Description20 Squares is a shareware computer conversion of an Ancient Egyptian board game, probably dating back even before the pyramids. The prosaic name of the game, stemming for its 20 square board, is due to the fact that no name has survived on papyrus. The rules can also only be guessed, but the game is probably very similar to Senet, another Egyptian board game with 30 squares instead of twenty, and it seems to have come from a Sumerian board game .
The game is a simple "race and bump" game. You race down the board with your five tokens, trying to get them home before your opponent does. You can bump your opponents back to the beginning, and the board also contains some special squares which give you an extra turn.
As dice were unknown back then, the Egyptians (and the game) used "casting sticks" -- the halves of a twig cut in two, with one flat and one rounded side. Throwing four of these sticks together results in up to four flat sides up, which is the number of squares you can move. Zero flat sides up count as a six, giving you another turn, as when you throw four flat sides.
20 Squares game comes with a tutorial, explaining the (simple) rules in quite length, and features so-called "Mummy Facts" during the game -- interesting bits of information about Ancient Egypt.
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Related Web Sites
- Official Home Page (The 20 Squares page on P.S. Neeley's shareware pages, including a download of the shareware version.)