History of Ludo

When we think of Ludo, we imagine sitting in a circle with our friends and family and having a great period of amusement and entertainment. We can spend hours playing this board game with our loved ones. However, Ludo is not just a great time-passing game; it has also helped us develop various strategies and techniques that we can apply in real life.

The mystery of Ludo’s origins frequently piques our interest. How did this board game come about? Was it the same when our forefathers were kids? This page will explore the history of Ludo, starting from ancient times to who designed the modern version of this popular board game.


Origins of Ludo

The earliest evidence of Ludo will come when we peek into the Mahabharata. Indeed, the cave drawings in the Ellora Caves indicate that it was a popular game back then.

According to the material available about Ludo, it dates back to the 6th century. The game was known as Chauhar during ancient times. When Shakuni played cursed dice to defeat the Pandavas and lose everything, the game gained significance. In the end, Yudhisthira gambles with Draupadi and loses her as well. Dhritarashtra grants the Pandavas all of their belongings after Draupadi vows to curse the Kuru dynasty and reduce her rage.

Many former rulers played the board game, also known as Pachisi, with the Mughal emperor Akbar being a notable example. Instead of the usual shells or seeds, the monarch used females from his harem as game pieces on a life-sized board. This game is displayed on the floors of the palace halls of Agra, Fatehpur Sikri, and Agra.

Ludo (Chausar) in the Mahabharata

The next mention that we find of Ludo, is that of Mahabharata. This Indian epic has a mention of the game of Ludo, or Pasha as it was called then. When Yudhishtar and Duryudhan played this game of dice, using Shakuni’s dice, the Pandavas ended up losing everything they owned to the Kauravas.

This is why, on Ludo Select, we promote responsible gaming. Do not play games that you can’t afford to play. Only play with the money that you can spare.

Ludo (Chaupar) in Hindu Mythology

The Skanda Purana mentions the Hindu Deities Shiv and Parvati playing the game of Chausar. Paintings dating back to the 17th century can be found depicting this game.

Ludo in History as Chaupar: The Game of Kings

The game of ludo and its variants are said to be games of kings. There are many tales of the game of Ludo being played amongst kings passed down the generations. There are mentions of the games of Chaucer as early as the 4th century.

Ludo (Chaupar) in Legends

Legends talk about a king who loved to play the game of chaupar. It was claimed that the king had not lost a single game in his life. But this was not due to his skill, but rather a very clever plan.

The game of Ludo or Chaupar, as it was known back then, is a game that involves a lot of banter. It is a very fun practice, where the player tries to distract their opponent. But the king took it a level further. He would engage his opponent in a conversation. The opponent would then get distracted from the board. The king would then call out “Sundhree, Mundhree” casually in the conversation. And guess what? Sundhree and Mundhree were rats. They were two trained rats that would come and move the pawns around. Thankfully in the modern game of ludo online, there are no rats. So you have nothing to worry about.

Ludo (Pachisi) in Fatehpur Sikri

If you’ve ever visited Fatehpur Sikri, the capital of the Mughal Empire under Emperor Akbar, you have probably heard of this one. Badshah Akbar played the game of Ludo in a truly royal manner. The board was red and white in color, set on the floor of the palace. The Mughal Emperor didn’t use pawns, instead the pawns were the slaves owned by the king. Akbar’s obsession with Ludo is clear, when one visits the majestic board of Ludo in the palace. There is yet another human sized board of Ludo, located in the aptly named Pachisi court in the city of Agra.

The modern version of Ludo

In England, the original board was transformed into a cubic die with a dice cup, and the term “Ludo” was coined. The British Royal Navy adopted “Royal Ludo” and turned it into the board game Uckers.

The version of Ludo that we play today was patented in 1986 by Alfred Collier in England. The rules are similar, except that the rectangular dice are substituted with a cubic one. A dice cup was introduced instead of tossing with one’s hand. This may lessen the likelihood of cheating on the part of the players. Because the cubic dice were smaller in size, the tokens were less likely to be affected.

What are the rules of Ludo?

The rules of playing Ludo are very simple and easy to understand. The game can be played individually or in partnership of two. Each player must choose one corner of the board as their allotted area at the start of each game. Players can enter with a single piece or all four tokens. Until then, all tokens must remain in the occupied square.

When it is their turn, the players enter their tokens from their respective beginning squares and proceed clockwise along the track until they reach their destination. When the players reach the home column, they continue transferring tokens up the column to the final square. Other players are also racing to get to the home square first.

The speed at which the player’s pieces reach the home square is determined by die rolls, and the strategy game requires the player not to allow other coloured tokens to reach home before him. The game is won by the first player who collects all of the tokens.

International Variants of Ludo

The game of Ludo originated in India, and gradually many countries have adopted it in their own way with changes in rules. It is called “Fia” in Swedish, “Ludu” in Africa, “Parchís” in Spanish, “Cờ cá ngựa” in Vietnamese, “Chatush Pada” in Chinese, and “Parques” in Columbia.

Read More: Ludo India

How to play Ludo Online

Ludo is much more than a simple board game. It has now evolved into a digital game, with people spending more time playing the game on their phones, particularly during the pandemic. There are many applications that offer Ludo online games. However, one of the most fascinating and safe ludo apps is Ludo Culture.

Advantages of Playing Online Ludo

Online ludo apps allow users to play ludo while on the move. Ludo can be played anywhere and at any time with a stable internet connection. Ludo Culture is one of the top venues for playing online Ludo. Here are a few more advantages of using an online Ludo app:

  • You can play while travelling
  • Quick games that allow you to earn instant money
  • 24/7 availability of players

Also Read: Online Ludo vs Offline Ludo

Top Ludo App

Although Ludo is played for amusement on other platforms, Classic Ludo can be played for real money on Ludo Culture App. You can compete head-to-head with just one other player in 1v1 combat or in a 4-player arrangement on Ludo Culture. The objective of the classic Ludo form of the game is to score as many points as possible before the timer runs out.

The reasons that make Ludo Culture one of the best apps to play Ludo are:

  • Easy to sign up and highest sign-up bonus
  • User-friendly with fast loading times
  • 24/7 availability of players to play against
  • huge cash rewards, referral bonuses, and add cash offers.

Board Games in India

India truly has been the birthplace of so many dice and board games. Evidence of dice made out of bones and ivory can be found at the sites of Harappa and Mohenjo Daro.

The game of Chausar also gave birth to Gyan chauper. This variant of Chausar is also meant to teach people the lessons of morality. Guess what the game of Gyan chauper is known as today?
Snake and Ladders!

The game of ludo has passed the test of time and stayed relevant even centuries later. Today we see so many people playing ludo games online without knowing the vast history behind it. Share this with your friends and others who love to play Ludo to tell them about the vast history behind the game.

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Updated on 25th April, 2024

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