How to Play Domino

Domino is a game in which players place domino tiles on the table so that they touch one another. This sets off a chain reaction that eventually causes the dominoes to fall over, leaving behind a series of lines and patterns on the floor. While there are a number of different ways to play Domino, most have similar rules and scoring systems. There are also some minor variations in rules that can change the way a game is played.

To begin a domino game, the tiles are shuffled and then drawn by each player. The player who draws the heaviest tile will make the first play. If there is a tie, the players draw additional tiles from the stock until one player has the heaviest tile in his hand. Some games require that the player who starts the play is able to continue with it, while others do not.

The first domino in a line has “inertia” that makes it resist movement, unless pushed on. A tiny nudge can be enough to overcome this resistance and cause the first domino to topple over. The process then repeats itself with each domino that is pushed on. This is why it is important for the player to plan ahead and consider how each action will affect the next domino.

This planning can be a challenge, especially when the game is progressing quickly. For this reason, some players prefer to use fractions when preparing their domino installations. For example, if Hevesh is building an installation 24 inches long, she may divide the installation into three equal sections to help her figure out how many dominoes to buy. This will also give her more flexibility if she or her teammate accidentally knocks over part of the installation.

In the beginning, each player takes as many tiles as are required by the game being played. If a player is unable to place a domino, he passes his turn. The next player then picks a sleeping domino to add to his hand.

When a domino is played, the two matching ends must be touching and touching fully. Doubles are always placed crosswise to each other, while singles must be played lengthwise.

After a domino is played, the players must count the total number of pips on the tiles in their hands at the end of the hand or the game. The player who has the most pips wins.

Sometimes a domino is played that causes no other dominoes to topple, or it does not affect any of the other players in any way. When this happens, the players may agree to a scoring method.

The most common scoring methods take the total number of pips on the losing players’ dominoes at the end of the hand or game and divide it by the total number of tiles in the winning player’s hand. Alternatively, the total number of points could be calculated by counting only the heaviest domino in the losers’ hands at the end of the hand or game.