‘The Poll’ - A One Of A Kind Board Game That Simulates Indian Elections

‘The Poll’ - A One Of A Kind Board Game That Simulates Indian Elections
The Poll

The political fever is upon us. With the general elections being conducted all over India, its highly unlikely that you’ve escaped having some form of political dialogue: constructive or otherwise. The entire country is waiting with baited breath for the results on May 23rd.

There’s no doubt that elections are definitely one of our country’s biggest sport. Shrewd and meticulous, political strategists of every competing party design their manifestos and integrate it with money and manpower to procure the maximum number of seats to win. Interested in how that’s done? We’ve just the game for you!

The Poll

The Poll’ – a one of a kind board game that simulates a real election. With every passing year, it gets a bit difficult to engage youngsters in politics. However, this inventive game brings together fun and knowledge in a nearly perfect marriage to inform and educate the minds of people who want to learn about the Indian politics beyond its brouhaha.

The Poll affords players an opportunity to play different roles – a cold and calculative politician, as well as a compassionate and a careful statesman. But most importantly, the game demystifies and deconstructs our country’s perplexing election culture.

In the game, the player is in control of the affairs of a political party – he or she has to manage finances, build a manifestos, choose an alliance and strategizes for the contesting constituency. Beyond getting ready for the election, the player has to live up to the promises made, through arguments with other players and thus choose campaign strategies to maximize vote share, with the goal to win Lok Sabha’s majority.

The game translates real-world concepts of the political circus in an interactive manner. It has cleverly selected 50 Indian constituencies with their individual issues. The game box contains a central board and includes media cards, election commission cards, constituency cards and policy cards. The players have to solve the problems of the constituencies using policies as they mark their territory using cubes. The campaign strategy cards increase your chances of winning while the media cards increase your influence in a particular constituency; all under ‘the watchdog’ or the election commission. Obviously, each player is also allotted with Rs. 5000 in the game and can use corporate finance when they find themselves running out of it.

Abeer Kapoor

As the game creator Abeer Kapoor says, “We wanted the players to go back with the understanding or a vocabulary of policy promises made by political parties.” A journalist himself, Abeer adds, “Secondly, in its design it pushes forward the liberal values of the importance and centrality of a free press. A combination of all of this will serve as an important voter training too.”

The game is a brilliant simulation of the electoral process. The opacity of our political system only makes it urgent for us to engage in a game like this. We are primarily exhausted and apathetic towards our government’s functioning and thus it is important that a game like The Poll bridges the gaps of inaccessibility and helps us become more aware and mindful. The game thus reflects on a larger message – of how a player can either remain a clever politician focused on winning the polls or be an efficacious leader who develops the future without compromising of our country.

So, who wins the poll? Play and find out!

People playing 'The Poll'

You can buy the board game here.

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