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Japanese island set up as life-sized Game of Life board game


UPI News Service, 06/09/2013 

Japanese officials said they hope a life-size version of the Game of Life board game will boost tourism and help Yoron island recover from punishing typhoons.

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Taknanori Iwamoto, a member of Yoron's Chamber of Commerce said the life-size game -- reminiscent of "The Amazing Race" -- was inspired by a board game marathon the head of the chamber and his family played during a grueling typhoon season last year.

The storms battered the island of 5,400 people, many of whom left after the storm and never came back, ABC News reported Sunday.

"He had some guests with young children and didn't have power. They didn't have anything to do except play board games," Iwamoto said, adding that the shape of the game's spinner was a source of inspiration. "At that time he realized that the piece of the game looked just like Yoron.

"We are currently still repairing and restoring a lot of the area. Roofs were ripped off of hotels and other buildings," Iwamoto said. "The population has decreased and there are not enough people to help rebuild the area. So, this event isn't just fun, it is part of a larger restoration plan."

Participants can pay $5 to join the game, which starts July 20. The island is divided into four sections, each of which has its own life-sized roulette wheel and 18-square-foot boards. A tourist bus acts as a game piece, shuttling tourists from game piece to game piece, ABC News reported.


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