s all “old timers” who are yelling at players to play faster, (shows up as FP, by the way in the chat room while you play) sooner or later, people will not engage.  I think the NMJL is aware of this issue.  There is a new version of the game at the NMJL website, that is available while still playing the old version and this issue, hopefully, is supposed to eventually go away.  But, there’s other solutions in the meantime:

First, just don’t do these annoying things to someone else and it will diminish as a practice!

Secondly, there’s a lovely group who have changed that on their own – going in the “Official” room instead of the “Minutes” room solves that – there is no timed requirement.  The challenge is to have more players join us!  And there’s a lot of us who have become “e-friends” playing together nicely.

Finally, you can go in to the Social room with your own friends; schedule a time to play there or in the official room with people you already know of from connecting on our MahJonggMentor site or other Facebook sites.

Let me know what you would like to see about this fun topic as we create videos to share!


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  1. anitam51  May 5, 2015

    Thank you so much for this. As a newbie I have been hesitant to join the online game, and I would love to in order to learn more about the game, but I have read about pushy and rude players. Playing online is supposed to be fun, right?? Heck, Mahjongg is supposed to be fun. I understand in tournaments speed is important but for online games … really? What’s the rush?? I’ll get my nerve up someday and sign up. Maybe you’ll take pity on me and play at my table. Ha! Ha!

  2. Jozella  September 25, 2015

    I play at I was new just a couple of months ago (though not new to MJ, but VERY rusty). I found them to “circle and sniff” but as I learned my card and got better (within a month) I feel accepted and they are NOT rude. I remember playing on the NMJL site … they were very RUDE and intimidating. I would not go back.

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