RMC Originals - Japan Trip Review
Originally, we wanted to create a video for our entire Japan trip, but we were unable to film everything…. so here is a detailed blog post on what we were able to do :)
Our main goal for this trip was to meet all (or at least most) of the people in the Japanese Mahjong industry who have been helping us since launch.
This includes the providers of websites and contents that we were translating.
we were also able to meet new people and network for future projects!
A Visit to RTD
Our first trip was visiting RTD in Nishiazabu, Tokyo. As some of you may know, RTD is a very high end set Mahjong parlor. We were fortunate to be able to play with Professional Mahjong players there! Here is a quick video of the place!
As you can see, RTD is not your everyday Mahjong parlor. They also host the RTD League, now tournament, on AbemaTV. AbemaTV is the online streaming channel that airs M League, and is now viewable in countries outside of Japan. Here is a link to join in on the Mahjong action!
Attending the Tsuchida Academy
Some of you may know Kosho Tsuchida, a well known Professional Mahjong player in Japan. He is known for his Chi-Toi-Tsu hands and his “cult” way of playing. We arrived a little early to sign up, and we were able to play with him for a few sessions! He won 5 games in a row, and we were able to witness his Chi-Toi-Tsu win in person. His flexibility in making hands is very difficult to copy, but at his Tsuchida Academy, where he hosts study sessions every other week in Tokyo and once a month in other areas through out Japan, he goes over the mindset of being a strong player. He threw in a lot of jokes, and the atmosphere of the study session was amazing.
Tsuchida Pro just finished his “Mahjong No Takumi” series on YouTube. We hope that the English translations for the series will be released in the near future as it is very entertaining!
A Visit to Jan-Saku
Jan-Saku is a Mahjong informational website that we have been translating some of it’s contents for. They are based in Osaka, Japan, and it was a treat to say the least! We went there with Junko, organizer of Los Angeles Pride of Mahjong (LAPOM), and we were able to be on one of their livestreams! They just released the segment that we were on.
Although the entire show is in Japanese, we were able to spread awareness to the Japanese viewers on what we are doing overseas. Many of them were curious to see what we were doing, and were asking questions on how it is like.
We were also able to talk with the president of Jan-Saku, and he proposed a VERY interesting collaboration project with us! We are still in the works with the final details, but everyone can participate in this project. Maybe even some professional players will be too!? We will fill everyone in when the details are finalized :)
A Visit to the Japan Kenko Mahjong Association
One of the main reasons why we visited Japan, was to obtain the Mahjong “Lesson Pro” license. This is a license to officially teach Mahjong through the Japan Kenko Mahjong Association’s guidelines. We were able to talk with the chairman and executives of the association, and we were granted the license!
We were told that this was the first time anyone in the United States was granted with this license, and we can’t wait to start teaching it to others!
We also have many projects coming up with the Japan Kenko Mahjong Association. They are also the main association that is responsible of making Mahjong into one of the Olympic sports and the spreading of Kenko (Wellness) Mahjong.
Mahjong in Japan, for the most part, has been linked to things like gambling, smoking and drinking. Japan Kenko Mahjong Association was formed to eliminate these negative images, and to spread the positive benefits of Mahjong. They have connections with other organizations throughout the world, and we are proud to be a part of the movement!
Meet and Greets
Aside from these meetings, we were able to meet many other groups and individuals. We were able to meet and play with Makoto Fuuchi, former and current Professional players, as well as website owners. We had many fun talks through dinner and actual Mahjong play. So much to learn from everyone in Japan!
But at the end of the day, everyone was very supported in our cause. We will continue to do what we started, and will be planning a trip back to Japan again when we can.
For now, we will be announcing the details on what we will be doing for National Mahjong Day.
Keep an eye out next week as the officially announcement will be made!