What are the official rules of beer pong? That can be a leading question. While there ARE official rules and even a world series of beer pong, most casual beer pong play at house parties is largely dependent on the preferences of the host. But for educational purposes, here are the rules that the pros play by:

Setup

1. The two teams (or individuals) stand on either end of the table. Teams are generally two players each.

2. The ten glasses on each side of the table are laid out in a triangular fashion, with four glasses just barely in front of the table’s furthest edge, three in front of that, two in front of them, and one more in front of them. Rims of the cups should be touching, and no cups should be tilting or leaning against each other.

3. Standard tournament dimensions for a beer pong table are 8′ x 2′ x 27.5″.

4. Standard size 40mm ping pong balls are used for gameplay.

5. Split 24oz of beer between the ten cups. In official tournament play, the back four cups are filled with water instead, but we’ve yet to go to a party where this actually happens!

Gameplay

1. The team that goes first is selected randomly. In some house rules, we’ve seen a face-off take place between the two teams to compete for the first turn, and in this case, whoever lands a ball in a cup first gets to throw the first (official) shot.

2. Traditionally, the team that throws first gets only one shot. After this, one turn equals two shots per team, which is one shot per team member.

3. Legal throws include the following:

-Throwing a ball directly into an opposing team’s cup

-Bouncing the ball on the table and landing it in an opposing team’s cup

4. A penalty of one cup is granted for the following reasons:

-Altering the ball’s path on its way to their cups

-Extending any body part over the table while making a shot

-Creating a distraction, including but not limited to: Fanning or blowing on the balls, trash talking the opposing team, blocking the opposing team’s view of the cups, interfering in any way with the opposing team’s ability to shoot, etc.

-If you knock over your own cup, it counts as if the other team made a shot into that cup. The cup stays empty…unless, of course, the other team doesn’t notice this. Then, the cup may remain. Don’t believe us? It’s in the official rules of the world series of beer pong, called the “Dipshit not paying attention rule”. See http://www.bpong.com/wsobp/official-rules-of-the-world-series-of-beer-pong for these rules.

5. The final rounds: If it has come down to a situation in which both teams have one cup remaining, the first team to make a shot is not necessarily the winner. The opposing team gets a chance to make a rebuttal shot, and if they sink the rebuttal shot also, it’s back to square one, with one cup remaining for each team. If the rebuttal shot is missed, then the team that made the original shot is the winner. The official rules describe several possible finals scenarios, but this is the simplest of those described, and, as house rules vary, it makes more sense to just ask the host about his or her rules about the final rounds of beer pong.

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