Photo by BrianBarney
Rummikub is invented in Israel by Ephraim Hertzano in the early 1930's, and the first sets are made with his family in the backyard of his house. The game is innovated on the elements of Rummy and Mahjong. Hertzano sold first sets through door-to-door and local shops method, and soon the game became popular enough as the number one export game of Israel. With the efforts of Pressman Toys the game reaches the American shores in 1964, and became the best-selling game in the United States in 1977. (1)
Rummikub is a game composes of 104 number tiles pieces in addition to two or more joker pieces. The number tiles have labels of numerical one to thirteen in four colors that usually consist black, yellow, blue, and red. Each player has a rack similar to that of scrabble to set their tiles on facing the player as to not reveal the tiles to other players. (2)
Rummikub is internationally licensed by Lemada Light Industries, a company by Hertzano's children. (3) An estimated 500 million Rummikub tiles are being played around the world. (4) A World Rummikub Championship is held every year since 1991. (5)
The origin of games is one of the oldest human civilization lineage, spanning over millenniums of development to date. From archaeological evidence traditional games is one of the fundamental aspect of life in the ancient world, and is paramount to the development of social culture and military strategies. Many of these games became modern day family fun for holidays and occasions to enjoy.