CARROM

Australia’s first venue to offer this traditional table top game of Indian origin in a contemporary setting for all ages.

the game

Carrom is a tabletop game played with fingers on a square board with a pocket in each corner, using small disks of wood known as carrom men, that are designed to slide when struck by a Striker.

The most common forms of the game are “singles” (two players sitting opposite each other) and “doubles” (four players, one on each side, with players sitting opposite being a team). A carrom set contains 19 pieces (striker not included) in three distinct colours: one for each player or team, and another for the queen. The usual colours are white (or unstained) and black for the players and red for the queen. Carrom follows similar “strike and pocket” games like pool, with its use of rebounds, angles, and obstruction of opponent’s carrom pieces. Points are scored by pocketing the carrom men and the queen, each of which is identified by a predefined point.

The game of carrom originated in India. It became very popular among the masses after World War I. The game gained popularity in South Asia, the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth during the early 20th century.

PLAYING SURFACE

PlayPoint is offering Synco Champion Genius Carrom Boards that are approved by the All India Carrom Federation and the International Carrom Federation as playing surface for the 8 tabletop boards.

pLAYING Rules

General

  • To begin, the Queen is placed in the center of the board. Six pieces are put around the Queen directly in a circle, each touching the Queen and their neighbours. The remaining twelve pieces are positioned around the inner circle of six pieces, so that each outer piece touches the inner circle. Both circles should have the pieces opposite in colour. The two circles are oriented so that the Queen, a white piece from the inner circle and a white piece from the outer circle lie in a straight line pointing towards the center of the side of the board where the player who will play first is sitting.
  • For the very first turn, the player is allowed three attempts to “break” i.e. disturb the central group of counters. It doesn’t matter which piece the striker hits first and it doesn’t matter if the striker hits no pieces. If the striker pockets the Queen and/or one or more pieces of their own colour, the player retrieves the striker and takes another strike.
  • If the player pockets no pieces or commits a foul, the turn finishes.
  • For each strike, the player must position the striker within the baseline OR on one of the two circles at either end of the baseline. A striker within the baseline must touch both the front line and the rear line. The striker may not “cut the moon” – be placed partially within the baseline and partially within the circle.
  • The player must flick the striker with one finger so that it crosses the front baseline – it is not permitted to flick backwards or horizontally.
  • If the carrom man is behind the baseline, the player can directly hit the carrom man by the carrom striker.
  • In striking, the player’s hand or arm must not cross the diagonal foul lines at either end of the baseline.
  • Sinking the striker incurs a penalty of one piece and a loss of turn. If a piece is pocketed in the same shot as the striker that piece is also removed. These pieces are returned to the board in the center circle. If the striker is sunk before any of a player’s carrom men, that player must later return a carrom man after sinking to make up for the deficit.
  • If a piece jumps off the board, it is placed on the center spot. If pieces land on end or are overlapping, they are left that way.
  • If the center spot is partially covered when replacing the Queen or a jumped piece, the piece should cover as much red as possible. If totally covered, the piece is placed opposite the next player behind the red spot.
  • One can touch any coin. However, if the player touches their last piece directly before the Queen, penalty is imposed.

Scoring

Professional – mostly played in the UK, Sri Lanka, and India
Professional carrom is a variant where each team or player is assigned a colour and can only pocket that colour of carrom men.

  • Pocketing the Queen must be followed by pocketing another coin on the same strike.
  • The Queen can only be pocketed if the player has already pocketed a carrom man but has not yet pocketed the last carrom man of the player’s colour as a carrom man must be pocketed to cover it.
  • Once the Queen is covered, whoever clears all their carrom men first wins the board.
  • Queen and cover can be pocketed in the same turn, irrespective of the order they enter the pocket.
  • The winner of a board collects one point for each of the opponent’s carrom men left at the finish and three points for the Queen if covered by the winner (if covered by the loser, no-one gets those points). No more points are collected for the Queen after the score reaches 21.
  • A game consists of 25 points.
  • If a player sinks an opponent’s piece, that player loses a turn. If a player sinks an opponent’s last carrom man, they lose the board and three points.
  • If a player sinks their last piece before the Queen, they lose the board, three points and one point for each of their opponent’s pieces left.

Point – popular with children or an odd number of players
Point carrom is a variant where each player is allowed to pocket carrom men of any colour.

  • Carrom men of either colour are assigned points as follows – Queen 5 points, Black 1 points and White 2 points.
  • To get queen points, one needs to put a carrom man of any colour in the same pocket after the queen on the same or a subsequent strike in the same turn. If the player fails to “cover” the queen in this fashion, the queen is put back in the center of the board.
  • The first player to reach 25 points is declared the winner.
  • If no player reaches 25 points, the player with the highest points is declared the winner. If the scores are tied, a tie-breaker must be played. Players who are tied select a colour and are only allowed to pocket carrom men of the other colour on the rebound.

Family-point – mostly played in South-East Asia
Family-point carrom is an informal variant suitable for an odd number of players where each player is allowed to pocket carrom men of any colour.

  • Typically, a black carrom man scores 10 points, and a white scores 20 points
  • The queen scores 50 points.
  • The queen must be “covered” pocketing another carrom man in the same pocket on the same or subsequent strike in one’s turn.
  • With the points system, if one team/player gets queen points early in the game, the opponent still has a good chance to win by earning more points.

Total-point – widely accepted in many areas of Bangladesh, India and Pakistan

Total-point carrom is a variant where one team or player has all the carrom men and he queen.

  • The black carrom men are worth 1/10 point(s) and the white ones are worth 2/20 points.
  • The queen is assigned 5/50 points. As in the above two variants, it must have a carrom man pocketed after it.
  • To win, a player must receive all the carrom men on the board.
  • After the first round, the player or team with the lowest score puts all their carrom men in the center.
  • The others must match this score in the center and the players play for the carrom men in the center.
  • They repeat this until one team or player has all the carrom men.