Fritz Dooley's
How to Play Mancala - and WIN!

Fritz Dooley's Mancala Center

Several years ago I was taking a course in game theory.  For my term paper, rather than pursuing one of the classic game theory topics such as how game theory explains the mating habits of baboons in the wild or how game theory explains the bidding for NFL teams, I chose to apply the principles of game theory to a board game with which I had become fascinated: the game of mancala. 

With the help of a professor of computer science, we developed a computer program that recursively explored the several trillion possible games to see if we could determine the best strategies for playing, and what is the optimal opening move.

The resulting term paper is provided here for fellow mancala and game theory enthusiasts.

I've also posted a resource page with links to online mancala games, history of mancala, mancala boards, mancala strategy,  mancala instructions and game rule variations, etc.

Enjoy - and drop me a line.


Mancala Research Paper Contents



(c) 2008 by Fritz Dooley