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How to Play Ludo: Rules, Strategies, and History


Ludo is a timeless board game enjoyed globally for its easy-to-learn rules and engaging gameplay. Originating in India, Ludo has transcended cultures and continues to be a household favorite. While it shares the need for strategic thinking with other traditional games like the kho kho game, Ludo’s charm lies in its blend of luck and tactics.

Objective of the Game

The main objective of Ludo is straightforward: be the first player to move all four of your tokens from your starting area to the home area in the center of the board. This contrasts with the kho kho game, which is an outdoor team sport focused on speed and agility. Ludo requires a mix of strategic movement and fortunate dice rolls.

Equipment Needed

To play Ludo, you will need:

  • Ludo Board: Divided into four colored sections, each leading to a central home area.
  • Tokens: Each player has four tokens of the same color as their section of the board.
  • Dice: A standard six-sided die is used to determine the movement of tokens.


Ludo accommodates 2 to 4 players. To set up:

  1. Each player chooses a color and places their four tokens in the corresponding starting area.
  2. Players roll the die to determine who goes first. The player with the highest roll starts the game.

Basic Rules of Play

Players take turns rolling the die and moving their tokens. The movement rules are:

  • Rolling a Six: Allows a player to move a token out of the starting area onto the board and grants an additional roll.
  • Token Movement: Tokens move forward based on the number rolled on the die, progressing in a clockwise direction around the board.

Moving Your Tokens

When a player rolls a six, they can bring a token onto the board from the starting area. Subsequent rolls dictate how many spaces a token moves. Players can:

  • Move one token multiple spaces.
  • Split the movement between different tokens. This strategic choice differentiates Ludo from the kho kho game, where strategy is focused on physical placement and tagging.

Capturing Opponent’s Tokens

Landing on a square occupied by an opponent’s token sends that token back to its starting area. Key rules include:

  • Safe zones, often marked by a different color, where tokens cannot be captured.
  • Tokens on their starting squares or in the home column are also immune to capture.

Entering the Home Column

Tokens enter the home column after completing a full circuit of the board. The rules for entering the home area are:

  • Tokens must land in the home area by an exact roll.
  • Once in the home column, tokens move towards the center home area.

Winning the Game

The game is won by the first player to get all four of their tokens into the home area. Strategies for winning include:

  • Balancing token movement to avoid capture.
  • Utilizing rolls of six effectively to advance tokens and disrupt opponents.

Tips and Strategies

To improve your chances of winning:

  • Balance Offense and Defense: Move tokens towards the home area while also positioning them to capture opponents’ tokens.
  • Utilize Safe Zones: Place your tokens in safe zones to avoid being sent back to the start.
  • Maximize Rolls of Six: Use extra rolls strategically to move multiple tokens and increase your board presence.

Ludo is a captivating game that blends strategy and luck, providing hours of entertainment. Unlike the kho kho game, which tests physical endurance and agility, Ludo challenges players to think strategically and adapt to changing situations. Gather your family and friends to enjoy this classic game, and experience the excitement of racing your tokens to the home area.

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