Domino is the classic game in which players place domino tiles on an edge-to-edge line. Then, after a slight nudge, the entire row falls in a spectacular chain reaction. Hundreds of dominoes can be toppled in this way, creating curved lines, grids that form pictures, and 3D structures like towers and pyramids. It’s a beautiful sight, and it also illustrates a concept called the “domino effect”—the idea that one small action can lead to greater consequences.
This principle is what allows Hevesh to create such incredible domino art. But if you want to replicate her designs, there are a few things you’ll need to know.
For starters, you’ll need a set of dominoes with matching numbers on both sides. The most common set has 28 double-six dominoes, which are shuffled and then divided into two groups so that each player has seven tiles. Each tile has a value, indicated by an arrangement of spots (called “pips”) or blanks on each side. A tile with six pips is considered higher in rank than a tile with five pips, and a tile with two pips is lower than a tile with three pips.
Depending on the rules of a particular game, dominoes can be played either in rows or columns. When playing a game with rows, the dominoes must be placed so that both ends touch, but when playing a game with columns, a tile can be placed perpendicular to a double touching at only one end. This allows the chain to develop a snake-like shape.
Dominoes may be stacked in straight, curved, or diagonal lines; the number of dominoes required to create a particular design depends on the complexity of the layout. Most games are scored by awarding the total number of pips on opposing player’s tiles to the winner. This is done by counting each pair of adjacent pips, or by assigning values to each domino in a double-blank position (i.e., a 6-6 counts as 12). Most players prefer to use the count of pips on the ends of opposing dominoes, as this is simpler.
There are many different types of domino games. Some are based on blocking or scoring, while others require strategy and concentration. In some cases, the winner is determined by the last player to play a domino; in other instances, the player who reaches a target score for a specified number of rounds is the winner.
Whether you’re writing an epic fantasy or an intriguing mystery, the idea of the domino effect is a powerful one to keep in mind. If you don’t make a detailed outline of your plot and just let the story unfold, you risk having scenes that are out of order or don’t have enough impact on the scene ahead of them. Using scene cards can help you prevent this from happening—and give your scenes the domino effect that they need to be successful.