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Compete and Have Fun Throwing Axes at The Axe And Ale

Axe-throwing is a fun social activity that can be mastered by anyone. But before you can earn bragging rights among your friends and family, you must familiarize yourself with the axe-throwing basics. If it’s your first visit to The Axe And Ale in Fort Collins, CO, our friendly staff will help you with the mechanics when you arrive. But you can also practice your posture and motions at home using our helpful tips. If you don’t have a chance to practice ahead of time, have no fear. Our instructors will show you how to throw so that you can begin hitting the bullseye in no time.

Helpful Tips

1. Stance

To begin, position your feet shoulder-width apart and square with the target.

2. Grip

Beginners should learn to throw an axe using a two-handed grip. Grab your axe with your dominant hand and the blade facing away from you. You will then cup your other hand over your dominant hand.

3. Motion

With a firm grip, you will bring the axe over your head and step forward with your non-dominant foot.

4. Throw

Begin moving your arms forward in a throwing motion and release the axe as if you are aiming at a target a foot above the bullseye.

5. Follow-Through

Finish your release by pointing at the target. The axe should rotate and stick.

Axe and Ale visitors holding axes in front of an axe throwing target

The Axe And Ale-Branded Bullseyes

We have nine dedicated indoor axe-throwing lanes and one outdoor lane at The Axe And Ale in Fort Collins, CO. Each lane is surrounded by chain-link fencing and is 10’ 6” high. Our lanes include official target boards custom-branded with The Axe And Ale logo. Axe-throwing targets have five rings. The smallest circle is the bullseye in the middle, with four rings surrounding it. Each ring is worth a different point value. In the top right- and left-hand areas of the outermost ring, there are two circles known as the Killshot. The Killshot is worth the most points on the board but can only be used at certain times, depending on which game you are playing.

Axe-Throwing Games and Rules in Fort Collins, CO

There are various axe-throwing games you can play. The Axe And Ale team in Fort Collins, CO, can introduce you to the different games and the scoring rules for each. One of the great things about the sport of axe throwing is participants can find a suitable game to play whether there are just two people or upwards of 16.

 

Standard League Head-to-Head Scoring Matches

Traditional league competitions use a head-to-head scoring structure between two opponents. Each player gets 10 throws at the target and receives points based on where the axe sticks on the board. The thrower with the most points at the end of 10 throws wins that match. Points for head-to-head competition are as follows:

  • The Bullseye: 6 points
  • Second Ring: 4 points
  • Third Ring: 3 points
  • Fourth Ring: 2 points
  • Fifth Ring: 1 point
  • Killshot: 8 points. The Killshot can only be used on the 5th and 10th throws in a match and must be called out by the thrower before the throw.

Cricket

Playing axe-throwing’s version of Cricket involves 2-16 players. There are three variations — easy, medium, and advanced. The general rule for all versions is that each team must hit all predetermined numbers on the board three times, putting up one mark each time a number is hit. When one team has hit a number three times, that number is considered closed out and is no longer available for scoring. Once both teams close out a number, the number is deemed to be dead and will do nothing for either team that hits it for the rest of the game.

Easy Cricket

  • Only numbers 1-4 need to be closed out.
  • Bullseyes put 2 marks on the board on any number(s) of the thrower’s choosing.
  • Killshots put 3 marks on the board on any number(s) of the thrower’s choosing.
  • Winner – First team to close out all numbers.

Medium Cricket

  • Only numbers 1-4 need to be closed out.
  • Bullseyes put 2 marks on the board on any number(s) of the thrower’s choosing OR 6 points.
  • Killshots put 3 marks on the board on any number(s) of the thrower’s choosing OR 10 points.
  • When a team closes out a number, that number of points is awarded to that team with each subsequent hit (ex. If 3s are closed, every 3 the team hits from then on earns them 3 points).
  • Once both teams close out the same number, the number is “dead.” Nothing happens if either team hits a dead number.
  • Winner – First team to close out all numbers and have a higher score.

Advanced Cricket

  • All numbers 1-6 need to be closed out.
  • Killshots put 3 marks on the board on any number(s) of the thrower’s choosing OR 10 points.
  • When a team closes out a number, that number of points is awarded to that team with each subsequent hit (ex. If 3s are closed, every 3 the team hits from then on earns them 3 points).
  • Once both teams close out the same number, the number is “dead.” Nothing happens if either team hits a dead number.
  • Winner – First team to close out all numbers and have a higher score.

Cornhole

If you’re familiar with the backyard version of Cornhole, then you probably have an idea of how axe-throwing Cornhole works. Cornhole involves 2-4 players who compete against each other to score 21 points. Traditional Cornhole is played to exactly 21, but players can agree on competing to any number. Each player takes a turn throwing an axe at the target to score points. What makes the game unique is the method in which points are decided.

  • Each player throws an axe at the target.
  • Players receive points based on which part of the board they hit.
  • Only the player that scores the higher points on that turn receives points for that throw. The point total is figured out by subtracting one player’s lower points from the higher points of the other. Example: Player one scores 6 points. Player two scores 2 points. Player one gets 4 points for that throw (6 – 2 = 4).
  • The point winner from that turn gets to throw first on the next turn.
  • Play continues until the first player hits 21.

Humans Vs. Zombies

Humans vs. Zombies is a competitive axe-throwing game that requires at least 4 players but can include up to 16. Scoring uses a similar point differential system as Cornhole.

  • Humans generate points in a positive direction.
  • Zombies generate points in a negative direction.
  • The object of the game is for the Humans to reach +15 points, while the Zombies want to reach –15 points.
  • Example: Humans score 3 points. Zombies score 6 points. Zombies get 3 points in the negative direction and now have –3 points. (3 – 6 = -3)

Baseball

Axe-throwing Baseball uses the traditional concept of batters, pitchers, and innings to get either “hits” or “outs.” Each “inning” is comprised of one team “batting” and the other “fielding,” and then vice versa. Players cycle through their rotation so that the same “pitcher” and “batter” throw against each other until the batter is out or gets on base. The pitcher always throws first, and the goal is to hit the bullseye (the highest score). The batter throws second, attempting to beat the score of the pitcher. There are three possible scenarios on each turn:

  • The Pitcher Has the High Score: The batter is out. Both the pitcher and batter rotate out. The next two throwers step up
  • The Batter Has the High Score: The batter advances the number of bases that is the difference between the scores (*bullseyes count as 5 points in this game). This advances any other runners already on base the same number of bases. This concludes the turn, and the next two throwers step up.
    • Example 1: There is a runner on second base, pitcher throws a 2, batter throws a 3. The batter “hits a single” and goes to first base, the runner on second base advances to third base.
    • Example 2: There are runners on first base and third base. The pitcher throws a 3. The batter throws a bullseye (5 points). The batter “hits a double” and goes to second base, the runner on first base advances to third base, and the runner on third base comes home and scores a run.
  • The Batter Ties the Score of the Pitcher: This counts as a strike, both players throw again. If this happens three times in a row, the batter is out, and the next two throwers step up.

Horse

Players from competing teams throw head to head. The lower cumulative score total receives a letter. The first team to have HORSE spelled out loses. Ties result in one additional overtime throw. If the score is still tied after overtime, no letters are awarded, and the next two throwers step up. There are two variations of Horse:

  • Closer to Horse: The second thrower needs to match the first thrower’s point value, rather than beat it. If the second thrower fails to match the first thrower’s point value, they get a letter. If they succeed in matching it, then no letters are awarded, and it becomes the second thrower’s turn to throw first.
  • Closest to Horse: The first thrower must call the point value at which they are aiming. Players can even get more specific with their throws by calling out a certain part of the ring they intend to hit. Example: The third ring on the left half of the target. If they hit what they called, their opponent must stick the same throw or get a letter. If their opponent sticks the throw, then no letters are awarded, and the lead throw switches teams.

Around the World

Following a similar pattern to the basketball version, Around the World in axe throwing requires each player to hit all the numbers on the axe-throwing target board in ascending and then descending order in the fewest throws possible.

  • Players compete head-to-head and throw axes simultaneously.
  • The first player to complete the board wins.
  • The order that must be followed is 1, 2, 3, 4, B, 4, 3, 2, 1, K.
  • You cannot skip a section and go back to it later.
  • Around the World can be played with anywhere from 2 to 16 players.

Landmines

Landmines is a game for 8 to 16 players. Each team starts at 0, and the goal is to get to 50 points first.

  • The game’s landmines are at set at point intervals of 10, 20, 30, and 40.
  • If your team’s score aligns with any of the landmine numbers, you go back 10 points from the number you started at on that throw.
  • Example: You have 16 points. You throw and hit the 4-point circle. That puts your team score at 20, a landmine, so you go back 10 points from where you were (16 points). You now have 6 points (16 – 10 = 6).

Rules of Competition at the Axe And Ale

We make axe-throwing fun, but it can still be a dangerous game. Therefore, The Axe And Ale has a list of rules and regulations to which competitors must adhere. We do not allow any participants under the age of 14. Additionally, open-toed shoes are not permitted in the playing area. We would hate for someone to accidentally drop an axe on bare feet and cause a medical emergency. We ask you to please be responsible during competition and while playing with sharp instruments. If you want to have another celebratory drink after beating your pals in one of our games, feel free after your session is complete. Still have questions on the ins and outs of axe throwing? Take a quick look at our FAQ page!

Throw an Axe, Then Throw Back a Cold One!