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How to Play Dominoes

May 23rd, 2013 Games

There are many different versions of dominoes, which dates at least as far back as ancient Egypt, according to the World Championship Dominos Tournament's website. But as much as the strategic game has evolved over the centuries, the basic concept where the game pieces are small rectangles featuring different numbers of dots remains the same.

Shuffling the dominoes
It may seem impossible to shuffle a set of dominoes the same way you would a deck of cards. However, domino-games.com recommends turning all the dominoes face-side down, and randomly scrambling them around the the table top before dispensing them to avoid giving any players an unfair advantage. Next, divide up the dominoes evenly among the players.

Let the dominoes begin
According to domino-games, the "double-six" - the domino with six dots on both sides, should be put on the table first. If neither player has the double-six, the double-five is the next best option. However, the Alex Cramer Company's instructions for dominos says it doesn't matter which domino hits the table first. So it's a matter of personal preference.

General playing guidelines
After the first domino is on the board, a domino with the same number of dots on one side is placed next to it, so the matching sides correspond. What direction the connecting domino goes off in is up the player - it can be straight ahead, up or down and sometimes stemming from the middle of the original domino. After a certain number of turns, an increasingly elaborate design of dominoes will form on the table. Whoever runs out of pieces first is declared the winner.

Keep in mind, there's a lot more to the game of dominoes than you'll read about here, so don't be afraid to ask fellow gaming enthusiasts for advice.