Shut the box is a game of dice for one or more players, commonly played in a group of two to four for stakes. Traditionally, a counting box is used with tiles numbered 1 to 9 where each can be covered with a hinged or sliding mechanism, though the game can be played with only a pair of dice, pen, and paper.
At the start of the game all levers or tiles are "open" (cleared, up), showing the numerals 1 to 9.
During the game, each player plays in turn. A player begins their turn by throwing or rolling the die or dice into the box. If all of the remaining tiles show 6 or lower, the player may roll only one die.[clarification needed] Otherwise, the player must roll both dice.
After throwing, the player adds up (or subtracts) the pips (dots) on the dice and then "shuts" (closes, covers) one of any combination of open numbers that sums to the total number of dots showing on the dice. For example, if the total number of dots is 8, the player may choose any of the following sets of numbers (as long as all of the numbers in the set are available to be covered):
The player then rolls the dice again, aiming to shut more numbers. The player continues throwing the dice and shutting numbers until reaching a point at which, given the results produced by the dice, the player cannot shut any more numbers. At that point, the player scores the sum of the numbers that are still uncovered. For example, if the numbers 2, 3, and 5 are still open when the player throws a one, the player's score is 10 (2 + 3 + 5 = 10). Play then passes to the next player.
After every player has taken a turn, the player with the lowest score wins.
If a player succeeds in closing all of the numbers, that player is said to have "Shut the Box" – the player wins immediately and the game is over.
Shut the Box is a simple and classic dice game that is simple to learn, fun to play, and develops fluency with addition facts.
1. One wooden box with numbers marked from 1 to 10.
2. 8 sets of dice to be played with.