Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Destructoid review: Mahjong Tales: Ancient Wisdom

4:00 PM on 01.27.2009 // Dale North
  @DaleNorth

I already know what you're thinking. It's a mahjong game, right? How good could it be?

Well, it's a bit different from your standard mahjong game you'd pull up on your PC. Sure, it's still basically just tile matching, and you could likely be using that much-touted number crunching power of the PS3 for something a bit more interesting. But it's nice to take a break every once in awhile, right?

Take a break and read our review of Mahjong Tales: Ancient Wisdom.

Mahjong Tales: Ancient Wisdom (PS3)
Developed by
Creat Studios
Published by Creat Studios
Released on January 9, 2009 (PlayStation Network)

Okay, so it's kind of boring. But what do you expect? Creat Studios did try to do a few different things with the classic formula known as mahjong solitaire, where you're matching stacked tiles to clear a game board. Sadly, each of these new modes are just slightly more interesting than the standard game.

The main story mode attempts to append mahjong to ancient Chinese fables. The game starts a narration and slideshow, and then puts up a game board. After you clear that, another bit of the story is revealed. Do that about ten times, and you'll come to the end of a...well, a pretty boring story. There's no "ancient wisdom" here -- just anti-climatic stories that you could do without.

There's a slightly more interesting Motion mode, which adds a bit of a action puzzle element to the board game. There is a simple stack of mahjong pieces in the middle of the screen, and around them runs a conveyor of constantly moving random pieces. Your job is to select a moving one and use it to clear a like piece in the middle of the screen, rushing to clear them all before a piece moves to the end of the conveyor. If your pieces move all the way around the screen, you'll lose a life. Clear it all, and you'll defeat the dragon. 

Of course, if you just want to mindlessly match tiles, that mode is also included.  There's also online multiplayer, but I have yet to see another opponent show up in match making. 

What is aggravating about all game modes is the control scheme, which has you controlling a PC mouse-style cursor with either the PS3's d-pad or analog stick. Neither give you the precision you're needing, and if you're playing against time, or battling dragons in the Motion mode, it's really easy to guide your cursor to the wrong piece. In many cases, the cursor seems to move just past the area you're hoping to land on. If you're playing a casual game, it's not so bad, but it just about ruins the rest of the game modes. 

Mahjong Tales: Ancient Wisdom looks about as good as you'd expect a mahjong title to look. It's in high-definition, there's some pretty special effects, the graphics are Chinese themed, and there's some neat background art in the story mode, but none of it is anything to write home about. The sound is pretty bad, with the worst being the narration. The stories sound like they're being narrated over a broken headset. What kind of budget did this game have? Finally, the music makes me hungry; it sounds exactly like the songs that my local favorite Chinese restaurant loops daily. Thankfully, there's the option to turn off the sound completely and use your own music collection as background music.

If the control scheme was a better, we'd call Mahjong Tales: Ancient Wisdom a great time-waster for the PS3. But the lack of polish on this boring $10 PlayStation Network game makes us want to call it a waste of time instead.

Score: Below Average (4s have some high points, but they soon give way to glaring faults. Not the worst games, but are difficult to recommend.)



Dale North, Former Dtoid EIC
 Follow Blog + disclosure DaleNorth Tips
I am Destructoid's Editor-In-Chief. I love corgis. I make music. more   |   staff directory



 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

KnickKnackMyWack avatarKnickKnackMyWack
I'm glad that the Amiibo stock situation got much better. Because Hasbro sure as hell didn't get the memo with their Marvel Legends figures. These two seem more elusive than a western Lucina Amiibo!
taterchimp avatartaterchimp
Yay, finally beat the Necrodancer!
Jinx 01 avatarJinx 01
The next time you're getting riled up about game news, politics, drama, etc. just step back and be like The Dude.
The Dyslexic Laywer avatarThe Dyslexic Laywer
So #TeamCap or #TeamIronMan ?
Gundy avatarGundy
*Neps Internally*
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
Seeing as how SMT is nowhere near as massively popular as Pokemon, this probably won't become a thing. Still, I'm curious about whoever's favorite demon/persona. Mine's probably Trumpeter! Without 'em, I would've never aced P4G on Very Hard.
CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
Playing Tearaway Unfolded without glasses on makes it looks even prettier, gives it a glossy papercraft or almost dreamlike feel to it.
Parismio avatarParismio
eating cold pizza RN. i would warm it up but eeeeeeeeeehhhhh.
Kieronpowell14 avatarKieronpowell14
Just some Marvel stuff
EAPidgeon avatarEAPidgeon
Have a good one everyone. May you enjoy bountiful carbs and fats this Super Bowl Day.
Heat avatarHeat
someone asked me what i am going to do on my vacations... "playing like 6 hours of XCOM 2 daily, then some Diablo 3. Later, Darkest Dungeon and some beers, and to end the night, i'll watch some anime and eat instant noodles" "Perfect"
The Dyslexic Laywer avatarThe Dyslexic Laywer
I've beaten the Gaping Dragon and finally got the key to Blight town, whats the first thing I immediately did when I got there? Fall right into a endless pit and died.
Bardley avatarBardley
I scanned some pages from issues of Nintendo Power from the early 90's and saw this back cover ad. I thought it would be appropriate to post today. Who's everyone rooting for tonight?
Amna Umen avatarAmna Umen
Came home pissed off for some reason, hopped on Rocket League and played the best games of my life. New tactic!
ScionVyse avatarScionVyse
10 hours into the Witness, I've solved 350 puzzles, and activated 8 lasers. So, that's about 35 puzzles an hour, I think that's a pretty good pace. I have no idea how many more puzzles there are, but I think I'll be getting towards the first ending soon.
Dreamweaver avatarDreamweaver
Shoot, I have made the awful mistake of watching 50 First Dates while doing Comments of the Week. The comedy in the beginning gave me energy, but all of the sad drama is making me cry and it's hard to see through all the tears. WHY YOU DO THIS TO ME!? 8^8
Zatsune avatarZatsune
I'm eating EDO's rn. Leftovers. Yum. 🍱🍣🍜🍲
ikiryou avatarikiryou
Kotobukiya's making a Xenoblade Chronicles X Formula skell model that looks great but I'd rather have a Lailah model. And I would name it Tharja just like my Lailah in the game.
ChrisHannard avatarChrisHannard
Damn you, TV Tropes. As if I wasn't already dead set against doing an Undertale genocide run, this has killed the possibility for me.
TheDefenestrator avatarTheDefenestrator
About to start streaming some This War Of Mine: The Little Ones on Twitch. Say hi! http://www.twitch.tv/thedefenestrator
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -