Let's Play Skeeball - Tips and Tricks to Make You a Winner!

Skeeball in Ocean City, MD
Skeeball in Ocean City, MD

All About Skeeball

You know what we need more of in life? Skeeball! You know we need to learn more about online? Skeeball! You know what game does not have enough online articles about it? Skeeball! Yes, the answer is always Skeeball.

Skeeball is potentially one of the greatest games ever created. It is similar to bowling, but on a much smaller scale. Even if you are not athletic (like me) you can play Skeeball like a champ. Skeeball machines are typically located in all arcades. It is an especially popular game at amusement parks and boardwalks.

The premise of the game is simple. You put a quarter in the slot, then a group of balls the size of a baseball roll out. You simply roll the balls one by one, similar to bowling, and you try to get each ball in a hole. Each hole is worth a specific amount of points depending on its location. The amount is anything from 10 points to 100 points. At the end of the game, you receive tokens. You can turn them in for prizes.

Skeeball is an extremely addictive game since it is so simple. It always seems like the next roll will be "the big win" which is why you keep pumping the quarters into the machine. People of all ages play this game. Who needs to gamble with the slots in Atlantic City when you walk down the boardwalk and play Skeeball instead?

A Little History About Skeeball

Skeeball is often found in arcades and even in some bars. It can be called Skeeball, Ski Ball, Skee Ball, or Skee Roll depending on where you go to play. The game was invented J. Dickinson Este in 1909. The rights to the game were sold to the Wurlitzer Corporation in 1935, and then the Philadelphia Toboggan Company in 1945.

In some areas of the country, the game was considered a form of gambling and was subject to restrictions. However, those restrictions no longer exist. Now, we can enjoy the wonderful game of Skeeball all over the U.S.A. and we should be ever so grateful for that!

Source: Skee Ball Wikipedia

Some Skeeball Strategies

As someone that plays skeeball whenever possible when visiting the beach, I have some strategies I am willing to list. First, I have a theory to share. I believe the only reason the 100 point holes exist is to distract you. It is next to impossible to get the ball in that goal. Every now and then you may hit it, but usually it is because the skeeball machine is off in some way. The more you aim for the 100 points and miss it, the less chance you have of getting a high score.

What you really need to aim for with Skeeball is the 50 point hole in the center of the holes. The key is to roll the ball down the very center of the ramp. Do not put too much power into it or you will roll the ball too far. Make sure to practice a bit to determine just the right amount of speed needed. Then aim away at the 50 point hole.

Often, I find that a slight twist of the wrist adds a slight spin to the ball. This can be important if you are playing on a machine with a ramp that tilts just slightly. Once again, after playing a round or two, you will get a sense of the ramp and its flaws. After all, Skeeball is very serious business. There are tons of cheap prizes to win!

The Prize at the End!

You might be wondering what are some awesome prizes you can look forward to winning after playing. Please remember Skeeball is all about the game. The prizes at the end are the icing on the cake, but not what you should concentrate on. Play the game to the best of your ability. Challenge your friends to see who can get the highest score. The best reward is having the buzzer go off and watching all the tokens come flying out.

If you are into the prizes, you will probably have to play a really long time to get a good stuffed animal. However, just a few games will likely get you a cool bouncy ball or some gum. So yes, you can get some fun stuff, but don't beat yourself up over it if you don't. It is all about playing the great game of Skeeball, so go out there and become a Skeeball Champ even if it is only in your own head.

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Comments 21 comments

mike_bouma profile image

mike_bouma 5 years ago from Whitby, Ontario, Canada

I love that you made a hub about skeeball and skeeball strategy. I'm going to kill it at Dave and Busters :)


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

Thanks so much! I can't believe no one thought to write one sooner. Good luck at Dave and Busters!


nycgrl profile image

nycgrl 5 years ago from New York

Hahahahaha I now consider you more awesome than ever. I thought I was the only dork in the world that loved playing skeeball!! Great hub, I am gonna have to try some of your strategies. We got a Dave & Buster's over here in Times Square, might have to visit it.


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

I am glad you enjoyed the hub and you are going to try some of the strategies. It is all in the wrist! I plan on getting a lot of games in when I go to the beach. And yes, I am quite the dork, but what can be better than skeeball? Thanks for the comment!


Sunshine625 profile image

Sunshine625 5 years ago from Orlando, FL

Fun hub!!! Skeeball is one of my favorite games at Chuck E Cheese! I love getting those tickets but I never seem to win enough for the bigger prizes :) up/funny!!!!


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

Yes, Skeeball is by far the best game at Chuck E. Cheese. I never get enough tokens to get the good prizes either. That is OK with me. I usually just give them to a kid that needs more tokens for a good toy. Thanks for the votes and for the comment.


Simone Smith profile image

Simone Smith 5 years ago from San Francisco

Skeeball will and always shall make me think of the movie Dogma. Great Hub!


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

Thank you! That is so true about Dogma. I forgot all about that.


pinkydoo profile image

pinkydoo 5 years ago from New York

I LOVE this hub! I grew up going to the Jersey shore, and skeeball is the ONLY game I seem to be good at. I actually won a stuffed tree frog! After reading this,I really have the urge to play some skeeball. This is what I call a super FUN hub!


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

I absolutely love skeeball, too. I am also not so great at anything else. I tried to figure out putt putt golf the last time I was at the beach, but it was not for me. I am all about skeeball. Thanks for the comment!


DoctorDarts profile image

DoctorDarts 4 years ago

I know you said forget about the prizes...but I am going to use these to absolutely RINSE the next Skeeball setup I come across! Thanks!


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 4 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

I wish you the best of luck next time you play skeeball. Thanks for dropping by my hub!


KDuBarry03 4 years ago

I remember playing skiball all the time when I was younger...When I go to the beach, they usually have an arcade FULL of them; so I really can't help myself but play it for a good hour! Thank you for these tips! Yeah, I am defintiely guilty of always aiming for the 100 point hole...haha!


Sally's Trove profile image

Sally's Trove 4 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

What a wonderful hub! You've brought back so many fond memories of playing skeeball in the boardwalk arcades at the Jersey shore when I was a kid. Up and awesome!


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 4 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

KDuBarry03 - I am so hooked on skeeball, too. I do have to admit... I still aim for the 100 point slot sometimes myself. Thanks for the comment!

Sally's Trove - I still love skeeball. I don't think I will ever outgrow it since it reminds me of childhood. Thanks for the votes!


Tonyx35 profile image

Tonyx35 4 years ago from Illinois, USA

Great article.

I rarely get to go to a place with Skeeball machines/lanes installed. The last few places I know of that still have them are Chuck E. Cheese's and Gurnee Mills mall here in Illinois.

I usually play $3.00 worth in games, whenever I see one of these things.


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 4 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

It can be tough finding skeeball machines. I usually play when I go to arcades at the beach or amusement parks. If you have a Dave and Buster's near you, they also have skeeball games. Thanks for the comment!


VeronicaFarkas profile image

VeronicaFarkas 4 years ago from Ohio, USA

Potentially? It totally is the greatest game! ;)

I don't so much mind going to Chuck E Cheese or Dave & Busters w/ the kids. I get to play skeeball! haha

Great hub! Voted up, useful, & funny!


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 4 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

I just discovered two days ago the sports bar down the street from me has skeeball machines. I predict I will spending a lot of time there from now on... and I will always be out of quarters. :-)

Thanks for the votes and thanks for your comment!


VeronicaFarkas profile image

VeronicaFarkas 4 years ago from Ohio, USA

That is awesome, & very smart of that bar owner! hehe :) Have fun!!


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 4 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

Thanks so much and, yeah, I see myself going there a lot now. Not to mention, they have great crab soup and great salads... the 3 Ss... soup, salad, and skeeball. What could be better than that?

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