10 Best Backyard Games Image via epcobocce.com


Perfect for: Old Italian men

Originating in Ancient Rome and developing into its current form in Italy, bocce is a game not unlike bowling or other games in which something is tossed or thrown. Often, you'll hear avid players of this game speak of "finesse," but not in phrases that explain that directly. ("Treat the ball like a lady" is an example heard on more than one occasion) Expect it to play like chess in the park. It may seem simple at first, but it'll take one game with a veteran to know that some have spent their lifetimes mastering the simple art of bocce.

How to play: Play begins when one player throws the boccino (a small white ball) somewhere between 8.2 to 16 feet away from the throwing line (anything shorter or longer will be rethrown). Teams then begin to bowl balls (underhanded), attempting to place their balls as close to the white ball as possible. The team that does not have their ball closest to the boccino continues to bowl until they have the closest ball or their balls run out. Both teams ultimately bowl all of their balls until they no longer have any more. Only the team with the closest ball to the boccino can score any points in the round, and each of theirs ball that is between the boccino and the closest ball of their opponent earns one point. Games are typically played to between 7-13 points total.

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