Japanese Folk Games and Entertainment

Folk Games

Japan is a diverse country with anything from highbrow cultural pursuits to lowbrow entertainment. And even though they have a reputation for being overachievers, they have always been looking for ways to escape from the monotony of daily life – just like the rest! 

Takito Akagi, a Japanese gaming expert you can read more about here, gives us a quick overview of Japan’s history of entertainment and the various folk games that you can try right away.

The History of Entertainment in Japan

Japan has a rich history of entertainment and games. While video games and anime are arguably two of the most popular modern mediums of entertainment today, they have got nothing on the Japanese folk games. 

The Japanese cultivated a wide variety of games that were fueled by intellectual challenges, social interaction, and physical ability. Many of them were also considered a form of mental training. 

Games like chopsticks, Riichi Mahjong, and Janken are still used to teach kids basic life skills, such as shape recognition, Math, and strategic thinking. 

Are Modern Japanese Casino Games The Same as Traditional Ones?

It is nice to reminisce the older traditions but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy those strategically exciting games even today. A lot of online casino operators now offer the classic Japanese games in a modern package a.k.a. in mobile and desktop versions. 必要なのはインターネット接続と信頼できるオンラインカジノサイト、たったそれだけ。カジノについてのあらゆる情報を詰め込んだecasinos.jpがあれば百人力、心強い味方として活躍してくれるでしょう。

The platform brings you authentic reviews and information on trending games online from players all over the world, so you can choose yours from only the best of the lot. 

What’s more, you can enjoy up to 160,000 yens in welcome bonuses, 300 free spins, and $500 in cash back – no matter where you are playing from. It doesn’t get better than this!

Traditional Japanese Folk Games

Although not all Japanese games and entertainment options are intellectually stimulating, they do all represent a path out of humdrum life and into the world of fun and excitement. Let’s dive into the list. 


Go is best known as the oldest board game to humankind. This game is played using stones (go-ishi) and each player aims to capture more territory than the opponent. While the rules might sound easy to get your head around, Go is very rich in strategy and deep thinking. It is so complex that it took years for humans to develop a computer that could defeat human intelligence in the game. 


Shogi, also commonly known as Japanese chess, is believed to be based on an Indian game called Chaturanga. It has 20 game pieces, each with a different set of rules and abilities. Unlike most Western board games, which can be learned in an hour or so, mastering Shogi takes anywhere between five to ten years, making it one of the most complex traditional Japanese folk games.


Karuta is a traditional Japanese folk game based on reciting short verses that are found on cards. The participants have to take turns drawing one card each and read the text on it to reveal a sentence. Meanwhile, the other players have to rush to find the card with a picture matching the text on the reader’s origin card. 

Whoever matches the cards first wins the game. This simple game is typically played by children in their learning years but adults who want to practice speed reading actually find the game quite helpful. 


Sugoroku is a classic Japanese board game wherein you throw 6-sided dice to move your token on the board in an effort to reach the end of the board first. It is similar to backgammon, so if you know how to play that then you will be familiar with the premise of this game. The rules are simple, but there is endless room for strategy, so you will never grow bored. 


When it comes to choosing a traditional Japanese game online, you will never run out of options. Most of the above games have been passed down for generations and show no sign of losing popularity. So, whenever you want to test your technical knowledge and strategizing skills, all you need to do is get on a computer and play away.


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