Mancala is an old board game with a count-and-capture theme. Hundreds of variations can be found all around the world. Stones or seeds can be used as playing pieces, and holes dug in the ground or boards with holes can be used as holding cups.
Mancala's heritage comes from Eritrea and Ethiopia, and it dates back to the 6th and 7th centuries, and it is being celebrated today. Mancala comes from the Arabic word "Naqala," which means "to move."
Thousands of years ago, there were references to the game. Although the setting is basic enough to be played on an earthen surface with seeds and holes, there is no significant archaeological evidence to support an earlier origin.
- Played on a two-rank Mancala board, Oware is a popular board game in West Africa and the Caribbean. The Mancala game Oware is the most popular.
- Oware Nam Nam is a game played by youngsters in and around Ghana on the same board, however, it is just as complicated and distinct from Oware.
- Another name for this variant is Bao. In Kenya, there are two variants of Bao played on a 2 × 8 board: one for children and beginners, and another with 32 pieces.
- Another popular game in Zanzibar, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, and eastern Zaire is Bao Kiswahili, which is played on a four-rank Mancala board.
- The game of Bao Kiswahili is one of the most difficult of the Mancala games.
How Do You Play Mancala Game?
There are around 300 different Mancala games; some are easy, such as Kalah or Oware, while others, such as Omweso or Bao, can be quite complex, as they are played on two boards and occasionally in the opposite way.
1 Mancala board and 48 stones.
The Mancala 'board' is divided into two rows, each with six holes or pits. If you don't have a Mancala board, an empty egg carton can be used in its place. Then, in each of the 12 holes, four items (marbles or stones) are inserted. It makes no difference what color the pieces are.
The goal of this game is to see who can fill their store with the most stones.
- One player will begin the game by selecting any stone-filled pocket on their own side.
- The player will remove all of the stones from that pocket and place one stone at a time into surrounding pockets in a clockwise direction until all of the stones have been placed.
- A stone is deposited in a player's own shop if they come across it.
- If there are enough stones to go past the player's own store, the stones are dumped in the pockets on the opposite side. However, if they come across the store of another player, that store is skipped.
- The player gets another turn if the last stone is deposited in his or her own store.
- If the final stone lands in an empty pocket on the player's side, the player takes this stone, as well as the stones of the other players on the opposite side of the empty pocket, and places them in their own store.
- Place all captured pieces in your Mancala at all times (store).
- When all six pockets on one side of the Mancala board are empty, the game is over.
- When the game is over, the player who still has pieces on his or her side of the board captures them all.
- Count how many pieces there are in each Mancala. The player who has the most pieces wins.
- The game is always played in a counter-clockwise circuit around the board (to the right)
- You are the owner of the store on your right. That's where you'll keep your winning seeds.
- Your pits are the six pits in close proximity to you.
- To pick up and place seeds, only use one hand.
- You must move the seeds in a pit once you have touched them.
- Put seeds only in your own store, not in your opponent's.
Mancala is a game that originated in Africa and is one of the oldest games in the world. There are several versions, as with many traditional games, so players should agree on all rules ahead of time.
- Starting with your third hole is often regarded as the finest opening move if you are going first. This will land your final piece in your mancala zone, granting you not just a point but also a second move before your turn ends.
- When going first, starting from the rightmost or second-rightmost hole is a solid choice. Either of these plays will place a stone in your opponent's third hole, stopping them from making the same excellent opening move you did. Because you want it to be empty, the rightmost hole is the best choice.
- Early in the game, empty your rightmost hole. Because your rightmost hole is adjacent to your mancala zone, whenever you pick up a single stone from that hole as your move, you will score a point and receive another move.
- Create empty holes on your side of the board if you're using the capture rule. By ending a turn on one of your opponent's stones, you'll have additional chances to capture their stones. Taking control of a pile of stones can be extremely effective.
Poker vs Mancala
Poker is a card game that is played all over the world.
Mancala is a board game that has evolved over time and can be played with 1 mancala board and 48 stones.
Poker can only be played with cards and chips.
Mancala can be played in any setting. Players also make holes in the sand to mark their pits and they use stones or glass beads as well.
Mancala Game FAQ’s
1.) Is mancala an African game?
Wari, Warri, Awari, Oware, and Wouri are only a few of the various variations played by nations and peoples all over Africa. The game is popular in the Baltic regions of Europe, but it has yet to spread throughout the continent. It traveled to India, Malaysia, Indonesia, and China with Arab culture and trade.
2.) What is the purpose of mancala?
The goal of the game is to collect as many pieces as possible by the end. One of the stones in each pocket can do this until the stones run out. When all six spots on one side of the Mancala board are vacant, the game is over. When the game is over, the player with the most pieces on his side of the board wins the game.
3.) Is mancala hard to play?
The mancala rules and online mancala tactics are rather simple. The game is not difficult to play if you follow the above-written instructions on how to play mancala.