Electronic Ludo

By Pramod Kumar


Ludo, a traditional board game, requires the players to throw a dice by hand and move forward their tokens on the board by the number of squares indicated by the dice. The dice has six plain surfaces bearing one to six dots that determine the steps of forward movement. In this electronic ludo, the players need to press a push-to-on switch instead of throwing the six-surface dice. When the switch is pressed momentarily, the 7-segment digital counter displays a number immediately. As in the manual dice, the numbers are displayed randomly between ‘1’ and ‘6’ depending on the time for which the player presses switch S1.

Electronic Ludo Circuit

Electroni Ludo Circuit
Electroni Ludo Circuit

Timer IC 555 (IC1) is wired in the astable mode to produce clock pulse of very high frequency depending on the values of capacitor C1 and resistors R1 and R2, respectively. Pin 4 of IC1 is pulled to negative supply through resistor R3 to disable timer IC1.

Circuit operation

When switch S1 is pressed momentarily, IC1 starts generating clock pulse. On releasing S1, IC1 stops counting. Output pin 3 of IC1 is connected to clock input pin 14 of binary decade counter IC 7490 (IC2). Output from pins 11, 8, 9 and 12 of IC2 is connected to BCD input pins 12, 13, 14 and 15 of 1-of-10 decoder IC 7442 (IC3). Output from pin 9 of IC3 is fed back to pins 2 and 3 of IC2 after inversion by inverter N2 to resets IC2 after every six counts. Outputs from pins 11, 8, 9 and 12 of IC2 are also connected to BCD input pins 6, 2, 1 and 7 of BCD-to-seven segment decoder/driver IC 7447 (IC5), respectively, to drive 7-segment common-anode display LTS542 (DIS1).

IC2 would normally produce binary code of ‘0’ to ‘9’ on sequential clock pulses provided by IC1 but output from pin 9 of IC3 resets it after every sixth clock pulse. The resulting count output is always between ‘0’ to ‘6.’ Diodes D1 and D2 form an OR gate and convert the first ‘0’ into ‘1,’ so the displayed count is always between ‘1’ to ‘6.’

The article was first published in September 2006 and has recently been updated.




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