Domino is a game of skill in which players build a line of dominoes that progressively grows longer. Each tile has a number showing at either end of the chain, and it is the player’s job to make sure that his tiles touch both ends so that he or she can create a unique sequence.
The earliest known version of the game was invented in 1120 CE, and they were standardized by the Chinese Emperor Hui Tsung in 1163. They were quickly spread around the world and were often seen in Europe.
In the West, dominoes are most commonly played in games called block and draw. These can be played with either a standard or extended set (see below).
Playing block and draw: Each player starts the game by placing their first domino on a table. Each of the other players must then play a domino onto the table, attempting to position their tiles so that the numbers show at both ends of the chain.
The first player to reach a certain number of points in a round wins that game. The number of points awarded depends on how many open-end pips the player’s dominoes have. A single domino with an equal number of pips on both ends scores the same amount as the total number of pips on an end, and doubles count twice.
This type of game is also played with a special version of the traditional double-six dominoes, which have been bent to a 120-degree curve so that three tiles can be assembled into a circle. This is a minor variation of the traditional draw game and was created by Thierry Denoual.
There are also several types of game that can be played with dominoes, including blocking games and scoring games. Some of these games draw inspiration from card games.
Another example of a game that combines dominoes and a card game is 42, which is played with four players in pairs or in teams. The objective of the game is to be the first player to draw and play a total of seven dominoes that add up to 35 points.
In a similar manner, the game Matador requires each player to add the total of the open-end pips on all of his or her layouts to a certain number. For example, a tile with 3 pips on both sides would add up to 7, and a tile with one pip on both sides would add up to 5.
The most common domino set is the standard or “double-six” set comprising 28 tiles. There are many extended sets that add more pips to each of the ends, increasing the possible combinations by three.
This can result in a more exciting and interesting game of dominoes, as the pips are less predictable, but it is also more difficult to create a sequence that matches both ends of the chain. This is why some people prefer to use a larger set, like a double-nine or a double-12.