“Haiku Journey has stunningly beautiful graphics, relaxing music, superb atmosphere and fun but challenging puzzles. Haiku Journey is a very addictive game and worth the journey to become a Haiku Master.” —Zoomer
In 2006, I served as editor for “Haiku Journey,” a computer game published by Hot Lava (now MumboJumbo). In the game, you travel a route through old Japan to the base of Mt. Fuji as you become a haiku master. To advance, you find words in letter grids of various shapes (the shapes get harder as you progress). As you find words, you start filling in blanks for a mystery haiku—bonus points if you guess it correctly before all the letters are provided (somewhat like TV’s “Wheel of Fortune”). The poems are all by well-published English-language haiku poets, and one pleasure of the game is finding out who wrote each haiku once it’s completed. As you progress through the game, you also build a “book” of haiku that you can stop and peruse at any time. The game also includes power-ups and surprises to keep it interesting and challenging. Whether you use the time mode or the turn mode, the game is very relaxing, a lot like haiku. Beautiful music and great graphics, too.
master level, players typically encounter 150 to 200 haiku, which can take many sessions. If you choose to start again as an apprentice, or switch to a different game mode, you’ll likely encounter entirely different haiku along the way. As you progress through each level, you can also read text I wrote about haiku, including a definition, introductions to haiku techniques, histories of the great Japanese haiku masters, and more.
Click the following links to learn more about the game. You can play free for an hour, or download the full game for just $2.99 at Big Fish (also available at many other locations online, but Big Fish is cheapest). Currently for Windows only. + +
—26 February, 15 May 2013, Redmond, Washington
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