Dice Games are a Little Chancey

Dice gamesDice games are defined as any pastime that primarily uses one or more dice to determine the outcome. These games were being played before recorded history, and the oldest known dice belonged to a 5000-year-old backgammon set that was excavated in modern-day Iran. Their popularity remains high, with players throwing dice in back-alleys and casinos around the globe.

If you’re looking to get involved in a game of dice, this article is devoted to listing some of the most popular options. We won’t discuss every detail, so it’s important to familiarize yourself with the rules before play begins.

Why Dice Are Games of Chance

Each time a die is rolled, it produces a random result based on the number of sides. Due to the uncertain nature of the outcome, any hobby involving dice is automatically categorized as a game of chance. While the most common die has six sides, it should be noted that dice are also available with four, eight, ten, twelve, twenty, fifty, and one-hundred sides.

Popular Games Featuring Dice

The following dice games are among the most popular with both veteran players and interested novices:

Craps — Often associated with casinos, although craps games can also be played in more informal settings. Wagers may be made against the house (known as “casino craps”) or against other players (known as “street craps”). Based on the English game of Hazard, craps begins with the shooter making a “come-out roll.” A roll of 7 or 11 results in an automatic win, while rolling a 2, 3, or 12 is a loss. If any other number is rolled, it becomes the “point,” and the shooter must then try to roll the point again before a 7 comes up on the dice.

Backgammon — While it’s often classified as a board game, dice figure prominently into each game of backgammon. Luck and strategy both play a role, as players roll dice and attempt to be the first to move all their pieces off the board.

Yahtzee — First marketed in 1956, this Milton Bradley product evolved from older dice games such as Generala and Yacht. Each game includes 13 possible scoring opportunities, and players are allowed three rolls per turn to get one or more of these combinations. Yahtzee sells over 50 million copies each year.

Bunco — A team dice game created in 18th century England. Played in six rounds, Bunco requires players to roll three dice in an attempt to roll the number of the current round. For each die matching the target number, a team receives one point. Twenty-one points wins a round, and the team with the most rounds wins the game.

Poker Dice — Instead of number pips, the dice used in this game have playing card values on their surface. Two or more players roll dice in an attempt to create the best poker hand.

Dice games are often associated with gambling, but there are numerous versions that don’t involve a financial wager. This allows games using dice to appeal to a broad spectrum of players, from families gathered around the kitchen table to high-rolling casino patrons.

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