Mancala World
First Description: Víktor
Bautista i Roca, 2005
Cycles: One
Ranks: Two
Sowing: Single laps
Region: Haiti

Voleur ("thief") is a traditional mancala game, which is played by children in Haiti. It was first described by the Catalonian game expert Víktor Bautista i Roca in 2005. He recorded it at La Descubierta, Dominican Republic, where he met Eduardo, a 49 years old immigrant from Haiti. His informant was a sports teacher who learned the game while he was studying at the Salesians of Jean Bosco school in Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti.


Voleur is played by two players on a board, which has two rows of six holes.

At the beginning each hole contains four counters.


Initial Position

Each player controls the row on his side of the board.

Players take turns to move.

At his turn the player takes all the stones from one of his holes and distributes ("sows") them one by one in a counterclockwise direction.

The contents of the last hole in which a counter is dropped are captured (including the last counter sown) even if this hole was empty. Counters can be captured on either side of the board.

The winner of the game is the player who has captured most counters.


Another game from La Descubierta (with just one source) is almost identical, except that the player captures the contents of a hole only if its contents are even.


Bautista i Roca, V.
Africa Hidden Inside A Small Hole. Paper presented in the VIIIth Board Game Studies Colloquium. Oxford (England) April 2005.


© Wikimanqala.
By: Víktor Bautista i Roca.
Under the CC by-sa 2.5.