January 25, 2010

Project 2: Lac-Luck!

I grew up listening to tales of the Mahabharata, and even as a child, I always used to feel that it was one of the most wonderfully real stories I had ever heard. Full of human frailties, problems, treachery- it depicted a very real picture of the world to me. Although I recognized this to a very minimal extent back then, as a child; I only realize how relevant the Mahabharata continues till date.

B.R.Chopra’s televised serial Mahabharata was part of my weekend diet of TV programmes. With its wonderful cast and some riveting performances, it had me glued. I found the Lac palace incident one of the most interesting parts of the Mahabharata and this game was inspired from the same.

The idea of trapping the Pandavas unawares and burning them alive along with the lac palace was brutally brilliant. The counter plan devised by the Pandavas, to build the tunnel of escape due to Vidura’s timely warning was also a life-saving idea.

These concepts of device, conceive, trap, counter device and escape seemed interesting to work on, when asked to devise a game based on a story. I’ve tried to use these concepts in my design of the game too. The route is devised; the game with its open floorboards is devised. The traps can be opened and counter-closed to escape.

The game went through many peaks and lows and was revised many a time. What has emerged is the most feasible idea of the lot.

The board, inspired by the Manipuri and Meghalaya bamboo dance and the foosball, could be used to play other interesting games that could be devised.

For the story of The House of Lac, click here

Sandhya Ramachandran

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