Pictures of Maldoo
Maldoo is an electronic board-games board, which you play by touching the point you want to play in. It plays standard Go and Reversi and additional 11 new games. The board does all the "dirty work" of playing (checks the rules, counts points etc.) so makes it much easier, and hence much more enjoyable, to play it. In most of the games, the players can play without actually knowing the rules, because the board will take care about the rules. The range of games is from simple reaction time games (ghost, TouchIt), to highly intellectual games (SpeedGo, Visiput).
There are 13 games to play:
Reversi, Ghost, TouchIt, Life1, Life2, Symmetry, CountLines, ClearIt, FillIt, FindThem, Visiput, SpeedGo, RepeatIt.
All the games are suitable for the age range 8-80. TouchIt and Ghost are very simple, and with reduced speed (the Gap parameter) are suitable for young children (about 4 years old). Ghost is probably the best game for children, while Reversi and CountLines seem to be the most attractive for adults that play the board first time.
All the games except Symmetry can be played by one player or two. When two players play, one plays green and the other player plays red. Symmetry is a one-player game.
Reversi, Ghost, Life2, CountLines, ClearIt, FillIt, FindThem, Visiput, RepeatIt and SpeedGo are 'taking turns' games, in which the two player play in turn. The board switches on one of the turn-lights (large lights on both sides of the alphanumeric display) to signal whose turn is to play. Each player has 30 seconds to play (can be changed by the Turn Time parameter).
In Reversi, CountLines, ClearIt and Visiput if the player tries an illegal move, the board flashes the legal moves.
These games can also be played against the board (the Board Plays parameter, the board plays Red). For Reversi, CountLines, ClearIt, FillIt, RepeatIt and FindThem, the playing level of the board can be adjusted by the Play Level parameter in each game's Rule menu.
1. Plug the board.
2. The board displays Play:Game followed by the game name. To change the game, press the 'Up Arrow' and 'Down Arrow' buttons (top right). See game descriptions on page 2.
3. Start playing by pressing the 'play' button (large rightward arrow).
4. Play by pressing points in the grid.
It is possible to work out the idea of most of the games simply by playing them. FillIt is the easiest to work out; Life1, Life2 and SpeedGo are the most difficult.
Maldoo - brief game descriptions
Reversi - Standard Othello (RTM) with different layout. Each player in their turn touch a point, which must be such that there is at least one sequence of one or more points of the other player’s colour between it and another point of the current player’s colour. If the player tries illegal move, the board flashes all the legal moves. The winner is the player with more points when neither of the players can make any move. Medium level of complexity.
Ghost - the player try to catch the ghost, by touching a point of the ghost while it is still illuminated, and gets a point for each successful hit. When a player misses, the point becomes yellow and the ghost does not move through it. The game ends after 32 turns, and the player with more hits wins.
Life1 - each player tries to switch off all the points as fast as possible. The player that reaches 100 first looses. Simple.
Life2 - Each player tries to cause the points of the other colour to disappear. Note that by default each player has only two moves to make. Simple.
TouchIt - the players need to touch the third point of their colour before the fourth is turned on, or the fourth one before they disappear. Very simple. The game ends after 40 turns, and the player with more hits wins.
Symmetry - The player tries to touch all the points that are in a mirror position to the points that the board shows. Simple.
CountLines - Each player touches a point, which must be at least three points away from the previous point they pressed. If the player presses an illegal move, the board flashes the legal moves. The winner is the player which has in the end more lines of four points. Simple.
ClearIt - Each player in their turn touches a point, which switches off points of the other player’s colour which are a knight away, and points of the current player’s colour which are one point further. The player that first switch off all the points of the other colour wins.
FillIt - Each player in their turn touches a point, which switches to their colour empty points or points of the other colour which are up to two points away, and switches to the other colour neighbours that are in the current colour. The player with more points when the board is full wins. Simple/Moderately complex.
FindThem - The board show some pattern and switches it off, and players try to find points of the their colour by touching them, which switches them on if they were of the player's colour initially. The first player to find 9 points wins.
Visiput - Each player switch on a point by touching it. Only points that are connected through straight lines to less points of the other colour than the current colour are legal moves. If a player tries an illegal move, the board flashes the legal moves. The board terminates the game when it is clear which points each player can take, and the winner is the player with more points. Highly intellectual game.
Speedgo - Standard Go, but starts with many points already illuminated, in random configuration.
RepeatIt - Each player in their have to touch that last 4 points that the other player touched, and then touch another two points. When a player touches the wrong point, their misses count increases. The player hat reaches 100 misses first loose the game.
Maldoo How to:
Start a game:
Press the 'Play' button (Rightward large arrow).
Change the game:
Check that the display shows the words Play:Game. If not, press the Menu button (the 'square' button, top left) until they appear. Then use the Up-arrow or Down-arrow (top-right) button to change the game.
Change the turn time:
Press the Menu button (the 'square' button, top left) button repeatedly until the words Time:Turn Time appear. Then use the up/down arrow buttons (top right) to change the time.
Change game specific rules:
Press the 'square' button (top left) repeatedly until the word Rule appears. Then use the leftward-arrow/rightward-arrow buttons (top middle) to find the appropriate parameter, and then use the Up-arrow/Down-arrow buttons (top right) to change the value. The applicable parameters for each game are listed in the Verbose Game Descriptions in the long description. For example:
Change the gap in TouchIt or Ghost:
Check that game is TouchIt or Ghost as above. Then press the menu button ('square', top left). The words Rule:Gap should appear. Then use the Up/Down buttons (Top right) to change the gap time.
Play against the board:
Select the game as above, and while the words Play:Game are displayed press the small rightward arrow button (Top middle). The words Play:Board plays appear. Then use the Up/Down buttons (top right) to change the setting to Yes.
Pause the game:
Press the Pause/Continue button (||/> button). Any button except the 'Play' button can be used, but The Pause/Continue button stops the game without affecting any other state.
Continue a paused game:
Press the Pause/Continue button.
Change points on the board:
Find the word Play:Game as above, and then press the small right arrow button (middle top) three times to find the player parameter. Use the Up/Down buttons to set the player, and then press the board where required.