Aadu Huli ( Tigers and Goat ) – A Math Game from India

Aadu Huli also popularly known as Tigers and Goat game is an ancient game played mostly in the southern parts of India. In this asymmetric game, one player controls 3 tigers and the other player controls a herd of 15 goats. The tigers “hunt” for the goats while the goats attempt to block the tiger’s movement. This two-player strategy game teaches a very powerful lesson that there is “Strength in Unity ” that even though weak, if united, one can conquer the stronger enemy as a team.

In ancient times, people use to draw the game board on the ground using chalk and used stones and twigs as counters. You can either draw the game board on the cardboard or download it on a piece of paper and laminate it so that it can used over and over again.

Download Tigers and Goats (Aadu Huli ) without Instructions

Download Tigers and Goats (Aadu Huli ) with Instructions

Game Board : Draw the game board on a piece of paper or cardboard to represent Tigers and Goat game.

Counters : 3 counters representing Tiger and 15 counters representing goats. We used small lego pieces for the counters

Number of Players : 2

Game Rules

  • Opening Position
    • The game starts by placing the 3 tigers on the corner points and no goats on the board.
  • Objective of the Game
    • The objective of the player playing tigers is to capture 6 goats and the objective of the player playing goats is to surround the tigers so that they cannot move.
  • Moves
    • Goats start first and players take turn to play.
    • Counter placements and movements : The counters can only be placed on the intersection point of lines and they should always move along the line.
    • The game has two phases : In the first phase all the goats need to be placed on the board. Once all the goats have been placed on the board, the second phase starts in which the goats are allowed to move.
    • When it is the goat’s turn, only one goat per turn can be placed on a vacant point on the board such that it is safe from tiger’s attack. Once all the goats have been introduced on the board, the player can then only move one goat per turn to an adjacent vacant point along a line. Goats cannot hop over the other goats or tigers and can only move once all the goats have been placed on the board.
    • When it is the tiger’s turn, the player can move 1 tiger along any adjacent vacant point.
      • If a tiger encounters an adjacent lone goat with a vacant point just behind it, then the tiger jumps over the goat to the vacant point and removes the goat from the board.  
      • A tiger cannot jump over a goat if there is no vacant point behind that  goat.
      • A tiger cannot hop over another tiger and can hop only once during its turn and doesn’t have multiple jumps during a turn.
    • Hopped-over goats ( goats eaten by tiger ) are permanently taken out of the game and are can not be reintroduced on the board during that game.
    • A Simple sample move would be :  Place 1 goat on any vacant point on the board such that it is safe from tiger’s attack. Next, move one of the tigers to its adjacent vacant point. Keep introducing all the goats one by one on the board one each during its turn. (i.e., one goat is placed on a point, next one tiger moves, next one more goat is placed on a point, next a tiger moves, next one more goat is placed on a point and so on).
  • Winner
    • The player playing tigers win if they eat/hop a minimum of 6 goats first.
    • The player playing goats win if  the goats immobilize all the three tigers.

My boys loved playing this game over and over again and I loved how using bare minimum stuff, we could keep the ancient games alive.

Have Fun !

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