Mushiking: The King of Beetles is a kid sized card collector where Beetles battle each other. Each time a player battles, they get a new card to add to their collection, either a Beetle or Skill card. The cards have a barcode and the reader mounted on the machine allows the player to use their Beetle or Skill cards.
From their card collection they choose the best Beetle to battle against their friend or computer. By matching the best skills to their Beetle they can maximise their chances of winning. The battles follow the rules of rock, paper, scissors, with the winner then using their skills to damage the opponents beetle. The beetle who loses its life energy first loses the game.
The initial set of 18 Beetle and 18 Skill cards will be updated with new releases at timed intervals; in Japan there are already 250 cards to collect. Rare and special cards will also be inserted into circulation. The cards are very educational with facts about all the beetles on each card.