Tag Archives: Japanese game


20 Aug

Have you ever played the Japanese number game 「数独」 (Sudoku)? Ironically, the game is known by the Japanese name “Sudoku” (which means “single number”) outside of Japan…but in Japan, it’s usually called 「ナンプレ」, short for 「ナンバープレイス」 (“Number Place”) in English.

Do you know how to play “Sudoku“? It’s good mental exercise.

Do you want to play online? I found a Japanese game site with “Sudoku”…there are probably sites in English with Sudoku games too, but if you want to try the Japanese one I found, click here.  This game is a bit different in that the goal is to win five games and get “Bingo“.

I’ll explain how to play.

First you'll see the "teacher" announcing the game "Number Place" (Sudoku)

I put a red arrow showing the 「スタート」 (“Start”) button. Click there.

This is the “Bingo card”, click a square on the grid. The arrow on the left points at possible points for each square (100 – 500). The arrow at the stove shows how many points you have.

The “100 point” games are the easiest and the “500 point” ones are the most difficult.
You can choose any five-in-a-row to try to get “Bingo”. Choosing the five “100 point” games is fine…but that “Bingo” is only worth a total of five hundred points. If you play the five difficult ones (“500 points” each) you can get a total of 2,500 points for “Bingo”. Diagonal or horizontal are OK, too.

To play "Sudoku", you have to fill in the missing numbers (1-9). But you can't repeat a number in a horizontal row...

...you can't repeat a number in a vertical column either...

...nor can you repeat a number in any of the block groups of nine squares.

Each horizontal row, vertical column, and block of nine squares must each have the numbers one through nine without repeating any.

Click on any of the empty boxes in the puzzle and a choice of the nine numbers appears. Hovering over a digit (in this case, "1") makes all of the other places in the puzzle with that number become highlighted...to help you not repeat a number in a row, column or group.

Click an empty box and then choose the number to want in that box from the pop-up.  (To help you, if you make a wrong choice, it shows up red.  The correct choice will show in blue.)

When you successfully complete the game, the screen goes back to your Bingo card and puts a circle in the space. And your total points increases. Choose another space on the "Bingo card" for the next round.

I played one round of each level for a diagonal Bingo worth 1500 points.

Click here to play the game.

If you try this game, tell me what you thought of it (and how many points you got) in the comments’ section of this post.

Shiritori Round Two

11 Aug

「しりとり」 (“Shiritori“) is a Japanese word game.

The rules are pretty simple.
To play, the first player would say any (Japanese) noun. It can be any word as long as it doesn’t end with the 「ん」 (“n“) character.
– The next person says any Japanese word that begins with the same character that the previous word ended with.
– And the next player does likewise.
– The game ends when a player loses by either saying a word that has already been used or saying a word that ends with the 「ん」 (“n“) character (because no word in the Japanese language begins with 「ん」).
– When a word end with a character with 濁点 (「゛」) or 半濁点 (「゜」), the next player can use the character with or without it (ie: If a player’s word ends with 「ば」 or 「ぱ」, the next player’s word can start with either that character or simply 「は」).

An example of how the game would go:
「タ」(“Tako“)→「アラ」(“Koala)→「イオ」(Laion (lion)) (The player who said 「ライオン」 (lion) would lose because you can’t choose a word that ends with 「ん」(「ン」).)

Actually, I had written a post a Japanese games, including this one, about a year ago (click here to see it).

In that earlier post, we played Shiritori in the comments section.
It was popular with visitors to my blog, and it was fun.

So, let’s try “round two”!

I’ll start with the first word…「たまご」(tamago (egg)).

Anyone can play. Write the next word (that must begin with 「ご」(“go”)) in the comments section of this post.
Usually this game is played only usuing Japanese words…but we’ll play using both Japanese and English.

Just remember, you can’t use a word that ends with 「ん」(“n”), and you can’t repeat a word that’s already been used.

Brain Test

8 Jan

I found a Japanese website that has IQ-type games.
These games give you ten – fifteen problems and then tells you the equivalent age of your “brain age” (rather than an IQ).
The “ideal age” is twenty-years old, according to the site.

On the first test, you click “START” and then after a three second countdown a set of numbers will flash on the screen:

In the example above, the numbers 3, 9, 8 appear.

Then the numbers will quickly be replaced by blank circles:

The goal is to click the blank circles in the same order that the numbers appeared in, from lowest to highest (so in this example, first you’d click the circle where “3” was, then the one that had “8” and finally the circle that had the “9”.

In the bottom of the screen, in the lower left-hand corner, it tell how many problems are remain in the game.
In the lower right-hand corner, there are two numbers…the first one is the number of questions you answered correctly and the other is how many you missed.

At the end of the game, it will tell you “the age of your brain”. As I mentioned above, 20 years old is best.

Click here to try this game.


In Test 2, about fifteen math problems will appear. But, rather than tell what the sum is, you have to choose the missing “+”, “-“, “X”, or “÷” to make each problem correct.

In the example above, the correct choice would be the plus sign (“+”) because 11 + 2 = 13.

At the end, your “brain age” is calculated on both the number of correct answers as well as how quickly you answered the questions.

Click here to take this test.


Test 3 can be taken in a number of different languages including Japanese or English because you need to read the names of the colors shown.

I prefer to play this game in Japanese but there’s a choice of ten different languages, so you can choose whichever is easier for you before you click the “START” button.

After you choose your language preference and click “START”, a name of a color will be shown in large letters. And the letters will be in one color or another.
And below that word, the names of six colors will be written in various colors.

The idea is to notice the color that the word at the top is written in (regardless of what color it says), and click the name of that color from the six choices below (regardless of what color those letters are).

In this example, 「みどり」 is shown but it’s printed in red, so you’d click 「あか」.

Or, in English…

It says “White” at the top but the letters are red, so you’d click “red” from the list at the bottom.

Click here to play this game.

So, after you finish tell me in the comments what your “brain age” is according to each test. (On test one I scored a brain age of “39 years old”, on test two I got “51”, and on test three it said my brain age is “29 years old”. That averages to 39.6 years old. I am 40 years old, so…)


21 Jun

I’ve written an earlier post (click here to read it), Japan has many types of 「パチンコ」 (pachinko) machines.

If you want to know about what 「パチンコ」 (pachinko) is, you can read my earlier posts that I wrote about it.
(click here and here).

「パチンコ」 (pachinko) is often called “Japanese pinball”…and like pinball machines, 「パチンコ」 (pachinko) machines are decorated with pictures of famous people or characters.

In Japan, there are Spiderman, JAWS, Marilyn Monroe, 「ウルトラマン」 (Ultraman), and 「七人の侍」 ( The Seven Samurai) 「パチンコ」 (pachinko) machines.

That’s just an example. There are many others.
There’s even a 「パチンコ」 (pachinko) machine for the Japanese pop singer 「倖田來未」 (Koda Kumi):

(Click here to see the Koda Kumi Pachinko website).

As I mentioned in the earlier post I mentioned above (click here to read it), there are also KISS and Star Wars 「パチンコ」 (pachinko) machines:

kiss-pachinko(Click here to see the KISS Pachinko website.)

star_wars-pachinko(Click here to see the Star Wars Pachinko website.)

Now there’s a new 「パチンコ」 (pachinko) machine. And it’s also decorated with images from American pop-culture.
It’s the Bon-Jovi 「パチンコ」 (pachinko) machine. It plays some songs by the band and has cartoon images in their likeness.

bonjovi-pachinko(Click here to visit the Bon Jovi Pachinko website).