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Chinese Domino Game Strategy

If you're interested in developing tactics for winning Chinese domino games, then you can find some useful information, here

Strategies for Chinese domino games differ from those for Western ones.  If you want to become a more accomplished player then this page will help with some general advice on gameplay followed by more specific advice for a number of specific Chinese domino games in particular

General Chinese Domino Game Strategy

Make sure you know the rules of the game you're playing and study the makeup of a Chinese domino set thoroughly.  If you want some quick information on this,  then below are some tables illustrating various statistics on the spotted values on either end of the tiles and the tile totals.  You can use these figures to help in choosing the tiles you play in various different Chinese domino games.  For example, a game like Che Deng, that connects tiles by the pips on either end, may be better played if you know the number of tile ends bearing a particular pipped value.

 

Tile Ends Number of Tiles' Numbered  Ends Civil Military
1   12 10 2
2   9 4 5
3   10 6 4
4   10 6 4
5   11 8 3
6   12 10 2

The total values of both ends of the tiles are listed below along with the number of Civil and Military tiles that bear the total.

Tile Total Civil Military
2 2 0
3 0 1
4 4 0
5 0 2
6 4 1
7 2 2
8 2 2
9 0 2
10 4 0
11 0 2
12 0 2

 

Individual Chinese Domino Game Strategies

Dancing Dragons

If you layout a Chinese domino set sequentially with same-number adjacent to same-numbered end, you'll find that open ends always number 2 and 5 because these pipped values occur an odd number of times on the ends of a whole set.  These values cannot be matched in pairs like the others.

Since you score the number of pips on your discarded tiles, a good strategy is to lead with the high value tiles (like 6-6, 6-5) in your hand.  It is also a good idea to play a defensive strategy, keeping a variety of pipped 'halves' in your hand so as to keep a good chance of being able to play a tile when it comes to your turn because it is very hard to predict which values will be open.

The two-spots and three-spots are "short" which means there are less of these pipped values than the others which makes it possible for players to dominate play if they have significantly more of these values than the other players.  A possible tactic to bear in mind when playing.

 

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