Welcome to Square-Off! This is a game that was designed with kids in mind, but people off all ages will enjoy it. Originally offered as a counting game for kids, many adults have found it appealing too. It also makes a great addition to family game night!

How to Play Square-Off!

Game Objective: Be the first to win five matches.

Basic Game Play:
Basic game play is the best option for small children. It teaches them how to count, and builds a great foundation in mathematics. Your children will learn basic counting skills, followed by the development of an innate ability to mentally combine groups of numbers. This dice game for kids is simply that to them - they may never recognize it as a game designed to build math skills!

In basic game play, each player takes turns rolling a pair of dice. The player with the highest total wins that match, and an "X" is drawn in that player's box. If the players with the highest numbers have the same total, those players roll again until a winner for that match is determined. For example, there are three players: A, B, and C. Player A rolls a four, and players B and C each roll a seven. Only players B and C continue to roll until one wins the match. The game continues until a player has crossed out all of his/her boxes, and that player is declared the winner.

This counting game for kids can be modified by simply adding more dice. After your children get comfortable with playing with two dice, challenge them by introducing three. Indeed, playing with three or more dice can even be fun for adults too!

Advanced Game Play:
In more advanced play, the basic objective remains the same, but some of the rules are modified:
1: If players roll the same high value, and one player gets it with same dice faces (e.g., the player rolls a ten with two fives), the player with the same dice faces wins the round.
2: If the players with the highest numbers have the same total and same dice faces, those players roll again until a winner for that match is determined.
3: If a player rolls all sixes, that player automatically wins the round.

Poker-Style Game Play - Single Roll:
In poker-style play, players roll five dice, and hand strength is determined by rules similar to poker. The player with the highest hand strength wins the round. Players with tied high hands roll again until a winner is determined. The order of hand strength, from low to high, is:

Highest Die Rolled
One Pair
Two Pairs
Straight (Five consecutive values)
Full House (Three-of-a-kind and a pair)

Poker-Style Game Play - Multiple Roll:
Multiple roll poker-style Square-Off is similar to draw poker in that you can discard unwanted dice and roll them again, hoping to obtain a better hand. The number of draws is normally one, but this can vary, depending on how the players wish to initiate this variable. Five dice are enough to play this variation, but it is suggested that each player has his/her own set of five dice in order to keep track of your hands.

Items Needed to Play:

Only dice and a score sheet are needed to play! Dice can be bought cheaply at your supermarket and/or department store in the same area where they sell playing cards. The score sheet can be downloaded here (printable PDF file). If you don't have a printer, simply use the image below as a guide to make your own.

One last imprtant point - Have Fun!!

Click Here to download the PDF version

By Steven Pomeroy
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