Shuffleboard table game rules for beginners
Have you been to your local watering hole and have seen people gathered around playing shuffleboard?
You and your friends want to join in? BUT, you dont know how to play shuffleboard.
We have all been there, you walk into a bar and see the masterfully crafted shuffleboard table that always has a bunch of people around it, having a great time. It’s intimidating.
But you and your friends, have never played before leaving you one of three options:
- Keep reading this page so you and your friends can confidently walk into the bar or restaurant and know how to play or
- Go up to the people playing and ask them how to play. Shuffleboard is a very social game and who knows you might make some more friends from it or
- Read the rules and then go make some friends at the shuffleboard table.
Good Choice, Learn the Rules for a Shuffleboard Table
If you are down this far that means you chose #1 or #3
Shuffleboard table game rules have not changed over the course of the years but these are the basics, lets get started.
The table you are at can be anywhere between 9ft – 22ft long and at least 20in wide. Not going to get into the details of how its made but different tables use different woods, materials, etc.
You will notice at each end you will see a range of different ways to score, some tables have 3 sections painted on them and others have triangles with different scoring areas, etc. We are going to stick with traditional shuffleboard tables and stay with the 3 areas clearly labeled 1, 2 and 3. Easy enough.
Shuffleboard Weights (Pucks)
These circle pucks are what you will slide from one end of the table to the other. There are all different types of pucks but hey, you are beginning so you will be using the pucks that are at your local bar/restaurant so i am sure they are good for the table.
Teams vs Individuals
Shuffleboard is played with either individuals or teams so, either way, you are good to go. There will be different colored pucks so you know whose team is which puck.
For teams, one member of each team is on each end of the table with an opposing team member (just like corn hole). You stay at your end of the table until the game is done, then you can switch out but once the game begins you need to stay on your side.
For individual games, it’s just you and your buddy, stranger, girlfriend, boyfriend, whom ever you are playing against. You both start on one side of the table and choose the color puck you want to be. From there you will both slide from the same end down to the opposite end (scoring end) to score points.
So not you know which side you need to be on, how many people are playing, how the table is laid out and what you use to score. Now for the nuts and bolts.
Scoring on a Shuffleboard table
First, you need to decide what score you want to play to, 15 points or 21 points is standard for a shuffleboard table game. There are a lot of other games you can play on a shuffleboard but this is the basics.
Next, decide who goes first. The proper way to go about that is flipping a coin but you can use “paper, rock, scissors”, or whatever way you want, just need to decide.
Next, the person who gets to go first will take their color puck and slide it down the table to the other end. You want to get your puck in the scoring areas and each scoring area is labeled for the points you MAY get.
Now you alternate sliding with your opponent until both of you have slid all 4 of your pucks to the other end.
NOTE: it is allowed to knock your opponents puck off the playing surface… part of the game strategy.
Like in the diagram above whatever color puck is farthest down the table without falling off scores.
So in this diagram, the red team got 3 points… PLUS one extra point for being over the edge and not falling off. Called a “Hanger”. BUT this point is only possible if the puck is that the very end of the table, not the edges.
If you have 2 pucks that are farthest down the table then you get points for the area they are located in (1 point for area labeled1, 2 points for area labeled 2 and so on).
Conclusion for Shuffle Table Game Rules
Shuffleboard is fun, it’s not difficult to learn and have fun.
Make some new friends around the shuffleboard table at your local watering hole.
Most importantly have fun.