Beer die

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Beer Die
Drinking Game
Beer Die.jpg
PlayersTwo vs. two
Setup time2 minutes
Playing time15 minutes
Skill(s) requiredaccuracy, hand–eye coordination, reaction time
Material(s) requiredPlywood table, pint glasses or solo cups, dice
Alcohol usedBeer

Beer die (or snappa) is a table-based drinking game[1] where opposing players sit or stand at opposite ends and throw a die over a certain height with the goal of either landing the die in their opponent's cup or having the die hit the table and bounce over the scoring area to the floor. The defending team attempts to catch the die one-handed after it hits the table, but before it touches a non-table surface. The game typically consists of two two-player teams with each of the four players having a designated cup on the table, but can also be played one-vs-one. If the score leads to one team with a ‘victory’ rebuttal will ensue and the losing team will have a chance to redeem themselves by tossing again.

There are three distinct attributes which define a beer die thrower: offense, defense, and stamina. A good offensive player throws many legal throws and often will put pressure on the defense by throwing near the opponents cups and edge of the table. A good defensive player consistently catches routine throws, and often will snare "hot tosses". A player with good stamina is able to drink often over a period of many games without his or her game diminishing. When constructing a beer die team it is advantageous to bring different facets to the table.

Beer die involves quick thinking, quick reaction time, precision throwing and awareness. However, most of all, beer die requires a love for drinking with friends and a stomach that can handle it.

Basic rules[edit]

A Solo cup

The Beer Die League website specified the following rules for the game in February 2014, based on a crowdsourced project and research into the history of the game:[2][unreliable source?]

  • It is played on a standard sheet of plywood (8 by 4 feet (2.4 by 1.2 m) of at least 12 inch (13 mm) thickness) placed on banquet tables, saw horses or similar objects between 20 and 30 inches (510 and 760 mm). The game uses a standard solo cup (4.75 inches (121 mm) height, 3.75 inches (95 mm) diameter). The official dice used for play is the standard Bicycle die, measuring 58 inch (16 mm).
  • The game can be played singles (one vs one), or doubles (two vs two), all seated.
  • A cup full of water is to be placed 8 inches (200 mm) from the back, 5 inches (130 mm) from the side, for each player (hand from back, fist from side).
  • The game is played first to five points (win by 2, cap at seven)[clarification needed]
  • The number 5 must be referred to as bizz, the number 7 must be referred to as buzz.
  • One player from each team will roll the die, the team rolling the highest number will be able to choose either side or first toss.
  • Players must tap the die before tossing to signal the impending throw.
  • The die must be thrown in such a manner that the opposing team does not see the thrower's palm upon release of the die.
  • The die must travel higher than 8 feet (2.4 m) from the ground. If the opposing team disputes the height, the shot does not count.
  • A point is awarded if the die hits the table and bounces off the defensive (4 feet (1.2 m)) edge of the table without being properly caught.
  • The defending team may catch the die to nullify potential points scored. The die must be caught with one hand (juggling is permitted) but must not be trapped between any surface or body part or a point is awarded. Once the die comes in contact with the floor or stops moving, the play is dead and a point is awarded. Leaving the chair to catch the die is permitted. Players may not reach over the plane of the table to catch the die.
  • If the die strikes the cup on a toss, this is a "plink" (also "body" or "ting"): the die is dead and no points can be awarded.
  • If the die is thrown into the opposing team’s cup, this is a "plunk", "sink" or "sploosh": the throwing team is awarded one point and the thrower is permitted to sign the table. Each additional plunk is awarded a tally under their name.
  • If a team shoots out of turn, the toss is negated and the team loses their next shot.
  • A designated "god" referee has a final say in disputes


When played as a drinking game, players are required to take drinks when certain events occur, or fail to occur. The Beer Die League website specifies that the following rules are used:[2]

  • There are five drinks per cup (or "boat").
  • All drinks must be completed as a team.
  • A player must drink 1/5th of a cup if:
    • They say the word five or seven.
    • Their toss misses the table completely.
    • Their toss stays on the table, without hitting the cup.
    • Their toss hits the ceiling.
    • Their team tosses the die out of turn.
    • The die strikes their cup (plink/body/ting).
  • If the die lands in a cup (plunk/sink/sploosh) that team must finish their drinks and roll the die out onto the table. If the die is a "bizz", the team must finish another full drink.

Alternate standing rules[edit]

At Santa Clara University and University of Wisconsin-Madison, students play a much more active and competitive beer die standing up, and with very different rules. Standing beer die has spread across the state of California. The rules below do not reflect the original rules set by students of SCU. In the international scene, the most significant different is Swiss Rules in which the die is red.

  • Games are played to 12, and the winning team must win by two.
  • A cup is placed on all four corners of the beer die table, with each player standing on their respective corner.
  • The team who throws first must throw the die above a certain pre determined height, most usually higher than the tallest person standing up whilst their hand fully extended towards the sky.
  • A point is scored when the offensive team throws the die up and it lands on the defender's side of the table, rolls off, and is not caught one handed by either teammate.
  • If the defending team successfully catches the die with one hand (no bobbles allowed), no point is awarded. Players can not reach over the table to catch die. If the die lands on the opposing side and rolls off your own side, the other team must catch it, or it is a point. In some variations bobbles are allowed but traps against the body are prohibited. Also, once a bobble occurs, the opposing team has the right to interfere with the catch through responsible physical contact.
  • If a die is thrown up and hits a cup at any time, it is an automatic point. If the die falls off the table without being caught, 2 points are awarded to the throwing team. One for the "plink" and one for the successful fall.
  • If a player splashes the die into either of the opposing teams' cups, it is 3 points.
  • If a player splashes the die into their own cup, they must call their mother by phone and tell her that they "sunk themselves", or has to run a naked lap.
  • If the die lands on the opposing side of the table and rolls back between the throwing team's cups, that is considered a field goal and 2 points is awarded to the throwing team.
  • Beers are to be finished every four points if playing to twelve or sixteen.
  • There are no re-tosses. If you throw a die up and it lands on your side or the halfway line, it is automatically dead.
  • In the case of a splash: When a team splashes (lands the die in one of the defending team's cups), the defending team must finish their drinks. The one whose cup was splashed must drink his beer with the die in the cup. In variations, the player whose cup was splashed must in addition "spit his fate" see the following rule.


  1. ^ "Beer Die". BeerDie. BeerDie. Retrieved 19 January 2014.
  2. ^ a b "Tournament Rules — Beer Die". 16 March 2016.