Play a game of rock-scissors-paper before beginning a game to decide who starts. The person shooting second always has the advantage, because they have the opportunity to knock their opponent’s puck off and leave their’s on the table for the win. The winner of each end leads off on the following end though, so this advantage is shared evenly.
Some people play a defensive style and some people attack. There’s no right or wrong way to be, but the best players have both elements in their gameplay.
The aim of the game is to have your puck/s sit further down the table than your opponents, but it’s also a skill setting up blockers and traps if you’re playing against a competent aimer. Your final puck might be a hanger, but if your opponent has the final shot, he or she will look to knock you off and leave their puck on the table to win a game.
The 7-10 split is ten pin bowling’s most infamous scenario, where the bowler is left with the leftmost and the rightmost pin in the back row (the number 7 and number 10) to knock down with a single ball to achieve a spare. Shuffleboard often has similar difficult scenarios, where you’re left with the last puck – potentially shooting for the win or staring down the barrel of elimination – and a dilemma in front of you… Do you try to shuffle your final puck past the others to a winning position? Do you nudge one of your other pucks further for the win? Do you knock-off your opponent? Each game is different, so it’s up to you…
However you play and whatever the outcome, shuffleboard is supposed to be fun.
Go for glory. Be animated. Get your shuffle on. Have fun!