List of yaku

A yaku 「役」 is a certain pattern in a mahjong hand, or a special condition under which a win is declared. Many yaku are pattern-based yaku comparable to "poker hands". Unlike poker, yaku types do not supercede each other. Instead, they are the main factor to determine hand values. Players must finish hands before others do; and each yaku has specific values attached to them to determine payment amounts.

Example hand, containing many yaku.

The yaku and their values are essential for scoring. The game rules define twenty-six different yaku, worth a different amount of han 「飜」 based on their difficulty or pre-assigned value. A player can incorporate several different yaku in the same hand and accumulate their han values for high-scoring hands. For additional scoring, the game also features dora. However, possession of dora are not considered as yaku, even though they provide han. In addition, eleven additional patterns are classed as yakuman. Finally, one special case may be allowed in nagashi mangan.

In order to win any hand in this game, a player requires at least one yaku. A hand having no yaku may not win, even if it has multiple dora. Declaring a win on a yakuless hand may result in chombo. So, as an early part of the game's learning process, it is essential to learn the different yaku listed here and eventually their han values.

The most important yaku to learn is riichi, since it is very common and a very easy yaku to achieve. A new player may find it easiest to avoid opening their hand and simply aim for riichi every time; no other yaku is required to win the hand. However, this strategy is far too simple for serious play and an experienced player should generally aim for a high-scoring yaku or combination of yaku from the beginning of the hand.

One han closed only

Menzenchin tsumohou
「門前清自摸和」
Win by self-draw
Closed only
This yaku may apply to any closed hand. Any player who draws a winning tile with a closed hand is awarded this yaku.
Riichi
「立直」
Ready hand
Closed only
This is a special yaku applied to closed tenpai hands, which requires the player to make a declaration and "wager".
Ippatsu
「一発」
One shot
Closed only
This is applied when the player calling riichi wins within 4 tile draws/discards. In addition, the cycle must not be interrupted by tile calls.
Pinfu
「平和」
All sequences
Closed only
Typically known as "all sequences", this is a hand that does not gain fu based on composition, other than that of a closed ron.
              Agari:   or  
Iipeikou
「一盃口」
Identical sequences
Closed only
This hand includes two identical sequences.
              


One han

Haitei raoyue
「海底撈月」
Win by last draw
May be open
The hand is completed with the last tile on the wall.
Houtei raoyui
「河底撈魚」
Win by last discard
May be open
The hand is completed with the very last discarded tile.
Rinshan kaihou
「嶺上開花」
Win by dead wall draw
May be open
This yaku is awarded upon winning with a tile from the dead wall.
Chankan
「搶槓」
Robbing a kan
May be open
The winning tile for a hand is called on another player's Kan. Essentially, the tile needed to complete a Kan is stolen to complete a winning hand.
Tanyao
「断幺九」
All simples
May be open (Closed only on variation)
A hand composed of only inside (numbers 2-8) tiles
              Agari:   or  
Yakuhai
「役牌」
Value tiles
May be open
A hand with at least one group of dragon tiles, seat wind, or round wind tiles. This hand can be valued at 1 han for each group.
               Agari:   or  


Two han

Double riichi
「両立直」
Double ready
Closed only
Riichi is declared with a dealt hand before the first discard.
Chantaiyao
「全帯幺九」
Terminal or honor in each group
May be open (Loses 1 han)
All tile groups contain at least 1 terminal or honor.
               Agari:   or  
Sanshoku doujun
「三色同順」
Three colored straight
May be open (Loses 1 han)
Three sequences have the same number across the three different suits.
              Agari:  
Ittsu
「一気通貫」
Straight
May be open (Loses 1 han)
This hand has a complete sequence of 1 through 9 of a single suit. As a note, the sequence of 1-9 are actually three groups of sequences numbered 123, 456, and 789.
              
Toitoi
「対々」
All triplets
May be open
The entire hand is composed of triplets.
               Agari:   or  
Sanankou
「三暗刻」
Three closed triplet
May be open
The hand includes three groups of triplets (or closed quads) that have been formed without calling any tiles. The fourth group can be an open triplet or sequence.
              Agari:   or  
Sanshoku doukou
「三色同刻」
Three colored triplets
May be open
The hand includes three groups of triplets with the same number.
                Agari:  
Sankantsu
「三槓子」
Three kans
May be open
Three kans are called for this hand.
                  Agari:  
Chiitoitsu
「七対子」
Seven pairs
Closed only
This hand is composed of seven pairs. It is one of two exceptions to the standard 4 tile groups and a pair pattern.
              Agari:  
Honroutou
「混老頭」
Terminals and honors
May be open (Consider as 4 han †)
The hand is composed of nothing but all terminals and honors.
† This hand may be considered as 4 han, because it is impossible to score this hand without either chii toitsu or toi toi.
               Agari:   or  
Shousangen
「小三元」
Small three dragons
May be open (Consider as 4 han †)
The hand contains two sets of 3 dragon tiles and a pair of the third dragon tiles.
† This hand may be considered as 4 han, because it is impossible to score this hand without two sets of yakuhai, from the two sets of dragons.
               Agari:   or  


Three han

Honitsu
「混一色」
Half flush
May be open (Loses 1 han)
This is a single suit hand mixed with some honor tiles.
               Agari:   or  
Junchan taiyao
「純全帯么」
Terminal in each meld
May be open (Loses 1 han)
All sets contain at least one terminal.
               Agari:  
Ryanpeikou
「二盃口」
Two sets of identical sequences
Closed only
This hand has two sets of "iipeikou". This hand does not combine with chii toitsu, even though the hand can be interpreted as one.
              Agari:  


Six han

Chinitsu
「清一色」
Flush
May be open (Loses 1 han)
This hand is composed entirely of tiles from only one of the three suits. It is the only yaku set at 6 han, where the number drops to 5 han when opened.
              Agari:   or  


Yakuman

Kazoe yakuman
「数え役満」
Counted yakuman
May be open
This is a special class of yakuman, where a hand is composed of 13+ han based on the combination of above regular yaku and/or dora.
Kokushi musou
「国士無双 or 国士無双13面待ち」
Thirteen orphans
Closed only
This hand has one of each of the 13 different terminal and honor tiles plus one extra terminal or honour tile. Some rules may allow double yakuman for a 13-wait set.
              Agari:  
Suuankou
「四暗刻 or 四暗刻単騎」
Four closed triplets
Closed only
This hand is composed of four groups of closed triplets. When this hand has a shanpon pattern and the win is via ron, then it would not be counted as such; only as the lesser toitoi with sanankou.
              Tsumo:   or  
Daisangen
「大三元」
Big three dragons
May be open
This hand possesses three groups (triplets or quads) of all the dragons.
               Agari:  
Shousuushii
「小四喜」
Small winds
May be open
This hand has three groups (triplets or quads) of the wind tiles plus a pair of the fourth kind.
                Agari:  
Daisuushii
「大四喜」
Big winds
May be open
This hand has four groups (triplets or quads) of all four wind tiles.
               Agari:  
Tsuuiisou
「字一色」
All honors
May be open
Every group of tiles are composed of honor tiles.
                Agari:   or  
Chinroutou
「清老頭」
All terminals
May be open
Every group of tiles are composed of terminal tiles.
               Agari:   or  
Ryuuiisou
「緑一色」
All green
May be open
A hand composed entirely of green tiles: 2, 3, 4, 6 and 8 Sou and/or Hatsu.
              Agari:   or  
Chuuren poutou
「九連宝燈 or 純正九蓮宝燈」
Nine gates
Closed only
A hand consisting of the tiles 1112345678999 in the same suit plus any one extra tile of the same suit.
              Agari: Any manzu.
Suukantsu
「四槓子」
Four kans
May be open
Any hand with four calls of kan.
                  Agari:  


Initial yakuman

Tenhou
「天和」
Heavenly hand
Closed only
The dealer hand is a winning hand even before discarding a tile.
Chiihou
「地和」
Earthly hand
Closed only
The non-dealer hand is a winning hand with the first tile draw.


Special case

This yaku does not specifically deal with a player's hand, but rather the player's discards. In addition, the hand may or may not be at tenpai upon scoring. The result of nagashi mangan modifies the case of ryuukyoku, where point exchanges equate to mangan.

Nagashi mangan
「流し満貫」
Terminal honor discards
Closed only
All the discards are terminals and/or honors. In addition, none of these discards were called by other players.


Local

The above list is generally considered as the "standard yaku", including the yakuman. However, the game offers an even larger array of tile patterns. Various house rules may opt to use some of these yaku on their own.

External links

List of yaku in Japanese Wikipedia
Lists all the yaku occurrences in Tenhou.net by percentages and by room
Pointing out which yaku to learn first
Yaku list in Wikipedia.