The Hanoi Project (ハノイプロジェクト, Hanoi Purojekuto), also known as the Lost Incident (ロストけん, Rosuto Jiken), is an event that occurred 10 years prior to the start of the Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS anime.[1] Kiyoshi Kogami, a researcher at SOL Technologies, developed and executed the incident without the knowledge of his company.[2] This project resulted in the creation of the Ignis.[3]


10 years before the present, Dr. Kiyoshi Kogami, believed humanity would eventually become extinct since human life always ended in death or due to phenomenons. He sought to create humanity's successor---AI with free will. Together with Kyoko Taki, Aso, and Dr. Genome, Dr. Kogami planned and executed the Hanoi Project, kidnapping six children one-by-one. During their six months of captivity, the children were imprisoned separately in rooms with nothing but VR equipment. Believing that duels were the best way for AI to understand humans, Kogami forced the six children to Duel in a virtual arena where if they did not win, they were electrocuted and starved. Behind the scenes, the scientists used the duel data to create the Ignis, who were modeled after the six children and the Duel Monsters attributes. After the children were rescued, the incident was covered up.

In the aftermath of the incident, several of the children suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, with some taking years of therapy to recover while others have not recovered at all. During the final showdown between Playmaker and Varis, Varis revealed he was the one who reached out to Yusaku. He couldn't stand hearing the pain of the six children so he called the police. Once the incident came to light, Dr. Kogami was imprisoned by SOL Technologies and was able to complete the Ignis before the company infected him with a computer virus to cover up the incident. Furthermore, Dr. Kogami tests several simulations of the Ignis growth and eventually concludes that their continuous development would cause them to supervise and eventually destroy humanity, forming the Knights of Hanoi with his assistants to kill his own creation.

The project's name is the main reason why Yusaku and Kolter suspect the Knights of Hanoi of a major involvement in the incident and thus why they pursue them. Varis confirmed his knowledge of the incident during his Duel with Yusaku,[4] while Kiyoshi, Kyoko Taki, and Aso were all present during the incident, watching the victims' suffering.[3]

People Involved



Victim Effect Status Ignis Attribute Age by the time of abduction
Yusaku Fujiki Post-traumatic stress disorder, strong desire for revenge, 'time stopped moving' for him. Active Ai
Jin Kusanagi Heavy post-traumatic stress disorder, left in a permanent state of shock unable to speak, 'closed his heart' from the world. Incapacitated
Specter Started enjoying life, 'time started moving' for him', grew to distrust humanity. Active Earth EARTH
Takeru Homura Became socially reclusive, severe trauma towards "Despair from the Dark", 'time stopped moving' for him as well due to his parents' death. Active Flame FIRE 6
Windy WIND
Lightning LIGHT



  1. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 19: "The Incident Buried in the Darkness"
  2. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 20: "Unyielding Justice"
  3. 3.0 3.1 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 28: "Final Commander of the Three Knights"
  4. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 12: "Link the Circuit"