How To Play 301 Darts Game: Rules & Overview

Darts are commonly played around the world, it is not only a professional competitive sport but also a traditional pub game.

In which, two or more players throw small missiles (or darts), at a circular target (or dartboard). The first to reduce the score to zero from the initial score of the game is the winner.

Dart Games 301: Prelude

In this article, we will discuss the dart game 301 specifically. Dart game 301 is one of the more popular x01 dart games, if not the most popular.

The x01 dart games are referred to as such because they can be played by any multiple of 100 plus 1. 501 is the current standard yet it may be a bit difficult for beginners to play so 301 is a good alternative for beginners. Once you grow in proficiency you can move on to 501.

X01 game variations include straight-in/double-out and double-in/double-out. If an x01 game is a “straight in” that means you can start counting points and deducting from your score from your first turn without hitting the double section of a number.

If an x01 game is “double in” you must hit the double section of a number before you can start subtracting from your score, starting with that double. The standard rules for the 301 dart game are with a “double-in/double-out” format.

Two players or two teams will compete with each other in dart game 301 or any other x01 dart game. The objective of this game is to reach zero before your component quickly.


The dartboard is numbered from 1 to 20 in no particular order on the outermost circle of the board. The scores are set according to the following criteria:

  • The red circle in the middle of the board is called a Bullseye and counts for 50 points.
  • The four fields around the bullseye are worth 25 points.
  • The outer ring numbers count as ‘doubles’ and are worth double the nominal value.
  • The inner ring is worth triple the nominal value which is why the highest score you can target is triple 20. This will give you 60 points.
  • The areas inside the double ring and triple ring are worth a single nominal value.

How to Play Dart Games 301

301 outchart

To start the game, you need to define who goes first. You may flip a coin or throw a dart, who gets the dart closest to the bullseye will go first, the other will go last.

Per the standard rule of this game, you must hit a double, which is the very outside ring on the board, to officially start collecting points and also must hit a double to win the game.

Once you hit your first double, those points count and you can start subtracting them from your total points to count down from 301. If both players hit anywhere in the inner bull then a re-throw is required.

Each player is given three darts to throw and is allowed to target number 1-20 on the board. Your dart has to remain stuck on the board for at least five seconds otherwise the score will not be counted. An important thing to note is that you must finish the game by reducing your score exactly to zero.

If you reduce your score past zero it will be labeled a “bust” and your score will revert to what it was before you hit the bust, you have to restart from your previous score. You can also gain a bust if you have only 1 score left. For example, let’s say you have 11 scores left. You land a single 10 but now only 1 remains which will lead to a bust.

Dart Game 301 was the old standard of darts for years and for good reason, it’s an exceptional darts game. Though the darts world has moved on to 501, 301 can still serve a multitude of purposes.

One of which is as a stepping stone for beginners. One tactic for learning anything is easing into it. Going step by step. Using that principle 301 can serve as a great prerequisite to 501 or any other x01 dart games.

Last Updated on November 18, 2021 by Drake Lambert

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