Tiger and buffaloes is a two-player abstract strategy board game from Myanmar (formerly known as Burma).It belongs to the hunt game family. The board is a 4x4 square grid, where pieces are placed on the intersection points and move along the lines. It is one of the smallest hunt games. Three tigers are going up against eleven buffaloes. The tigers attempt to capture as many of the buffaloes by the short leap as in draughts or Alquerque. The buffaloes attempt to hem in the tigers.
The game most resembles tiger hunt games (or tiger games) and perhaps can be classified as one. Examples of tiger games are Bagh-Chal, Rimau-rimau, and Catch the Hare. Tiger games usually consist of a standard Alquerque board which is a 5 x 5 square grid with several diagonal lines. Tiger and buffaloes consist of only a 4 x 4 square grid with no diagonal lines. It therefore most resembles hunt games such as Khla si ko, Len cúa kín ngoa, and Sua Ghin Gnua.
The game was described by Miloš Zapletal in his 1986 book Velká encyklopedie her; II. Hry v klubovně which when translated from Czech is Great Encyclopedia of games; II. Games in the clubhouse.
Another name for the game is Tiger game.
A 4x4 square grid is used, and this creates 16 intersection points (here-in-forth referred to as "points"). There are 3 tiger pieces and 11 buffalo pieces with each set of pieces distinguishable from the other by color or design. Players decide who will play the Tigers, and who will play the Buffaloes. The board is empty in the beginning with each player's pieces set beside it.
Khla si ko is a Cambodian variant of Myanmar's Tiger and Buffaloes and of Thailand's Len cúa kín ngoa. Khla si ko when translated from Khmer to English means tigers and cows, or tigers and bulls.The game is also sometimes spelled as Kla si ko or Khlaa syi kau. Khlaa syi kau may also mean tiger eats cow. The game also uses a 4 x 4 board as in Tiger and buffaloes, but Tiger and buffaloes uses a 4 x 4 square grid where pieces are played on the gridded lines and intersection points. Khla si ko uses a 4 x 4 square board where the pieces are played within the squares. There are also 4 tigers and 12 cows in Khla si ko which is a contrast to the 3 tigers and 11 buffaloes of Tiger and buffaloes. There are a few other differences also. But both Khla si ko and Tiger and buffaloes have only orthogonal movement of pieces, and only move one space at a time. Tigers in both games capture by the short leap as in draughts and Alquerque, and only in orthogonal directions. Diagonal movements or captures are not allowed in both games. A game called Dragons and Swans is played exactly the same way with the same board and number of pieces.
Khla si ko is a hunt game, and may be considered a tiger hunt game, or in short tiger game, since one side is represented by tigers. Usually tiger games consist of an Alquerque board which is a 5 x 5 square grid with several diagonal lines, and pieces are played on the intersection points and move along the lines. These features are missing in Khla si ko.
The board is a 4 x 4 square consisting of 16 squares. There are 4 tiger pieces and 12 cow pieces with each set of pieces distinguishable from the other by color or design. Players decide which animal to play. The game begins with the 4 tigers situated on the four corner squares of the board with the rest of the board empty. The 12 cows are set beside the board awaiting to be placed on the board.
Len cúa kín ngoa or The game of "tigers eating cattle" is a game from Thailand (formerly Siam). It was observed and documented by Captain James Low in Asiatic Researches (1839).The game resembles Khla si ko and Tiger and Buffaloes in that it is a hunt game that uses a 4 x 4 board. It especially resembles Khla si ko in that the 4 x 4 board is specifically a 4 x 4 square board where game pieces are placed within the squares; moreover, there are 4 tigers versus 12 oxen, and that the opening setup has the tigers on the four corners squares of the board. There are however some features that make this game possibly unique which will be described in the Rules section. The following setup and rules are based upon Low's description, however many parts of his description were vague.
The board is a 4 x 4 square consisting of 16 squares. There are 4 tiger pieces and 12 oxen pieces with each set of pieces distinguishable from the other by color or design. Players decide which animal to play. The game begins with the 4 tigers situated on the four corner squares of the board with the rest of the board empty. The 12 oxen are set beside the board awaiting to be placed on the board.
Mak-yek is a two-player abstract strategy board game played in Thailand and Myanmar. Players move their pieces as in the rook in Chess and attempt to capture their opponent's pieces through custodian and intervention capture. The game may have been first described in literature by Captain James Low a writing contributor in the 1839 work Asiatic Researches; or, Transactions of the Society, Instituted in Bengal, For Inquiring into The History, The Antiquities, The Arts and Sciences, and Literature of Asian, Second Part of the Twentieth Volume in which he wrote chapter X On Siamese Literature and documented the game as Maak yék. Another early description of the game is by H.J.R. Murray in his 1913 work A History of Chess, and the game was written as Maak-yek.
Rimau-rimau is a two-player abstract strategy board game that belongs to the hunt game family. This family includes games like Bagh-Chal, Main Tapal Empat, Aadu puli attam, Catch the Hare, Sua Ghin Gnua, the Fox games, Buga-shadara, and many more. Rimau-rimau is the plural of rimau which is an abbreviation of the word harimau, meaning 'tiger' in the Malay language. Therefore, rimau-rimau means 'tigers'. The several hunters attempting to surround and immobilize the tigers are called orang-orang, which is the plural of orang, meaning 'man'. Therefore, orang-orang means 'men' and there are twenty-two or twenty-four of them, depending on which version of the game is played. The game originates from Malaysia.
Main tapal empat is a two-player abstract strategy board game from Malaysia. It is a hunt game, and specifically a tiger hunt game since it uses an Alquerque board. The tigers can move as many spaces in a straight line as a clear path allows. Most hunt games have tigers, leopards, or foxes moving only one space at a time. In effect, the tigers in this game have the movement capability of the queen in chess.
Hare games are two-player abstract strategy board games that were popular in medieval northern Europe up until the 19th century. In this game, a hare is trying to get past three dogs who are trying to surround it and trap it. The three dogs are represented by three pieces which normally start on one end of the board, and the hare is represented by one piece that usually starts in the middle of the board or is dropped on any vacant point in the beginning of the game.
Rimau is a two-player abstract strategy board game from Malaysia. It is a hunt game, and specifically a tiger hunt game since it uses an expanded Alquerque board. The one tiger is being hunted by 24 men. The tiger attempts to eat the men, and the men attempt to trap the tiger. An interesting feature in this game is that the tiger can capture a line of men in a single leap. There must be an odd number of men in the line, and they must be adjacent to one another. In most hunt games, the tiger, leopard, or fox is only able to capture one prey in a leap.
Buga-shadara, also known as Bouge Shodre, is a two-player abstract strategy board game from Tuva, a republic in Siberia, Russia. It is a hunt game where one player plays the deer. There are two deer usually represented as the black pieces. The boars are also referred black in the referenced article "Buga-shadara a folk game from Tuva". The other player has 24 white pieces with dogs associated to them. The board consist of an Alquerque board flanked on two of its opposite sides by a square patterned board. Because the board is in part an Alquerque board, this makes Buga-shadara a tiger hunt game. What makes Buga-shadara unique among tiger games are the expansion boards on the two opposite sides of the Alquerque board. They are square, whereas most are triangle-like. The word "shadara" resembles the word "shahdara". The "shah" part "is a title given to the emperors/kings and lords of Iran .". There is a place called Shahdara Bagh in Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan, and it's thought that the word "Shahdara can be translated as "the way of kings". Shah translates as "king" and dara translates as the way of kings." The referenced article associates the boars as kings. Perhaps the boars or deer are kings, and have to find a way or have a way with the white pieces or dogs.
Sher-bakar is a two-player abstract strategy board game from Punjab, India. It is a hunt game. It uses an Alquerque board, and therefore, Sher-bakar is specifically a tiger hunt game. There are two tigers attempting to elude and capture as many of the other player's pieces which in other hunt games in this part of the world is often referred to as a goat, cows, lamb, or men. An interesting and uncommon feature in this game is that the goats, cows, lamb, or men are piled up on four points of the board at the beginning of the game. Piling up pieces is an unusual feature in hunt games or any board game in general. The only other hunt game that uses this feature is Bagh bandi, a game closely related to Sher-bakar. Hereinforth, the white pieces will be referred to as goats.
Bagh bandi is a two-player abstract strategy board game from Lower Bengal, India. It is a hunt game. It uses an Alquerque board, and therefore, Bagh bandi is specifically a tiger hunt game. There are two tigers attempting to elude and capture as many goats while the goats are attempting to surround and trap the tigers.
Liberian Queah is a two-player abstract strategy game from Liberia. It is specifically from the Queah tribe. The game is played on a slanted or diagonal square board with only 13 spaces. Pieces move "orthogonally" along these slanted or diagonal square boards. Another unique feature is that each player must have four pieces on the board. Each player's captured piece is resupplied at the beginning of their next turn with a piece from their reserve.
Leap Frog is a multi-player abstract strategy board game that was described by H.J.R. Murray in A History of Board-Games Other Than Chess (1898), and attributes its origin to England. Several variants have been created including one by Murray himself which utilizes different colored pieces with different point values. Several players can participate. In the traditional game, players take any piece on the board and use it to hop over and capture other pieces on the board. When no more pieces can be captured, the game ends, and the player with the most pieces wins the game. Murray includes it in the section called Clearance Games which includes the game Solitaire which it does resemble in many ways except that Solitaire is played by only one person. The game is also known to be spelled as one word, Leapfrog.
Catch the Hare is a two-player abstract strategy board game from Europe, and perhaps specifically from Spain. It is a hunt game, and since it uses a standard Alquerque board from the game Alquerque de Doze, it is specifically a tiger hunt game. In some variants, some or all of the diagonal lines are missing which makes it difficult to classify as a tiger game in general. One hare is going up against ten to twelve opponents(hunters or hounds). The hare is the "tiger" in this hunt game which is prey and predator at the same time. The hare can capture the opponents by leaping over them. The opponents attempt to surround and trap the hare.
Zamma is a two-player abstract strategy game from Africa. It is especially played in North Africa. The game is similar to Alquerque and draughts. Board sizes vary, but they are square boards, such as 5x5 or 9x9 square grids with left and right diagonal lines running through several intersection points of the board. One could think of the 5x5 board as a standard Alquerque board, but with additional diagonal lines, and the 9x9 board as four standard Alquerque boards combined, but no additional diagonal lines are added. The initial setup is also similar to Alquerque, where every space on the board is filled with each player's pieces except for the middle point of the board. Furthermore, each player's pieces are also set up on their respective half of the board. The game specifically resembles draughts in that pieces must move in the forward directions until they are crowned "Mullah" which is the equivalent of the king in draughts. The Mullah can move in any direction. In North Africa, the black pieces are referred to as men, and the white pieces as women. In the Sahara, short sticks represent the men, and camel dung represent the women.
Fetaix is a two-player abstract strategy board game from Morocco. It is very similar to Alquerque. The only difference is that pieces cannot move backwards until they are promoted to Mullah which is the equivalent of King in draughts. Furthermore, Mullahs can move any number of vacant points on the board, and capture enemy pieces from any distance similar to the Kings in International draughts. Another name for the game is qireq.
High Jump is a two-player strategy board game from Somalia. It is related to draughts and Alquerque as pieces hop over one another for capture; however, pieces move and capture orthogonally and not diagonally. Moreover, the game is played on a 5×5 square board. A feature of High Jump is that the central square offers a kind of sanctuary; a piece occupying the central square cannot be hopped over and captured. The same board is used in the game Seega.
Tûkvnanawöpi is a two-player abstract strategy board game played by the Hopi native American Indians of Arizona, United States. The game was traditionally played on a slab of stone, and the board pattern etched on it. Tukvnanawopi resembles draughts and Alquerque. Each player attempts to capture each other's pieces by hopping over them. It is unknown how old the game is; however, the game was published as early as 1907 in Stewart Culin's book "Games of the North American Indians Volume 2: Games of Skill".
Awithlaknannai Mosona is a two-player strategy board game from the Zuni Native American Indian tribe of New Mexico, United States. It is unknown how old the game is. The game was described by Stewart Culin in his book "Games of the North American Indians Volume 2: Games of Skill" (1907). In this book, it was named Awithlaknan Mosona. Awithlaknannai Mosona resembles another Zuni board game called Kolowis Awithlaknannai with few minor differences. The former having a smaller board, and depending upon the variant, it also has less lines joining the intersection points. The rules are the same. Awithlaknannai Mosona belongs to the draughts and Alquerque family of games as pieces hop over one another when capturing. It is actually more related to Alquerque, since the board is made up of intersection points and lines connecting them. It is thought that the Spanish had brought Alquerque to the American Southwest, and Awithlaknannai Mosona may have been an evolution from Alquerque. However, in Stewart Culin's 1907 book, the Zunis claim that they had adopted a hunt game from Mexico similar to Catch the Hare and the Fox games of Europe, and transformed it into Awithlaknannai Mosona. In these games, one player has more pieces over the other, however, the other player's piece has more powers. The Zuni's equalized the numbers of pieces and their powers, and also may have transformed the board making its length far exceed its width. Diagonal lines also replaced orthogonal lines altogether. However, the hunt game from Mexico may have used an Alquerque board even though the game mechanics of their new game, Awithlaknannai Mosona, were completely different.
Indian and jackrabbits is a two-player abstract strategy board game from the Tiwa tribe of Taos, New Mexico. A similar game with a slightly different board is also played by the Tohono O'odham tribe of Arizona. From the outset, these games look like hunt games similar to Catch the Hare, the Fox games of Europe, and the tiger and leopard games of Asia, because they use very similar boards, and the game mechanics are the same, and the number of pieces each player controls is different. However, they are not the same games, because the goals are completely different. The goal of the one Indian is to capture just one of the twelve jackrabbits. The goal of the jackrabbits is to move themselves safely onto the other side of the board mirroring their initial positions.
Sua Ghin Gnua is a two-player abstract strategy board game from Thailand, formerly known as Siam. Another name for the game is Tigers and Oxen. It is a hunt game played on a 5x5 square grid with only orthogonal lines. One player plays the three tigers, and the other player plays the twelve oxen. The board is empty in the beginning. Players first drop their pieces onto the board, and then are able to move them. The tigers can capture the oxen by the short leap as in draughts and Alquerque, but the oxen attempt to elude and at the same time hem in the tiger. Sua Ghin Gnua most resembles the tiger hunt games such as Bagh-Chal, Rimau-rimau, Main Tapal Empat, Catch the Hare, and Adugo since they all use a 5 x 5 square grid. But tiger games technically consist of a standard Alquerque board which is a 5 x 5 square grid with several diagonal lines criss-crossing through it which are completely missing in Sua Ghin Gnua. There are however some variants of Catch the Hare which have missing diagonal lines also. Another game that resembles Sua Ghin Gnua is from Myanmar called Tiger and Buffaloes which is a hunt game consisting of a 4 x 4 square grid with no diagonal lines. Myanmar happens to border Thailand geographically so there might be a historical connection between the two games. Another game from Myanmar is Lay Gwet Kyah that is presumed to be similar to Sua Ghin Gnua. Sua Ghin Gnua was briefly described by Stewart Culin, in his book Chess and Playing Cards: Catalogue of Games and Implements for Divination Exhibited by the United States National Museum in Connection with the Department of Archaeology and Paleontology of the University of Pennsylvania at the Cotton States and International Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia 1895 (1898). It's also briefly mentioned by H.J.R. Murray in his book A History of Chess (1913). It was also described by R.C. Bell, in his book Board and Table Games from Many Civilizations (1969).
Astar is a two-player abstract strategy board game from Kyrgyzstan. It is a game similar to draughts and Alquerque as players hop over one another's pieces when capturing. However, unlike draughts and Alquerqe, Astar is played on 5x6 square grid with two triangular boards attached on two opposite sides of the grid. The board somewhat resembles those of Kotu Ellima, Sixteen Soldiers, and Peralikatuma, all of which are games related to Astar. However, these three games use an expanded Alquerque board with a 5x5 square grid with diagonal lines. Astar uses a 5x6 grid with no diagonal lines.
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