Rules of the Game
The object of the game is to position shooting discs on the playing surface in such manner that they remain within the highest scoring circles by the end of the round. A crokinole shot is accomplished by firmly holding the end of your index or middle finger against the thumb and then flicking or snapping it against the disc in order to propel the disc across the playing surface. (See "Shooting technique," for how to avoid the "dreaded crokinole finger.") Each player seeks to make a “20” (centre hole) score whenever possible. At the same time, each player - in turn - will attempt to make such scoring opportunities difficult for his opponent. The game is played to 50, 100, or more points, as determined by all players in advance.
For 2 - 4 Players
When two players are playing, each player will have 12 discs of the same colour to shoot. They oppose each other. When four players are playing, each player has 6 discs to shoot. With 4 players, the players sitting opposite each other constitute a team (shooting the same colour) and oppose the other team.
- To determine who goes first, there are numerous methods, but here are a couple. For example, say "white" goes first. One player will hide a disc of each colour in her hands. An opponent chooses one hand and whichever team has the "white," begins the play. Or, you could each take a shot, and the person who ends up closest to the middle, begins.
- Play proceeds in a clockwise fashion. The player to the left of the previous shooter always plays next.
- Neither the board, nor the seats of the players may be moved during the game. A chair without arms is the ideal chair, so you can shift your position on the chair easily. The "one cheek" rule - as long as both feet are on the floor and one cheek of your posterior is on the chair it is a legal shooting position.
- All players must keep their fingers, hands, and discs off the board unless it is their turn to shoot.
- To shoot, place the disc on the board with any portion of it touching their quadrant “starting line.” (See diagram) Each player will shoot discs only from within his particular quadrant of the board. A disc placed on a “quadrant intersection line” should not be more than half way over that line (house rules notwithstanding).
- The first player will try to shoot his disc into the centre “20” hole. The opening shot, if not a “20,” must at least touch the 15-circle line or remain within the 15-circle, or it is removed. If it successfully lands completely within the "20" hole the disc is removed and set aside to count as 20 points at the end of the round. If it does not land in the “20” hole, and remains within or touches the 15 circle as described, the next player must shoot at that opposing disc in an effort to knock it into the “ditch.” If she misses or does not in any way touch that opposing disc, her disc must come off the playing surface and be put in the ditch.
- Combination shots or “Caroms” - bouncing off a post or other disc, or combination shots using ones own discs, are allowed. In a combination or caroms shot, if an (any) opponents disc is not touched, both the played disc and any of the shooter’s same colour discs that have been moved, will be placed in the ditch. A shot that goes off the playing surface and bounces back on is considered out of play. It is removed to the ditch. Any other discs it may have touched when bouncing back on the playing surface, will remain where they are.
- A disc that touches the quadrant “shooting line” after it is played, or has been hit is "out of bounds," does not count and will be removed to the “ditch.”
- Once a particular round is finished (after all discs have been played), scoring takes place. Once the score for the round has been determined, with 2 players, the person having won the round goes first. With 4 players, the person sitting to the left of the player who started the previous round will begin the new round, and so on with each round.
Counting and Scoring
At the end of each round, each player (or team) will take count of his/her discs within each circle. The inner (or pin) circle counts 15 points for each disc. Middle circle counts 10 points for each disc. Outer circle counts 5 points for each disc. Discs that touch the lines separating each circle are counted at the value of the lesser circle. For example, discs touching the “starting line,” are out of bounds, and do not count. Two discs of opposite colour counting the same value, cancel each other. Add the “twenties” that may have been made during the game and which were set aside. If both teams have made an equal amount of 20s, these automatically cancel each other out.
The difference of the count between the players or teams, is the score for that round. For example, the team or player with the black discs has a total score of 65. The team or player with the tan discs has a score of 25. Subtract the lesser from the greater. Therefore the black team has 40 points for that round. The team that wins the next round, adds to its own score. Begin the next round. (With 2 players, the player that won the round goes first. With 4 players, the play is progressive or clockwise). The first player (or team) to reach e.g., 100 points, wins. The winning score shall be determined at the start of the game and typically is 100 points, or an agreed to score.