dart games

What is Dart Games? Best Dart Games Complete Guide

The humble dartboard a staple of pubs and rec rooms around the world is more than just a target for idle throwing. Darts is a game that combines skill strategy and a healthy dose of friendly competition. Whether you’re a seasoned professional or a complete novice there’s a dart game out there for you.

A Brief History of Darts

The exact origins of darts remain shrouded in mystery but its history can be traced back centuries. Early versions of the game likely involved throwing sharpened objects at targets evolving over time into the pub game we know today.

The first standardized dartboard design emerged in the 1800s and the sport’s popularity has surged ever since. Today professional dart tournaments attract a global audience showcasing the incredible skill and precision honed by dedicated players.

dart games

Essential Dart Game Equipment

Before diving into the games themselves let’s take a quick look at the essential equipment you’ll need:


The standard dartboard is made of sisal a natural fiber known for its durability and ability to grip darts effectively. The board is divided into 20 numbered segments with a bullseye at the center.


Darts come in various weights and styles with heavier darts generally offering more control and lighter darts promoting faster throws. Finding the right weight for your throwing style is crucial for accuracy. How to Win Darts? Pro Secrets to Mastering the Oche

Throwing Line

A throwing line typically marked on the floor at a set distance from the dartboard (usually 7ft 9.25 inches) ensures fair play and consistent throws.

While these are the core items additional equipment like dart flights (stabilizers at the back of the dart) shafts (connecting the point to the flight) and sharpeners can further enhance your throwing experience.

dart games

Understanding Dartboard Scoring

The scoring system in darts is relatively simple. Each numbered segment on the board corresponds to its number (1-20). Hitting the bullseye earns you 50 points while the outer bullseye ring is worth 25 points.

The key to many dart games lies in checking out which means finishing your score exactly by hitting a specific combination of numbers. For example in a game of 301 you need to reduce your score from 301 to zero by hitting legal combinations of numbers on your final throw.

Popular Dart Games to Master

Now that you’re familiar with the basics let’s explore some of the most popular dart games to get you started:

301/501 (01 Games)

These are the quintessential competitive dart games. Players start with a score of either 301 or 501 (depending on the chosen game) and aim to reduce their score to zero by hitting legal combinations of numbers. The final checkout must involve hitting a double (outer ring surrounding a number) or the bullseye.


A fast-paced and exciting game Cricket involves players opening and closing numbers (15-20 and the bullseye) by hitting them three times each. The first player to close all their numbers wins the game.

Around the Clock

This is a great game for beginners to practice their accuracy and learn the dartboard layout. Players take turns throwing darts aiming to hit each number sequentially from 1 to 20 finishing with the bullseye.

dart games


Similar to 01 games Legs focuses on scoring the highest points possible. Players take turns throwing three darts each aiming for high-scoring segments like 20 and 19. The player with the highest score after a predetermined number of rounds wins.


A fun and social game Killer requires players to choose a random number (by throwing a dart) and then hit its double to become a “killer.” Once a killer you aim to eliminate other players by hitting their chosen numbers. The last player standing wins.


This is a fun fast-paced game for larger groups. Players take turns throwing three darts aiming to hit a single double and triple of the same number in one turn (e.g. single 7 double 7 triple 7). The first player to achieve a “Shanghai” wins. Mastering Shanghai Darts: Your Ultimate Guide


Calling all baseball fans! This game mimics the excitement of America’s favorite pastime. Players take turns throwing three darts with each dart counting as a single double or triple (depending on the segment hit) – just like scoring runs in baseball. The player with the most “runs” after nine innings wins.

dart games


A simple yet engaging game for a crowd Gotcha involves all players throwing at the same time. The first player to hit any number shouts Gotcha! and eliminates the other players. The last player remaining wins.


This game adds a strategic twist for more experienced players. Players take turns throwing three darts aiming for specific high-scoring segments (like 20 16 double 7 etc.). Missing a target number results in your score being halved making accuracy crucial.


Calling all golfers (or wannabe golfers)! This game allows you to practice your precision by simulating a round of golf on the dartboard. Players take turns throwing darts at designated segments aiming to score points just like strokes on a golf course.

dart games

Essential Dart Game Etiquette

Now that you’ve got a grasp on different dart games here are some essential etiquette tips to ensure a smooth and enjoyable experience for everyone:

  • Maintain good sportsmanship: Celebrate your wins graciously and accept losses with a smile.Call your fouls: If you accidentally cross the throwing line or believe a dart may be out of place call it out honestly.Respect the throwing line: Don’t walk in front of a player during their throw for safety reasons.
  • Minimize distractions: Avoid loud talking or disruptive behavior while others are throwing.
  • Take turns patiently: Wait for your turn without rushing or pressuring other players.
  • Offer help to beginners: If you’re playing with someone new offer friendly advice or answer their questions.

By following these simple guidelines you can contribute to a positive and respectful atmosphere at the dartboard.

dart games

Resources to Elevate Your Dart Game

Your darting journey doesn’t end here! Here are some resources to help you refine your skills and delve deeper into the world of darts:

Online tutorials: Numerous websites and YouTube channels offer instructional videos on throwing techniques scoring systems and different game variations https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ck5i8CVEkJI.

Darting communities: Join online forums or local dart leagues to connect with other players share tips and participate in tournaments.

Professional darts organizations: Explore websites of organizations like the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) https://www.pdc.tv/ or the British Darts Organisation (BDO) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Darts_Organisation to learn about professional play and upcoming events.


The world of darts offers something for everyone from casual pub games to competitive tournaments. With a little practice you can master the basic techniques explore different game variations and elevate your dart game to the next level. So grab your darts challenge your friends and get ready to experience the timeless fun and friendly competition that darts has to offer!


What’s the best weight for dart beginners?

For beginners it’s generally recommended to start with heavier darts (around 18-22 grams) as they offer more control and stability during throws. As your skills develop you can experiment with lighter weights for faster throws.

How far should I stand from the dartboard?

The standard throwing distance is 7 feet 9 ¼ inches from the bullseye to the throwing line. However this can vary slightly depending on your height and throwing style. Experiment to find a distance that feels comfortable and allows for consistent throws.

Are there any safety precautions for playing darts?

Always ensure everyone is clear of the throwing area before a player throws. Avoid leaning over the dartboard while someone is throwing and maintain a safe distance from other players.

What are some tips for improving my throwing accuracy?

Maintain a consistent grip and stance.
Focus on a smooth throwing motion.
Practice regularly to build muscle memory.
Watch professional dart players for technique inspiration.

Where can I find darting communities or leagues?

Many local pubs and recreation centers have dartboards and might host casual games or leagues. Look online for darting communities or organizations in your area. You can also find numerous online forums and social media groups dedicated to darts.

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