How to play Mahjong Solitaire

Mahjong Solitaire (also commonly known as Shanghai Solitaire) is very different from the normal 4 player Mahjong game. The only common thing between the two games is that they are played with the same tiles. In Mahjong Solitaire you try and remove all the tiles from the playing area by matching up tiles that are free.

Free tiles are tiles that don't have tiles bordering on there left or right hand side. Tiles with other tiles on top off them are also not free. Below are some pictures with free tiles highlighted to give you an idea.

In the computerized version of the solitaire game, players play against time to accumulate score. The faster the tiles are cleared the more score you will accumulate.

In this version there is a bunch of different layout to try. We suggest starting off with the default layout to get familiar with the game and the rules.

In the above free mahjong solitaire game you can also change the tile to have different pictures on them and you can even build your own unique layouts.

Play Mahjong solitaire

The history of Mahjong

The inventor

Mahjong originated in China and has a history of about 1000 years. Many legends exist about the inventing and the inventor of this game. It has been said that Mahjong was created by Confucius himself. Another legend has it that a beautiful Chinese girl who was locked in the King of Wu's court invented Mahjong by carving the tiles from ivory and bamboo. No one knows exactly by whom Mahjong was invented, but it is believed that it evolved from other similar games until it became the game we know today.

The name

The name Mahjong first was Ma Diao ('Ma' - horse, and 'Diao' - hang), symbolizing a horse with one leg lifted. This was derived because in that time the game involved 3 players (3 legs of the horse on the ground) playing against one banker (the lifted leg). After some time the name Ma Diao changed to Ma Que, which means sparrow. Even today, some people call Mahjong "Sparrow" and "Ma Que" in some parts of China. The game later became known as Mahjong, the most common name for the game used today. The word Mahjong is sometimes spelt differently – for example Mah Jiang, Mah-Jong or Mahjongg.

The history

Even today, the game can be played in many different ways. The first Mahjong was believed to have been played with only 34 tiles. Until 500AD, Mahjong was a game reserved for aristocrats and it was illegal for the Chinese working class to play. 500AD this law was changed and the popularity of Mahjong in China increased significantly.

Before the 1920's, Mahjong was a game only played by China and some surrounding countries. Mahjong was introduced to the West mainly by Joseph Park Babcock, an executive for and American Standard Oil Company in Shanghai. He patented the name Mah-jongg and made the tiles and game more user friendly for Westerners. He also imported Mahjong sets to the US. As the game became more popular and well known in the West, companies started importing more Mahjong sets. Different Western versions of Mahjong also developed.

A standard Mahjong

Because there were so many versions of Mahjong being played all over the world, a need arose for a standard to be created. In 1998, Mahjong was declared an official sport in China. New rules for Mahjong was developed which was composed out of parts of the different versions of Mahjong and the scoring method was also simplified. This Mahjong is called the Chinese Official Mahjong and the first World Mahjong Championship in Tokyo made use of this version.

Klondike solitaire

Cards on the foundations need to be stacked by the same suit from Ace to King. Cards on the tableau need to be stacked by alternating color from high rank (King) to low rank (Ace). Empty spots on the tableau can be filled with a King of any suit.