Game with Labels for Components

Play has the following sequence:

  1. Steel balls are divided equally among players (5 balls each for 4 players).
  2. The starting goalie places the target ball in the nearby dimple, signifying readiness. (The team to the left of the scoreboard gets to start first at the beginning of each game. After the first point, the team that lost the last point starts.)
  3. The referee (if available) announces the score, signifying readiness.
  4. The defending goalie says “ready,” signifying readiness. This signal initiates active play.
  5. The starting goalie releases the first steel ball (after steadying the target, if desired).
  6. Immediately thereafter, all other players may release steel balls.
  7. Play continues until a goal, a foul, or a reset.
  8. A goal or foul leads to a point, which is recorded on the scoreboard or a scorecard.
  9. Repeat …


It is a goal when the target ball touches any part of the back wall, including the top, either directly or through a series of one or more contacting steel balls. A game is won by the first side to get to 4 points, with the option that winning requires a margin of two points.

Fouls (Points):

Touching: Players may not touch the target ball while on the table surface during play.

Disturbing: It is a point if a player disturbs the motion of the target ball by a steel ball that was not rolled down a chute. Examples include:

  1. A steel ball that was in contact with a player when it contacted the target.
  2. A steel ball that was dropped and made contact with the target.
  3. A steel ball that was pushed with the side or tip of a chute.
  4. A steel ball that was pushed with a hand while gathering balls.

The latter three violations are usually not called, unless there was an immediate influence on the trajectory of the target ball, because these steel balls continue their motion indefinitely. When the target ball is hit by a launched ball, all previous accidentally dropped or pushed steel balls are not the cause for a foul.

Interfering: Players may not touch a steel ball recently launched by an opponent and on its way to the target. Players may acquire steel balls anywhere on the playing surface. However, players may not interfere with the play of opponents, including touching their chutes, obscuring their vision, or hampering/altering their movement. Players may not take balls from the hands of any other player.

Slapping: Players may not rotate a chute toward the target ball and hit it with the side or corner of the chute. A target ball may legally bounce off the tip (front) of a chute, even if the chute is moving. Players may not forcefully hit steel balls with a chute.

Accelerating: Steel balls must be placed in the groove of a chute (and basically stationary) before being released for launch with a chute only under the force of gravity. For example, players may not push or spin steel balls down a chute, drop steel balls onto a chute, or fling steel balls by quickly rotating/jiggling a chute. Most chute rotations are allowed, like tracking the target ball or the dispersion of steel balls, even though there may be a modest speed increase.

Starting: After the defending goalie says "ready," if any of the other players releases a steel ball before the starting goalie releases a ball, it is a point against that player's team. If the starting goalie fakes a launch, it is a point against the starting goalie's team.

Hoarding: Hoarding is defined as possession by a team of more than 75% of the steel balls. {With 20 steel balls total, holding 16 or more steel balls in the hands of a team constitutes hoarding.} At any time during a game, any player can yell "HOARDING!" Immediately, all players must present both hands face up. If a hoarding accusation is proven, the violating team loses the point. Otherwise the challenging team loses the point.

Placing: Players may not place steel balls anywhere on the playing surface. Players may not push steel balls into a corner or anywhere else on the table. Players may push steel balls to retrieve them from "under" the barriers. Players may not put or shoot steel balls into the hands of their partner. Players may not hold steel balls by any means other than their hands.

Pinching: Players may not hold the target ball with a chute against a side wall.

Miscellaneous: Players may not engage in any of a variety of actions that obviously detract from the design of the game, like hitting or tilting the table, blowing on the target ball, unnecessary delays, etc.


The following events are treated as a "reset." The sequence for beginning a new point is followed, including an equal allocation of steel balls. The target is placed in the same dimple as at the beginning of the point.

  1. The target ball flies off the surface of the table and then either contacts a player or lands on the floor.
  2. The target ball rolls onto a chute and makes contact with a player.
  3. A player launches a steel ball before the defending goalie says "ready."
  4. The target ball has stopped moving and opponents can’t hit it because a chute blocks access.

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