Rating: 6.3 Fair
Popularity:5
Difficulty:Easy
Year:2001
Players: 3-5 players
Playing time: 60 minutes
Age:8+

Official Site: Rules


Created by: Kory Heath, Alexander Bradley

Published by: Looney Labs

Description:

Zendo is a game of inductive logic in which one player, the Master, creates a rule that the rest of the players, as Students, try to figure out by building and studying configurations of the game pieces.

The first student to correctly guess the rule wins. Zendo uses Icehouse Pieces, but was released as a standalone game in July 2003.

Prices:
Retail Price:$0
Awards:
Mensa Select Winner 2005

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Zendo is a game of inductive logic in which the Master creates a rule and the Students attempt to discover it by building and studying small arrangements of Looney Pyramids.

The first student to state the rule correctly wins.

Components

  • 81 Pyramids (15 of each color)
  • 27 White Stones
  • 27 Black Stones
  • 27 Green Stones
  • 40 Rule Cards
  • 2 clips
  • 2 instruction booklets

Setup

Choose someone to be the Master. The other players are the Students. Give each Student a black and a white stone, to serve as "answering stones". …



The following terms and definitions can make it easier for Masters and students to conceptualize and discuss rules.

Color

The standard Zendo colors are red, yellow, green, and blue, though other pyramid colors can be added or substituted. A koan "contains a color" if it contains any pieces of that color. A rule will occasionally refer to the "number of colors" contained within a koan, or within a subset of its pieces.

Size

There are three sizes of pieces: small, medium, and large. A koan "contains a size" if it contains any pieces of that size. As with color, a rule will occasionally refer to the "number of sizes" found within a koan, or within a subset of its pieces. Unlike color, sizes are related to each other in specific ways, such as "larger", "smaller", "largest", and "smallest". …



When you are selected to be the Master for a game of Zendo, you take on a very different role than you would if you were playing as one of the students.

You will not be trying to guess the secret rule; instead, you will create the secret rule that the others are trying to guess. You will spend much of your time during the game carefully marking the koans that the players build, and setting up counter-examples to their guesses. …




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