Konno’s Kolumn #8: Golden One-away

Hello Mahjong players of the world, this is Shintaro Konno. Mahjong is a game in which the goal is to “win a hand.” In order to “win a hand,” you first have to get your hand to, “Ready.” Before “Ready,” you must get your hand to “One-away,” In Japan, there is a special “One-away,” that we call the “Golden One-away.” Today I would like to introduce this “Golden One-away,” concept to you.

The term “Golden One-away,” was coined by the comic book artist Masayuki Katayama, the most famous mahjong comic artist in Japan. So, what is the Golden One-away? I’m going to use hand examples to explain this.

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This is the idea. If your next draw is a Active Image or a Active Image then you are Ready with a Full Straight (ikki-tsuukan) and if you draw a Active Image or a Active Image you will be Ready with Three Colored Runs (sanshoku). In other words, you are One-away with a shot at either the Full Straight or the Three Colored Run, two hands that cannot be completed together.

Let’s take a look at other hand cominations that can be included in Golden One-away hands. Look for these opportunities in your next game.

Full Straight and Outside Hand

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Three Colored Runs and Two Double Runs

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Also, even if you are already Ready, there may be hidden, “Gold” in your hand.

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You may feel the urge to Reach with a Active ImageActive Image wait, but if you show a little bit of patience:

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In this hand a Active Image will give you a Full Straight
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Hands like these include Golden One-aways in the Ready hand.

Mahjong can be enjoyed in many ways by many different people. Looking for hands like this is another way to find enjoyment in this game. It really feels great when you achieve the hand that you have been aiming for. The secret to aiming for hands is catching small seeds like this. Search out these tiny seeds and grow them into big hands.

See you next time.

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