Family Members Challenge Each Other in Janggi

Janggi, or Korean chess, is one of the folk games favoured by Koreans.

In particular, it is very popular with men for smart moves and as it affords exciting opportunities of checkmate.

All the men of the family of In Yong Il, a 67-year-old living in Ryusong-dong of Central District, Pyongyang, are all janggi lovers.

The old man is a member of the Korean Chess Association and his son and son-in-law are amateurs.

Among his different sizes of chessboards and pieces made with different materials he likes best a jade board and pieces. He only uses them on special occasions including on folk holidays or when he competes with strong opponents.

According to him, his son and son-in-law have never defeated him, but they are unrivalled players in their workplaces.

Janggi game has been a regular part of the routine on Sundays or holidays when all his family members get together, and the match between his son and son-in-law is always the highlight as they are on a par with each other in moves.

Once, they ended in a draw and so they were compelled to resume the match the following Sunday.

“As a frequent visitor to his family, I am the umpire of their game. Though In Yong Il is better than me, since he is the same family member, the fairest umpire is none other than me,” said Kim Jong Son, a neighbour of In and 64-year-old member of the KCA.

“Janggi adds zest to my family. I welcome janggi visitors and willingly teach them how to play the match. It is another pleasure of mine,” said In.

In the DPRK, not only adults but also kindergarteners like to play this intelligence game.

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