Permainan (Indonesia)


Traditionial Indonesian game pieces are shells versus pebbles or stones, with the board grid inscribed in sand or volcanic ash.

The game features an unusual method of capture which is “possibly unique” and “not known to exist in any other recorded board game”.[Description]

[Play Online]



  1. I played a TON of “Roundabouts” (which is the name this game went by when Sid Jackson published it in America) with my brother, it’s actually a really really good game. If you look at the (fairly attractive) board shown on the Wikipedia description, the “capture rules” are basically that in addition to a normal one-step move, you can slide along any of the “rails” in any direction until you hit an opposing piece, at which point you move to that space and the opposing piece is captured. You can only move like this if you’re capturing, and you can only capture if you slide far enough along a rail that you travel through a “loop”. So it’s cool because the pieces that you can capture are highly nonlocal to your pieces’ current locations, and capturing is hugely advantageous because it serves as a “warp” (but also very risky, because the game tends to settle into pieces clustering in “safe” areas created by the shadows the opposing player’s pieces create by blocking themselves, so a big “warp” like a capture entails will often take you out of a safe area and leave you exposed to capture yourself). So some really neat strategy arises that forces you to constantly be thinking about what correspondences will exist between distant parts of the board two turns from now.

  2. i can make very little leeway in this game because i suck, but this is fun

  3. Bryce McQuern

    It’s like if a chess game were all gambits.

  4. Bryce McQuern

    I wish it’d show your looping paths the way it shows your opponent’s. I don’t understand how some of these captures are captures. I played on “Idiot,” by the way. Anyone else play on idiot?

  5. Wow, I’m from West Java and I’ve never seen this game before. Neither does anyone around in the house! Really interesting game, and I totally suck at it.. didn’t even capture anything on beginner 🙁

  6. I bought a homemade version of this a few months back at an artisans fair near my house. The guy had all kinds of strange board games made out of cardboard and carved wood. Even them asymmetrical types (like Bagh-Chal and such). Also told me I could ask him for new pieces if I lost some of mine, any day, free of charge.

    I never had anyone to practice with, since new strange board games are always hard to pitch. Still don’t understand the possible strategy behind this, I’m at the stage where the game is just “move a piece, get that piece eaten.” I’ll have to practice.