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Since the first release of the game "Shanghai" in 1986 by Activision, two other titles have followed the great success of the original game. Two of the sequels, Shanghai II in 1990 and more recently, Shanghai III in 1993, have new improvements and action as found in arcade games.

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On the 3DO, Shanghai: Triple Threat is probably the first title of a long series, with other games in development such as Shanghai: Great Moments. The game of Shanghai is based on the Mah-Jong tiles, but this is the only reference to the chinese game. Shanghai's rules are of a dramatic simplicity. To win, you must remove all tiles from the board. The only rule you must remember is that you can remove tiles by pairs when it is possible. A tile is removable if there is no other tile above it or if it is possible to move the tile to the left or to the right. You can not think of something easier to use, but winning is not that easy!

Shanghai: Triple Threat is quite addictive like all other Mah-Jong games, but this version brings new features that really make a difference. First, there are 4 different games all based on Mah-Jong tiles: The Classic Shanghai, The Great Wall, Beijing and The Golden Tile, each one having similar rules with various gameplay. Second, Shanghai: Triple Threat offers three tile's set: Mah-Jong, Zodiac and Music with 42 types of tiles's for the first two and 41 for the last one.

There is also an arcade mode besides the original mode which forces you to remove all tiles within a limited time to move onto the next level.


With over 10 different soundtracks, a collection of pictures for the backgrounds and an intense gameplay, Shanghai: Triple Threat is the best of its generation. Definitively something to get if you like Mah-Jong!


Overall: ****

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