Many new archers decide to participate in archery because of the fun and challenging aspect of the sport. If archery games were a factor in your decision to shoot archery, then you’re in for a treat! Challenging archery activities not only make for a day of fun with friends and family, they’ll improve your accuracy.
As a new archer, it’s always a good idea for you to try out new situations to challenge yourself from time to time. Whether you decided to shoot archery purely for enjoyment, for competition, or for hunting, archery games are crucial when it comes to keeping archery fun and exciting.
The games below are considered safe, provide you with necessary exercise, and improve your spirits by getting you outside with others.
Archery games not only improve your accuracy, they’re fun! Games give you even more reasons to get out and challenge yourself using the equipment of your choice. The games below are suitable for all ages and contain both indoor archery games and outdoor archery games.
1. Popping Balloons
Aka Wash Out, this archery game is surprisingly satisfying and not just for the kids. Simply grab some balloons, add your choice of filling, then attach them to a backboard target. Take turns to see who pops the most or time shooters to see who can do it in the fastest time. Popular filling ideas include washable paint, water colored with your favorite color of food coloring, and glitter, corn starch, and more. This game teaches how to shoot under pressure and improves focus.
While this classic game is often associated with basketball you can also play it as an archery game. Use a large target so you have plenty of room to attach 5 different things to aim at. Be sure to clearly number them 1 to 5. Now, pick 5 different shooting positions, i.e. standing, sitting, kneeling on 1 knee, etc, and pick 5 different shooting locations. Each shooter takes turns shooting and with each miss, they get a letter. The first to spell H.O.R.S.E. loses. This game teaches how to shoot under pressure in different shooting positions.
3. Lucky Stars
This simple archery game requires you to print out 3 different size stars to attach to your target. Make 5 copies of the large star, 3 copies of the medium star, and 1 copy of the small star. The largest star earns the least amount of points while the smallest star earns you the most points. To make it even more interesting, prizes can be earned by hitting certain stars at a specified distance. This game teaches mental focus, accuracy, and competition.
4. Fruit Shoot
Now there’s a use for that old fruit sitting on the counter! Choose your favorite fruits to shoot at, making sure to use a few different shapes and sizes. Apples, oranges, grapes, and kiwis all make great choices, just choose whatever sounds fun. Simply attach them to a backboard or spear them with a sturdy stick to place in front of a target. The smaller the fruit, the more challenging and fun! This game teaches accuracy under pressure.
Most everyone has played or at least heard of tic-tac-toe. This classic game can be played with archery as well! Start by simply drawing 3 x 3 squares to make the 9 spaces required to play the game. Archers must use 2 different arrow types as it’s the arrows that take the place of the X’s and O’s. The goal is to get 3 arrows in a row and in any direction. Or you can play until a player hits 5 squares, the majority of the board. Be sure to take turns on who goes first for fairness. This game improves focus and strategy under pressure
6. Archery Tag
This fun archery game is similar to the game we all played as children, except you use arrows to tag other players. Of course, you’ll need to use special equipment for safety reasons, like soft-tipped arrows in order to avoid possible injury. One player is it while the others try to dodge incoming arrows. Playing with many archers requires setting up 2 teams. Make sure to set up safety zones where tagging is off-limits. This game helps improve accuracy at moving targets.
7. First Contact
This exciting archery game requires one of the players to call out a surprise target, which can be just about anything! The target could be a stick on the ground, a blade of grass, a large leaf, etc. The goal is for everyone to immediately shoot at the target to see who can hit it first. Keeping score allows for an ultimate winner. This game improves accuracy under pressure.
8. Robin Hood
This archery game starts you out at a certain shooting distance and then requires you to move further away from the target after each shot. Shoot at a distance of 10 to 15 yards to start and then simply move back 5 or 10 yards after hitting the target. Only those who hit the target continue playing as a miss means automatic elimination. This game teaches long-distance shooting accuracy while under pressure.
9. Aerial Archery
Aerial archery games let you shoot clays, plastic bottles, water jugs, pie plates, ping-pong balls, and anything else you can imagine while they’re flying through the air. This moving target game really challenges archer’s as it requires the use of more instinctive shooting skills. Be sure to use flu flu arrows as this arrow is specifically designed to fly over short distances. This game improves your instinctive shooting skills and helps you hit moving targets more easily.
Anyone who understands the rules of playing poker will enjoy playing this challenging archery game. Simply attach a deck of cards to a large target in random order. Each shooter takes turns shooting at the cards to create a winning poker hand. If a card is already hit then it’s immediately taken out of play so it doesn’t count if it’s hit again. Players keep playing for a total of 5 rounds and whoever has the best poker hand wins. This game teaches shooting accuracy under pressure.
11. Archery Golf
Aka clout shooting, archery golf is one of the more popular games archers play. While some play for fun, many play archery golf so they can participate in tournaments. Similar to traditional golf, archers shoot arrows at targets to make the shot in the fewest shots possible. Low score wins. This game teaches long-distance shooting accuracy when under pressure.
12. Archery Bowling
This archery game requires you to knock over a pyramid of cups, similar to a game of bowling. Choose your size of plastic cup and stack them in a group of 10, with 4 on the bottom. Now choose a shooting line. The goal is to knock over as many cups as you can. You get to take 2 shots to do so and get a point for each cup knocked over or you can competitively shoot at the same time until you’ve knocked over all of the cups. The winner is the one who shot the fewest arrows. This game teaches shooting accuracy under pressure.
13. Candle Shoot
This fun archery game requires shooters to place a lit candle in front of a target. The goal is to blow out the flame while at the same time keeping the candle in its exact location. You can also set up more than 1 candle and let everyone shoot at the same time to see who can blow out the most flames in the fastest amount of time. Playing this game requires using proper precautions and no flammable materials in the vicinity. This game teaches shooting accuracy.
14. Card Pairs
Card pairs is a game that’s similar to poker except the goal is to get the most points. You can choose to post 13 pairs of cards or a lesser amount to your choice of target, just be sure to arrange them in random order. Each archer takes 1 shot before the next archer takes their turn. The goal is to hit paired cards, so once an archer hits a card it belongs to them. Once players hit all cards it’s time to award points, which is based on how many card pairs one has hit. Highest score wins. This game teaches shooting accuracy under pressure.
All you need to do to play this archery game is print out a dartboard template and attach it to a target. Instead of using darts to gain points, you’ll use your arrows to shoot at the dartboard. Simply keep score as you would when playing classic darts – start with a score of 501 and deduct points from this amount until you reach 0. This game teaches shooting accuracy.
Why Archery Games?
Practicing archery games is a great way for new archers to experience real-life shooting situations. For example, using a 3D target while playing H.O.R.S.E. forces you to consider different shooting angles, especially useful when hunting. Children and youth are especially adaptable to learning new skills and archery offers discipline and focus they can take and use in many situations throughout their lifetime. While archery games are fun, they really can help improve your skills as an archer.
Which of the above archery games most appeal to you? All of these archery activities offer a fun way to challenge yourself. It’s worth a shot to try all 15 games as you just might be surprised at the many and various challenges that you’ll experience. Improving as an archer is always the goal, so challenge yourself with these games and have fun while you improve your shot!