History of the Game
Farkle goes back a long way and it would take a few pages to relate the whole history, so we will try to sum it up in one sentence. Back in the Early 13th Century, after having many daughters, Sir Anthony XVIII of Wasack finally had a son, but Sir Anthony begrudged the tradition of naming sons after their fathers, (after all he was the 18th in a long line of Anthony’s of Wasack) so he decided to break the tradition, but he couldn’t think of a suitable name for his new son so his son went nameless for about a year when, while playing with his favorite toy, a set of wooden dice, he spoke his first word, which was the word “farkle”, and in commemoration of this great event, Sir Anthony the XVIII of Wasack, decided to give his son this unique name while he was on the earth, speaking of earth, that is where Dacy and Amy found the ancient manuscript with the official rules of the unique game of Farkle, which was the game that Sir Farkle I of Wasack invented. (Some sentence!)
- 6 Wooden Dice
- Scratch Paper (or if you really wanted to, you could use official Farkle Score Sheets)
- Pencil (or a Pen might work too!)
- A flat surface (preferably larger than a Deck of Playing Cards)
- Tostitos® Chips and salsa (You got Tostitos®, You got a Party!)
Number of Players
Anywhere between 2 and 86 players may play in one game. Anymore than that, and it’s just way too long before you get to roll the dice again, let alone the size of the room you’d need.
To acquire points by a systematic rolling of the dice.
Sit around the selected flat surface, write the names of each player on the scratch paper with the pencil (or pen), open Tostitos® chips and salsa, & grasp dice in closed fist.
Points are acquired one of three different ways.
- A roll of a 1 is worth 100 points.
- A roll of a 5 is worth 50 points.
- Three (3) dice rolled at the same time with the same value is worth 100 times the face value, for example: three 2’s rolled is 200 points and three 5’s rolled is 500 points.
One exception to this rule is that three 1’s rolled is 1,000 points rather than 100 points.
The first player rolls all six dice at the same time and sets aside any “point dice” (1’s, 5’s, or three of a kind) that appear. At this point, the player has the option to continue to roll the remaining dice to collect even more points, or stop and keep any points acquired.
A Farkle occurs when the dice are rolled and no point dice appear. At this point the player loses all the point dice he/she/it has collected during that turn, and the play passes to the player to the left. No points are recorded on the scratch paper.
If a player decides not to risk rolling a Farkle then he/she/it can stop rolling and the play passes to the player to the left. Any points collected during that turn are then recorded on the scratch paper. At this point the player may eat some Tostitos® Chips and salsa. Yum!
If, in the course of one turn, all six dice become point dice and are set aside, the player must roll all six dice at least one more time, before stopping and keeping the points collected.
Entering the Game
In order for a player to initially enter the game, (record points on the scratch paper), he/she/it must continue to roll until at least 1,000 points are collected during one turn. Once the player officially enters the game, the points are recorded and that player may stop rolling at any time during future turns. Sometimes it might take many turns before a player can get on the board.
Secret Strategy: All point dice do not have to be set aside. If you roll a 1 and a 5, sometimes it may be strategic to keep the 1 and roll the 5 again with the rest of the non-point dice. This may give you a better chance of rolling a three of a kind. But, at least one point die must be set aside after each roll.
Special Rule: If a Farkle is rolled when rolling all six dice at once, it is termed a “six-die Farkle.” When this occurs all players must throw their hands in the air, wiggle back and forth and sing “SIX-DIE FARKLE.” Any player refusing to follow this very important rule loses one point and can’t have any Tostitos® Chips and salsa.
Other ways of playing: While the original rules didn’t allow this, many electronic versions of the game now play with the following rule: If you roll 4 of a kind, your score doubles. So if you roll 4 3’s, you get 600 rather than 300. With 5 of a kind, it doubles again. Etc. Read about more alternative rules here.
We are purists and play by the original rules, but I decided to put this on the website because it is one of the most common questions I get asked.
Winning (As Charlie might say)
In order to win, A player must get 10,000 points recorded on the scratch paper for a normal game or 8,435,042 points recorded if your are going to play the extra long game.
After a player gets over 10,000, each of the other players get one turn to try to beat the first player who goes out. If none of them beat his or her score, then he or she is declared the winner. If someone beats his or her score then that new player wins the game.
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