Published on January 5th, 2015 | by Marissa Lieberman

Game Show Programs Anime Style!

“On Your Mark…Get Set…Go!” is something you will often hear before a race, a challenge or a game. Game shows have been popular with people of all ages for over forty years–and with good reason. Who doesn’t love a little friendly competition? From Match Game and Jeopardy to Double Dare and Minute to Win It, game shows incorporate trivia, physical challenges or some kind of skill set that players must master either individually or as a team in order to win. Game shows are just as fun to watch as they are to participant in, making them a perfect activity for large crowds.

Game show programs are fairly common in mainstream tween and teen library programming. Depending on the show(s) you are featuring in your program, they often cost little to re-create, can be done in any size space, and can easily be adapted for the age, knowledge base and number of people attending. Once you have a format that works, you can switch out the questions or challenges and repeat as often as you would like! The diversity and appeal of game shows make them perfect program additions to an anime club or convention. You don’t need to be an anime fan to add some anime style to popular game shows.  Information for the questions can be found from quick online searches, in your library’s manga collection (if you have one) or by asking the kids and teens. Listed below are tips for re-creating my favorite go-to anime game show programs.

Minute to Win It


Minute to Win It is a popular game show on NBC where players have 60 seconds to complete a challenge. There are some challenges in this document ( that already fit; others can be adapted to give them a more Japanese/anime feel. Additionally, you can make up your own challenges!

Here are some challenge suggestions to get you started:

  • Chop Stack Players use only chopsticks to stack three tubes of Chapstick.
  • M&M Race. Players must move all of the M&Ms from one bowl to the other using only their chopsticks.
  • Card Ninja. Players throw cards (use common Yugioh or Pokemon cards if you can) and try and make them stick into a whole watermelon, halved.
  •             Option 2: Glue felt on the back and have players throw cards onto a felt board.
  • Ramune Challenge. Ramune is a kind of soda from Japan and available in the U.S (Asian markets have them, as do stores like F.Y.E). They come in a cool bottle but are very tricky to open. Players have 60 seconds to open one.
  • Ninja  Star Throw. I bought Styrofoam and thick paper stars used for party decorations. To make the edges stronger, I taped them. Players stood near the Styrofoam and had to throw their stars so they would stick on the Styrofoam.
  • Pretzel Kanji. Print out various words and sentences in Japanese. Use mini pretzel sticks and have players try and re-create the words and sentences using the pretzels. If they do it well enough in 60 seconds, they win.


Jeopardy can be done multiple ways, but I prefer using Power Point. If you have done a Power Point Jeopardy program in the past, keep the grid on the first page and the slides after it, but delete everything else. If you are in need of a template, a quick Google search will bring up many options. Feel free to jazz up your game with music and sound effects.

Once you have your template set up, it’s time to fill in the categories and questions! I like to put a picture next to the answer. Remember to double check that all of your links and Animation buttons work properly (ie: if you click on Naruto for 200, it should bring you to the proper slide, and the answer should only appear after you click!).



$25,000 Pyramid

An oldie but goodie, create your Pyramid with separate sections on Power Point. When a person chooses a category (ie: “Gotta Catch ‘em All”), have the category link to a consecutive set of 15 or so slides with a picture and word/name on each slide. This will make it easier to click through as the teams try and describe and guess what is on the slides.

To play, one person faces the screen and gives clues to the other person who is facing away from the screen. The clue giver must describe what is on the screen–it could be the name of a character, the name of a show, a type of Japanese snack, etc. Keep track of how many correct guesses each team completes in the time allotted.



Once you have a number of games in your arsenal, you will see how easy they are to do over and over again. Programs such as Jeopardy and $25,000 Pyramid require no set-up, so keep your files handy in case you need a last minute program to do. Take note of how your questions and overall flow of the program work with your audience and tweak as needed for next time. Don’t forget about prizes! I have found that giving out raffle tickets to winners works well, especially for Minute to Win It, where anyone who completes a challenge in the 60 second time frame is a “winner.” Then, you can pull as many prizes as you have available. Happy gaming!

About the Author

"Marissa Lieberman is a children’s librarian at the East Orange Public Library in New Jersey. She graduated with her MLS from Queens College in 2011, and has worked part-time at various libraries in Nassau County, New York before moving to New Jersey. An anime fangirl for over thirteen years, Marissa is grateful to be able to share her passion with her library patrons by running the tween anime club and organizing Tosho-con, a full day anime and comic convention. Marissa has presented professionally about anime and manga; she is also a reviewer for Voices of Youth Advocates (VOYA), School Library Journal, and No Flying, No Tights. She created based on her experiences doing anime programming and manga collection development."

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