TAIKEN Card Game

Taiken: History Mystery is an interactive educational card game about surviving the Japanese Canadian internment. Ready-to-play printed sets will soon be available through our museum shop and our Journeys Outreach Kits. Or, you can download the files below to print your own set.

Standard gameplay methods are suitable for 2-5 players, ages 11 and up. Younger children can play Memory Matchup with the deck’s Start and End cards (see rules booklet).




When you play Taiken: History Mystery, you will meet a number of remarkable Japanese Canadians who were alive during the 1940s, a time when the Canadian government carried out racist policies that changed the lives of Japanese Canadians forever.

Your goal is to find out how one person made their way through this tumultuous time by choosing the correct three red “event” cards that link their pre-1940s life to their post-1940s life. Claim, discard, and trade cards until you have solved your History Mystery.


Harry-card          Mary-card           


Download your own game set:

Game rules

Japanese Canadian history in a nutshell

To make your own Taiken: History Mystery game set, print the two files linked above and any one of the four card and answer key sets below. If possible, print the answer keys double-sided, and use heavier paper such as cardstock for the cards. Cut out each of the cards on the dotted lines, and shuffle them into a deck. Fold each of the name card/answer key sheets in quarters so that the answers are not visible. Now you’re ready to play!

Choose one deck: Matsu, Tsuru, Tabi, or Daruma; and print both the cards and the answer keys. For extra challenge, mix and match!

MATSU deck cards

MATSU deck answer keys

TSURU deck cards

TSURU deck answer keys

TABI deck cards

TABI deck answer keys

DARUMA deck cards

DARUMA deck answer keys

The Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre is proud to produce this educational resource and would like to acknowledge the generous support for this project from Metro Vancouver, the National Association of Japanese Canadians, BC Arts Council, and the Government of British Columbia.

With thanks to the card subjects and their families; Nikkei National Museum staff and volunteers; student, teacher, and community beta testers; the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre; Kamloops Japanese Canadian Museum & Archives; and McMaster Alumni.






Metro Vancouver Logo