Mahjong, a Chinese game from the 5th century BCE, is a four-player game featuring tiles. The aim of the game is to get a complete hand of four sets of three to four tiles in the same suit. Playing mahjong online allows you to indulge in a game even when you don't have mahjong tiles on hand. Online mahjong games also allow you to find other people with whom to play.
Mahjong solitaire is not the traditional four-player method of playing mahjong. Instead, you play against yourself with a full set of mahjong tiles. Your object is to match tiles by image on the tile, which makes the matched tiles disappear and gives you access to other tiles. You'll find multiple variations on the mahjong solitaire theme online, such as "War Mahjong" at Free Online Mahjong Games and "Mahjong Black White" at Mahjong Games 4 All.
A site such as Mahjong Express allows you to compete with other live players from around the world in a traditional four-player mahjong game. You can elect to play for fun for free. Your ultimate goal in free play is scoring points and rising among the top ranked players. You can also, depending on rules in the area in which you live, compete for prizes such as cash. Entering a tournament requires registration.
When you join a mahjong guild at a site such as Mahjong Time, you'll have constant access to other players who are passionate about the game of mahjong. You can practice together online and enter upcoming online tournaments together. Mahjong Time also allows you to compete for cash prizes if you're a paying member of the site. Expect to pay around £3 a month as a paying member.
Licensed Property Mahjong
Traditional mahjong tiles feature a series of Chinese designs, such as circles and Chinese characters. However, you can enjoy mahjong solitaire online with a variety of licensed characters and properties. For example, at Free Online Mahjong Games you can find "Looney Tunes Mahjong" and "WOW Connect" ("World of Warcraft" mahjong). At the official US "Naruto Shippuden" site, the "Naruto Shippuden Tile Match" game is essentially mahjong solitaire with theme of the manga series "Naruto."