Dominoes are a type of game board that is popular throughout the world. Typically consisting of a set of 28 tiles, they are played in a variety of ways.
The most common domino games are block and draw. In block play, a domino tile is placed on the table that starts the line of play and then extends it with matching tiles at one of its two ends. The line can be moved clockwise or counterclockwise depending on the rules of the particular game.
In draw, each player picks seven tiles and then begins playing them in clockwise order. The first player plays a matching tile at one of its two ends, and each subsequent player does the same until the last player has played their last domino. The winner is the player with the lowest remaining pip count.
While the games of domino are fun and entertaining, they also have a deeper meaning for players. Stephen Morris, a physicist at the University of Toronto, explains that dominoes have potential energy when they’re upright, which is stored based on their position and converted to kinetic energy as they fall.
As the dominoes fall, some of that potential energy is converted to kinetic energy and then reverted back to potential energy as they return to their original positions. This process creates a chain reaction, causing the dominoes to topple again and again.
What’s more, the potential energy created by a single domino is enough to knock over a whole row of them. This is what makes a domino rally exciting: Each domino has the power to knock over all the others in its path, and that’s why it’s fun to watch a domino rally!
During the game, each player must try to get their line of dominoes to be as long as possible. This is accomplished by laying down a number of dominoes in the same row, alternating between laying down and removing each consecutive domino.
When it’s time to lay down a new domino, a player must choose a tile from their hand that has a blank side and place that tile on the table. The player can then match this tile with another domino that has a blank side. This gives the player a greater chance of winning the game.
In addition to blocking and scoring games, dominoes can be used in a wide range of other variants. These include a few different types of trick-taking games and some solitaire variants.
A simple domino trick-taking game is 42, which is popular in Texas and similar to the card game spades. It is played by four paired players who each draw seven dominoes and then play them into tricks. Each trick counts as a point and the total points of all the players add up to a score, which is counted at the end of the hand.
Lily Hevesh loves to play with her dominoes. When she was younger, she would set up a row of dominoes in a straight or curved line and flick the first domino to watch it fall, a sensation that has been called “the magic of the domino.”
Hevesh uses her knowledge of the way dominoes work to create spectacular installations. She combines flat arrangements and 3-D sections, testing each section to make sure it will work individually before putting them all together. She then films the tests in slow motion, so she can make any necessary adjustments as needed.