How to Play Pachisi
Be first to move all four of your pawns from your NEST to your HOME.
Each player starts with four pieces of the same color placed in their "NEST" or Start Circle. The game is displayed so that each player's nest is to his lower right. Pieces enter play onto the darkened space to the left of the nest and continue counter-clockwise around the board to the HOME path directly in front of the player.
Scoring is calculated on two levels:
  • First, by number of Pawns in their Home
  • Second by the total of all steps taken by each pawn. Note that Pawns still in the Nest, will count as a negative 5.
How to read the Score
Take the following score as an example:
The 3 is the number of pawns already in the player's HOME.
The 110 is the score. Note that the score always starts with the first number. So any score of 3 at the beginning, beats any score starting with a 2 or 1.
Game over Neptune Reports
When a game is over in a lobby, there is a "Neptune" report that orders the players from Highest to Lowest (see Scoring above). In the event of a complete tie, additional measures are used to determine the order by giving more weight to pawns that are closer to the finish (HOME). The following rules apply only in this case:
  • If two players are tied, the system recalculates their score by adding weight to pawns that are further along on the board.
  • The player with the higher score is put ahead of the other player, but their original scores still show in the Neptune report.
    The weighting is as follows:
    • If the pawn's position is greater than 4, but less than 22, add 1
    • If the pawn's position is greater than 21 but less than 39, add 2
    • If the pawn's position is greater than 38 but less than 56, add 3
    • If the pawn's position is greater than 55 but less than 64, add 4
    • If the pawn's position is greater than 63, add 5.
  • In the event they are tied even when calculating with the weighted score, then the system randomizes a dice roll internally to determine which player goes ahead of the other.
    If randmonization was used, a star (*) will appear at the end of the Neptune report.
Yacht Club Member Feature!
Yacht Club Members can see the current score of all the players at the table, whether they are playing or kibbitzing.
How to Play
Each player rolls a die; the highest roller goes first, and subsequent play continues to the left. On each turn, players throw one or both dice and use the values shown to move their pieces around the board. If an amount on one or both of the dice cannot be moved, that amount is forfeited.
Entering Your Pawns
Five has a special value in entering pieces out of the nest from where they begin the game. A player may enter a piece only by throwing a five or a total sum of five on the dice. Each time a five is tossed, the player must start another piece, if viable.
If you cannot use a five to enter, you can use it to move an existing pawn on the board.
Your entered pawns are moved counter-clockwise around the path the number of spaces rolled on the dice.
  • The player may move one pawn per dice, or use both dice on one pawn move.
  • The player must move whenever possible. If they cannot move by the count of both dice, they may move one pawn by the count of either one of the dice.
  • No more than two pawns of the same color can occupy a single space.
A roll of matching dice is called doublets. A roll of doublets entitles the player to another roll and may also entitle the player to a bonus move (see below).
  • If doublets are rolled before all pawns are entered, the player takes their turn as usual then rolls again
  • Doublets Bonus: If doublets are rolled after all four of the player's pawns are out of their NEST, then the player uses the four numbers on the tops and the bottoms of the dice for movement. The total of this four-part move is always 14, and can be taken by one pawn or split the amount between 2 or more pawns. The player must be able to move all four parts of their move, or they can't move any of them. In either case, the player rolls again.
  • Doublets Penalty: The third consecutive doublet is a penalty. The player cannot move any of their pawns, and must take the pawn closest to their HOME and return it to their NEST. Pawns already in their HOME are not affected. This ends the player's turn.
When a player lands on an opponet's pawn, by the count of any die, it is captured and is returned to it's NEST.
Pawns cannot be captured on their HOME Path spaces, or on most Safety Spaces (see Safety Spaces below for the exception).
Capture Bonus
After capturing a pawn, the player may move any one of their pawns an additional 20 spaces at the end of their turn.
If they capture during a Doublets Bonus move, they must complete their capture bonus before moving again.
If they cannot move one pawn the full 20 spaces, they forfeit the bonus.
Safety Spaces
All gray spaces with circles, including the Enter spaces, are Safety spaces. Two pawns of different colors can NEVER share a Safety Space.
Pawns cannot be captured on Safety spaces EXCEPT if an opponent's pawn occupies your ENTER space, and if you enter a pawn, then you capture it and it returns to their NEST.
Two pawns of the same color on any path space form a blockade. A blockade cannot be landed on, passed through, or captured.
If a blockade occupies a player's Enter space, then that player cannot enter a pawn.
Two pawns in a blockade cannot be moved forward to form a blockade together on a new space.
To reach HOME, the player must move their pawns up the HOME path and into the HOME area of the same color. A player cannot move their pawns onto any opponent's HOME Path spaces.
Each pawn must enter their HOME by an exact die roll, counting the HOME space as a space.
HOME Bonus
After moving a pawn into HOME, the player can move any one of their pawns an addtional 10 spaces at the end of their turn. If they can't move one pawn the full 10 spaces, they forfeit the bonus.
Variations supported by Options
2, 3 or 4 players
Chosen at the start of the game. Once a game starts, no one new can join. Note that only 4 player games can support partners.
First Pawn Out
  • "First Pawn" starts all the players with one pawn out of the nest.
  • "No Pawn Out", which is the default, starts with all four pawns in the next.
Undo move or not undo
  • "Undo Moves", allows the player to undo a move before they complete the dice play. Once the dice play is complete, and they are playing an bonus moves, they cannot undo their move.
  • "No Undo", which is the default, does not allow the user to undo any move.
  • "Blockade On", Default Setting. Players are allow to set up blockades and block other pieces from moving past.
  • "Blockade Off", No player can place two of their pawns on the same spot.
Auto Fives
  • "Auto Fives On", (Default) Forces the rule that whenever a Five is rolled, the player must move one of their Pawns out of the Nest, if possible.
  • "Auto Fives Off", Allows the player to use their dice for moves in any combination. Does not enforce the Five rule.
Timer option
The game can be set with Timer Off, 1 minute, or 2 minutes. If the timer is on, and the time runs out on a player's move, the remaining player(s) have the option to permanently remove them from the game.
Pachisi Glossary
Destination space for players. This is the end point where all your pawns must reach to win the game.
Starting place for all pawns. Also called the start circle.
Playing pieces. Four per player.
Contact Us at
Any use or reproduction of our graphics, trademarks, or content without written consent from SHG is strictly prohibited.
© 2008 - 2016 Safe Harbor Games (SHG)

All our software is free from viruses and spyware.