Amazingly inexpensive starter set works out to just 2 yen per card.

We often think of 100 yen store Daiso as a place to pick up practical stuff. Cooking gadgets, miniature washing machines, coffee cups that represent surprisingly long-term commitment…that kind of stuff.

Daiso also sells games, though. Up until now, they’ve primarily been travel-size board games, like miniature chess or shogi sets, but this week Daiso stepped into new territory by launching its first-ever collectible trading card game. And yes, the packs are just 100 yen (US$0.68) each.

Titled Mushi Jingi (“Sacred Insect Treasure“), Daiso’s card game has the colorful artwork and framing devices fans have come to expect from Japanese collectible card games. The game is set in a world like our own, except with the key difference that competitive insect battling has become one of the most popular sporting events, thanks to the development of Mushu Jingi Cards that allow their users to control insect warriors in matches against opponents.

There’s even a cast of periphery anime-style human characters. Pictured on the left below is fourth-grader Kanon Kagari, a boy whose kind, shy nature belies his determination to become the insect battling tournament champion. To his right is his rival, brash fifth-grader Renji Ogami, known for his aggressive tactics, and Tengo Kozuka, a researcher in his mid-30s studying the original Mushi Jingi artifacts that the Mushi Jingi Cards attempt to replicate the power of.

Each of the insect-themed creature cards has attack and defense values, as well as special effects and an element (red, green, or blue) that provides potential attack bonuses (red deals double damage to green, green double damage to blue, and blue double damage to red).

The 100-yen Starter Set includes a rule booklet and enough cards to build two distinct decks, meaning that two friends can start playing for less than the cost of single bottle of hot green tea (or hot water) from a vending machine. Booster Packs contain five cards each, with at least one guaranteed hologram super-rare or legend-rare rank card included.

▼ A super-rare Mushi Jingi hologram card

▼ The Starter Set comes with 50 cards, making their effective cost just 2 yen each.

▼ Booster Pack

A demonstration video shows that players start by selecting 20 cards for their deck (with no more than two of a single card type), shuffling, placing the top six cards face down as a defensive perimeter, and drawing four into their hand. On their turn, they can draw a new card, select insects to offer as “food” to gain action points, and attack their opponent’s perimeter, winning once it’s destroyed. A single game takes about 10 to 15 minutes, Daiso says.

And should you need something to carry your Mushi Jingi cards home in, Daiso’s new series tote bags for Japan’s 47 prefectures should do the trick.

Source: Daiso via Hachima Kiko
Images: Daiso
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