What Are the Instructions for Mexican Train Dominoes?


Quick Answer

Mexican Train uses a standard domino set and markers for each player. Each player draws seven dominoes at random; the highest double is placed in the center, and each player matches that number with the first domino of their "train," a line of dominoes moving outward from the center. The objective of the game is to be the first player to exhaust all of their dominoes.

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Full Answer

On the first turn, the player selects a domino from his seven and matches it to the domino at the center — a 12 matching to a 12, for example. Each player has his own train, but there is also an unclaimed train, the eponymous "Mexican Train" that any player can choose to play on at any time. If unable to match the number at the center, the player must draw an additional domino. If this new domino can be played, the player should play it immediately. If the drawn domino does not match any available plays, the player places a marker on his train, and other players are able to play on it until the marker is removed. The marker can only be removed if the player that owns the train is able to play on it.

Playing elsewhere on the board or on the Mexican Train does not remove the marker, but it does enable the player to continue playing without drawing additional dominoes. As long as a player has a domino that can be played on his own train, the Mexican Train, or another player's marked train, he does not have to draw any additional dominoes. If a player has a double domino and can match that to an available train, then he is required to play another domino after the double is played; however, the second domino played does not have to match the double and could be played anywhere else.

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