We all know about shooting paper targets and 3D, but how about other games that you can play with bows and arrows? There are lots of fun ways to spice up your shooting and have a little fun.
I personally tend to get a little too competitive (and critical of my own shooting) when doing paper and 3D shooting, and this can often lead to having less fun. My wife and I have been shooting in a “couples league” at our local pro shop (Rocky Mountain Archery in Ft. Collins, CO) and it has been a ton of fun. We have done some normal 3D and paper shooting, commercial paper target games and some other fun stuff. I’d like to compile a larger list of all the fun stuff people do to shoot, so feel free to contribute! You can either reply to this article or hit me up on the CONTACT page.
Commercially Sold Targets and Games
There are several different variations of games that can be purchased at different shops and online. One good source for quite a few different games is Archery Game Cube. They feature several targets with familiar games such as tic-tac-toe, poker/blackjack, darts and others. I’ll touch on a few of these that can be found at the aforementioned site as well as other places:
Tic-Tac-Toe Your basic game where each shooter takes turns trying to make three in a row. The twist is that if you miss your intended square, it could be big trouble!
Poker/Blackjack These targets have all of the standard cards. Just like the real card games, you attempt to make the best hand possible while your opponent does the same. One miss can blow your royal flush or make you bust instantly.
Nock Out This is one that I haven’t tried yet but that looks like a lot of fun is. In this game there are a series of circles with numbers from one to five in them. The goal is to have five shooters who try to hit everyone else’s number but their own. The last person with a number left is the winner!
Darts Just like standard darts, but make more fun with arrows! These targets are basically the same as a dart board and all familiar dart games can be played on them. However, arrows are bigger then darts and sometimes it’s wise to spread your darts out more rather than going for triple 20s every shot.
Connect Four This is one of my favorites and can be a lot of fun. Similar to the game most of us played as kids with the plastic cage and checker pieces, the object is to get four arrows in a row. I’ve played this on grids as small as five by five and as large as ten by ten. While similar to tic-tac-toe, this one tends to take more thought and more shots. You can shoot three to five arrows per end and if someone hasn’t one yet, retrieve your arrows and mark the boxes with stickers and shoot another end.
CD shoot I believe this one originated at the Lancaster Archery Classic, at least that is where I first heard of it. A CD, preferably one you don’t care about! The CD is hung up down range, usually at twenty yards. The object is to hit the center of the CD without breaking any portion of the CD itself. This is a lot tougher than it sounds! Hint: don’t use your normal log-arrows for this one, get something skinny.
The Dollar Game At my hometown archery club we used to play this every night after paper leagues. Each person takes a dollar bill and folds it in half four times then hangs it up downrange using golf tees. Everybody then picks a different bill to shoot at than their own. If you hit one, you keep it. If someone else hits yours, you’re out! The game continues until no bills are left. I should probably mention it might be better to use a different target and just have everybody put a bill into a pool. That wayyou don’t end up going to the bank with a bunch of bills with holes in them!
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