This is a RISC OS desktop version of an ancient game of capturing your opponent’s seeds or shells in hollows in the ground. The object of the game is to collect more captured seeds than your opponent. It is almost always played with two players. This version provides robotic opponents if necessary.
It has been played for 3,500 years, longer than any other game known to civilised man. It was first played by the Pharoahs and now over 200 different versions are known to exist. Wari is a West African variant and is one of the commonest played.
In the two player game, there are two rows of six holes or hollows, each having an additional, larger hole at the right of each row. Each player controls the shells in his row and the larger holes or storehouses at each end are used for captured shells. Before play starts the board is dressed by distributing four shells into each of the (smaller) holes.
A player’s turn is taken by selecting a hole from which to play. The shells in this hole are removed and sowed one at a time into succeeding holes in a counter-clockwise fashion. The player captures shells if his last shell is sown into one of his opponent’s holes, making the number of shells in this hole two or three. The player removes these shells to his storehouse and play passes to his opponent.
The game features sprite and character animation and can be played by using only the mouse. Instructions accompany every move that the novice makes and there are three settings for the speed of play. The game was built using AppBasic and requires a recent copy of the Toolbox modules. These can be obtained free from the RISC OS Ltd support website or for an Iyonix machine from the AppBasic downloads web-page.
Compatibility of sample and full versions
A current version of the Toolbox modules must be present (see above)
|RISC OS version||2||3.1x||3.5||3.6||3.7||4.0x||4+(select)||5.0x||6.0x||VA|
|Full game compatibility||No||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
The full game, version 3.70
The complete version of the game is available on CD. It adds the following features to the sample game:-
Screenshots of the full version: double click on the thumbnails to download a larger
Robot 'HAL' wins the game on level 10
Play review, 2 players using a 'traditional board' skin
Robot 'b1MBO' is about to choose to end the game and beat robot 'BERT1e'.
At the end of this game, each player adds the counters that are in his holes to his total score.
Play review: at this point, Susan, although leading with 22, is struggling against the level 8 and level 9 robots.
It's robot b1MBO's turn to choose a hole to sow from.
Links to other games software:-
Vingt et Un
'Sea Holes' course [for use with HoledOut]