Manwhatta? Mancala!

Weekly Waddle Guide to Mancala (not Manwhatta!)

What is Mancala?

Mancala is a strategical game that can be played in the Club Penguin Penguin Times Office, above the Coffee Shop. It is only for 2 players however you can always spectate it!

How do you play Mancala? 

There are instructions in the Club Penguin Times Office however it would be more straight forward for me to clear them up and explain them to you myself.

Basically, here is the Mancala board:


The board is divided up into 2 sides in which is owned by either Player 1 or Player 2. The first player to host the game is always Player 1 so your side of the board is demonstrated in the image. Your Mancala is always to the right! The Mancala is the big hole on each end of the board. This is where you aim to get all your stones. The second player needs to keep in mind some logic. Technically you would be facing towards the board so your Mancala is over the the left of the board (in the image viewpoint). Remember that so you don’t mistake your actions!

After knowing the general structure of the game, the aim is to move all of your stones to your Mancala.

How many stones can I fit in one hole?

At the beginning of the game, you start with 4 stones in each hole and there are 6 holes on each side of the board. SO that means that there are 48 stones in total and each of the players begin with 24. You can fit up to any amount in each hole however don’t aim to gather them all in one hole. If you use your strategy, you can help gain free turns and captures.

What is a free turn?

To gain a free turn, you need your last stone to enter your Mancala. In other words, you need to set up your half of the board so that you can plan out your turns. For example, you start off with 4 stones in each of your 6 holes. A strategical way to begin is to click your 4th hole away from your Mancala so that every stone lands in 1 hole each. There are 4 stones so if you are 4 holes away from your Mancala, you can easily begin with a free turn.

Look out for ways to gain another free turn in the games since it earns you more turns which is then giving you more of a chance in succeeding in Mancala.

What does capture mean?

A capture in Mancala is when your last stone ends up in an empty hole. If this happens, then you are gaining more stones into your Mancala or you can say capturing the opponents stones. This is because once you enter an empty hole, the opposite hole on the opponents side of the board empties out all of its stones and you capture them in your Mancala (including the stone that entered the empty hole).

A smart way to capture the opponent’s stones is to try and empty a hole that is opposite an opponents hole which is full of loads of stones. Then try to capture that hole before they use it to fill up your side of the board. This may be a rare opportunity in the game however it helps you gain a lot of points.

How does Mancala end?

The game immediately ends once either player empties all of their stones from their side of the board. It is that simple.

How do you win Mancala?

The winner at the end of the game has to have the greatest total of stones in his/her Mancala and any remaining stones on his/her side of the board. The game has to end before you know who won it.

How come the winner isn’t announced?

For some reason, the winner isn’t announced but you can tell who won by the amount of coins you earn at the end of the game. Coins are rounded up in your score so if you get 21 stones in total, you get 20 coins. If you get 27 stones, you get 28 coins. I don’t think this game is designed to announce winners since it is there for some pure fun. After finally learning it, it has become one of my favourite games on Club Penguin!




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