Lagim Card Game: PH folklore-themed card game

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Lagim card game is a collectible games based on Filipino folklore and myths. Players take turns defending their Baryos while they master the creatures of the dark forest to unleash attacks.

We all know just how nuanced and layered Philippines folklore can be. Have you ever wondered what it would be like to experience an actual “gabi ng lagim” in real life? We personally don’t think we’ll survive such an encounter, especially if we end up facing creatures like the “aswang” and “sigbin”, a goat- or dog-like nocturnal creature said to suck the blood of its victims. From common creatures like the Manananggal to ones we’ve probably never heard about coming from different islands, the call to elevate our homegrown stories has always been prevalent.

To all thrill-seekers and folklore enthusiasts who think otherwise may want to try this unique card game called Lagim, where they can pit their skills against some of our country’s scariest and most gruesome mythological creatures. Hopefully, the Lagim card game is an addicting battle royale between friends.


let the game begin...

History of Lagim Card Game

Developed by an all-Filipino team at Fictionminds, Lagim is a game of strategy and luck. The intricacy of the illustrations also makes the cards a good art collector’s treasure, especially if you like highly gothic and detailed illustrations with elements of dark art.

Lagim is so much more than a card game. It is a functional art piece, in the sense that even outside of playing the game, you can still see the artistic value in its meticulous design and craftsmanship; that it can be a personal collection, creative gift, or a family heirloom, and that it is a one-of-a-kind vessel and keeper of the Filipino artistic expression.

Lagim Card Game: PH folklore-themed card game
The Dark Soul Coin and the Soul coin
Lagim Card Game: PH folklore-themed card game
Lagim basic game set

The game intends to overcome any barrier between the ages of Filipinos by utilizing vivid narrating and intuitive ongoing interaction. Lagim desires to share the uniqueness of Filipino culture as the game is delighted in with family and friends.

The design of Lagim Game Card is an excellent association of gothic, archaic, and Filipino craftsmanship styles. The stunning craftsmanship of the game’s cards and parts, for example, the Soul and Dark Soul coins, show ethnic imagery and symbolism noticeable in local folklore and are suggestive of the traditions and history that it was enlivened by. Lagim separates itself from different games in that it tends to be viewed as a bit of workmanship itself, one that you can value even outside of playing the game.

Playing Lagim is a straightforward affair where your objective is to survive the long and lightless nights of the 17th century to be the last Baryo standing. The Filipino language is used for all the major actions, so Pinoys will think in the vernacular; to attack is “maghasik ng lagim,” while a counterattack is termed “pagtauli.”

It’s an apt claim. The combat, the meat of the game, seriously has no-frills: you can only attack another Baryo if you are in possession of one of the four kinds of monsters. Specially designed gear cards for these mythological monsters (called Hiwaga cards) are also available and if you’re lucky to have one that matches your monster, you can buff your attacking creature, making it more powerful.

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Lagim Card Game: PH folklore-themed card game
The Sigbin is a limited edition in game card

Conquer the creatures

There is unrest between the Baryos, as mystifying beings and savage beasts freely roam about the world, infiltrating villages, and endangering the human population. Use your magical prowess to gain control over those that terrorize your village and unleash them upon your enemies! With both luck and wits, make use of whatever is at your disposal and strategize your way to victory! In the end, those that keep their souls, keep the peace. Until the next battle, that is…

ALSO READ: 13 Travel Hacks to Save Money: Ultimate Guide

How to play Lagim Card Game

Lagim can be played by 2-6 players. Each player takes turns battling against monsters and each other while defending their Baryos. During a player’s turn, they are referred to as the Active Player. The Active Player is allowed to perform 1 action during their turn. This action depends on their current cards and strategy.

    • Play the Dark Soul Coin to instantly gain 2 Lagim cards to harness the power of darkness to attack and overwhelm your opponents.
    • Sacrifice a Soul Coin. If the Active Player, for any reason wishes to get a fresh set of cards, as a sacrifice to the dark forces they must offer 1 Soul Coin to the forest in exchange for a new set of Baryo cards.
      The Soul Coin serves as the player’s life points in the game. A player is eliminated once they run out of Soul Coins.
    • Play card abilities. Baryo card deck comes with standalone cards that can be utilized or can be played without the support from Lakas or Lagim cards. Depending on the player’s luck, the Active Player can choose to play a card from their hand to grant them special abilities that can summon powerful cards.
    • Battle a Lagim card from the deck enables the Active Player to capture it when they surpass its entity level using Lakas or Lakas + Kontra cards. Having a Lagim card on hand grants the players the ability to attack other Baryos on their next turn and acquire more Soul Coins from successful battles.

    • Engage in battle; Attack a Baryo to eliminate other players and become the last Baryo standing. Use Lagim cards and strengthen them further with Hiwaga cards to attack and strike down your opponents with ease.
      Successful attacks grant the player additional Soul coins.

Learn more about the complete battle mechanics and advanced battle moves to cast Lagim over your opponents by downloading the game mechanics booklet below.
lagim card game creatures giant and dwarf
The six-headed giant (left) and the dwarf (right0
Lagim is a game of strategy and luck

A great mechanic, and one of the few games that has this I believe, is in how one acquires a monster (or a Lagim card) that enables you to attack your enemies, the other Baryos. You literally pay the price of a coin (Dark Soul Coin) for access to dark magic. If you can’t pay, then you can opt to capture one of these creatures by drawing from the Lagim (monsters) deck. But beware, like a Faustian pact that can always turn when you least expect it, the random creature may prove too powerful to wrestle under your control. If you fail, you end up losing one of your in-game hit points (Soul Coins) and the creature escapes back to the wild.

While we often found the decks hard to shuffle in the traditional way (I don’t recommend shuffling in the usual way at all, since it will fold or at least dogear the thick cards), one of the major and common sticking points became misdeals; simply not getting enough Lakas or any defender cards. We often had enough gear, but nobody to wield them and gameplay would stop. This was solved by making sure we had shuffled the deck better and scattered all the Lakas cards throughout the thick Baryo deck.

What important in Lagim Card Game is the total experience rather than just the game. People poring over it like vinyl or cassette tape albums of old is what we want and that was very satisfying.

Lagim Card Game Started kit starts at P3,850 and available at their official website,

Why not book a Manila City Tour? Explore and discover things around Manila. Your tour kicks off from the financial district of Makati including Fort Bonifacio and the American Cemetery, then moves on to the country’s capital, Manila. There, you will first go for a brief picture stop at Rizal Park, in honor of the country’s national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal. Then, you will go to the historic Walled City of Intramuros where you will travel through the cobbled streets of San Agustin Church, the country’s oldest stone church, to view its wide collection of ecclesiastical icons, vestments, and other religious articles.

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