The best games from Seiji Kanai 🇯🇵👨 2024

Looking for a really good game from game designer Seiji Kanai 👨? Then we have just the thing: the list with the best Seiji Kanai games 2024.

Who is Seiji Kanai anyway?

Seiji Kanai has been designing dice, card & board games since 2005. The game designer hails from Präfektur Kanagawa, Japan🇯🇵, was born in 1981 and currently lives in Japan🇯🇵. He is also known as カナイセイジ, Kanai Sage.

Kanai's first game "Dragon Rush" he developed in 2005 at the age of 24 - so he has been designing games for over 19 years. Famous Kanai games are for example Love Letter und die Love-Letter-Serie, Lost Legacy & BraveRats.

Who is Seiji Kanai anyway?

Seiji Kanai has been designing dice, card & board games since 2005. The game designer hails from Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan🇯🇵, was born in 1981 and currently lives in Japan🇯🇵. To our knowledge, it is currently the only professional analog game designer among the nearly 300 in Japan. Kanai, by the way, is spelled カナイセイジ in Japanese, sometimes called "Kanai Sage."

Kanai's first game "Dragon Rush" was developed in 2005 at the age of 24 - so he's been designing games for over 19 years of games. Famous Kanai games include Love Letter and the Love Letter series, Lost Legacy & BraveRats.

Game fair in Essen & awards from Germany brought the breakthrough

In 2008, he exhibited for the first time at SPIEL'08 via JAPON BRAND. In 2012, he was at Spiel'12 with the game "Love Letter". Both the €7 variant with a red bag that was sold initially and the version subsequently sold without a bag for €3 sold out in a very short time.

In 2014, "Love Letter" won the 4th prize at the Deutscher Spielepreis 2014. It was the first Japanese game to win this award.

Game inventor already in his teens

Kanai started making simple "Sugoroku" (a Japanese version of Pachisi) when he was still in his teens. His dream was to one day be able to make a living solely from creating new games.

After dropping out of college, he lived with his parents in Tokyo and supported himself with odd jobs. The underlying motivation for his game development is not so much financial gain, but the joy of providing entertainment for others, he says.

Love Letter brought the breakthrough

There was a contest called "500 Yen Games" at Japan's largest board game event, Game Market. In 2010, he planned to make a game ("Regality & Religion") at a low production cost and sell it for 500 yen (about €4.40 at the time). A publisher had a special offer to print 16 cards very cheaply.

Then, after another game in 2011 ("R"), he finally showed Love Letter at the 2012 "Game Market." At the game fair, publisher AEG also became aware of the game and acquired the license. Everything after that is history.

How good are "Seiji Kanai" games?

There are 4 games by Seiji Kanai in our Top1000 games list, making Kanai the #61 best game author out of a total of 708 authors in our database.

More information about Kanai

More information about Kanai can be found on:

List of best games by Seiji Kanai 2024

In this list we have listed the best board games that Seiji Kanai either designed himself - or was involved in designing.

Unfortunately, not all of Seiji Kanai's games are currently available. In the following list you can find all dice, board & card games by Seiji Kanai that you can buy 2024:

This list was last updated on May 13, 2024. We compared 48 board games for this list and selected the top 24. There's also a print version for this list.
  1. Love Letter

    All details for the board game Love Letter and similar games

    Love Letter is a charming and strategic card game where players vie for the affection of a noble Princess, aspiring to become her most trusted confidant. Utilizing a blend of deduction, risk, and luck, players must navigate the royal court by enlisting influential characters to deliver their love letter to the Princess.

    More details for Love Letter
    • 2 - 6 Players
    • 20 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Immediately playable

    Video reviews for Love Letter

    • YouTube Review for the game "Love Letter" by Shut Up & Sit Down
      Video is in English
  2. Love Letter

    All details for the board game Love Letter and similar games

    In Love Letter, you must compete with other suitors to deliver a romantic letter to Princess Annette, who has secluded herself in the palace.

    Nominated for 14 awards and won 7.

    More details for Love Letter
    • 2 - 4 Players
    • 20 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Immediately playable

    Video reviews for Love Letter

    • YouTube Review for the game "Love Letter" by Shut Up & Sit Down
      Video is in English
  3. Love Letter: Premium Edition

    All details for the board game Love Letter: Premium Edition and similar games

    Love Letter: Premium Edition is an enhanced version of the beloved game Love Letter, offering both physical and gameplay upgrades to the original. This edition brings a new level of sophistication and enjoyment to the game, making it suitable for larger groups and adding variety to the gameplay.

    More details for Love Letter: Premium Edition
    • 2 - 8 Players
    • 20 - 30 Minutes
    • 8+ years old
    • Immediately playable

    Video reviews for Love Letter: Premium Edition

    • YouTube Review for the game "Love Letter: Premium Edition" by Shut Up & Sit Down
      Video is in English
  4. Love Letter: Adventure Time

    All details for the board game Love Letter: Adventure Time and similar games
    • 2 - 4 Players
    • 20 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Immediately playable
  5. Star Wars: Jabba's Palace – A Love Letter Game

    All details for the board game Star Wars: Jabba's Palace – A Love Letter Game and similar games
    • 2 - 6 Players
    • 20 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Immediately playable
  6. Lovecraft Letter

    All details for the board game Lovecraft Letter and similar games

    Lovecraft Letter transports you into the eerie world of H.P. Lovecraft in the 1920s. This card game, a unique take on the Love Letter system, blends mystery with an "insanity" mechanic that adds depth and intrigue to the gameplay.

    More details for Lovecraft Letter
    • 2 - 6 Players
    • 5 - 15 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Immediately playable

    Video reviews for Lovecraft Letter

    • YouTube Review for the game "Lovecraft Letter" by Shut Up & Sit Down
      Video is in English
  7. Infinity Gauntlet: A Love Letter Game

    All details for the board game Infinity Gauntlet: A Love Letter Game and similar games

    Infinity Gauntlet: A Love Letter Game brings the epic struggle from the Marvel Universe to the tabletop in a dynamic adaptation of the classic Love Letter mechanics. This version transforms the game into a thrilling one-vs-many experience, pitting one player as the formidable Thanos against a team of heroes aiming to thwart his universe-altering plans.

    Nominated for 1 award.

    More details for Infinity Gauntlet: A Love Letter Game
    • 2 - 6 Players
    • 15 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Immediately playable

    Video reviews for Infinity Gauntlet: A Love Letter Game

    • YouTube Review for the game "Infinity Gauntlet: A Love Letter Game" by BoardGameGeek
      Video is in English
  8. Love Letter: The Hobbit – The Battle of the Five Armies

    All details for the board game Love Letter: The Hobbit – The Battle of the Five Armies and similar games
    • 2 - 4 Players
    • 20 - 30 Minutes
    • 8+ years old
    • Immediately playable
  9. Archer: Once You Go Blackmail...

    All details for the board game Archer: Once You Go Blackmail... and similar games
    • 2 - 4 Players
    • 20 - 30 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Immediately playable
  10. BraveRats

    All details for the board game BraveRats and similar games

    Nominated for 1 award and won 1.

    More details for BraveRats
    • 2 Players
    • 15 Minutes
    • 8+ years old
    • Immediately playable
  11. Lost Legacy: Second Chronicle – Vorpal Sword & Whitegold Spire

    All details for the board game Lost Legacy: Second Chronicle – Vorpal Sword & Whitegold Spire and similar games
    • 2 - 6 Players
    • 10 Minutes
    • 14+ years old
    • Immediately playable
  12. Lost Legacy: Third Chronicle – Sacred Grail & Staff of Dragons

    All details for the board game Lost Legacy: Third Chronicle – Sacred Grail & Staff of Dragons and similar games
    • 2 - 6 Players
    • 10 Minutes
    • 14+ years old
    • Immediately playable
  13. Lost Legacy

    All details for the board game Lost Legacy and similar games
    • 2 - 6 Players
    • 20 - 30 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Immediately playable
  14. Zaginione Dziedzictwo: Gwiezdne Ostrze

    All details for the board game Zaginione Dziedzictwo: Gwiezdne Ostrze and similar games
    • 2 - 4 Players
    • 10 - 20 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Immediately playable
  15. Chronicle

    All details for the board game Chronicle and similar games
    • 3 - 6 Players
    • 30 Minutes
    • 12+ years old
    • Easy to learn

    Video reviews for Chronicle

    • YouTube Review for the game "Chronicle" by Shut Up & Sit Down
      Video is in English
  16. Cheaty Mages!

    All details for the board game Cheaty Mages! and similar games

    Nominated for 1 award and won 1.

    More details for Cheaty Mages!
    • 3 - 6 Players
    • 30 Minutes
    • 12+ years old
    • Easy to learn
  17. Mai-Star

    All details for the board game Mai-Star and similar games
    • 3 - 6 Players
    • 30 Minutes
    • 14+ years old
    • Easy to learn
  18. Gods' Gambit

    All details for the board game Gods' Gambit and similar games
    • 2 - 6 Players
    • 20 Minutes
    • Easy to learn
  19. RR

    All details for the board game RR and similar games
    • 2 Players
    • 15 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Easy to learn
  20. Sword Art Online Board Game: Sword of Fellows

    All details for the board game Sword Art Online Board Game: Sword of Fellows and similar games
    • 1 - 4 Players
    • 30 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Easy to learn
  21. Adventure Tours

    All details for the board game Adventure Tours and similar games

    Nominated for 1 award.

    More details for Adventure Tours
    • 3 - 6 Players
    • 30 - 45 Minutes
    • 10+ years old
    • Easy to learn
  22. Say Bye to the Villains

    All details for the board game Say Bye to the Villains and similar games
    • 3 - 8 Players
    • 45 Minutes
    • 14+ years old
    • Easy to learn
  23. Eight Epics

    All details for the board game Eight Epics and similar games
    • 1 - 8 Players
    • 30 Minutes
    • 14+ years old
    • Easy to learn
  24. Unicornus Knights

    All details for the board game Unicornus Knights and similar games
    • 2 - 6 Players
    • 60 - 90 Minutes
    • 12+ years old
    • Medium difficulty

    Video reviews for Unicornus Knights

    • YouTube Review for the game "Unicornus Knights" by BoardGameGeek
      Video is in English

Didn't find the game you were looking for?

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