What is Domino?
Dominoes are cousins of playing cards and dice and one of the most common tools for game play. From professional domino game competitions to simply setting them up and knocking them over, these small flat squares of clay or wood with a series of black or white dots (called pips) are used in countless ways for games of chance or skill. They can also serve as a means of entertainment for a group or a family, and can even be used to teach math or spelling.
Domino is a popular board game that requires strategic thinking and planning, as well as a keen attention to detail. The game is played by placing a number of small plastic or ceramic dominoes on a flat surface, and then “setting” the first tile in the sequence with a finger or pencil. The other players then draw tiles from their hand, and the first player to place a tile wins that round. The remaining tiles are then “pushed” over the set of dominoes, starting with the first tile in the line of pips. Depending on the rules of the game, additional tiles are placed atop the set to continue the chain.
There are hundreds of different domino games, which can be as complex or simple as you choose. The most popular are a variety of strategy games, which often involve blocking other players or scoring points. Some of these games can be quite fast paced, as the player must carefully plan his or her moves in order to win. There are also a number of games that involve drawing dominoes from a stack, and then laying them in a particular pattern. These are generally slower paced and require more patience, but can be extremely satisfying when completed.
Despite the many variations in gameplay, most dominoes are constructed of the same basic materials: bone, silver lip ocean pearl oyster shell (mother of pearl), ivory or a dark hardwood such as ebony. Occasionally, sets are made from other natural materials: stone (e.g. marble, granite or soapstone); other woods (such as elm, oak, redwood or cedar); metals; or even glass and ceramic clay. The most popular dominoes, however, are still those made of pressed clay or polymers.
In the English language, domino originally denoted a long hooded cloak worn together with a mask at carnival season or at a masquerade. The French word domino was borrowed by the English around 1750 and eventually supplanted the earlier sense of the word.
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