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Subject: Scramble: A Trick-taking Domino Game rss

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Thalla Rothach
United States
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I've played it as much as I can, and I think it's past time to give it to the community. It developed out of Six Steps Solitaire (another game I invented [which I'll get to after this] after playing lots of domino solitaire variants) and my enjoyment of trick-taking card games.

Materials: two Double Six domino sets, in two different colors (example is given in Green and White)and a means to keep score.

Set Up: Players pick which color they want to use. The doubles are removed and placed to the right of a person's playing field. The rest are shuffled into a bone pile on the left. Next players decide in what order to use the doubles-numerically or randomly picked (in which case they'll need to be shuffled into a separate bone pile). For this example 0-0 will be used to start players' lines.

The opening tiles are placed horizontally [0|0] in the center of a person's playing field on the right. Then each player draws three tiles from their respective bone piles, face up, in front of themselves. White draws 0-2, 1-3, 0-4. Green draws 5-1, 5-6, 2-4. As the last part of this phase, the pips of the hands are counted and the person with the higher score goes first. In this case Green. In the event of a tie, players draw a tile from their respective piles until the tie is broken. Tiles so drawn are reshuffled back into the pile.

Game Play: the goal is to steal as many of your opponent's dominos as possible because these are the only ones worth points for scoring. However, a balance must be struck in also using your own because any dominos left in your hand will be subtracted from your score.

In order for a play to be valid the ends of the dominos in your line must total either 0, 6, or 12. Since the starting double is 0, Green will be able to use either White's 0-2 or 0-4. Picking the 0-4, this is placed vertically next to Green's double blank so that the two zeroes are touching:
0|0 0
4 (software isn't allowing me to line up the numbers, sorry).

This allows Green to use its own 2-4, followed by White's 0-2, continuing to place them vertically in a downward step pattern. With no more plays available, the turn comes to an end and Green draws one tile from its bone pile so that its hand consists of three tiles again, drawing a 1-0.

White starts by taking Green's 1-0, then Green's 5-1 and 5-6. White then draws two tiles: 3-5 and 6-3. Green needs a blank, so must draw from the bone pile: 4-6, 2-3, 5-2, 2-0. The 2-0 is played, followed by the 4-6, then White's 6-3, 3-5 and 1-3; concluded with Green's 2-3, and finishing by drawing two tiles: 3-1 and 0-3. Note: if the only playable tile is one of your own, you must play it.

Play continues until a player dominos or no more plays are possible. Players count the pips on the opponent's tiles they've been able to catch, subtracting the pip count of tiles in their hands (if any remain). The higher score wins. Up to seven rounds are possible (one for each double), either for fun or to break ties of the previous round. If the downward step pattern of tile placement causes one to run out of space, play can be shifted upward, into ascending steps.

A simple solitaire game that I don't think needs playtesting-very little can go wrong with solitaire, in my opinion-it's something I want to share with the community.

Only one Double Six set is used. All tiles are shuffled together, and you start by drawing four tiles. The goal is to use all the tiles to make a snaking line, up and down and branching off of itself, by laying tiles vertically in step pattern so that the ends equal 0, 6, or 12, as in Scramble. Any of the first four drawn tiles can begin the line. Whenever new tiles need to be drawn, always 4 tiles are drawn at once. When doubles are played, both their ends are considered open, creating a new branch to play on.

Hope ya'll have fun

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