How to Play Killer

A popular party game with a few variations to mix things up.

Killer Dart Game Rules

Killer is a great free-for-all party game where each player starts with three lives and the last one standing wins.

Number of Players

Two or more people can play Killer. It is also possible to play on teams.

To play on teams, simply alternate turns with your teammate.

How to Play

To begin, each player throws a single dart with their non-dominant hand to choose their number. This will be their number for the entire game. If a player misses the board during number selection or hits a number that has already been selected, they will throw again until they strike the board in an unclaimed number.

After everyone has a number, then the game begins. Each turn will consist of three darts. Starting out, each player will attempt to hit the double of the number they were assigned. Once they do, they achieve "Killer" status, which is where the real fun begins.

Once a player becomes a Killer, they will aim for their opponent's doubles to eliminate their lives. One hit will remove one life. If a player loses all three of their lives, they are out of the game. It is possible to eliminate a player from the game before they become a Killer.

However, Killers need to be careful when aiming close to their number.  If a Killer accidentally hits the double of their own number, they will remove one of their lives instead.

The game ends when only one person is left standing.

Optional Rules

Killer is an easily modifiable game and there are a couple of ways to make the game harder or easier, depending on your skill level and the people you're playing with. One of the more obvious is to change how many lives each player has. Using three as a minimum is recommended. Going lower can make it possible to eliminate someone before they get a turn.

It is also possible to change what area counts for hits and is a great way to give other players handicaps. Instead of needing to hit a double, players could be allowed to eliminate lives by hitting the outer single on a player's number as well.

There are plenty of ways to change the rules to make the game easier or harder, just figure out what sounds the most fun and run with it!

Killer Variations

Killer Straight Off
Killer Straight Off is the same as a standard game of Killer but each player begins as a Killer instead of needing to hit their own double first. It's a simple modification to make the game quicker.

Killer with Trebles
Killer with Trebles is the same as a standard game of Killer but instead of hitting doubles to become the Killer or eliminate players the treble is used instead.

Blind Killer
Blind Killer follows many of the rules of regular Killer but with a few notable exceptions.

First and foremost, no one knows who owns which number and everyone starts as a killer. This is because if you had to hit your own double to become a killer it would make it pretty obvious where everyone needs to aim.

The best way to determine each person’s number is to pick it out of a hat at random or have someone who isn’t playing confirm each person’s number and have people re-pick if they have the same one.

If two players get the same number then they won’t target each other, and if they are told by a third party to choose a different number because the one they got was taken, everyone would have to reselect. Any method works though, as long as it’s impossible for two people to get the same number and no one knows who has what number.

Blind Killer is much more mental than other games of Killer since each player will need to be careful with their verbal and non-verbal behavior. It also relies on people being honest with each other about what their number is and willingly conceding when they are out of lives. Otherwise a third party will need to act as a referee. 

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