Where an amateur might think all one has to do to play darts is throw darts at a board, there are many different darts games played around the world. There are many different variations of dart games but the most common of them all is Cricket.
Cricket is played in darts tournaments, but it is also a popular drinking game played around the world in bars and pubs. It is a fan favorite for parties since multiple people can play. There are different variations of Cricket, which is why the game is popular. Let us look at several variations and how they are played.
This is the most common variation of Crickets. Master Crickets has no fixed number of players and so it can be played by individuals or teams.
The goal of Master Crickets is to ‘close’ all the numbers on the board while scoring the highest points of all players.
How to Play
Since Master Crickets can be played by multiple people, it is important to choose who goes first. All participants throw a dart at the bullseye. The player who lands closest to the bullseye gets to go first.
Once the first player is chosen, he is required to close all the numbers from 15 to 20 and the bullseye. There is no specific order in which numbers are closed first. ‘Closing’ a number means hitting it a section of it until three points are scored.
The player earns three points when they hit the treble of a number, two points when they hit the double, and one point when they hit the single.
If a player shoots three darts and only one lands on the current number being played, only one point is counted. For example, if the current number being played is 20 and a player lands only one dart on 20, only 1 point is scored.
If the player lands one of their darts on the double 20, two points are scored and they will only have to hit the 20 one more time to close the number. If the player’s darts hit 20 treble with one dart, while the other land on other numbers, it will be taken as if they have hit 20 three times and therefore it.
A player earns points on a number once they close it. For example, if number 19 is being played and the player has landed all three of their darts on it, they are said to have closed it. Every dart they throw afterwards that lands on 19 will earn them 19 points.
These points are added to the overall score. If the player hits a double 19 after closing, they get 38 points are added to their score. If they hit the treble section, they earn 57 points.
When the bullseye is first played, the outer one is worth one point and the inner one is worth two. After the outer bullseye is closed, subsequent hits earn 25 points per hit. The outer bullseye earns 50 points per hit after it is closed.
A player does not earn points on a number if the number has already been closed by an opponent. If a player throws three darts at number 15 and only two hit it, they have failed to close it. If an opposing player manages to throw all their darts at 15, and therefore closes it, the first player will not earn points if they hit 15 during the game.
So to win the game, a player has to be the first to close all their numbers and earn more points than their opponents. A player cannot close a number if they have fewer points than their opponent. To end the game, the player will have to accumulate more points.
Apart from Master Cricket, there are other variations of Cricket that a player can learn to increase their skill level. These variations include;
Cut Throat Cricket
Also known as the Reverse Cricket, this variation is the reverse of Master Cricket. While the goal in Master is to close all the numbers and have the highest score, the goal in Cut Throat is to have the lowest score.
As with Master, players still have to close all the numbers between 20 and 15 plus the bullseye for them to win. In this variation too, the double counts as double with the treble counting as triple the number hit.
However, the player cannot close the last number until their score is lower than their opponent’s. Once a player scores their points, they are given to the opposing player. Since nobody wants more points than the opponent, the competition to hit more numbers and hand over the points to the opponent is stiff.
That is why the game is called Cut-Throat Cricket. For example, if a game has three players with players 1 and 2 having closed number 17, they cannot keep hitting the same number to run up their own score.
If player 1 hits a treble 17, the points are given to player 2, who has to try and give all the points to player 3. At the end of the game, the player with the lowest points after closing wins.
This game is a simpler version of Master Cricket.
The starting player is determined by aiming at the bullseye. The one who threw the dart closest to it goes first. In this game, players earn the same points they would earn in Master Cricket if they hit the single, double, and treble areas of the number being played.
However, in this version, a player does not earn points after closing a number so there is no need to keep aiming at those numbers.
The player who closes all the numbers from 15 to 20 and the bullseye is the winner. A player can move on to the next number once they close a number without having to worry about accumulating points.
Double Only Cricket
This game also has the same objective of closing all the numbers from 15 to 20 and the bullseye. Double Only Cricket requires a player to accumulate more points than the opposing players to win. However, a player begins earning points on a particular number if they hit its double. To illustrate, if a player throws three darts that a single 17, treble 18, and double 16, the only dart that counts is the one that hit the double 16. The double is worth two points.
Cricket games are a lot of fun for everyone who plays. There are so many variations to suit all skill levels. The competition in each kind of game is enough to get your adrenaline going. So next time you are at the pub with your friends, or have family over for barbecue or dinner, play one of the variations of Cricket and see for yourself what a blast these games are!