- 2 or 4
- 20 Solo Cups
- Ping Pong Balls
- First team to eliminate all 10 of the opposing teams’ cups wins.
Additional Setup Notes
- The game can be played as individuals or teams. Identify who will play in either a 1 player vs. 1 player set or 2 players (team one) vs. 2 players (team two)
- Each team or player stands on either end of the table
- To set up the game, place 10 cups on each end of the table in a pyramid formation. Four cups in the first row, followed by a row of three, then two, and finally one cup at the point of the triangle.
- Fill the cups about ¼ to ½ full with beer. Alternatively, you can fill the cups with water water and keep your drink of choice on the side.
The game is played until defeat. Each team member or individual takes turns attempting to sink a ping pong ball in the opponent’s cup. Every time a ball goes in the cup, the cup is removed. The first one to sink all of the opponent’s cups, wins!
There are two ways to decide which team goes first:
- Eye-to-eye shootout: If neither team facing each other won the previous game or if it is the first game of the night, the team that goes first is decided by one member of each team looking each other in the eyes and throwing their ping pong balls at the same time at the opposing team’s cups. The first member of a team to make a ping pong ball into a cup has won the right for their team to go first. If both players make a cup at this stage, the next two players throw again until only one team has made a cup.
- Champion start: If a team playing in this round has won the previous game and stayed at the table they have the right to go first and no eye-to-eye shot is required.
You can play beer pong as either one one-on-one or in teams however, it is most typically played with four players or two teams. Teams take turns throwing their ping pong balls at the opposing team’s cups. If a ball lands in a cup, that cup is removed from the table, and the eliminated cups team drinks the liquid from the cup, and discards it to the side.. The team that eliminates all 10 of the opposing teams’ cups first wins the game. The winning team has the option of staying at the table to challenge the next team.
To win a game of beer pong, your team must sink all 10 of the opposing team’s cups before they sink all 10 of your cups.
Beer Pong Tips & Strategy
- Find your shooting style. Some players like to throw their ping pong ball higher with more arc, while some are more accurate, throwing the ping pong ball more like a dart.
- If you are playing with re-racks, do not use your one or two re-racks too early in the match.
- If your teammate makes their shot and the opposing team is slow to remove that cup, aim for that cup for the opportunity to make the same cup and get balls back for your team.
Examples & Demonstration
- Two teams line up across the table from each other and set up their 10-cup triangle
- One member from each team looks each other in the eye and throws their ping pong balls at the same time. If one player makes their shot, all cups stay on the table, and that player’s team gets to shoot first.
- Teams take turns throwing one ping pong ball each per turn at the opposing teams’ cups until they have made a ping pong ball in every cup.
Beer Pong Variations
Variations and alternative rules are typical in gameplay and are often called “house rules.” Don’t be afraid to make up your house rules and get creative with the game.
- Wrists/Elbows: Players must keep their wrists or elbows behind the table when shooting on their turn. If a shooting player violates this rule and makes their ping pong ball into a cup, they must step back and reshoot.
- Re-Racks: Once or twice per game (depending on which rule you choose), teams are allowed to ask the opposing team to rearrange their cups at the start of their turn. This cannot be done after one team member has thrown a ping-pong ball. There are many different combinations and names for re-racks, including the eight-cup flower, six-cup triangle, five cup house, four cup diamond, three cup stop light, and many, many more. Get creative with it!
- Balls Back: If both team members make a cup on the same turn, the balls are returned to them, and they get to shoot again.
- Heating up/Fire: If a player has made two shots in a row, either back-to-back turns or from balls back they must say “Heating Up” before their shot. If they hit the third shot in a row without missing, they exclaim, “Fire!” and they get to continue shooting until they miss. If they did not say heating up after the 2nd consecutive shot made, they do not get to announce that they are on fire and do not get to continue shooting.
- Death Cup: If the opposing team has pulled a cup from the rack and is slow to drink it, you may throw your ping pong ball on your turn at the cup they are holding. If the ping pong ball makes it into the cup and there is still beer in the cup, this is considered the “Death Cup,” and the game is over.
- Same Cup: If both members of the same team make their balls in the same cup, this counts as 3 cups, and the defending team decides which other two cups to pull from the rack.
- Island: Once per game, all members may choose to call out “Island” and shoot at a cup that has no other cups touching it. If they make the shot, the defending team must pull two cups choosing the second cup to be pulled from the rack.
- Rebuttal: After the last cup is made by a team, the defending team has a chance at rebuttal. Both members get to throw one ping pong ball each at the opposing team’s cups, and if they make either of their shots, the rebuttal is successful. If they both miss, the game is over.
Do I have to put beer in the cups?
No! Beer pong can be played with any liquid inside of the cups. The most typical way to play other than putting beer in the cups is to put water in the cups and to have your own personal beverage that you drink from off to the side of the game.
Can I make up my own “House Rules”?
Absolutely. Beer pong is meant to be a fun time with friends, and the more creative you can get with the rules and how you want to play, the better. Just remember not all rules are followed/enforced at all houses, so if you play at someone else’s house the rules could be very different.
What table is best for Beer Pong?
The official Beer Pong tournament table is 8 feet long and 2 feet wide, but Beer Pong can be played on any table or surface with 2 sides where you can put your cups on either end. Most home beer pong games are played on any 6-foot foldable table you can purchase at any department store.
The Game Farm does not encourage or promote alcohol consumption of any kind. We do not take responsibility for any injuries, damages, or other consequences that may arise from the consumption of alcohol while playing our games.
It is the responsibility of each individual player to drink responsibly and know their limits. We recommend that players drink plenty of water and take breaks throughout the night to avoid becoming intoxicated.
If you are underage, please do not drink alcohol. Drinking alcohol underage is illegal and can have serious health consequences.
We hope you have fun playing our drinking games responsibly!