Play Mahjong Online for Free

Mahjong is a game with a long history and is one of the most popular games in the world. It originated in China and has evolved and adapted to various cultures and platforms. Today, you can play Mahjong online, either as a relaxing single-player game or as a challenging board game with others. This article focuses on how to play Mahjong online, its history, rules, and variants. Of course, we will also take a closer look at the traditional Mahjong game, its history, and its role in Asian culture.

Mahjong – History and Game Facts

Mahjong has long been a board game that unites strategy, skill, and a dose of luck. It is played with a set of 136 or 144 tiles, adorned with Chinese characters and symbols. In the traditional game, four players aim to build a complete hand consisting of various combinations of tiles, usually by drawing and discarding tiles until a player forms a complete hand. To be successful in Mahjong, tactical thinking, good memory, and the ability to read opponents are required. It’s no wonder that researchers are investigating whether Mahjong can help keep the brain active and prevent or reduce the risk of dementia in older adults.

Traditionally, Mahjong has been a way for family and friends to come together. Different forms of Mahjong have been played all over Asia, and the game is present in many Chinese households.

A computer monitor displaying an online Mahjong game

The Rise of Digital Mahjong

Mahjong has a long history and is a game that has diversified in different directions over the years. At the end of the 20th century, as computers and video games became more common, digital versions of Mahjong were created. In digital games, Mahjong was often transformed into a single-player game. These have few similarities with the traditional Mahjong games, but they use similar tiles, for example.

To distinguish traditional Mahjong from digital single-player games, these games are often called Mahjong Solitaire or Shanghai Solitaire. When Microsoft released a version of Mahjong, they renamed the game to Taipei to avoid confusion with the classic game. Mahjong Shanghai was the name of the game released for Macintosh and Apple 2 in 1986. And this is the Mahjong game that we offer.

As technology has advanced over time, digital Mahjong games have become more appealing and realistic. The Internet has also made it possible to play Mahjong online. And with smartphones and tablets, you can enjoy the games on mobile devices too, making Mahjong online even easier to access.

This technological evolution has not only broadened Mahjong’s audience but has also contributed to a renewed appreciation of the game. By retaining its traditional roots while embracing modern innovations, Mahjong has managed to remain relevant and beloved in an increasingly digital world.

Mahjong Online – Basic Rules

Online Mahjong differs quite a bit from its traditional predecessor. It is a single-player game that is more reminiscent of solitaire. The goal is to remove all tiles from a board by pairing identical tiles two by two. Tiles can only be paired if they are available, meaning they are not covered or blocked from the sides. When there are no more free tiles left to pair, the game is over.

How to Play Mahjong with Us

The game you can play here is a single-player version of Mahjong. It has 144 tiles in total, with four of each kind, except for flowers and seasons, which only have one each. In total, there are four flowers and four seasons. Flowers can be paired with any other flower, and the same goes for the seasons.

Tiles are paired by clicking on them on the board. The tiles you select are highlighted with a yellow frame and then disappear if you’ve made a correct match. When you click on a tile that doesn’t match the first one, the frame goes away from the tile. The last tile you clicked on is then highlighted and becomes the one you need to match.

You cannot click on locked tiles. This makes it easy to tell which tiles are locked and which are free.

At the start of the game, the tiles are arranged in what is called a turtle pattern.

Next to the game window, you can see how many tiles are left in the game. If you need help, you can click on ”hint”. The cursor will turn into a question mark when you hover over free tiles that have no matches at the moment. This way, you can tell if there is a matching tile that is free when you move the cursor over a tile.

If you regret a move, you can click on ”undo” and if you want to give up, you can click on ”start over” to begin a new game round.

Different Variants of Mahjong Online

Over the years, as we mentioned, many variants of Mahjong games have emerged. This applies to digital Mahjong games as well. For those who like to play Mahjong online, there are games with different layouts, difficulty levels, and themes to choose from. Some different Mahjong games are:

  • Mahjong Shanghai
  • Mahjong Classic
  • Mahjong Titan
  • Mahjong Connect
  • Mahjong Link
  • Mahjong Solitaire
  • Mahjong Shanghai

The games can differ in the layout, difficulty level, and design of the tiles, as mentioned. Game features can also vary, such as how clues are presented, how tiles are marked, and so on. Many games are very similar to each other, and it’s mostly a matter of personal preference which one you like best.

A series of four tiles, each representing a different season. From left to right: spring, summer, autumn and winter


A series of four tiles, each representing a different flower


Tiles in Mahjong

The tiles in Mahjong game can also be called stones or tiles and have different signs:

  • Circles: There are nine different tiles with circle symbols. These symbolize money.
  • Bamboo: There are nine different tiles with varying bamboo symbols.
  • Characters: There are nine different tiles with Chinese characters.
  • Winds: There are four different tiles that symbolize the four cardinal directions.
  • Dragons: There are three different tiles with dragons or the Chinese character for dragon. Each dragon is either green, white, or red.
  • Flowers: There are four different flowers.
  • Seasons: There are four different seasons.

In real board games, the tiles are usually made of plastic, stone, bone, or wood.

Play Mahjong for Free

There are many ways to play Mahjong for free online. Here with us at, you can play free Mahjong. You don’t need to download any program to play or register. Just open the game directly in your browser and start playing. You can play as many times as you want without cost.

Being able to play online Mahjong for free is likely one of the reasons why the game is so popular. If it had been expensive, the online version of Mahjong probably wouldn’t have been as common and enjoyable.


Can I play Mahjong for free online?
– Yes, it is possible to play Mahjong for free online. At, there is an opportunity to play a Mahjong game with 144 tiles in a turtle pattern.

What is the difference between different Mahjong games?
– When playing online, for example, the appearance of the tiles varies between different games. How the tiles are arranged also varies. Some games are also more difficult than others. What can also differ is which game features are available and the visual effects.

What is the difference between Mahjong and Mahjong online?
– Mahjong is a traditional board game for several people, while Mahjong online is an online game for one person. Mahjong online involves pairing tiles on a game board. Only loose tiles that are not blocked can be used. If you manage to pair all the tiles, you have won.

How many tiles are used in Mahjong Shanghai?
– 144 tiles.
Source: Wikipedia