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How to Play High / Low Darts

Joshua Wicks

Last updated Jul 29, 2022
My goal is to help others learn about the game and to help them improve their skills.

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high low darts

Are you a beginner? Looking for an interesting chasing game? High/Low darts can be a better match for you. High darts and Low darts are two identical games that share the same idea. While you are playing, you may get confused about the rules. Here we have explained the rules, scoring, and the strategy of high darts as well as low darts so that it won’t look confusing anymore. 



Why are the games named High darts and Low darts? 



These two are score-chasing games. But one chases the score to exceed it and the other chases to score lower than the target. In the High darts, players try to get a higher score than the previous player has done. 

In the same way, players try to score lower than the previous score in the low darts game. In both games, players own three lives per round. Players score according to the rules so that they don’t lose their ‘lives’.  

Let’s start with the high darts first. 



How to play High darts 



Number of players

Any number of players (more than 2)  can enjoy this game. It can be played with a large group of friends.  


The object of the game 

The game aims to get a higher score than the previous player’s score. If a player fails to score more, he loses his one life. When he loses all his three lives, he gets eliminated. So the player’s object is to score more if he does not want to lose. 


How to play 

Who will throw first is determined by the closest shot to the bullseye. Once the order is selected, the first player throws two darts simultaneously. The segments on which they land are summed up. The sum of the scores becomes the target to chase for the second player. He uses his three darts one by one. If he scores higher, the score becomes the target for the third player. But if he fails to get a higher score using three darts, he loses one life. His obtained score is marked as the target for the next player then. So the target gets changed in every round. When the last player standing with any life wins the game. 


How to score 

The players’ names are written on a scoreboard according to the order. Besides their names, their lives are marked as straight lines (I I I). The target is also written after one player completes his turn. The lives are erased one after one when a player is unable to score more than the target. 

The segments resemble the standard scoring where the outer bullseye worth 25 points and the inner bullseye scores 50. 


Player 1I I I
Player 2I I I
Player 3I I I

High darts example 

Suppose you are playing with two other friends. You are marked as player 1 and the others are player 2 and player 3.

You have got the chance to throw first. You throw two darts at a time. One has landed on single 5 and the other on single 20. So the score is 25. Player 2 comes in turn. 

Player 2 throws his first dart that lands on single 18, the second dart on double 4 and the third dart lands on single 1. So the new score is 27.  

Player 3 comes and throws the first dart. It scores 10. The second dart misses the board and the third dart lands on the larger segment of 12. Now his score is 22 which is lower than the last player had scored. So he loses his life.


Player 1I I I
Player 2I I I
Player 3I I

The target is 22 for the second round. It is your turn again. You throw the first dart and miss it. With the second dart, you hit double 12 and the third dart lands on the smaller single segment of 5. The target becomes 29 for the second player. 

Player 2 scores a single 13, a double 2 and a single 7. The total score is 24, which does not exceed the target. So player 2 also loses one life. 

Player 3 scores 35 in total. So you have to score more than 35 in the third round.


Player 1I I I
Player 2I I
Player 3I I

When a player loses his three lives, he gets eliminated and the rest of the players continue the game. 

If you are the one standing alone with any remaining life, you will be the winner.    


The strategy 

The game chases the lower score. So if you want to beat the score, aim for the doubles. If you have accuracy in throwing, you may take the risk of aiming the bullseye. If it lands in place, it will add 50 points to your score. Try to carry a score that your opponent finds hard to chase. 



How to play Low darts 



Number of players 

2 or more players are required to play this game. 


Object of the game 

This game aims to score lower than the target. If you fail, you will lose your lives. So To keep scoring lower will keep you alive. It is the object of the game.


How to play Low darts 

Player 1 throws two darts at the same time. The sum of the numbers on which they land becomes the target. Player 2 comes in turn and throws his darts in the traditional way. He throws three darts one by one and aims to score lower than the target. The points he scores become the new target. Player 3 aims to get points lower than that. If players fail to obtain a lower score than the target, they lose lives. 


The scoring 

The game starts with three lives for each player. Suppose player 1 throws two darts that land on double 20 and single 19. A total of 59 is the target score. Player 2 throws his first dart to single 20, the second dart to single 20 again, and the last to the single 5. So the total is 45. So the new target is 45 now. Player 3 hits a single 10, a single 13 and a 15. So his score is 38. It will be the new target score for the second round. 

If you are thinking of lowering your score by missing the darts, it will be a great mistake. Every missed dart will add +25 points to your score. But you can save your score by hitting the bullseye. The outer bullseye will add -25 and the inner bullseye will give -50. Though they are very tough to aim at, they can keep you safe from losing lives. 

The only player remaining with any life wins the game. 


The strategy 

Try to hit the single segments to keep the score lower. If you miss any, try to hit the bullseye to cover it up.



Final words 



High darts and low darts both are beginner-friendly games. As a beginner, you need to choose the  best darts to enjoy an exciting match. A good dart may change the game with its better trajectory. So you can perform well even if you are not a pro. Hope this article will help you to  plan your strategies to win.

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