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The Different Ways to Play Table Shuffleboard

There are few games like shuffleboard in terms of accessibility and flexibility. Shuffleboard is easy to understand and doesn't require much physical prowess, so anyone of any age can have a good time playing it. Its simple rules make it easy to customize to create new ways to play. 

For these reasons and more, a shuffleboard tabletop game is an extremely popular and fun way to socialize with friends and family. That's why we put together this guide on how to play table shuffleboard so you can join in the fun and enjoy everything this unique game has to offer.

Classic Shuffleboard

Classic shuffleboard is a super fun game that anyone can play. Usually, classic shuffleboard is played by two or four players, with either one or two people per team. Each team gets four pucks and aims to slide their puck down the scoring zones to get points. The points received are based on where your puck stops. 

Here are the rules for classic tabletop shuffleboard:

  • Push pucks: Each player pushes their puck to the other side of the table. 

  • Tallying: Scores are tallied when both teams have pushed all four of their pucks.

  • Legal plays: Players can use their pucks to score points, displace their opponent's puck or both.

  • Doubles allocation: In doubles games, each player gets two pucks.

A tabletop shuffleboard has various areas for scoring points, usually labeled 1, 2 and 3. The labels correspond with the number of points awarded. A puck hanging over the edge of the table is worth 4 points. If a puck lands on a line between two zones, the lesser point value is awarded. 

Horse Collar Shuffleboard

Horse collar shuffleboard is a more complex and competitive version of classic shuffleboard. You can play horse collar shuffleboard by yourself, or you can split into teams, depending on how many people play. Try to split the teams as evenly as possible!

Horse collar shuffleboard is played in frames, like bowling, so there is no limit to the number of teams who can join a game, making it one of the best table games to play at large gatherings. Eight pucks are used in this version instead of four. The winner of this shuffleboard variant is the first team to score 51 points. 

Here are the rules for horse collar shuffleboard:

  • Order: Once the teams are formed, the play order must be decided by tossing a coin or another suitable method. 

  • Puck allocation: Players use all eight pucks during their turn.

  • Shooting: One at a time, each player in the team shoots their pucks to the other end of the board.

  • Tally and change: After the player finishes their turn, the team tallies their total score for the round, and the next team plays their turn. This goes on until one team wins by reaching 51 points.

Here's how horse collar shuffleboard is scored:

  • Zero points: Pucks that fall off the end of the table or don't pass the foul are not counted.

  • One point: Pucks between the foul line and the deuce line earn one point.

  • Two points: Pucks between the trey line and the deuce line are worth two points.

  • Three points: Three points are given to pucks between the trey line and the back end of the table. 

  • 13 points: If a puck hangs off the back end of the table and is past the trey line, it earns 13 points.

  • 26 points: Pucks hanging off the corners of the table past the trey line earn 26 points, the maximum point allocation.

These differences make horse collar shuffleboard a more competitive way to play the game.

Crazy Eight Shuffleboard

Crazy eight shuffleboard presents a fun and exciting twist on the classic rules of the game. This version can be played with two or more people. Like horse collar, crazy eight is also played in frames.

Here are the rules for crazy eight shuffleboard:

  • Goal: The first player groups four pucks of the same color together and sends them down the board simultaneously. If none of them pass the foul line, no points are scored, and the next player starts their turn. If all four pucks pass the foul line and remain on the table, the same player will shoot the other four pucks one at a time, aiming to knock the first four pucks off the board. If all of the pucks of the first color are knocked off the board and at least one puck of the second color remains on the board, those points are scored. If none of the pucks of the second color remain on the board, no points are scored.

  • Winning conditions: The winning team is decided when a predetermined number of rounds have been played or a predetermined score has been reached. The totals of each frame are added up to determine the winner.

  • Turn structure: If none of the first player's pucks pass the foul line, the next player starts their turn. Otherwise, the next player starts their turn after the first player tallies the points scored from aiming to knock the first four pucks off the board using the second set of four pucks. 

  • Hickey count: The hickey count is an optional rule used when playing for money. Players who do not score during their frame put money in the hickey jar. The overall winner takes all the money from the jar at the end. 

The scoring area is divided into three sections. The high-scoring zone is located at the top of the board. The middle is the second-highest scoring section, and the bottom of the board scores the lowest points.

Bowling Shuffleboard

Bowling shuffleboard is a lot like ten-pin bowling. There is no limit to the number or players who can join. The shuffleboard game is played by using your shuffleboard pucks to knock down ten small bowling pins in two attempts. The pins are arranged in a four-three-two-one descending formation, the same order used in ten-pin bowling. The rules are the same as ten-pin bowling, with both strike and spare scoring rules applied similarly.

This type of shuffleboard should be familiar to most people and works like an at-home bowling alley. This is a great game for parties, as it can accommodate a lot of people. 

Score Big With Shuffleboard Tables From Imperial

Imperial offers premium shuffleboard tables designed to give you an authentic pub-style game table that blends into your home and decor seamlessly. Play your favorite version of shuffleboard with these fully equipped, high-quality shuffleboard tables.

Imperial offers 9-foot and 12-foot-long shuffleboard tables in a variety of styles and materials. Shop Imperial's quality shuffleboard tables and get the game table you've been looking for. Play the right games and win the right way with Imperial's top-notch tables and accessories.

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Table shuffleboard is a fun and versatile game that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and skill levels. The basic premise is simple: slide your pucks down the table and score points by landing them in scoring zones or knocking your opponent's pucks off the board.

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