Play The Japanese Word Connection Game

Shiritori just not doing it anymore for you? Need a new word game to challenge yourself solo or with friends? Time to connect… words with more words (excitement follows).

Play The Japanese Word Connection Game 1

The rules are simple

Player 1 chooses two completely unrelated keywords. Starting with the first keyword each player has to say out loud related words until the second keyword is reached. Each player gets to say two words before taking turns. If one of your connected words allows you to have your second word as the keyword you win.

The game is a speed game, as the longer you are allowed to think, the easier it is. So you say the words as soon as they come into your head, and you have a time limit of a few seconds per word.

The explanation sounds complicated, but seeing it in action shows this simple yet challenging game.

Example game

Play The Japanese Word Connection Game 2

Player 2 chooses starting keyword 冷蔵庫 (refrigerator) and ending keyword 猿 (monkey)

Player 1: 冷たい (cold)、氷(ice)
Player 2: 飲み物(drink)、ジュース(juice)
Player 1: オレンジ(orange)、甘い(sweet)
Player 2: バナナ(banana)、猿(monkey)

Player 2 wins

That’s it. Some games go quick like this. Some can get very extended depending on the direction each player takes.

Game Variation

Play The Japanese Word Connection Game 3

A minor twist on this is to see who can create the word connection solo in less words. Player 1 gives two words and Player 2 must create the connections by himself in as few words as possible. Then players switch roles. See who did it in less words. You can also use this variation just to play by yourself.

Sound silly?

It is. But you’ll laugh. And it beats shiritori… Anything beats shiritori. Give it a try.

*Source: this is my variation of a game featured on the variety show さまぁ~ずのご自慢列島ジマング

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Founder of Jalup. Spends most of his time absorbing and spreading thrilling information about learning Japanese.

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