Parchís

Parchís

Parchís (parxís; Basque: partxis) is a Spanish board game of the Cross and Circle family. It is an adaptation of the Indian game Pachisi.

Parchís was a very popular game in Spain at one point, and it is still popular. Since it uses a die, Parchís is not usually regarded as an abstract strategy game like checkers or chess. It does not depend entirely on luck either, since the four pawns under a player's command demand some sort of strategy.

Parchís is license-free in Spain, so in stores it is just as easy to find as a deck of cards, and is usually cheaper. Although the original game allows up to four players (that is, the board counts four colors: yellow, blue, red and green), six-player versions are not hard to find (adding orange and purple, in that order), and eight-player boards can be found in big toy stores.

Traditionally, each player has a cubilete (dice cup) to shake and toss the die. This does not affect the course of the game itself, but most habitual players find it imperative.

Rules

This game is played with 1 die and 4 pawns per player. Dice cups are optional, but most game sets include them. As in Pachisi, the aim is simple: players compete on leading their four pawns out of their nest, around the whole board, into the color track and up to the center of the board, chasing and "eating" each other in the process.

A roll of 5 forces the player to release one pawn from the nest (if there are any left), and a roll of 6 gives the player an extra turn. When the player has 4 pawns in the game (outside the nest), whenever he gets a 6, he can move 7 squares.

If ever three 6's are rolled in a row, the last piece moved is killed and returned to the nest. If the last piece moved was in the final coloured ramp, it is only moved to the bottom of it.

When a pawn "eats" an opponent's pawn (by landing on the same square, if it is not a safe square), it "kills" it, sending it back to the nest, and advances 20 squares. When a pawn reaches the end, one of the other pawns of the same color can advance 10 squares.

Blockades can also be made with 2 pawns, but only in safe squares. In some variants, a blockade can be formed in any square, if both pawns belong to the same player -- otherwise the last to arrive would kill the first. Pawns cannot jump over blockades, which causes "jams", making it easy for players to "eat" each other. A player must open a blockade if he tosses a 6.

See also

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