Chopat is a cross and circle game that is mostly played in parts of Gujrat. The game is also known by the name of Chopat. It is similar in some ways to Pachisi, Parcheesi and Ludo. In ancient times this game was played for entertainment purpose in India.
This is the game which was played between Yudhishthira and Duryodhan where Draupadi was the bet. A Chopat board is an embroided cloth in the shape of a cross. Each of the arm is divided into three columns and every column is divided into eight squares. The game consists of a dice that has seven crowny shells. The pieces are made of wood and each player has four men.
The rules of the game are quite easy. Maximum four players can play this game. The centre is called the ‘Home’. The starting point for each player is the flower motif on the left column of his home column. Each player enters his four men into the game from the starting point. Thereafter the pieces are moved by the players around the outer perimeter columns in an anti-clockwise direction. Before a player can bring any of his own men “home”, he has to knock out at least one man of another player. This is called a “tohd”. Only the player’s own men can enter the home column of each player. Once the men cross the flower motif, they are played by laying the pieces on their side to indicate they are in their final home stretch and are safe now from any further attack.
By: Shruti Anand