Dominoes – The Game That’s Been Around For Centuries


Dominoes are a popular game that has been around for centuries. It is a favorite in many parts of the world, especially parts of Europe and the Caribbean.

A domino set consists of 28 tiles; most commonly, the pips range from one to six and there are also blanks. Some sets also have a spinner in the center of each tile.


In a domino game, players each draw a hand of seven or five dominoes. The player who draws the highest double or single plays first.

The game moves clockwise, with each player taking turns. If no one is able to make another play, the game ends and a new player is chosen.

If a domino is played in wrong place, it must be recalled and placed back on the table. This is called a misplay and is usually not worth a score.

Unlike many other games, dominoes are not numbered, but have pips (spots). In most cases a domino has only one pip.

Some domino sets use a number system that is easier to read than pips. These sets are referred to as European dominoes. Unlike Chinese dominoes, they do not have the military-civilian suit distinctions. These sets are also more likely to include duplicates. In addition, they are often made of harder wood than their Chinese counterparts.


The game of domino originated in China and has since been played throughout the world. While Chinese dominos were made of actual animal bone, Western domino sets primarily use tagua nut tiles.

These tiles can be used by most people and are usually arranged in a semicircle on the table top, either with one hand or with a tile rack. A tile rack is a bar of wood with a ridge and backstop cut into it to support a row of seven to nine tiles standing on end.

Another common material for making domino tiles and racks is basic aluminum. It was widely used in the 19th century because it is easy to stamp or emboss.

After tinplating dominoes became popular, another plastic made specifically for domino manufacture was invented by Frenchman Charles Lepage in 1855 called Bois Durci. It was very popular at the time, but was later abandoned because of its flammability. The next kind of domino plastic to be developed was Parkesine, which was invented in 1856 by a company in Birmingham.


Dominoes are rectangular tiles with a face that is divided into two square halves by a line. The face contains pips, which are dots that represent numbers.

Some domino sets have the same number of pips on both halves; others have a different set of numbers on each half. This is because the pips on the front of a domino are molded or drilled into the tile, while the pips on the back of a domino are painted.

In addition to traditional tile-based domino games, there are several variations on the game. These games differ in rules and play, and can be very challenging or very simple.

One common variation is The Draw Game, also known as the Block Game. In this game, players start with a double-six set and draw seven tiles to form a single line of dominoes. Each player extends this line of dominoes with a matching tile. The first player to play a match wins the game.


Scoring is the main objective in domino games, whether played individually or as part of a team. The most popular method is to add the pips (spots) on the winning hand rounded to the nearest multiple of five.

The scoring system is usually the same for each player in a game; however, some games are won differently. One of the most popular variations is Hector’s Rules, which allows double tiles to be played on opponent’s hands and awards a bonus play if the domino is laid before the opponent’s turn ends.

Other notable scoring systems include Holsey and Tidwell’s X. The largest X is worth 10 points. The small X’s around it also score, but in smaller quantities. This system is used on a cribbage board, and can be a challenge for beginners. It is a quick and reliable system, but beginners often lack the mental capacity to think of the most effective X’s.