Cheerio is a turn-based dice game. In this version of it, you may play against yourself or another opponent. The object is to gain the highest total points by scoring high in each of several different scoring categories.
On your turn, you roll all five dice. After the roll, you may either choose a category to score in or take up to two optional rerolls. For each reroll, you may select any of the dice to keep and only reroll the remainder. You may score at any time, thus ending your turn; after the second reroll (three rolls total) you must score it.
To score, choose a category to score in. You may only score in one category per turn and may only score each category once in the course of the game. The game is over after all players have scored in each category. The points are totaled, and the winner is the player with the highest total number of points.
The scoring categories available depend on the mode of play you choose. The section on "scoring" (below) specifics how many points you get for each category. Here are the different categories that are available and what they mean:
In "Human vs. Human," you may play a game with another person sitting at the same computer. In "Human vs. Computer," you can play against a computer simulated opponent. In "Computer vs. Computer," you can watch two computer simulated players play against each other. In "Solitaire," you play by yourself and attempt to gain the highest score possible. The difficulty setting determines how competent the computer simulated players are at the game. On "Difficult," the computer will play to the best of its ability.
The "Traditional Game" of Cheerio has seven scoring categories: the six number categories, plus the "Cheerio" category, which is a run of five. The "Extended Game" adds six more categories: Three of a Kind, Four of a Kind, Five of a Kind, Run of Four, Full House, and Sum.
The "Wilds" setting may be set to "No Wilds" or "Ones Wild." In "Ones Wild" mode, a one may be used as any other number. For example, if you have three fours and one one, this counts for the "four of a kind" category, and if you score for the "fours" category, you will be credited with four fours rather than three. Another example: if you have three ones, a two, and a three, this can be counted as a "Cheerio," or a run of five. Use of wild ones usually affects how the game is scored; see below for further details. Also, for the case of the number categories, at least one of the dice must be non-wild -- in other words, to score fives, you need at least one genuine five; you can't count five ones as five fives. Also, wild ones can not be used in the "Sum" category.
Typically the "Traditional Game" is played with wild ones, and the "Extended Game" is played with no wilds. However, this online version of the game permits any combination of these two settings.
When scoring for one of the number categories (Ones, Twos, Threes, Fours, Fives, or Sixes), you receive the number times how many you have. For example, three fours count 12 points; four sixes count 24. When playing with wild ones, the scoring is the same except in the case where you have five of a particular number and aren't using any ones as wilds. In this case, the score is doubled. So five sixes with no wilds (called "honest" sixes) score 60 points. Note that five ones are always honest.
The "Three of a Kind" category counts 30 points if you have three of a kind; 0 if you don't. If wild ones are used as part of the three, it only counts 15 points.
The "Four of a Kind" category counts 40 points if you have four of a kind; 0 if you don't. If wild ones are used as part of the four, it only counts 20 points.
The "Five of a Kind" category counts 50 points if you have five of a kind; 0 if you don't. If wild ones are used as part of the five, it only counts 25 points.
The "Run of Four" category counts 30 points if you have a run of four; 0 if you don't. If wild ones are used as part of the run, it only counts 15 points. (A one that truly is a one -- i.e., if the run consists of a one, two, three, and four -- is not considered wild.)
The "Cheerio" category, which is a run of five, counts 50 points if you are playing the traditional game and 40 points if you are playing the extended game. If wild ones are used as part of the run, it counts for half that amount.
The "Full House" category counts 40 points if you have a full house (a pair and three of a kind); 0 if you don't. If wild ones are used as part of the full house, it only counts 20 points.
The "Sum" category scores the sum of all the numbers on the dice. Wild ones may not be used when scoring this category.
Unfortunately it is not convenient to save a Cheerio game by bookmarking it. You can do it, but when you return to the game, the most recent dice roll will have been rerolled. Thus, if you want to save your game, decide one move in advance that you will save it, and then pretend the next roll that occurs never happened. When you return to the game, consider the reroll the "official" roll for that turn.
Cheating at this game is possible but discouraged as a general rule. However, on occasion it can be fun to play around with the game engine. The simplest way to cheat is to hit the "back" button on your browser when something happens that you don't like. You can also cheat by modifying the URL at a particular point in the game. Notice that the URL is comprised of name=value pairs, separated by ampersands. The letter(s) or number(s) before the equals sign is the name, and what comes after it is the value. If you modify some of the values you can change the state of the game. You can experiment if you like. Below are some specific things you can do.
Reload the page to reroll the most recent roll. On the second or third roll of a turn, change the value of l to 0 to receive two additional rolls.