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What is Bunco and How to Play!

September 26th, 2013 Games

Dice games never fade from popularity, and the latest fad is the addicting and fun-to-say Bunco. Before you try your hand at this multi-dice, two-team game, though, be sure to review the rules to avoid having passionate co-players yelling at you during competition. Here is a basic guide to get you started on your road to becoming a world-renown Bunco champion.

What you'll need -A trio of dice for each table

-A Bunco score sheet and pencil for everyone who's playing

-A Bunco table tally for each table

-A bell

Starting out To start, everyone needs to divide into four-person groups, which will represent "tables." Two people from each table should partner up, with partners from the same team facing each other. Put three dice and a score tally sheet with pencils at each table. Choose one table to be the head table, and place the bell by it.  One player will be the scorekeeper, and everyone gets Bunco score cards to keep an individual tally at the end of the round.

Keeping score -One point is given if a player rolls a number on a die that is the same number as the round. For example, in round two, if one of a player's die shows a two, he/she gets one point. If two twos are rolled, he/she gets two points, etc. 

-If all three dice show the number of the round, this is a Bunco (e.g. a player rolls three ones in round one). A Bunco is 21 points. Don't forget that if a player rolls three of the same number that does not match the round number, five points are given (e.g. a player rolls three fives in round one). 

-The round is over when the head table gets 21 points. There are six rounds per set, and four sets are played.  

Playing A player at the head table kicks off the game by ringing a bell. The scorekeeper at every table then begins by rolling each of the three dice in succession (not simultaneously). Should a player get a Bunco, he/she must yell it, because otherwise it will not count. If the player is sitting at the head table, he/she rings the bell and the round is over. If the player who gets Bunco is anywhere else, he/she must continue rolling. Each player continues to play until he/she gets no points from a roll, even if the bell signaling the end of the round has already rung. It's possible to get a Bunco after the round is over. 

The scorekeeper should be keeping track of how many points each team gets per round. After he/she takes a turn, a player from the opposite team must go, to be followed by the scorekeeper's partner, and finishing with the opposite team player's partner. At the end of each round, partners are changed (you can move to another table). 

Winning Individuals must keep track of their own wins and losses after each round. The player with the most wins after all four sets wins.  

Tiebreakers In the event that two teams are tied in points when a round ends, a roll-off is necessary. Players from each team will continue to roll and accumulate points, just as they would in the ordinary game. If a player rolls no points on his/her turn, he/she can no longer roll. Whichever team has the highest score after this tiebreaker wins the round. 

Traveling An optional element of Bunco is traveling. This requires a soft object that players can toss to each other. Whenever three of the same numbers (non-Bunco ones, that is) are rolled in a round, the player shouts "traveling" and gets to hold the soft item. The player holding the traveling item at the end of the game wins a special prize. 

Prizes Prizes are given at the discretion of those playing.

Have fun, and get out there and play some Bunco!