Some of the most common terms, moves, and rules of gamesmanship used throughout Play It Again are explained in this section so that you can get right on with playing the games and testing your luck as well as your skill in out-maneuvering your opponents.
PLAYERS.-The suggested number of players or best combinations of players are listed for each game described in Play It Again along with the directions and rules for the games.
PLAYING PIECES or COUNTERS.-Traditionally, stones; seeds; wooden, ivory, and bone pegs; carved wood pyramids; coins; buttons; and marbles are among the many objects that have been used as play¬ing pieces in board games throughout the world. All of the playing¬board patterns in Play It Again have been designed so that pennies fit easily onto spaces and points. Therefore, we have included instruc¬tions on making playing pieces out of pennies in the section “Sugges¬tions for Making Playing Pieces.”
DIE (plural, DICE).-A die is usually a small six-sided cube, made of bone, ivory, or plastic, that is marked with one to six dots on its sides. Cubic dice have the advantage of being balanced so that any side should have an equal chance of landing face up. Some of the games in Play It Again use a die to determine moves, whereas others use a pair of dice.
The oldest-known dice were probably divining sticks made from twigs. They were rounded on one side and flat on the other, just like more modern carved versions and used in the same way to determine your future. Pyramid-shaped dice, inlaid with ivory and lapis lazulis, were buried in the royal tombs of Ur more than 5,000 years ago. Both four-sided stick dice and cubic ivory and bone dice have also been found in Egyptian tombs.