Sugoroku Library

"Nankyoku Tanken Hikoki Sugoroku" (South Pole Exploration Airplane Sugoroku) Meiji 44th
Produced as a supplement of "Nihon Shonen" (Japanese Boys), concept by Nihon Shonen editorial bureau, picture by Akashi Sekishi, published by Jitsugyo-no-Nippon-sha / size (cm) 54v x 74w

A competitive sugoroku which has 4 start points namely Tokyo, Berlin, London and New York, targeting the only goal South Pole. There are 4 different routes to move forward indicated with different colors. It may even be the first idea of multiple start points.
World famous places and things are drawn in each block like Chinese Wall, Matterhorn of Alps, Vesios Volcano, Lake Titicaca, Gibraltar Fortress, crocodile of Nile River. Because of the nature of airplane sugoroku, there are a few unique rules such like to move forward 3 blocks by "fair wind", to backward 2 blocks by "crash", to backward 1 block by "repair" and to backward 3 blocks by whirlwind/storm.

By the way, it was January of Meiji 45th (1912), the next year of the publication of this sugoroku, when Lieutenant Shirase arrived at the point of latitude 80th degree S. while aiming South Pole. It was 3 teams aiming South Pole at that time, namely Amundssen's from Norway, Scott's from England and Shirase's from Japan. It was December 1911, one month before Shirase gave up his way to further southward, when Amundsen arrived at South Pole for the first time. The team Shirase with 27 persons departed from Shibaura, Tokyo on November 29th of Meiji 43rd, when the sugoroku may have been printed. It was the time when the whole world was in the enthusiasm on this arrival race to South Pole.

* (ref.) H.P. of Museum of Shirase's Exploration to South Pole

*Click the part you want to see in larger picture.

whole picture

goal(the South Pole)