I know that Mexican Train is a friendly game, often played with friends and family, and that winning is not critical or terribly important. The most important thing is definitely the social aspect of the game: talking, laughing, and having fun.
With that in mind, Furthermore, i know there are people who would like to become better at this particular game. Specifically if the friendly people you have fun with are winning more often than you happen to be and you are beginning to be distraught and depressed over it.
Winning this game of Mexican Train Dominoes is not as hard to do as you may think. There are some simple tips that can have a dramatic effect on the outcome of the game. Weather you happen to be beginning player, an intermediate player, or an advanced player, you are going to still benefit from these strategic tips.
Mexican Train has a lot of rule variations which are used all over the world, however most of my strategic tips apply to all the most popular rule sets and I’ve noted inside the text in which the strategy can vary for many different rules.
Organize your dominoes into the ideal train
Obviously, every hand starts by “dealing” several dominoes to each player. Depending on how lots of people are playing, this number can vary from 7 or 8 to 15 roughly. The actual number is not relevant. But it is vital to arrange your dominoes into the perfect train before starting play.
When the starting double has become played, on your part or someone else, you build a train with your remaining dominoes that starts with the exact same pip value because the opening double and connect as numerous dominoes as possible to that particular train.
To actually calculate the best possible method to organize a player’s dominoes, one would need to consider every domino which has been played up to now, and do a substantial amount of math in order to calculate odds. The most effective play at any time within the game is determined by what has become played up to that time. As this is unrealistic, I prefer to “approximate” the most effective train by utilizing these 3 basic rules:
The train with the most dominoes is better.
Given 2 trains of equal length, the train with the most points in it is best.
Given 2 trains of equal length and equal point value, the very best train has higher point value dominoes placed as far forward in the train as possible.
Play your spares first anytime you can
Playing a spare is your first order of business. If there is no possible play from the spares, then play out of your train.
For those who have spares, then play from the end of the train anytime you can
This is very important! The first option is to try out out of your spares, but your second choice is to play from your end (caboose) of your train. You’ll find lots of times that you play from your end of your own train, and suddenly one of the spares can fit to the end. This has exactly the same effect as playing an extra.
Watch for opportunities to change your caboose
If the last domino in your train is actually a 10-4, and one of your spares is 10-2, and you may play either upon an opponent’s marked train (when i state “marked train”, I am talking about a players’ train which is open for anybody to try out upon), or on the Mexican train, take part in the 10-4, and move the ten-2 towards the end of the train. If someone is out prior to deciding to do, you might have saved yourself 2 points. This can be such a common occurrence, that throughout a complete game, you will likely save dozens of points.
In case you have spares, and the Mexican (or community) train has not been started, and your spares (or perhaps your caboose) can start it, then start it!
The Mexican (or community) Train is the most common spot to dump your spares. You can’t do that when it has not yet been started. So given a selection of playing upon an opponents penny, or starting the Mexican train, start the Mexican train. But this really is only if you have spares to try out. If all your dominoes are in your train, then you don’t require the Mexican train, so don’t start it.
Know when to play all on your own marked train vs. another train if you have an alternative.
Sometimes you may be confronted with a choice of playing Domino 99 Online on your own marked train, OR on another player’s marked train or the Mexican Train. You don’t want to play by yourself train, thus removing your penny, unless you have another domino you are able to play by yourself train.
For example, let’s say you may have just one domino left, the double-6, your train is marked (a penny is onto it), in fact it is your turn. You are unable to play in the double-6 so that you must draw. You draw a 10-8. Let’s repeat the end of your own train is really a 10 and the end from the Mexican Train is really a 10. So there is a choice. You can play in the 10-8 on either your personal train (removing your penny) or on the Mexican train.
The right options are to experience the 10-8 on the Mexican Train, not on your own. This can maintain your own train marked and accessible to the other players thus enhancing the chance which you may take part in the double-6 and head out.
In the event the Mexican train is stuck, i.e., nobody is playing on it, and there is no need any spares, then don’t play on the Mexican train from the end of your own train. You want it to remain stuck and so the other players cannot play on it either.
In case you have a choice of playing a domino on a single of two opponents’ marked trains, choose the opponent with additional dominoes to play.
Should you not possess spares, which means you are just playing your train, as well as the end of the train would fit with an opponent’s marked train, don’t listen to it. Why unstick an opponent?
If you’re playing with the principles that say doubles do not have to be covered, the following is another tip: Play doubles at the earliest opportunity – even out of your train.
You should play a double as quickly as possible. Playing a double lewnqd the center of your train fails to destroy the integrity of your own train. It simply lowers the point total of the hand. When another person goes out, you don’t wish to be caught with a double within your hand that you could have played earlier within the hand.
There certainly luck involved in Mexican Train, but luck has a tendency to even out over time, with everyone getting their fair share of excellent luck and bad luck.
So, although my strategic tips won’t guarantee a win each and every time, they actually do promise to boost your game and many likely, improve it to the stage that you are currently winning more frequently than your opponents.