I hear the following question frequently, especially from beginners: How long should a Mah Jongg game take to play? My answer is always the same – a game should take about 15 minutes at the most. Of course, it isn’t unusual to see a game take anywhere from 30 – 60 minutes for beginners. But, as each student becomes a better player, the game speeds up and the amount of time it takes to play a game becomes less and less until the players reach their goal of a 15 minute game. As I tell my students, it is better to try to play fast and keep up with the rest of the table than to worry about what tile to throw. And now, Gladys Grad, the Grand Master of American-Style Mah Jongg Tournaments, has addressed this very subject with a slant for those of you who might be nervous about the speed of game required to play in a tournament:
NERVOUS ABOUT PLAYING IN A TOURNAMENT?
For those players who stress about so-called “tournament speed,”…..please don’t let it bother you. We should all be playing at least 4 games in an hour in our friendly home games. (Many play 5 games in that time.) Tournaments sometimes have a 55 minute round. Plenty of time to complete all 4 of your games; even if you take some time to figure out your hands. It’s rare for players to go over the time limit.
And remember, only the first game in a tournament is daunting….after that, it’s just a group of players – playing the game we all love. And it’s a lot of fun.
How long does it take your group to play a game? Let me know.