How to Play Yahtzee Rules
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A yahtzee review of scoring and yahtzee gameplay.
A game of Yahtzee uses five dice and a score card either paper or in our case . On the score card is a list of thirteen dice patterns. Next to each pattern is a box in which to enter a score.
To place your score in the online version you click on the colored bar, that is highlighted next to the pattern you want to score.
In a modification attempt, you may choose any set of keepers, ranging from all dice to none. Keeping all dice boils down to skipping the modification attempt. The three modification attempts are independent. That is, there is no restriction on the second set of keepers, e.g. it need not be a superset of the first set.
Once you have the dice face combination you want to score, you score the roll in one of the 13 categories. You do this by clicking on one of the radio buttons in either the Upper Scores or Lower Scores box. Once a category has been scored, it is closed out for the rest of the game; you cannot change a category's score once it's been set. Each category defines its own scoring rules, as described below.
In the upper scores, you total only the specified die face. So if you roll:
and score in the Threes category, your total for that entry would be 9. This same roll would yield zero points if you scored it in the Aces (Ones), Twos, or Fives category, four points if you scored it in the Fours category, or six points if you scored it in the Sixes category.
When the game is over, if you score 63 or more upper points (an average of 3 die faces per category), you will get an upper bonus of 35 points. Of course do don't need to score exactly three die faces in each upper category to get the bonus, as long as the upper total is at least 63.
In the lower scores, you score either a set amount (defined by the category), or zero if you don't satisfy the category requirements.
3 and 4 of a Kind
For 3 of a Kind, you must have at least three of the same die faces. If so, you total all the die faces and score that total. Similarly for 4 of a Kind, except that you must have 4 of the 5 die faces the same. So for example, if you rolled:
you would receive 20 points for 3 of a Kind, but zero points for 4 of a Kind.
Like in poker, a straight is a sequence of consecutive die faces; a small straight is 4 consecutive faces, and a large straight is 5 consecutive faces. Small straights score 30 points and large straights score 40 points. Thus, if you rolled:
you could score either a small straight or a large straight, since this roll satisfies both.
Again as in poker, a Full House is a roll where you have both a 3 of a kind, and a pair. Full houses score 25 points.
A Yahtzee is a 5 of a Kind (i.e. all the die faces are the same), and it scores 50 points. If you roll more than one Yahtzee in a single game, you will earn a 100 point bonus for each additional Yahtzee roll, provided that you have already scored a 50 in the Yahtzee category. If you have not scored in the Yahtzee category, you will not receive a bonus. If you have scored a zero in the Yahtzee category, you cannot receive any bonuses during the current game.
You can also use subsequent Yahtzee's as jokers in the lower scores section, provided the following criteria have been satisfied:
Chance is the catch-all roll. You can roll anything and you simply total all the die faces values.
Final Scoring Rules - Bonus
The final score is the total of all pattern scores, plus 35 (the Upper Section Bonus) if the total of the Upper Section scores, is at least 63 (the threshold).
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