Backgammon is a game of skill and strategy; one of the world's classic parlour board games, played for recreation and gambling. Like Mahjong, Backgammon is played in social groups in coffee houses and bars. Historically, variants of this game are believed to have been played in Mesopotamia and Egypt thousands of years ago, then by the Romans and later in India. It also spread to East Asia, but was largely replaced by Xiangqi (Chinese chess). It is now very popular in the West.