|Category: Games > Puzzle Download size 99.7 mb Age rating: 12+ Publisher: Microsoft Studios|
Updated 10-21 (a couple screenshots are from an earlier version but nearly identical to current app)
Packed free with Windows 8, it provides some flair for this popular tile-based game. I’ve always seen it spelled as “Mahjongg” but in the Windows Store it is just one “g”, but it doesn’t really matter, it is still the challenging tile-based game many are familiar with.
There is just one type of game here, but you get different boards available, that unlock as you complete the initial one’s available. There are themes, that definitely aid playing a game like this. I just get tired of the chinese characters and trying to match them, not that the themes are infinitely easier, just gives you something different.
You get XBox Live for achievements, but not required to play. However the Daily Challenges really add to the game. You do have to endure a video ad for each challenge, but it is a free app so not so bad. The Daily Challenges combine to get you a score for the month. The only thing I dislike about the Challenges is I can’t use the special tile theme I usually use.
It comes with a tutorial if you don’t know how to play, controls for mouse/touch and keyboard and a tips and tricks section. I like the presentation here, the screenshots really improve the understanding of the controls.
There are 4 levels of play, Easy, Medium, Hard and Expert. You get one puzzle in each to start with and unlock others as you complete the puzzle. If you don’t remove all the tiles, it won’t open up the next board. I didn’t provide a shot of the board as they are just larger representations of what you see above. It has nice animations when you match tiles and statistics at the top for how long it’s taken you, how many tiles to be removed still, available matches and your score.
It isn’t easy to display in a screenshot of the celebration but it is a nice touch. About the only thing I would like to have is a choice whether it automatically shuffles them if no matches or limits how many shuffles you have. It does make it more challenging with limited shuffles but maybe someone doesn’t want it to be that hard.
Search – not needed. Share – basically just allows you to post that you are currently playing the game (though oddly I am in Xbox live and it just says “Player is playing Microsoft Mahjong”. Settings – allows a few game options. You can show the score or not, have a timer or not, even use Large Print tiles (if visually impaired). I found this changed things to have large numbers added, not larger images.
This game does not work in snapped mode.
The live tile swaps between images of boards and some of your statistics. It is about what you’d expect from a live tile here.
A sure-fire winner here for a free game. There are a few other Mahjong games at this time and I haven’t tried them yet, but the presentation is spot on here. Now if only Microsoft could put as much effort into their Music, Photo and Video apps Windows 8 would really be something.