''Ten - The Blessed Way of the Nice Guy'' is an earlier series by the creator of ''{{Akagi}}'' and ''{{Kaiji}}'', Fukumoto Nobuyuki.

Takashi Ten is called to a {{Mahjong}} club one night to play against a young mahjong player. Having just robbed Ten's friends blind at mahjong, Ten arrives to take back his winnings. Ten's mahjong style becomes more apparent as the game progresses...amateurish! Ten cheats in the last round, using a move called the Tsubame Gaeshi, and winning with a Tenhou hand. Hiroyuki is angered once Ten admits he cheated after the game. Ten is a friendly guy who happens to be good at Mahjong. Or, more appropriately, good at cheating at Mahjong. If someone is betting on a Mahjong game and ends up in a pinch, they call Ten to win for them. He always does, and because he understands how frustrating it is, always has the courtesy to give the people he cheats against a chance to beat him up. With his friends Hiroyuki, Ken, {{Akagi}}, and others, he eventually decides to take on something much bigger than cheating in small gambles.
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This manga provides examples of:
* AdventureRebuff: For Hiroyuki.
* AlwaysSecondBest: [[spoiler:Hiroyuki]] suffers from this to the point that it makes him utterly miserable for most of the series.
* AnimeHair: Ten, of course.
* ArtEvolution: The early chapters of ''Ten'' have "softer" lines than usual, and the characters look more "round" than "pointy" (for lack of better words); this changed as the series went on. Fukumoto would later re-use this early style in ''Atsuize Pen-chan'' since it was more fitting for the light-hearted story of that manga.
* BadassInANiceSuit: It's a series about ''{{Yakuza}}''. What did you expect?
* BadassMustache: Hitoshi Washio.
* BatmanGambit
* [[spoiler:BetterToDieThanBeKilled: Akagi chooses to go through medically-assisted suicide rather than have his mind deteriorate due to Alzheimer's. The fact that he was never afraid to face death makes it easier to digest...the fact that his mind was the greatest weapon he ever had and the fact that he was only in his early fifties doesn't.]]
* BittersweetEnding
* BlondeGuysAreEvil: Harada. Okay, ''evil'' might be a strong word to describe him (although he ''is'' a {{Yakuza}}), but he is an antagonist, and supposedly blonde.
* BreakingTheFourthWall: Ten does this in one of the earlier chapters.
* CantGetAwayWithNuthin: Averted.
* CardSharp: Ten. He starts to rely less on cheating later in the series.
* CerebusSyndrome: The manga starts out lightheartedly, in an almost slice-of-life way, though somewhat centered on Mahjong. Ten and his family do stupid things all day, Hiroyuki gets annoyed, etc. As the story goes on though, it gets more and more serious, with Yakuza and dangerous Mahjong matches becoming the main draw, Ten getting a character change and becoming all serious and actually very good at the game, and all the humor is stripped away to the point that there is not one single humorous panel in the later chapters. [[spoiler: And in the last arc, all the main characters are frantically trying to stop Akagi from committing suicide, and in the end they can't make it. A bit depressing, to say the least.]] That said, this was one of Fukumoto's first works. He was probably still looking for his own style in the earliest chapters.
* CharacterDevelopment: Especially for Hiroyuki.
* CharacterTitle
* CheatersNeverProsper: Actually they do in this series, with a few exceptions.
* ChristmasInJapan
* CombatCommentator
* ContinuityNod: The last few chapters reference the events of ''{{Akagi}}''; we even get flashbacks of [[SmugSnake Urabe]] and [[BigBad Washizu]].
* CoolOldGuy: Akagi and Sawada. Souga deserves a mention, too.
* CrouchingMoronHiddenBadass: Ten through and through, especially in the first part of the manga.
* DecoyProtagonist: Ten gets slightly overshadowed by Hiroyuki and Akagi.
* {{Defictionalization}}: A faithful replica of [[spoiler:Akagi's grave]] exists in a bar in Kichijouji.
* DirtyOldMonk: Kanamitsu. Priests are generally not involved in gambling between {{Yakuza}} gangs after all. He was also in Hawaii picking up chicks for some time along with several other characters, and takes a piece of [[spoiler:Akagi's]] tombstone hoping it will bring him luck.
* [[spoiler:DrivenToSuicide: Akagi]]
* TheGambler: Especially Akagi.
* [[spoiler:GoOutWithASmile: Akagi]]
* KatanasAreJustBetter: Early on, Sawada uses one to cut Ten because the latter was caught cheating.
* TheLancer: Hiroyuki to Ten.
* {{Mahjong}}
* TheMenInBlack
* {{Narrator}}: Hiroyuki at times, though the commentator takes over as it continues.
* {{Prequel}}: ''{{Akagi}}'' to this, and ''Manga/WashizuLordOfMahjongHell'' to ''Akagi''.
* {{Polyamory}}: Ten has two wives. Yeah...
* ProfessionalGambler
* TimeSkip: The first one (two years) happens fairly early on. [[spoiler:After the final "battle" there's a nine year time skip. And after the TearJerker, there's an epilogue set three years after the death of Akagi.]]
* ScarsAreForever: Ten has a lot of scars on his face; he got them from allowing people to beat him up after he cheats in games with them.
* {{Seinen}}
* SliceOfLife: Early on.
* SpinOff: Several.
** ''{{Akagi}}'' is the most famous one, as it got an anime adaptation. It provides backstory to, well, Akagi. The manga is still ongoing.
** ''Manga/WashizuLordOfMahjongHell'', which is about the BigBad from ''Akagi'' in his younger days. It wasn't written nor drawn by Fukumoto (although he is credited as an assistant since he owns the characters), so its canonical status is debatable. Creator/{{CLAMP}} also made a 4-page gag manga that was about Washizu.
** ''[=HERO=]'', which is a sequel to this and has Hiroyuki as the main character. Written but not drawn by Fukumoto. [[spoiler:An (even) older Ichikawa from ''Akagi'' makes an appearance]].
* TheIdiotFromOsaka: Ken, to a certain extent. He's young, brash and enthusiastic, even directly challenging Harada- who, despite also being from Osaka, is a much cooler, calmer character and thus accordingly loses his accent as the series progresses.
* TheRival: Harada to Ten.
* {{Yakuza}}
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