"Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn."
Ever heard of this saying by Benjamin Franklin? In our conviction, we believe that if you execute the things we teach you, you will excel in Mahjong. Mahjong is a technical game that requires skills. Do not believe those naysayers who say that Mahjong is all about luck. Although it is true to a certain extent, your observation and actions will all affect the game in one way or another.
You need to grind and learn from your mistakes to be the best. Now read, remember & practice the tips we give you below.
1) Think ahead with your starting hand
In the beginning, you should already have a rough gauge of how you plan to win. For instance, if you have many bamboo suits, you can think of winning with one color. Otherwise, if you do not have any flowers & animals, you can consider Ping Hu. By having a clear direction for your end game, you are off to a good start. Remember, if "you fail to plan, you plan to fail".
2) Beware of those with many bonus points
Aside from seeing your tiles, do look out for those with many bonus points at the start due to flowers or animals. These opponents will be more dangerous and you do not want to feed them the tiles they need. And if that opponent is sitting right after you, you will be in charge of defending against the guy. So, play appropriately and mainly discard tiles that are unwanted by your opponents. If not, you will be scolded by others at the table for making a fish play.
3) Observe what other opponents are playing
Since this is a four players' game, there are also two other opponents to look out for. Do not keep looking down at your tiles and forget about others. If you fail to catch what the others are playing, you will be in trouble. Note that information is key. With more information, you will have the upper hand over others. Look up and see what tiles others are discarding.
4) Play accordingly if your draws are bad
Many times, your plan will not go as smoothly as intended. That is when you need to adapt accordingly. If your draws are bad, just play to defend. You do not have to win every round. The essence of playing Mahjong is to minimize losses and maximize winnings. But, you may ask what if you are just "unlucky" all the time? This will lead us to our next point.
5) Never ever tilt play
In life, there are bound to be ups and downs. Sometimes, we may just have a dry run in Mahjong. Tell yourself, it will be fine. Tough times don't last but tough men do. Admittedly, luck is a factor in Mahjong. But, skill is more imperative than luck. Hence, do not get agitated when you are on a bad run. Instead, be more open to taking losses and moving on. You can only change your abilities; focus on self-improvement and you will excel in Mahjong.
6) Practice consistently
As mentioned previously, Mahjong is a game that favors the strong and not the lucky ones. To gain experience, you need more exposure. Play more often and evaluate your mistakes after each session. If you know you played badly, rethink what you did wrongly. As much as plausible, try not to make the same mistake again. Note that consistency is key to success. Never give up and you will do well in Mahjong.
These are the tips we have consolidated for you carefully. Hope you find them useful and applicable. No matter what player you are, only the most consistent one will eventually excel. Practice makes perfect. The luck factor in Mahjong is out of our control, so the best we can do is to sharpen our skills. Nevertheless, remember to practice diligently to get better at Mahjong.