The Basics of Domino


Domino is a game in which players try to make a line of dominoes that match a specified total value or pattern. The basic set consists of 28 oblong tiles with a number of dots in one half and a blank or a marked surface in the other. Dominoes may be made of various materials and come in many different shapes, sizes and colors. They can also be made of different textured surfaces. The most common domino sets are made of bone, silver lip ocean pearl oyster shell (mother-of-pearl), ivory, or a dark hardwood such as ebony. Some sets combine two materials, for example a double-thickness set with the top layer in mother-of-pearl and the lower in ebony.

There are many games that can be played with dominoes. Some involve a fixed sequence of plays, while others allow the players to decide when and how to play their tiles. The most popular games are bidding and blocking games, but there are also scoring games. In addition to these games, there are also solitaire and trick-taking games that were once popular in some areas to circumvent religious proscriptions against playing cards.

When a domino is toppled, the value of all of its neighbors on that end of the line are changed. When a player draws his hand, he has the option of adding all of these changed values to his score. It is important to keep track of the changes as they occur because they can be significant.

A player may be able to add new elements to his score by matching the value of his existing dominoes or by building upon a pattern already established by his opponents’ play. He may also be able to remove some of his opponents’ existing scores by taking away the corresponding set of dominoes from their line of play. When a domino is drawn from the stock and not used for its proper purpose, it is known as an overdraw. When this is discovered, the extra dominoes are returned to the stock and reshuffled before the next player draws his hand.

In the early 19th century, the term “domino” came to mean a hooded cloak worn with a mask at a masquerade. In an even earlier sense, it referred to a cape worn by priests over their surplices. A variant of this meaning is still used to refer to a hooded cloak or cape worn with an eye mask in the theatre. The word also carries the meaning of something that is dominant or preeminent in quality. The word is derived from the Latin dominus, which means “lord” or “master.” The domino effect is an analogy that describes how a single action can trigger a cascade of events with far-reaching consequences. It is often used in business to describe how a small change can affect a large group of people, for example, the effects of a new product on sales or the impact of a merger on profits.