# The Basics of Domino

Playing domino helps kids with their concentration skills. They also learn to work in teams.

Each domino, also known as bones, cards, men or pieces, is normally twice as long as it is wide. Its ends are usually numbered and have different values.

Traditionally the player holding the highest double begins the game. The winning players scores by laying dominoes end to end, touching each other on the exposed sides (ones touch one’s, twos touch two’s).

## Rules

The basic rules for domino are a series of procedures to prevent cheating and ensure that play progresses smoothly. The game is played with a standard set of 28 domino tiles that have two square ends each of which has a number from zero to six. The game is won when a player manages to empty his or her hand.

The first player to do so wins the round. This may be done by a simple count of the dominoes left in each player’s hand or, as some games require, the sum total of the exposed dots on each of the remaining Dominoes.

Normally, the starting tile is a double, but this can be varied depending on the game-variant in question. Players may also mark a train by placing a marker on it and thus making the train public, stopping other players from adding to it. In addition, some games play that each player subtracts the pip value of the dominoes left in his or her hand from a running total and then divides that amount by five.

## Variations

There are many different types of domino sets in use throughout the world, and a wide variety of games can be played with them. Each domino has an arrangement of dots on one side, resembling those on six-sided dice, and is blank or identically patterned on the other. This allows players to identify their own tiles, and to make decisions based on the knowledge of their opponents’ tile counts.

The most common domino game is the two-player blocking game, which uses a standard double-six set comprising 28 tiles. These are shuffled and form the stock or boneyard from which each player draws a number of dominoes, typically seven.

When a new tile is placed, its matching end must touch the adjacent double or the end of the domino chain. This creates a snake-line shape, which adds to the fun of the game. The winner is the player whose total score of exposed dots is the lowest.

## Materials

Modern dominoes are made from a variety of materials. They are generally mass produced and inexpensive for use by kids and in places where a high volume of dominoes is needed. They are available in many color combinations. The dots on a domino are called pips and they can be molded, drilled, or painted.

Some sets are made from natural materials such as bone, silver lip ocean pearl oyster shell (mother of pearl), or ivory with contrasting black pips inlaid or painted. Other materials that can be used to make dominoes include stone (marble or granite), other woods, and metals.

Most players arrange a row of dominoes in front of them on a table top and then play the tiles. Those with larger hands can also hold the tiles in their hand, stacked side to side in a column. Some sets have a tile rack that holds the dominoes standing on their edges. Traditionally, these have been made from wood, but nowadays they are also made from plastics.

## Scoring

The scoring system in domino varies according to the game type. Typically, a player is awarded points whenever the value of the exposed ends of the dominoes in a chain is divisible by five or three. A double counts as two, and a blank scores zero.

The winner of the game is determined once all rounds have been completed or until a specified point limit is reached. The player with the highest score wins.

To determine which player will begin play, either draw lots or let the player holding the heaviest double begin the game. Players then take turns placing tiles at right angles to the line. A double is placed square on the end of a line of dominoes, while the other doubles are played cross-ways across the line. The chain will eventually develop into a snake-line shape. The heaviest domino must touch the other side of the first one before any other piece can be placed.