Games: Farkle

This game is on facebook, so if you don’t have a facebook account … well, there’s another reason to get one. (I also just got a message from someone I went to elementary school with, who remembers my mother as “a nice woman” – I always appreciate hearing from people with positive memories of her.)

Farkle is a dice game, somewhat like Yahtzee in that you try to get three of a kind or other combinations. There are six dice instead of five, and ones and fives can get points even by themselves. Mostly you score by getting three of a kind, ones, and fives, but you can also get points for three pairs, or for a sequence of all six numbers. That last combination is of course the hardest to get and worth the most points. I’ve had three pairs two times now, but not one through six.

What’s different is that when you set aside one or more dice and re-roll the remaining dice, you don’t get to add them to what you already rolled, only to the points those other dice give. So saving two 5’s from the first roll gives you 100 points, fifty for each 5, and a third 5 on the second roll gives another fifty points, but it doesn’t count as three of a kind (which would be 500 points). So the only way to get the three pairs or the sequence one to six is on a single roll.

The other thing is that if you don’t get any dice that score when you roll, you “farkle” – which means you get zero points and the roll is over, even if you had scoring dice set aside before you re-rolled. This means that when you have dice that score, you have to decide whether to take the points you have, or risk losing them by re-rolling to try to get more points. Three farkles in a row, and you actually lose points. Ouch!

I’m not sure whether I’ll enjoy this enough to keep playing it the way I do Yahtzee. (I have an electronic Yahtzee that I like to play at bedtime – the intense focus on a video game screen helps me get sleepy.) But for now I’m having fun with it.


2 Responses to Games: Farkle

  1. Todd says:

    Hey Pauline, I play Farkle on facebook too. It’s great fun and I play for hours sometimes. My family/friends also play a game called Greedy Greedy in real life. It’s similar to Farkle but incorporates cards and promotes a lot more interaction among players. If you like farkle I bet you’ll love Greedy Greedy. Highpoint something or another makes it. Hopefully see you on facebook playing Farkle!


  2. geraldine ferris says:

    i would very much like to play farkle

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