In a domino game, each player takes turns placing a tile on the table so that its end points touch. The resulting chain then gradually increases in length. Each time a player knocks over a piece it affects all the other pieces in the chain. The players are awarded points according to the sum of all the remaining spots on their tiles. Alternatively, a player may choose to “chip out,” or take off his or her last piece so that the opponents can continue with their own scoring.
A domino is a small wood or plastic block with one or more blank sides and a number of raised dots or symbols resembling dice. It is marked with a number of dots or symbols in one of two ways: either all numbers (all pips), or some combination of all numbered and blank sides. A domino has potential energy based on its position, and when it falls most of this energy is converted to kinetic energy (energy of motion). A set of dominoes, sometimes called dominos, contains 28 or more tiles, depending on the type of game played with them.
Dominos are a popular pastime that can be enjoyed by children and adults alike. They can be used to create intricate patterns and structures, as well as play a wide variety of games. Dominoes are available in a variety of colors, sizes, and materials. Some sets of dominoes are made of polymer, a durable material that holds up well under normal playing conditions. Others are made of natural materials, such as bone or silver lip ocean pearl oyster shell (mother of pearl), ivory, ebony, or other dark hardwoods. These sets have a more traditional feel and can be very expensive.
Some of the most exciting domino constructions are created by professional domino builders, who build them for shows in front of audiences. These impressive domino effects or reactions are often filmed in slow-motion to allow viewers to appreciate the details of how the dominoes are constructed. To build a complex and intricate domino effect or reaction, a builder must first line up the largest 3-D sections of the installation. He or she then adds flat arrangements and then lines of dominoes that connect the sections together. The builder must make sure each section works well before adding the next layer, and some sections are even filmed in slow motion to check for precision.
When a domino is tipped just so, all the other dominoes tip over in a smooth cascade of rhythmic motion. This is called the domino effect, and it is what makes the constructions in domino shows so amazing to watch. In fact, it is the domino effect that inspires many people to become domino builders and compete in shows where they attempt to construct the most elaborate domino effects or reactions.