How to Play Dominoes?

Domino is a fun game with some pieces of rectangular tiles having dots or pips on their surface. The Domino set is played all over the world in different variations. Each rectangular-shaped tile or domino is divisible by a line, and on both sides of the line, there is a square shape containing blank to six-digit dots. Slightly different, this game is widely popular in Western Europe and America. Here are a few examples of recognized varieties of the game: straight dominoes, Mexican Train Dominoes, Domino Whist, Matador and Muggins, Texas42, Chicken Fives, Threes, Double Fives, and so on.

In this tutorial, we will show you the general rules of how dominoes is played.

Step 1 − Involve 2-4 players in the game

You can play this game with two or more players. To play with 2 to 4 players, use a double 9-set that contains 55 tiles. If the players are more than 4, then you need a double 12-set which comprises 91 tiles.

Step 2 − Arrange the dominoes and select the first player to start

First and foremost, you must lay out all the dominoes on a solid surface with their faces down. In shuffling, the person who takes the role of doing it must take the last stand and draw his hand.

It is also customary for the previous winner to be considered a shuffler for the next round. In this situation, the player standing to the right of the first player is entitled to mix the tiles in the game. Additionally, players can shuffle before each game or select one for each task.

Step 3 − Seating arrangements for the players

The place where one sits to play the game is called a seat. Seat arrangements among the players are, occasionally, determined by a lot. Besides, the person who draws the heaviest or the highest tile (considering the most pips) would occupy the first choice of seats. The person with the second highest pips has the seat ranking on the left. Thus, the subsequent seat arrangements will be functional for each one.

Step 4 − Beginning and the Seating Order of the Play

The game starts with a variety of methods, which are as follows.

The game begins with the man having the heaviest domino or the highest double, and the others' positions follow the same rules. It can also be fixed by drawing lots.

To begin the game, the person who won the previous game takes the lead. And in this sequential order, the seats can also be distributed among the participants. With the initial moves in either clockwise or anticlockwise order, the game generally begins on the left or right.

Step 5 − Collect the dominoes

From the pile/stock, one has to pick out the dominoes (usually 7 of them). After picking it up, it would be unchangeable and should be kept in a tricky position to conceal it from the other players. You should use a sturdy or solid surface when playing this game. Thus, the tiles will be visible to you only when standing on their edges.

Step 6 − The Beginning of the Game

Starting the game involves placing a tile face in the middle of a sturdy surface arranged to play the game. The next player has to lay down his tile, which should match up with the open end of any side of the tile already placed on the table. In this manner, we can position the dominoes lengthwise or crosswise while playing the game.

Step 7 − When to pass the turn, and buy the tile

The player who does not possess the tile-matching pattern on either side of the domino with the exact number of pips or dots placed by the opponent can draw from the stock dominos. Furthermore, he may pass his turn to the other player to play it.

Each round takes seven turns, but with the picking up of extra tiles from the sleeping dominoes, it takes longer. In case of unravelling of dominoes, however, if you accidentally reveal your domino to someone, you should still reveal it to others.

Step 8 − Calculate the scores to determine the winner

After several rounds, one reaches the winning or culminating points (100 points or any point decided by the players) of victory. Generally, the person who has used up the dominoes before others in the game can be considered the winner.

The remaining tiles are added to the score in the winner's favour by the person or persons who have them. If both of them have tiles, then the person with the lowest tile scores higher due to the calculation of remaining spots considering the tiles possessed by others.

Step 9 − Overdrawn and underdrawn dominoes

When a domino is overdrawn by one player during the game, and it is noticed before the other player starts, the player on your left needs to reveal it to everyone. It happens before the tile reverts to the store.

If the mistake is untraceable before the other players start playing, it will be assumed to be legitimate. At the time of the play, if one does not draw the minimum number of tiles, he may have the option of picking up the same from the pile.

Step 10 − The Misplay of the Game

If someone plays without his turn or plays the wrong domino, we can conclude it to be an unfair play or misplay. If anyone notices it before the other person's turn, the particular move of the game is invalid.

In case of a wrong play, if it is exposed before the other player takes their turn, the person is permitted to attempt the correct play. However, if both cases pass unnoticed, then it remains unchanged.


The most famous categories of domino games are bidding games, blocking games, scoring games, and round. However, there can be several variations depending on who you are playing with and how they have learned to play. Before starting the game, make sure all the participants agree on the rules.