HOW STUFF WORKS
QUIZZES

Parcheesi: Aristocratic gambit or children's game?
by Staff
The history, math and strategy behind the board game Parcheesi -- often thought of as a children's passtime in the West -- have earned it royal renown for centuries. Test your knowledge of this perennially popular game with our Parcheesi quiz.

### Parcheesi is a member of a group of games named for the shape of their boards. What are these types of games called?

• racetrack games
• maze-shaped games
• cross-and-circle games

• Sri Lanka
• India
• Tibet

### How many players can play Parcheesi?

• between one and four
• between two and four
• only two

### Modern Parcheesi sets use the familiar black-pipped white dice. What objects did traditional sets use instead?

• shells or carved wood
• small carved stones
• dried berries

### Each player is assigned a home row -- one arm of the cross-shaped figure -- in addition to a home circle. How is this assignment given?

• The player who rolls the highest number gets to choose her home row.
• Players are assigned home rows that match the color of their pawns.
• Players physically race to the board and are assigned rows based on how quickly they get there.

### Players pieces don't start directly on the board in Parcheesi. What do they need to do to move a piece onto the board?

• roll a higher number than the opponent to the left
• roll doubles
• roll a five on at least one die

### When do historians believe Parcheesi's ancestor, Pachisi, was first played?

• around the 17th century A.D.
• around 300 B.C.
• around the 4th century A.D.

• Chauapar
• Patchouli
• Pachis

### How did one Indian emperor take advantage of his aristocratic status while playing Chaupar?

• He used expensive bottles of alcohol in place of the traditional wooden pawns.
• He paid off his opponents to always let him win.
• He played a life-sized game of with fellow aristocrats, using beautiful women from his harem as the pawns.

### In which of India's famous epics does Chaupar play a role?

• the Ramayana
• the Mahabharata
• both a and b

### Where does the name Pachisi come from?

• The Hindi word for 25 is &quot;pachis,&quot; which was an important number in an early version of the game.
• In China, the game was thought to center a person's chi, or life-force.
• Early rules called for players to yell out the nonsense word &quot;pachisi&quot; when a pawn entered the finishing circle.

### Pachisi didn't just stay in India. Where did it travel first?

• England and Europe
• China
• Africa

### The English derivation of Parcheesi is called Ludo. Where did that name come from?

• the Indian word for &quot;shell game&quot;
• the Latin translation of &quot;I play&quot;
• a French phrase meaning &quot;roll the dice&quot;

### Parcheesi was the most popular game in America until 1935. Which board game giant outsold it?

• Scrabble
• Trivial Pursuit
• Monopoly

### Parcheesi can also be used as an educational tool. What is one major skill that the game can be used to teach?

• math (probability)
• science (chemistry)
• spelling (Parcheesi is a tricky one!)

### Pachisi made it across the ocean to America in the 1890s. What significant change occurred upon that migration?

• It was played every night before dinner in the McKinley White House.
• It was sold as a companion product to Swiss cheese.
• It was renamed from Pachisi to Parcheesi.

### Parcheesi became immensely popular when it traveled to America, so it's not too surprising that the rights were snapped up by a few different entities in succession. As a result, any imitators had to be creative when naming their versions of the game. Which of these has been used as a name for the game?

• The Near East
• Not-Parcheesi
• The Game of India

### Parcheesi and Pachisi are similar in many ways, but there's one major difference in how play occurs. What is it?

• Pachisi imposes a time limit for each move.
• Parcheesi is played with individual players, while Pachisi is played in teams.
• Parcheesi allows players to choose whether to move in a clockwise or counterclockwise direction.

• Mousetrap