The Basics of Dominoes
Originally, a domino was a cape or masquerade mask worn by priests. In later years, it became a gaming device used in a number of different games. Its origin is a bit of a mystery, but it appears to have originated in Italy or France in the 18th century.
The earliest known Western versions of dominoes were brought to England in the mid-18th century by French prisoners of war. These were typically made of bone or ivory and had a line down the middle.
Unlike traditional Chinese dominoes, European sets are not marked with a suit distinction. Instead, each tile has a number of spots on one side. These spots are arranged in an arrangement that represents the possible face of two six-sided dice. The tile’s value depends on how many spots are on one or both sides. Traditionally, European dominoes are made of dark hardwoods such as ebony, ivory, or silver lip ocean pearl oyster shell.
A game of dominoes usually involves two players, with each player obtaining seven tiles from the stock. Each player then draws a domino, and places it edge to edge against the other. The objective is to knock the other player’s domino out of the way while keeping yours in your hand. A player who has the fewest pips wins.
Some of the more popular domino games include Tien Gow, Pai Gow, and Five-Up. These games are played with multicolored tiles. Other types of domino games include trick-taking and scoring games. Some children prefer to use dominoes as toys.
A common variant of the game is the double-six set. The set has a total of six tiles, and each of them has a total of six pips. The first player begins the game by drawing the lead piece, which has the highest total pip count. The second player then draws a domino that matches the number of pips of the first. The player who has the fewest pips at the end of the game wins.
Some other variants of the game involve placing the dominos in long lines. When the first domino is tipped over, the next domino in the line will also tip over, and so on. This is called a chain reaction. When the last domino in the line falls, the whole pile will fall down. A variant that allows double tiles on the hands of the opponents is called Hector’s Rules. It is most popular in Singapore.
Another popular version of the game is the Concentration variant. It is played with a double-six set, and requires that the total pip count be twelve. However, this version can be difficult to play. In addition, it can be complicated to keep track of the numbers on the dominoes, and identifying the pips becomes increasingly more difficult as the number of pieces increases.
Traditionally, European dominoes were made of bone, ivory, or silver lip ocean pearl oystershell. In recent years, dominoes have been manufactured from rigid materials, such as plastic.