Domino – A Game of Skill and Strategy
Domino is a game of skill and strategy that can be played by one or more players. The domino pieces, called bones, cards, men, or pieces, are normally twice as long as they are wide and have a line in the middle to divide them visually into two squares, each with a number of dots on it, called pips. The value of a domino is indicated by the sum of its pips, which is usually expressed as a fraction (for example, double-six).
The most popular domino games fall into four categories: bidding games, blocking games, scoring games, and round games. Most domino rules are based on a set of basic principles, such as the principle of maximum scoring or that each player has only one turn. Other rules are specific to a particular game.
In addition to the basic rules, some dominoes have additional features, such as a draw, which allows any player to change his or her position in the game without having to play a tile. Often, the draw may be used to settle disputes or to make sure that all players have an equal chance of winning.
Some people use the domino as a metaphor for difficult tasks, such as establishing a budget or tackling debt. These tasks are often challenging to start, but once begun, they can be broken down into manageable parts. Each new task, or domino, builds upon the previous one and eventually leads to a successful outcome.
Traditionally, domino sets were made of bone, silver lip ocean pearl oyster shell (“mother-of-pearl”), ivory or a dark hardwood such as ebony, with contrasting black or white pips. More recently, dominoes have been made of a variety of other materials such as marble or soapstone; metals such as brass and pewter; ceramic clay; or even frosted glass and crystal. These sets have a more novel look and feel than those made of polymer materials and tend to be heavier in weight.
A domino is also a type of art form, used to create patterns in the air or on paper using different colored tiles, and a type of architecture, where the pieces are stacked to construct buildings or other structures. Artists such as Sheila Hevesh have created mind-blowing domino setups that include curved lines, grids that form pictures, and 3D structures such as towers and pyramids.
When a domino is flipped over, its potential energy converts to kinetic energy, and some of that energy is transmitted to the next domino in the chain, providing the push needed to knock it over. The process continues, as each domino transmits its own momentum to the ones that follow, until the final domino falls, causing them all to crash down. The process is called a domino effect, and it is the basis for many of the fun, engaging games we love to play.