Christmas is always a super fun time in my family. Great food, fun presents, lots of catching up. But one of our most enjoyable traditions when our family gets together is the absurd amount of dominoes we play. Mexican Train Wreck (MTW) is the name of the game. Probably the coolest family game I’ve ever played, and we usually play until we get sick of it.
Its a pretty basic game.
A tin of dominoes usually comes with a piece of plastic in the shape of an octagon with a domino shaped hole in the middle. Around the edges are eight notches where you place your “train”.
You start out turning all of the dominoes upside down and shuffling them. Depending on how many people are playing and how high up your dominoes go, determines how many each person should pick up for their hand. For example, tonight six of us played a game of MTW with our highest dominoes being double fifteen, so we determined that each of us should get fifteen dominoes. When starting the game you want to have in your hand the double fifteen (or whichever your highest double is) to start the round. This domino goes in the middle and if no one has it, you draw one by one until someone gets it. In a clockwise circle, the person after the one who placed the double down, must place a domino in the notch in front of them that has the same number of dots on one side. (To explain with a visual, if they place double fifteen in the middle, the next person must play something with a fifteen on one side of it). If they don’t have a domino that matches, they must draw and either pick up one that matches or skip their turn and place a penny on their domino (we’ll get back to this later). Once every one has played on the “main train” they can do what is called a “train out”. This is where a person places a seperate train with a double and something to back it. Kinda like the very beginning, and again if they can’t back it they must draw one and either place one down that matches or skip their turn. However, the next person must back that domino, and if they can’t the same thing and it must go around until someone can play a domino that matches.
Now, if you do end up with a penny on your personal train, another person may play on that train until you put one down. THIS IS THE ONLY TIME SOMEONE CAN PLAY ON YOUR TRAIN! You might get a penny from either not having a matching domino in the beginning or not being able to play on your train or on some one else’s train out.
The whole game continues matching domino ends until one person has one domino and at that point he/she says uno. Once this happens you struggle to either get rid of your highest domino or try to block that person from being able to play. (This is where the game gets super competitive, frustrating, and funny.)
Once that person runs out of dominoes, on a score sheet, every one must count up their score and tally it down while that person gets zero.
You do this every round going down the numbers (double fourteen, double thirteen, ect.) until you get to double zero. At the end of this round, the person with the lowest score is the winner.
With our family we get pretty ridiculous. We’re all pretty hyper and it seems that not all of us can focus at once so people get skipped on accident sometimes and thats when the loud yelling and laughing ensues. Its great when families have traditions like this, and its even more fun when you get to introduce people into your games.
Any way, I hope these were understandable and I hope if someone reads this who has never played, they decide to give it a go. I hope every one had a Merry Christmas.
Until next time. :]