Dominoes are small, rectangular blocks of wood or plastic that are played with like playing cards or dice. They are usually marked with a number of spots, or pips, on one face and blank or identically patterned on the other. There are many different domino games, and the rules of each game vary from place to place.
The most common domino sets are made from plastic, but a few manufacturers produce them in traditional European materials such as bone, silver lip ocean pearl oyster shell (mother of pearl), ivory or ebony with contrasting black or white pips. Such sets are typically more expensive than polymer ones. Natural-material dominoes are also available, such as marble, granite or soapstone; metals (such as brass or pewter); or ceramic clay. These are less common and more expensive than polymer dominoes.
A typical domino set contains 28 tiles. Depending on the rules of the game, some of the tiles may be doubles or singles. A player begins play by drawing a domino from the stock, or pile of unused dominoes. He places the drawn tile in front of him, adds it to his hand if necessary, and begins a turn by playing it to any adjacent dominoes or to the end of a chain that it touches.
The next domino in the line must be placed so that its open or “pointed” end is touching the closed or “non-pointed” end of the previous domino played. Normally the line of play is formed in a straight line, but it can be shaped to create an arched or “snake-line” shape if necessary to fit on the table. If a player can’t play any more tiles, he “knocks” the table with his hand and play passes to another player.
We have all seen domino constructions in which, by simply tipping the first piece ever-so-slightly, a whole cascade of pieces falls, one by one. The force that causes the dominoes to fall in such a pattern is known as the Domino Effect.
When David Brandon became CEO of Domino’s, he realized that the company had lost touch with its customers and needed to change its strategy. He focused on the Domino Effect, putting into practice the company’s core values by listening to its employees. He relaxed the dress code, instituted leadership training programs, and talked to employees directly about their concerns.
The basic rule of any domino game is to follow the heaviest tile. In most games, this is the highest double. In some, the winner of the last game is allowed to begin play with the heaviest single or double; in others, the highest unplayed tile. A player may also draw more dominoes from the stock than are permitted by the rules of the game if he wishes to do so. He then places those tiles in his hand in accordance with the rules of the game. The most common sets are double-six, double-12, and double-18.