Number of Players: 4
Type of Dominoes Used: Any Domino
Type of Game: Blocking Game
What's unique: This game is for four players only and each must play individually and not as a team. Also, players can continue to play as long as they can make a match.
The first player is determined by lot.
Number of dominoes drawn: Each player draws 7 tiles.
The remaining tiles after the draw, are discarded, not used during that hand because there will be no drawing from the boneyard.
Set domino: Any domino may be used.
Anytime a player makes a play, he may continue to play as long as he can make a match, play than continues to the left.
How to play: Each player tries to match the pips on one end of a tile from his hand with the pips on an open end of any tile in the layout. If a player is unable to match a tile from his hand with a tile in the layout, the player passes his turn to the player on his left. Each player may play only one tile per turn.
The first player to get rid of all dominoes announces "Domino!" and wins the came. if none of the players can make a play, the game ends in a block. If a game ends in a block, all the players turn the tiles in their hands faceup, count the pips on each tile, and add them together. The player with the lowest total wins the game and earns the points (1 point per pip) of all the tiles left remaining in his opponents' hands. The player who first reaches 100 points or more is the overall winner.
Set Variations: 1) highest double, and in the event no double is drawn, re-shuffle and re-draw; 2) 6-6, and in the event the 6-6 is not drawn, re-shuffle and re-draw; or 3) highest double, and in the event no double is drawn, play the highest single.
Other rules: The game can be played with no spinners (which seems the most often used rule) or by using the first double as the only spinner of the game.
In most places, Fours is played to 100 points. However, there are many different variations, including to 50, 150, 200, or 101 points.
Reprinted with permission of Sterling Publishing Co., Inc., NY, NY from GREAT BOOK OF DOMINO GAMES by Jennifer Kelley, ©1999 by Jennifer Kelley. (The Sterling book is available as PUREMCO'S GREAT BOOK OF DOMINO GAMES)