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Sniff

A point-type domino game, usually played by two to four players using a Double-Six domino-set, but may be played with larger domino sets to accommodate more players.  Said to be one of the best point-type domino games around for two players.  A Cribbage board may be used to record players scores.

Play:

The dominoes are shuffled, facedown, then each player draws a number of tiles, that only they can look at, that varies according to the number of players taking part. 

  • 2 players draw 7 tiles each
  • 3 players draw 6 tiles each
  • 4 players draw 5 tiles each.

Any remaining tiles are used as the boneyard and may be drawn upon by players during the course of play.

The lead player sets down the first domino which may be any tile he wishes, but the first double, (whether initially set as the first tile of a game or subsequently laid onto the layout during play), can be played off all four of its sides allowing play to branch off four ways and known as the sniff (usually referred to as a spinner).  No other double is played as a spinner after the first.

Players in turn lay tiles onto the open ends of the domino layout with same-number adjacent to same-number.  Should a player be unable to set a domino from their hand onto the layout, they must draw a tile from the boneyard and play it if they are able, or draw a second tile and try and play it, if they can't.

Players score points every time they play a tile onto the layout and the pips on the open ends total a multiple 5.  For example, 1 point if the ends total 5; 2 points if the ends total 10; 3 points if the ends total 15; and so on.  There may be two, three or four open ends on the layout at any time.

Once a player has dominoed by setting their last tile, or the game is blocked with no player able to set a tile, the round is over and the player who dominoed or has the lowest total of pips left in their hand, is the winner of that round.  The winner of a round then scores the total number of pips on all the other players' dominoes, minus the total number of pips on any remaining dominoes in their hand, rounded to the nearest muliple of 5 then divided by 5.

A number of rounds are played and the first player to score a set total (say 30, or 60 points), wins the game.  

Variations:

Players who are unable to play a tile, continue drawing from the boneyard until they can make a play or the boneyard is exhausted and do not stop drawing at the second tile.

A double may be played onto the layout endwise (not horizontally) and scores only the suit points on one of its ends.

 

 

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