These rules represent the official rules acknowledged by the Japanese Mah Jong Association several decades ago but is still used today, only slightly modified. Contrary to what is often believed, these rules are by no means outdated. Besides being the rules acknowledged by about 20,000 members of the Japanese Mah Jong Association, these rules are very popular in Europe, especially in the Nordic countries.
As always in Japanese Mah Jong, only the winner receives payments and the discarder pays for all. This calls for defensive strategy and encourages going out quickly on simple basic hands. On the other hand, a bonus double is given for a couple of relatively easy-to-collect hands.
Unlike modern Japanese versions, Japanese Classical rules do not use a settling table to determine the total score of the winner, but rather use the traditional point-double scheme. The rule of Riichi is not used, either, nor are special tiles like Dora, so the gambling features are not as prominent in these rules as in modern versions of Japanese Mah Jong.
For more information on these rules, visit the home page of the Japanese Mah Jong Association.