Classic games get digital update

Mahjongg: A CD-ROM game with solitaire and tiles based on the classic Chinese diversion features variations and is consistently enjoyable.

January 01, 2001|By Olin Chism | Olin Chism,KNIGHT-RIDDER/TRIBUNE SERVICE

The title of Hoyle's "Solitaire & Mahjongg Tiles" is a little misleading. What you get is not the old Chinese game of mahjongg, but rather a group of puzzles that use mahjongg tiles.

Sierra has packed 50 solitaire games and 60 mahjongg-tile puzzles onto this CD-ROM ($20). That's not quite as impressive as it sounds because many of the games are simply slight variations on a theme. But for a compulsive game player, the variety is welcome.

The game requires a 90 MHz Pentium PC with 16 megabytes of RAM and a 2X CD-ROM. If you're using a Macintosh, make sure you have a PowerPC or PowerMac G3 running OS 7.5 or higher and 16 MB of free hard drive space.

The solitaire group is divided into three sections: one-deck games, two-deck games and arcade games.

Each is a pleasant way to pass the time, though only a really serious player would spend a lot of time on only one.

Rules of play, which are found on the toolbar's help menu, aren't clear. One effective way to learn is to read the rules once, then simply start playing whether the game is clear to you or not.

The computer won't let you make an illegal move, and you'll soon catch on.

More addicting is the group using mahjongg tiles, which offer a choice of design - Chinese or ancient Egyptian.

There are three sections: mahjongg tiles, gravity tiles and memory tiles.

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