filipino games

Like any other country in the world, Philippines have many different games that are played as a past time, or simply for recreational purposes. Some games are more popular and more well-known than the others, but the three games that stuck out at me were Tubigan, Sungka, and Culliot. Tubigan, also known as Patintero, is played outdoors. The players are divided into two equal teams. Based on a coin toss, one team becomes the runners, and the other becomes the tagger. The object of the runner is to get through all the lines back and forth without being tagged.

To set this game up, the ground is marked off in a 5 or 6 meter rectangle divided into four equal parts. The taggers stand 1, 2, 3, and 4 on the marked lines. Tagger number 1 can go anywhere to tag the runners. Taggers 2, 3, and 4 must have both feet on the marked lines, and can only tag the runner as they cross their lines or as they get near them. As soon as the runners cross line 4, he must return to line 2 and call out “Tubig! ” scoring a point for his team. The runners must score a clean pass within 2 minutes; otherwise a turnover will be called.

Sungka, known as mancala in Southern Asia, has been around in the Philippines for as long as anyone can remember. The sungka board is a small treasure – the older it is, the more precious, it sits on a side table or a top bench, waiting to be played. The sungka board is a shallow boat made of solid wood. The whole length of the boat is lined in seven small bowls carved in pairs, with two large deep bowls carved out at both ends (bahay) for captured “sigay”. The props needed for this game are pebbles, “sigay” or shells, or seeds. In each small pit are initially 7 “sigay. ” Sungka is always played by two people.

At each turn a player empties one of his small pits and then distributes its contents in a counterclockwise direction, one by one, into the following pits including his own store, but passing the opponents store. If the last stone falls into a non-empty small pit, its contents are lifted and distributed in another lap. If the last stone is dropped into the player’s own store, the player gets a bonus move. If the last stone is dropped into an empty pit, the move ends. If the move ends by dropping the last stone into one of your own small pits you capture the “sigay” in the opponent’s pit directly across the board and your own stone.

The captured “sigay” are deposited in your store. However, if the opponent’s pit is empty, nothing is captured. The first move is played simultaneously. After that play is alternately. The first player to finish the first move may start the second move. However, in face-to-face play one player might start shortly after his opponent so that he could choose a response which would give him an advantage. There is no rule that actually could prevent such a tactic. So, in fact, the decision-making may be non-simultaneous. You must move if you can. If you can’t a player must pass until he can move again.

The game ends when no “sigay” are left in the small pits. The player who captures most “sigay” wins the game. The game culliot is similar to the game of tug-of-war. Two or more players can play this. The purpose of this team is to pull the other team over the borderline. The equipment needed is a 15-meter long rope with a diameter of 3. 81 centimeters. Each team must have an equal number of players. The teams are placed five meters away from each other. Both ends of the rope should be tied on the waist of the last player while the others hold on to the rope.

A piece of ribbon or handkerchief is tied onto the centerline of the rope. Upon the signal to start, each team pulls the other, attempting to pull the opposing team over the borderline, thus becoming the winner. In my opinion, the cultural aspect of these games teaches teamwork, skill, wit, as well as strength. Growing up, I have played all of the above games. I had no idea that they were Filipino games, except for sungka. I like these games because it brought my family and I closer together; my cousins and I especially. These games taught us how to work as a team, think about our decisions before we make a move, and wit.

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