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How To Play Dominoes

How To Play Dominoes

Play Dominoes. Your definitive guide on how to play the popular traditional pub game of dominoes. Play dominoes with anyone anytime!

Step 1: What is a domino?

The tile or "bone", as it is more commonly known, is a rectangle with a line down the centre, each end of the tile contains a number of dots, usually from zero to six.
For this film we are using a set called 'double-six'

Step 2: Naming Dominoes

Dominoes are referred to by the number of dots (or pips) on each end with the lowest number usually being mentioned first. So a tile with a 3 at one end and a 5 at the other is known as a "3-5". A tile with the same number at both end is known as a double, so a "6-6" is known as a double six. A double six is known as the 'heaviest' domino, and a double blank is the 'lightest'

Step 3: Shuffling the Dominoes

Before a game can begin the dominoes must be shuffled. The tiles must all be turned face down on the table, then moved around in a random motion, being careful not to flip any over. The collection of shuffled tiles is known as the "bone yard".

Step 4: Beginning a Game

Before a game begins you must decide who is to play first. Either players pick a tile from the bone yard, and the "heaviest" tile wins the right to go first. Or, the players draw 7 tiles and the holder of the heaviest tile starts.

Step 5: Playing Dominoes

Take seven dominoes from the bone yard, and stand them on the table facing you, so you know what you have, but no other player does.

In most games, only the open ends of the layout of dominoes can be used, an end is open when it has no other tile connected to it.
When playing a double, it can be placed crossways straddling the tile it is connected to. Usually, additional tiles can only be placed against the long side of the tile, although in some variations of the game of dominoes, all four sides of the double are considered open, allowing dominoes to be connected in all four directions.

A tile can only be placed if you have a tile in your hand that corresponds to a tile on the table. But the exception is a tile with no pips. This can be edited onto any other tile.

If a player cannot make a move, then they must take a tile from the bone yard until it is empty. Once it is empty then they must pass to allow the other players to go.

Step 6: Ending a Game

A game ends in one of two ways, either when a player has played all their tiles or the game is blocked. When no player is able to add any tiles to the layout, there is no winner.

Step 7: Scoring

Points are awarded to the winner by adding the number of 'pips' on the losing player's tiles. The player that reaches the target score first (usually 100 or 200 points), is the winner.

Step 8: Variations

The game of dominoes has been played for over 700 years so there are many variations on the game. For details on more games go to www.domino-games.com. Have fun playing dominoes!