A Primer on Dominoes


A domino is a tile-based game. Each tile is rectangular and has two square ends marked with a number. The aim of the game is to match the number of spots on each end of the domino with those of your opponent. You can also play with the same number of spots on a single domino. This game can be quite addictive, so it’s important to understand the rules and strategies for each one. Here’s a primer on dominoes.

All Fives

The objective of the game All Fives in domino is to score multiples of five. Double six tiles award a number of points ranging from five to twenty. If all five end tiles are played, the player earns a point. Double six tiles also have a higher value than one. A player scores a point when all five of the same color are played in a row. A player also earns a point if two or more end tiles are played side by side.

Spinner dominoes

Spinner is a variation on traditional dominoes that is unique due to its wild dominoes. Played with the double nine domino game and 11 Spinner wild dominoes, Spinner can be any number. It was created by Dr. and Mrs. Edna F. Smith in the late 1940s and is an excellent game for family nights or a fun night at home with friends.

Pip dominoes

The word “pip” is derived from the character “Pip” from Charles Dickens’ 1859 novel “Great Expectations.” The character’s name did not actually mean dominoes, but was shortened from Philip Pirrip. Pip is also a common term for small objects, such as the seeds of some fruits. The word “pip” is also a synonym for “dot” in morse code.


A fives-and-3s domino game combines the strategy of stacking pairs of tiles with the skill of matching up matching ends. Players score points when their domino’s pips sum up to more than 3 or 5 and they are then able to attach that domino to the end tiles to make a chain. The goal is to collect as many points as possible to win the game. Aside from playing a casual game, 5s-and-3s is also played in competitive leagues throughout the British Isles.

European-style dominoes

There are a few major differences between Chinese-style and European-style dominoes. Traditionally, each set of dominoes contains a unique piece that represents one of 21 possible outcomes of throwing two six-sided dice. The two dice have six-sided pips on one side, and each half of the domino contains the pips from the other die. Chinese sets differ slightly from European-style dominoes, introducing duplicates on some throws and dividing the dominoes into two suits. Traditionally, Chinese dominoes have been longer than the standard European version.

Chinese-style dominoes

Early Renaissance European travelers recorded mention of Chinese-style dominoes. They are a popular game in Asian countries today. The Chinese game is said to have been invented in 1112 by a fabled maker. The rules of the game have not changed much over the centuries, but there are several distinct rules that distinguish it from traditional ones. Listed below are some of the main rules for playing Chinese-style dominoes.