One of the best things about playing board games on your iPhone or iPad is that you don’t have to set up the board before you begin to play. Press “Start,” select a level, and within seconds you’re ready to go. One of the most popular games of this genre is Mahjong. Easy to learn, difficult to master, fun to play. Let’s take a look at Mahjong Ace and see what it brings to the table.
Mahjong is the ultimate tile matching game. The tiles are piled in rows and columns, and the idea of the game is find two tiles that match, and you can remove them from the board. You continue until all the tiles have been removed, or you can’t make any more matches. Simple, eh?
There are a few limitations to your matching endeavors, any tile you select has to have at least one one side (left or right) free and no other tiles placed on top. You can only remove one pair of tiles at a time. Simple enough, yes?
The interface of Mahjong Ace is intuitive and easy to learn, The game screen itself shows your tiles, your score, a timer, and a button to shuffle the tiles. There are also buttons to toggle sound effects and music on and off, and to zoom in and out on the board. This is a very handy feature when playing the iPhone version. The iPads larger screen allows easy viewing of the tiles when matching. The smaller iPhone screen can make a little tougher to correctly identify the tiles, and the zoom feature comes in handy. When zoomed in, you can use your finger to drag the tiles around in order to view all of the tiles.
There are 32 levels of play, so even the most advanced player should be met with a challenge.
One nice feature is the ability to change the look of the tiles. In addition to the traditional tiles, numbers, wildlife, landscapes, and abstract designs are also available for the tiles. I would think the animal tiles would come in especially handy if you’re teaching a small child to play the game.
Mahjong Ace is an enjoyable game, with a simple, yet attractive interface. The price is definitely right. (FREE, ad supported, but the ads don’t get in the way.) The learning curve is low, and the game is entertaining and a challenge for players of any level.
The graphics could be a little more refined, and they’re tough to see on the iPhone, but the zoom and scroll features help.
Price: FREE – Available for the iPad and iPhone in the App Store. [DIRECT LINK]
- Easy to learn.
- Variety of tiles designs are a welcome addition.
- Zoom function helps you see the tiles better on the smaller iPhone screen.
- Multiple levels presents a challenge for players of any skill.
- No excuse not to use the larger screen of the iPhone 5.
- Instructions are limited to one paragraph.
- Needs a simple tutorial for beginners.