Oriental board game Rahala explores Middle Eastern history

Daily Star Egypt Staff
3 Min Read

Diwan bookstore s celebration of culture is evident as soon as you walk into their flagship store in Zamalek. So it comes as no surprise that they are the first to bring to Egypt the pioneering oriental board game, Rahala (Explorer). A product of the region, ‘Rahala’ is a game that takes you on a journey through 40 centuries of Middle East history.

Created by Reem Askalan, Rahala is the first bilingual trivia board game to cover the history of the Arab World from 2000 BC until 2000 AD. It offers adults of 15 years and above an opportunity to delve into the art, science, wars, conquests, mythologies, religions, and philosophy of the historic Middle East.

The trivia board game aims to bring closer the wide spectrum of Arab cultural heritage to Arab audiences. “The game is highly enjoyable, useful and intriguing. .And while the concept of the game is intellectually quite refined and sophisticated, sufficient room for it is left to chance, thus making it on par with simpler, more popular commercial games, said Professor Wadad Al-Kadi of Islamic Studies at Chicago University.

Through its History Questions, the game highlights the multifaceted makeup of Arab civilizations. The questions reveal the widely spread geographic boundaries of this civilization along with its people, religions, minorities, scientific discoveries, cultural scenes, and interaction with other civilizations. In addition to the history element, the game includes Open Questions that allow for discussions and communication among the players over highly challenging topics.

Rahala/Explorers is a trivia board-game where players use cards to ask each other questions, pieces to move along squares in labyrinth around the Black Hole, and era tokens to mark the completion of travel over a certain era. There are six historic eras: Ancient Civilizations, Hellenism and Byzantine, Early Islam, Age of Discovery, Mamluks and Ottomans, and Modern Times. The objective of the game is to collect Points of Knowledge while traveling through different paths to reach and explore different eras.

There are adventures along the way that will either hinder or advance the players progress in the game. The adventurous paths include the fall in a Black Hole – after which the player must negotiate to continue the game – or the flying on a Pegasus, where the player has no control over where their playing piece will land.

The board-game is a fun way to learn about topics and issues that are relevant to Arabs’ history. It also highlights the diverse cultural facets of the Middle Eastern societies; an effort we all welcome and support.

Diwan Bookstore150, 26th of July St. Zamalik, Cairo, Egypt.Tel: +(202) 2736 2582+(202) 2736 [email protected]

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