Domino is a family of tile-based games, similar to playing cards, where players attempt to match a number of tiles. These tiles are usually rectangular in shape and have a line dividing them into two square ends, each marked with a number of spots (pips). The backs of the tiles are indistinguishable, either blank or with some common design.
In the most basic Western domino game, each player draws at random the number of pieces required for a game, usually seven. The leader, or “heaviest” domino, is then played first. The remaining pieces, known as the stock or boneyard, are discarded at the end of the game.
There are a wide variety of domino variations, some of which involve playing with curved tiles. One such variation, Bendomino, uses a double-six domino set that is bent into a 120-degree curve so that all of the tiles can be assembled into a circle. This makes it easy to block either or both sides of the line of play, depending on the rules.
Another version of the game is called Matador, which involves a different strategy. The objective is to match an adjacent domino with a number that totals seven when added to its open-end pips. This strategy can be very difficult, and the players may not always know which pips are which.
Some other variants of the game are muggins and chicken foot, both of which involve the goal of making the open-end pips on a layout a multiple of five. The muggins and chicken foot variants often require that the first tile played must be a double.
These games can be played with a single set of dominoes or with a more elaborate set, sometimes referred to as a deck or pack. The standard European domino set consists of 28 tiles, also known as bones, pieces, men, stones, or cards. The tiles are normally twice as long as they are wide, making them easier to re-stack after use.
Many people find this type of game relaxing and entertaining. Some have even claimed that a game of dominoes can be calming and therapeutic.
This game is also popular in China, where it dates back to the 17th century. Chinese dominoes were originally used to represent the 21 results of throwing two six-sided dice, with each domino representing one possible face. These games have a number of similarities with the European game, but they also have distinct differences.
The game of dominoes can also be a great teaching tool for kids. As young children learn to stand the dominoes upright and to flick them down in a line, they develop the ability to understand how gravity works.
They can also learn how to focus their attention and concentrate on a specific task. For example, if you have a large list of tasks to complete, it’s helpful to decide which one you want to work on first and then put your attention into that project.