A Beginner’s Guide to Dominoes


Whether you’re playing dominos for the first time or if you’ve played them a thousand times, you’ll be familiar with the basic rules of the game. You’ll also know the most popular variations. Some are solitaire games, while others involve a game of chicken foot. There’s also a concentration variant where you’re required to take a certain number of pips in order to win.

In the basic version of dominos, a player will be paired against a player who has the lowest numbers in their hand. The two players then form a team. The player with the least number of spots in their dominoes wins. The goal of the game is to make the tower stable. This is achieved by adding more dominoes to the platform.

The most common domino set is the double six with 28 tiles. A double nine set has 55 tiles, and a double twelve has 91. Larger sets are preferred when there are more than two players. Some large sets use Arabic numerals instead of pips.

The first tile that is played is a 6-6. The second is a 5-5, and the third is a 4-6. A double is a pair of tiles that are laid perpendicular to the line. The value of every piece is based on the points it has in both squares. The double is counted as one or two, depending on its position. The same applies to the double-blank, which is usually counted as 0 or 14.

If the player cannot place the first piece, he or she can pick a sleeping piece. This is a special type of tile that runs out when the other players cannot move it. When the player is finished with a sleeping tile, he or she must draw from the unused tiles.

In a domino game, players take turns placing pieces in the layout. Each tile has a specific function. Typically, the tile must have a certain number of spots. If the pips on the same side of the domino are all the same, the piece is said to have “stitched up” the ends. In a concentrated game, the total pip count must be twelve.

Some versions of dominos allow the tiles to be joined together at all four corners. These pieces are often called the “L” in the layout. Traditionally, dominos have been made of ivory or dark hardwood such as ebony. Occasionally, they’re made of silver lip ocean pearl oyster shell.

While the name “domino” is credited to two earlier meanings, the modern-day game is thought to be derived from the Latin dominus, which means mask. The word first appears in 1771 in Dictionnaire de Trevoux. This was likely a reference to the black and white hood worn by Christian priests during winter.

Although there are many variations of the game, the most popular variants are scoring games. In these types of games, each winning player’s hand is counted as a pips worth. For example, if a player has a double that’s worth a certain amount, that pips counts as a point. A player who has a double that’s worth five pips is said to have had seven tricks, which equates to 42 points.