a simple game in which one player marks down only X's and another only O's, each alternating in filling in any of the nine compartments of a figure formed by two vertical lines crossed by two horizontal lines, the winner being the first to fill in three marks in any horizontal, vertical, or diagonal row.
a children's game consisting of trying, with the eyes shut, to bring a pencil down upon one of a set of circled numbers, as on a slate, the number touched being counted as a score.
Origin of tick-tack-toe
1865-70; imitative of sound, as of bringing a pencil down on slate; see ticktack
(US & Canadian) a game in which two players, one using a nought, "O", the other a cross, "X", alternately mark one square out of nine formed by two pairs of crossed lines, the winner being the first to get three of his symbols in a row Also called (in Britain and certain other countries) noughts and crosses
C19: from ticktack (meaning: an obsolete variety of backgammon)