FFXIV: Play by Play

Hello! We haven’t done these for a while, right? I bet you started to forget that this was a riichi site amongst all the Hitler’s Blunders and mahjong collections. If you’re new to Riichi Reporter, welcome! We do write about many aspects of the riichi community and we hope to educate and build awareness wherever we can even if riichi is not your primary ruleset. If you’re an old hat here, you know the drill when Gemma writes – sloppy and of dubious value.

Anyhoos. I’ve been playing a lot of mahjong on FFXIV. In fact, I’ve been exclusively playing there and streaming the entire fiasco on twitch. People have gotten to see all my plays — the good and the bad. There has been a curious correlation between my fatigue and play quality. Now, correlation doesn’t mean causation and I’ll have to wait for science to get back to me on that. However, I managed to test the extreme end of the theory when I ill-advisedly played sick.

I do try and review bad games when I have a quiet moment, and it was interesting to see that I was doing things I wouldn’t normally do when I was suffering flu. Maybe the virus had gotten into my brain? But it one part I think is an interesting moment to consider with regards to the titular yaku of our game*.

Remember that that is NOT the dora indicator but the dora itself. So I have TWO dora plus one red five. This is an awesome start and I am ready to pon the hell out of that.

Things are starting to get into shape here. I’ve decided to break one of my inside wait shapes in the hope that the pair or 2 will be my pair and I will get that third 中. Otherwise, South is a safe hold.

1-away now so the South has gone. I’m still hoping to either draw or call fro that 中 which would lock in 4 han and a yaku.

(If you’re new to this version of mahjong, han is the point scoring element. Yaku is the hand shape or right you need to earn before you can call mahjong. In this case, a pon of red dragons if everything goes to plan.)

Things have moved on and I had spotted a chance to improve my wait with these more flexible shapes. If I draw a 2-5-8, I can drop the (1) and wait on the 2 and 中 or perhaps and more ideally the 2-5-8 中 . If I draw a (1), I drop the 2 and wait on the (1)(4) 中. If I draw the (4), I drop the 2 and wait on the less ideal (1) 中 wait.

Notice I didn’t mention the (3) before? That’s because I didn’t see it at the time. In my flu-recovered state, it seems silly that I missed it. However, I wasn’t at my best and I missed it, meaning I didn’t have a plan in my head for what I would do in this situation… What do beginners do when they see the “Riichi” button pop-up, they hit Riichi! That’s exactly what I did, too.

Riichi, ippeiko, dora 3. 5 han for 8,000… BUT was this riichi worth it?

Arguably, not.

If I hadn’t called riichi:

Ron: Ippeiko, dora 3, 4 han/40 fu – 8,000!

Tsumo: Menzen tsumo, ippeiko, dora 3, 5 han – 8,000!

The only situation where the riichi would have been a better situation for me here is if I had tsumo’ed. Then I would have hit haneman. BUT with this point situation, I don’t need to do that. Calling riichi would have alerted the other players at the table to my tempai situation (all good players here btw) so I actually made it less likely that my (2) was going to be dropped.

My conclusion, this riichi was a poor move. I should not have called riichi.

Kagakusha in the comments notices it, too! Because he’s a scientist, I’m hoping he can draw up a more detailed research paper into the effect of fatigue on mahjong playstyle.

I’ve had to take a week off playing mahjong because I was so sick over the past few days. That was the last game I played and realized I needed rest. I am back streaming if you want to see me play -judge for yourself if this was a move made under a feverish state or indicative of a more symptomatic problem! Feel free to ask questions or cast shade on my playstyle. Whatever works for you! See you in Eorzea.

*I need someone to tell me if I’m actually being clever with this little bilingual roleplay to justify the 2 full minutes I spent giggling to myself.