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The game of dominoes (in various forms) has been played for many centuries. And it’s one of those games, whose popularity goes beyond borders — geographically and culturally.

People of all ages can play Dominoes. You need a set of rectangular tiles or dominoes to play it.

These will either be plain or decorated on one face, and there’ll be 2 sets of spots (also called “pips”) on the other face.

Usually, the length of a tile is twice its width. They’re designed thick enough to stand on their side for players that like to make a pattern and watch the dominoes fall in succession.

Now, let’s get to the heart of the matter: the best dominoes sets.

Top 5 Dominoes Sets

“Mariner” Classic Domino Set with Black Walnut Case

This model is one of the most commonly used sets among players. In each of its luxurious twenty-eight ivory-look blocks, we’ve smooth rounded edges and a vintage look.

Painted to a gleaming finish, the black “pips” are engraved into the plastic.

The Black walnut case features premium-quality woodwork, which was produced from tough US-grown trees.

One of the fascinating features of this set is the scorekeeping notches on the lid of the case. It’s two 18-karat gold-plated scoring pegs, in addition to two nickel-plated scoring pegs.

Also, it comes with a rulebook, a top-quality cribbage board, and a “Certificate of Authenticity & Guarantee”.

Hence, you’re covered if any pieces become damaged, and Alex Cramer will happily send you a replacement if necessary.

Key Features

  • Flawless Ivory-Look Blocks
  • 18-Karat Gold and Nickel-Plated Pegs
  • American-grown Black Walnut Case
  • Lifetime Guarantee

Summing up

This set dazzles with its pure elegance and class. Its pieces and case have a sturdy build, meaning the unit will be long-lasting.

Red Double 6 Jumbo Size Red Domino Tiles in Snap Vinyl Case

This unit is also one of the best dominoes sets. It retails at an affordable price and gives you a cool vibe.

The chunky red dominoes measure 2.2in by 1.1in by 4in. They’re designed using robust plastic and won’t break easily.

Since they’re larger and chunkier, they’re an ideal option for people that have bigger hands or whose eyesight is impaired.

You won’t find any ball bearings molded into these dominoes. So, they’re safer for glass surfaces. Also, they won’t dent the playing board if there’s a slammer around.

The fact that they’re cheap (less than $15) doesn’t mean the quality is compromised.

Even the box containing the set has sturdy quality, with a very suave leather-look finish.

Additionally, the clasps snapping closed tightly will prevent the pieces from falling out and getting misplaced.

You’d love the fact that the set is available in different colors.

As the pricing of the model is very reasonable, you can afford to buy one of each variant to blend it up or hold multiple gaming sessions at the same time.

Key Features

  • Dominoes have attractive colors
  • Sturdy case
  • Cheap pricing

Summing up

As a result of their increased size, they’re ideal for kids and the elderly. Thanks to the vibrant colors and extremely reasonable price, they’re also a beautiful and entertaining set.

Marion Domino Double 6 Set w/ Spinners

This is yet another top-quality best dominoes set on the market. It has remarkable build quality, finishing, and coloring.

The tiles are designed using plastic of premium grade that can withstand years of play.

The dimension of each dominoes is exactly 2.24in by 1.10in by .47in. The set has a brass spinner that allows for easy mixing.

These are regulation-sized tiles, except that they’re a bit thicker. This offers them a firmer feel and adds to their durability.

You’ll find the dimples on the tiles bigger than normal, which makes spotting it easier without eye-strain.

This unit is sold in 2 color options, black tiles that have white spots or white tiles that contain black spots. Personally, we prefer the white tiles owing to its classic touch and enhanced visibility.

The set is available in a beautiful black velvet case, ensuring it can be stored easily.

And if you’re not familiar with how to play dominoes, there’s also a game instruction manual included in the package.

Apart from that, in the next section of this post, we’ve included a guide to teach you how to play the game.

Key Features

  • Brass spinner
  • Thicker and more durable compared with any other set available on the market
  • Has an elegant case

Summing up

The Marion Domino Double 6 set gives you great value and is also durable.

Spinner: The Game of Wild Dominoes

This set is a modern take on an ancient game. It will help in introducing your family & friends to a fun new means for playing with Dominoes.

Testing this option gave us a breath of fresh air.

Spinner, with its fast-paced and flexibility, will no doubt add some more excitement to your gaming night.  

Interestingly, the Art Deco design on the tin represents a magnificent work of art in itself, enticing you to take out the lid and get addicted to it!

The set offers ample room that fits every piece inside, including the rule book, paper, and pen.

Though it’s slightly oversized for its function, it’s better to have too much room than too little. 

Not only are the blocks smooth but also rounded. They’ve indented “pips” to prevent scratching of the other blocks.

There’s the quirky addition of the ‘spinner’ dominoes, which produces a uniqueness that you can’t get in any other traditional dominoes set.  

The major difference with this ‘Texas Wild’ version of Dominoes is that you make use of the ‘spinner’ in blocking as any number that can be thrown in the direction of a game at any point in time.

If you’re seeking a fast-paced, innovative, and fascinating way to play the game of Dominoes, the Spinner unit is the best option for you. 

Key Features 

  • Top-quality pieces 
  • A fast-paced and unique variation of Dominoes
  • Beautiful Art Deco Tin design

Summing up

This set is an innovative take on the classic arcade machine. Its wireless functionality will make it even more appealing to players of younger ages.

Alex Cramer Travel Domino Set with Caramel-Colored Leather Case

This model from Alex Cramer is also one of the best Dominoes set on the market.

Since 1975, the company has been designing professional-grade dominoes, and everything about this travel set looks attractive, including the gold foiled box it’s shipped in.

The dominoes have an impeccable finish, featuring rounded corners and delicately painted “pips”. The sizes of these highly uniformed blocks adhere to the official tournament standards.

This makes them ideal for competitive games or for people that play dominoes seriously.

Thanks to the much thicker and larger blocks, they can stand easier when play is going on.

Also, the attractive walnut-stained cribbage board that comes with the set is a cool addition, which is no doubt better than keeping score with a pen and paper.

The 4 brass pegs are nicely positioned in the notches. To prevent them from getting lost between games, they can be stored away in the base of the board.

The 8in by 3in by 3in case boasts exquisite quality.

It’s designed using finely stitched brown leather that sports a black velvet lining, latching tightly closed with magnetic clasps.

Key Features

  • Fine quality pieces and leather case
  • Tournament-grade Dominoes
  • Coverage (lifetime warranty) against breakage

Summing up

Any set that comes from Alex Cramer is guaranteed to deliver nothing less than perfection. Thus, this unit, which goes for slightly less than $70, is an absolute steal considering the quality you get.

The product should be the number one choice for any professional or serious players, or people looking to dazzle their friends & family with the stylish look of the set.

How to Play Dominoes

We’ve tons of different ways to play this game, with the majority of such variations falling into 3 classes: the blocking game, the scoring game as well as the draw game.

In this guide, our focus is on a blocking game — the most basic, most popular, and easiest-to-learn variant of domino play.

In a standard blocking domino game, we’ve a 28-tile set. This is typically called a double-six deck.

The tile containing each half with 6 pips for 12 in total, also known as the double-six tile, represents the largest tile in the set based on number value.

2 – 4 players can take part in this game.

Before play starts, all the twenty-eight tiles are laid flat face down. Then, they’re shuffled about until they’ve been thoroughly mixed.

These tiles are called the stock or the boneyard.

When 2 or 3 players share a game, any tiles that aren’t drawn from the stock are set aside until a later match.

Each of the players will then draw 7 tiles and hide their faces from the other player(s). After that, the designated starting player will lay one of his/her tiles down face-up.

This starts the line of play.

In subsequent moves, players will lay down tiles matching the pip value of an exposed half of a tile.

Thus, a starting tile that’s 1 blank half and 1 half with 3 pips may be joined by a tile that’s either a black or 3-pip side.

Double tiles, like tile containing 2 halves with both of them having 2 pips, can be laid down perpendicularly to a tile half that has a value, which matches each of its sections.

(For instance, a double-two tile may be positioned next to the 2 pip section of a 2–4 file.)

A player that fails to lay down a tile will be skipped over.

The game comes to an end when 1 player runs out of tiles or when none of the players can continue laying down tiles.

As for the latter case, the winner of the game is the last player to place a tile, and he/she is given a number of points that match the pip count from all the tiles of his/her opponent(s).

Looking at the History of Dominoes Briefly

People have been playing this game for at least 800 years.

According to writings dating to China’s Yuan Dynasty (13th-14th centuries), clear mention was made of game pieces, which are irrefutably similar to modern domino tiles.

Of course, it’s very possible that people played similar games for hundreds — if not thousands — of years before this written record.

Not only did the game of dominoes have its origin in China, but also, as a matter of fact, stayed almost exclusively as a pastime in the country for close to 5 centuries.

Until the early 1700s, the game pieces were not seen in any part of Europe. Their first players in the West were Italians, and that’s unsurprising due to the Italian heritage of trade & communication with foreign cultures.

From early eighteenth-century Italy, dominoes instantly spread across most of the remaining parts of Europe and became especially popular in France.

It is possible that the word, “domino”, came from the French, as the term was nearly surely coined as a result of the resemblance of the domino half masks that were worn during masquerade balls popular in the era.

The masks were typically white or black with prominent eye holes that looked like tile pips.

Dominoes gained popularity at homes, at the public house, and for passing the time during travels due to the game’s ease-of-learning & portability of play.

Some Benefits of Playing Dominoes

Apart from having a good time with family and friends, playing this game provide you with some actual health and mental benefits. Let’s explore them below:

Memory Improvement

When you play dominoes, you’re required to memorize patterns and sequences.

And this is a beneficial cognitive exercise for the muscles of the brain. Also, it’s seen as a simple, effortless brain activity that older persons can engage in.

Skills Development in Kids

A number of progressive teaching styles make use of board games and strategy games such as dominoes for teaching kids new skills.

Particularly, dominoes create great math manipulatives.

Activities like thinking in numbers, realizing patterns, and using a game strategy can contribute immensely toward enhancing the spatial learning skills of a kid.

Critical Thinking Development

Getting your opponent entrapped, changing your strategy based on the game scenario, and performing arithmetic operations successfully all are key aspects of a dominoes game.

By practicing these skills, you’re also developing your critical thinking skills.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Best Dominoes Set

How many players can play in a game of domino?

One of the fascinating aspects of dominoes is their versatility. We’ve many different versions of the game that you can try out with your best dominoes set.

And the majority of those games are usually best enjoyed with when you’ve 2–4 players. It’s possible to allow more people to take part in the game.

However, the more participants you’ve, the fewer dominoes each of them will get. This implies games will be over much faster, and the level of strategy could be slightly reduced.

If you’re seeking to play with more people, you’d need to opt for a set that has more tiles, such as the Yellow Mountain Imports Mexican Train Dominoes Set.

Can the dominoes be customized and engraved?

There are companies and manufacturers offering engraved and customized dominoes to interested buyers.

You can have your initials or name printed or engraved on the tiles, for instance.

But instead of this, a lot of players prefer to simply have the case engraved or decorated with a specific type of personalized plaque.

This is because it enables them to enjoy a “personal touch” to their personalized dominoes set without the tiles being directly affected.

What are the ages of players allowed in this game?

The majority of dominoes variants are straightforward to learn. However, they can be challenging to master.

The games can be played by people of all ages, and it’s an excellent idea to introduce your youngsters to your dominoes set, teach them how to play, and play games with them as well.

Even though younger players could consider the games a bit tricky to start with, over time, they can learn how to play better and develop their skills.

As they practice with family and friends, with time, they’ll become better players while also improving their problem-solving skills.

In a Nutshell

The game of dominoes has been around for centuries, and historians have traced its roots to China.

It’s among the games that are popularly played by people in diverse parts of and cultures around the world.

People of all ages can play the game, and you require a set of rectangular tiles or dominoes to play. Reviewed above are the 5 best dominoes sets to play the game with.

You can make your pick from one of them to have an enthralling gaming experience with family and friends.

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