Dominoes are a type of gaming device used for various games. The most basic version of the game requires two players and a set of double six tiles. These are generally made of wood or bone. They are often marked with spots or pips, and may also be blank.
Traditionally, European dominoes are made of dark hardwood, ivory, or mother of pearl oyster shell. Alternatively, they may be made of plastic. Some larger sets use Arabic numerals instead of pips.
In the basic game, a player draws seven dominoes from a deck, and places them in a row on the floor. One of the tiles in the line is then flipped, which causes the next to fall down. Depending on the game, players then try to knock down the tiles in front of them with a single tap. There are many variants of the game, and there is even a trick-taking variation.
Another popular version of the game is called Five-Up. Players use tiles of different colors. A goal is to score when a player can add up the open-end pips on a layout of five.
Another variant is Concentration. A similar game uses a single line down the middle of the board and requires a total pip count of 12. However, the first one to be tipped over starts a chain reaction. To complete the chain, the second player must match the number of pips in the first domino.
While it isn’t the smallest number, the number of pips in a domino is known as the weight of the game. Traditionally, the pips on a domino are arranged like the faces of a six-sided die. For example, a domino with five pips has a higher weight than a domino with three pips.
Originally, each domino was a representation of one of 21 possible results of throwing a pair of six-sided dice. But as the game became more popular, more pieces were added to the game, until it reached the current state.
Most modern domino games are adaptations of the original card game. In addition, there are also versions that feature other characters, such as the matador or the solitaire.
Interestingly, the name “domino” came from the French word for cloak, a cape that was worn by priests. Eventually, the game was introduced to England in the late 1700s. Later, it spread to France, Austria, and other countries.
There are also many variations of the game, including the Chinese version Tien Gow, which is played with 32 pieces, and the Chinese version of Che Deng, which is played with eight pieces. Although most dominoes are made of the same material, they have different faces and colors. Many children prefer to play with dominoes as toys.
Other games include trick-taking, the five-up variant, and the matador. These games can be played with any domino, or a custom course can be created by using other objects.
In the basic game, players try to get their opponents to hit them with their tile. However, the tying-up of tiles is sometimes the most exciting part of the game.