This small village has only four houses. But unfortunately there isn’t a square. Can you make a square by using this four piece ? The aim of this puzzle is to make a square with this four piece. I designed this puzzle yesterday. After drawing on my computer, I went to my workshop and I found some scrap woods. I made this puzzle from 6 mm mahogany. I cut pieces with a hand miter saw and hand scroll saw in one hour. Puzzle pieces are very small. Each piece is about 50×60 mm. You can cut from any material that you wish with a scroll saw or you can make a laser cut version. This puzzle hasn’t a replay value but you can put pieces in your pocket and have fun with friends. I added to Pdf file also a print and play version. Experienced puzzle enthousiasts can solve this puzzle from picture. Solution is on the last page of the PDF file.
Last year, I was browsing a book about traditional games. This puzzle is described as a single player game from Indonesia. This is a simple puzzle. But for me it’s very interesting because this is the first puzzle that I saw with the mechanic of “Mancala games”. I think may be a basic idea for different puzzles with same mechanic.
The rules are as described:
Start position is as seen on the photo. You play this puzzle on a board with six cell or five cell. Five cell version is easier than six cell version. But both of them are good puzzles. Ruma is the yellow marked cell on the board. To start, place two seed in each cell except ruma. Moves are made in clockwise direction.
Pick up the seeds from any cell and drop them, one in each cell, to the next cells, including the Ruma. This is called sowing the seeds. Plan your move so that the last counter does not fall into an empty cell. if your last counter fall on an empty cell you loose and you must restart.
After you have dropped the last seed, pick up all the seeds in that cell and continue sowing as before. If the last seed falls into the Ruma, you may pick up the seeds from any cell and sow them. But if the last seed in your hand falls into a cell that was empty, you lose the game. You win when all ten seeds are in the Ruma.