Four Winds uses by default the European Classical rule preset which represents the way Mah Jong was played in China several decades ago and is still played in many parts of Europe. The classical rules serve well as an introduction to Mah Jong: the rules and scoring are simple and they are generally recognized around the world. The Novice rule preset represents a simplified version of the classical rules and as they do not apply penalties, are a good choice for learning the basics of the game.
In addition to the default rule preset, Four Winds 2 supports over 20 other pre-defined rule presets. The current options cover the most popular versions around the world.
Several different versions of Chinese Mah Jong are supported: in addition to Chinese Classical rules and Hong Kong (old style) rules you can play according to the Chinese New Style rules and choose your favorites from dozens of new scoring patterns; Chinese Official rules are an example of a pattern-centered game in its extreme. In addition, the Chinese Transitional rule preset represents an interesting mixture of classical, Old Style and New Style from the time these styles were not separated from each other. Four Winds 2 now fully supports also the 16-tile Taiwanese Mah Jong.
In addition to classical Japanese Mah Jong (as specified by the Japanese Mah Jong Association), Four Winds 2 also supports its modern derivatives – Japanese Transitional and Japanese Modern – with several additional scoring patterns and features like voluntary ready declaration (riichi), Sacred discard (furiten) and Dora tiles.
Wilmington 12-Tile Advanced rules represent a modified Chinese and Taiwanese 12-tile version of Mah Jong with four pre-dealt jokers and over 80 different scoring patterns, while Alan's Zung Jung, IMS (Internet Mahjong Server), MMM (Mahjong Masters Million), Korean Style and WMPA (World Mahjong Players Association) rules are a kind of hybrids between the modern Chinese and Japanese Mah Jong.
Four Winds 2 also offers several Western versions of Mah Jong. In addition to classical American Mah Jong, Four Winds supports the modern American rules with specialties like jokers and Charleston. You can also play with Australian rules using special rules like a goulash deal. Finally, several European national versions are supported, including British, Dutch, French, German and Italian Mah Jong.
While you probably find your favorite amongst the pre-defined rules, Four Winds also lets you fully customize any of the pre-defined rule sets and save them as user-defined rules (you can build a library of any number of saved rule presets). For more information, see Creating and managing custom rule presets.
This help section presents a classification table, which helps you to see how different versions of Mah Jong have evolved and what their primary additions to the classical or parent rules are. In addition, all rule presets (excluding the Novice rules, which are a simplified form of the European Classical rules) are described in detail, and a comparison table is provided of the main differences between the supported rule presets.
Classification of rules
Alan's Zung Jung
Chinese New Style
Dutch League rules
EMA Riichi Rules
Hong Kong Mah Jong
Internet Mahjong Server
Mahjong Masters Million
Taiwanese 16-Tile Mah Jong
Wilmington Advanced 12-Tile rules