Traditional games in South Korea

Traditional games in South Korea

Traditional games in South Korea

Nowadays, with the continuous advancement of technology every ten years, it is said that the age of using smartphones is getting younger and younger, perhaps this is why we now see many young children insist on using smartphones instead of playing outdoors. Most children you see would be holding gadgets like mobile phones and tablets even when they’re outside of their houses. Digital games are very different from traditional games because traditional games are usually free games that you can play with your friends and neighbors to express emotions, build friendships, and enjoy a simple life while you’re young.

Ziptoss is a real estate company based in South Korea that helps foreigners find homes that would best fit them. They also give guides and information about Korean culture, arts, and lifestyle. In this article, ZIptoss will be talking about a few of the traditional Korean games that some might find nostalgic, and interesting for others to try with their children.

Spinning Top(팽이 놀이)

The spinning top is made by sharply cutting one end of a small cylindrical piece of wood. In South Korea, people usually play the spinning top game on frozen ice in winter. They let the topspin on the ice, then hit it with a stick tied with a rope to keep it spinning. The person with the longest spin time wins the game.

Slap-match game(딱지) 

You might have seen this game in the Netflix series “Squid Game”, or in the famous variety show “Running Man”. It is played with two pieces of colored paper folded together and is also called ttakji (딱지). It has a flat shape, but it is thick because it is made of two sheets of paper folded together. It’s pretty easy to play. One player must leave their Ttakji (딱지) on the ground, and another player must try to hit it until it overturns or goes out. The goal of the game is to hit as many Ttakji as possible. In the early 2000s, Ttakji that was made of rubber became very popular. They are usually sold in popular animation and character shapes. There are many colorful designs to choose from, which were very popular with children at the time, and if you are a bad player, you may lose all your Ttakji to your friends, so a lot of practice is usually done for the sake of protecting your ttakji collection.

“Hibiscus has bloomed(무궁화 꽃이 피었습니다)”

This game was called “Red light, Green light” in the Netflix series “Squid Game”. Basically, this game needs a large group of people to play with, and there will be a tagger. When the tagger faces his/her back to the others and shouts “Hibiscus has bloomed(무궁화 꽃이 피었습니다)”, the players will slowly walk up behind the tagger. When the tagger finishes saying this sentence, he/she will turn around, and the rest of the players should not be seen moving as much as possible. If the tagger sees you move, you will be captured. This is repeated several times, the tagger must try to catch the players before they reach the starting line, and if one player caught the current tagger, then he/she will be the next tagger.