Children from the 90s and early 21st century will probably understand the pure obsession they had with the Ludo game. The memories of playing this board game with our closest friends and chewing on snacks for hours together are unforgettable and remain to be the best days forever. But as time passed by and technology took over the world, Indians drifted away from this age-old game; until recently, when the online version of everyone’s childhood delight shook the gaming world.
From older adults to school-going kids, the online Ludo game has probably become the favourite pastime for many. Call it the nostalgia, the game brings about in the players or its new alluring features; it is undeniable that online Ludo is the new norm.
Evolution of online Ludo game
The very first online version of this game was ‘Ludo Classic’, following which, came ‘Ludo Neo-Classic’. Both of these games present a very simple and realistic copy of the traditional Ludo game with four tokens for each of the four players upon a wooden board. However, it was the recent version that made online Ludo so popular. In 2016, ‘Ludo King’, a product of Gametion (a Mumbai-based start-up) took the internet by storm with a very unique, colourful, and attractive online game that gave the nostalgic feeling of the old times but also had a touch of the modern era.
It was a little over a year after its launch that ‘Ludo King’ had over 120 million downloads with 10 million daily active players and 70 million monthly players. After the grand success of this game, hundreds of online Ludo apps like Ludo STAR emerged at a rapid pace and had millions of crazy Ludo fans going gaga over the game. India alone contributes to 70% of its users followed by Pakistan, Indonesia, and other countries from the Asia-Pacific region.
Some of the reasons for the massive fame and success online Ludo bagged in a very little time are listed below:
The nostalgia Indians feel
Tracing back the origin of Ludo to centuries ago, Indian history has had games akin to Ludo played by kings and rulers in the country. Pachisi during the Mughal era, as Ashta Chamma for the people of Andhra, Thayakaram in Tamilnadu, and Chauka Bara in Karnataka are a few games from where Ludo probably originated. Fast forward to a couple of decades ago, the tradition continued, till Ludo evolved as a board game in every other household in the country. Hence, the cherished feeling of reliving the joyous childhood memories through online Ludo is a probable reason why so many Indians have clung to the game as their go-to entertainment.
Easy to play, accessible, and culturally acceptable
A considerable reason to why Indian gamers are fantasizing Ludo can be its ease of availability to people from all backgrounds. Firstly, online Ludo apps are small in size, free to download, and compatible with all levels of smartphones. Hence, it barges away from the class discrimination so that anyone, with a basic featured mobile phone to those with an iPhone, can enjoy the pleasure of their childhood’s favourite game.
Secondly, the recent flourishing of ‘Reliance JIO’ which offered millions of Indians with mobile data at cheap rates is another excellent factor that contributed to people from all walks of life to using the internet. Hence, it was in this duration that these online Ludo apps witnessed millions of downloads and gained immense popularity among Indians.
Lastly, Ludo is regarded as a ‘culturally accepted’ game form in India. Unlike the games like rummy or teen Patti which include gambling and is gender-biased; Ludo is a family game with people of all ages and gender getting a fair share in the play.
Calls for community togetherness
Another alluring feature of the online Ludo game is the massive connectivity it offers to people who are miles away from each other. These games provide four modes of functionality, where players can choose to play with the computer, with friends physically near to him, with online friends or unknown virtual players on the internet. So, whether it is with family at home or friends afar, you can play online Ludo from anywhere and with anyone around the world.
Quirky graphics and interface
Games like Ludo King and Ludo STAR offer interactive and fun-filled gaming sessions with exclusive chat rooms for players who compete online. They can quickly choose from the already available emojis, greetings, or comments like ‘Play Fast!” or get going with their chatter. Moreover, these chat sessions are exclusively moderated to restrict all forms of abuse, thus making a safe enclave to retain the fun environment.
Adding to the already amazing characteristics, the concept of themed gaming interface is also a noteworthy factor that hooks the attention of many. For instance, Ludo King recently launched five new themes which include nature, Egyptian environment, disco, and pinball. These themes modify the appearance of the game board, tokens, and the surroundings, taking the players to an adventurous journey throughout the game. The scintillating sound effects are like cherry toppings on the cake.
Local competitions and tournaments
The extent, to which Ludo is popular in India, can be estimated when people commuting in a train, waiting on a bus-stop, in the car’s backseat, in their offices, or restaurants are found playing it. Apart from casual participation, local tournaments and mini Ludo competitions are also becoming a common trend in the country. With platforms like the MPL mobile game, a one-stop destination for a plethora of games, online Ludo competitions with exciting cash rewards, and other bonus prizes are surging high.
With India, witnessing the world’s most significant amount of app downloads, and also covering 3/4th of the list of game developers across the globe, it is no wonder why online Ludo has gained so much of fame. However, what’s more, evident is the fact that this game has crossed the country’s boundaries and spread its reach to other parts of the world, especially in the Asia-pacific region.
Blame it to the jaw-dropping twists or the thrilling excitement this game produces, and online Ludo is predicted to stay on top for quite a while in the future. After all, it is the nostalgia that brought millions towards it and will keep people attached for long.