Patent application title: BEER PONG GAME AND METHOD OF PLAYING
Robert Maffei (Forked River, NJ, US)
Peter Guarino (East Hanover, NJ, US)
SECOND BASE CUPS LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY
IPC8 Class: AA63F700FI
Class name: Amusement devices: games aerial projectile game; game element (e.g., target, etc.) or accessory therefor other than projector or projectile, per se target
Publication date: 2014-01-16
Patent application number: 20140015197
A game kit comprises, in one embodiment, a plurality of different-sized
containers for arranging on a playing surface and for use with a ball for
throwing into the containers, and various method for playing the game.
1. A game kit comprising a plurality of different-sized, stacked
containers and at least one ball for throwing into the containers.
2. The game kit of claim 1, wherein the containers are divided into groups of different sizes.
3. The game kit of claim 2, further comprising at least three different sizes of containers.
4. The game kit of claim 3, further comprising at least four different sizes of containers.
5. The game kit of claim 4, wherein the containers have size designations A, B, C and D.
6. The game kit of claim 1, further comprising at least one paddle.
7. The game kit of claim 6, further comprising at least a plurality of paddles.
8. The game kit of claim 7, further comprising at least a plurality of balls.
9. The game kit of claim 8, further comprising at least three different sizes of containers.
10. The game kit of claim 9, further comprising at least four different sizes of containers.
11. The game kit of claim 10, wherein the containers have size designations A, B, C and D.
12. The game kit of claim 1, further comprising packaging for the kit in the form of a transparent or semi-transparent sleeve.
28. A method of playing beer pong comprising: a) providing a kit having at least one ball and at least a first, second and third set of differently-sized containers; and b) arranging at least one container from each set on a playing surface.
29. The method of claim 28, further comprising arranging a plurality of containers of the at least one of the first, second or third sets of containers adjacent to at least one container from a different set of containers.
30. The method of claim 28, further comprising providing a fourth set of containers having a different size than either of the first, second or third sets of containers.
31. The method of claim 30, further comprising arranging at least one container from each set of containers on a playing surface in a graduated arrangement.
32. The method of claim 31, wherein at least a portion of the graduated arrangement is from the smallest container size to the largest container size.
33. The method of claim 32, further comprising arranging the containers in a triangular configuration.
34. The method of claim 32, further comprising arranging the containers in a diamond configuration.
35. A method of playing a game comprising: a) providing a playing field of different sized containers; b) providing a side field of different sized containers; c) at least partially filling at least one of the different sized containers from the playing field with a first liquid; d) at least partially filling at least one of the different sized containers from the side field with a second liquid that differs from the first liquid.
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
 This application claims the benefit of U.S. Application 61/670,120 filed Jul. 10, 2012, the contents of which are incorporated by reference herein.
FIELD OF THE INVENTION
 The present invention relates to a beer pong game in general, and more particularly to a game that uses a plurality of different-sized cups, and a method of playing the same.
 Beer pong games are typically played with at least one, and more preferably a plurality of cups on a table. One or more cups on a given side of the table is/are usually spaced on the centerline or near opposite corners of the table. Sometimes multiple cups are arranged in a pattern such a triangular or diamond configuration, for example. The level of difficulty or challenge can be varied or modified by modifying the number or location of cups on a given side. Various rules are implemented to govern the game play depending on the number and arrangement of cups on a given side of the table.
 What is universal, however, is that beer pong cups are always played with the same size cup, irrespective of the number of cups on the table at a given time. While some of the rules of play have become more exotic, and while the arrangement of cups has become more varied over time, the game of beer pong hasn't seen much advancement or improvement since it was first introduced.
 There is a need, therefore, to improve the game of beer pong beyond the implementation of certain rules or arrangements of same-sized cups.
 There is provided a beer pong game or the like having a plurality of different-sized containers that are, in one embodiment, arranged in a graduated configuration. The containers preferably have certain size designations that increase in magnitude with the size of the container. One embodiment of a game kit includes containers, balls, with optional instructional materials and paddles. Various non-limiting methods of arranging the containers and playing games including the containers are described herein.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
 FIG. 1 is one embodiment of a game kit in accordance with the present disclosure;
 FIG. 2 is one embodiment of the contents of the kit of FIG. 1;
 FIG. 3 is an alternative embodiment of a game kit;
 FIG. 4 is an alternative embodiment of a game kit including paddles;
 FIG. 5 is one embodiment of a plurality of different sized containers;
 FIG. 6 is an alternative embodiment of a plurality of different sized containers;
 FIG. 7 is an alternative embodiment of a plurality of different sized containers;
 FIG. 8 is one embodiment of a playing field including different sized containers;
 FIG. 9 is one embodiment of a game layout including a playing field and side field of containers;
 FIG. 10 is an alternative embodiment of a playing field including different sized containers; and
 FIG. 11 is one embodiment of a game layout including a playing field and side field of containers.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
 The description of illustrative embodiments according to principles of the present invention is intended to be read in connection with the accompanying drawings, which are to be considered part of the entire written description. In the description of embodiments of the invention disclosed herein, any reference to direction or orientation is merely intended for convenience of description and is not intended in any way to limit the scope of the present invention. Relative terms such as "lower," "upper," "horizontal," "vertical," "above," "below," "up," "down," "top" and "bottom" as well as derivative thereof (e.g., "horizontally," "downwardly," "upwardly," etc.) should be construed to refer to the orientation as then described or as shown in the drawing under discussion. These relative terms are for convenience of description only and do not require that the apparatus be constructed or operated in a particular orientation unless explicitly indicated as such. Terms such as "attached," "affixed," "connected," "coupled," "interconnected," and similar refer to a relationship wherein structures are secured or attached to one another either directly or indirectly through intervening structures, as well as both movable or rigid attachments or relationships, unless expressly described otherwise. Moreover, the features and benefits of the invention are illustrated by reference to the exemplified embodiments. Accordingly, the invention expressly should not be limited to such exemplary embodiments illustrating some possible non-limiting combination of features that may exist alone or in other combinations of features; the scope of the invention being defined by the claims appended hereto.
 This disclosure describes the best mode or modes of practicing the invention as presently contemplated. This description is not intended to be understood in a limiting sense, but provides an example of the invention presented solely for illustrative purposes by reference to the accompanying drawings to advise one of ordinary skill in the art of the advantages and construction of the invention. In the various views of the drawings, like reference characters designate like or similar parts.
 FIGS. 1-2 illustrate one embodiment of a game kit 50 for playing a game such as beer pong and the like. It will be appreciated that the use of beer pong as a game is only for purposes of illustration and is not meant to be limiting in any sense. For example, while containers are described as typically holding beer, or some other liquid, it will be appreciated that the containers could hold any type of liquid, or solid, or semi-solid, or a combination of the same. Furthermore, it will be appreciated that the game described herein may be played on a playing surface, such as an elevated table like a ping pong table, or the floor, or some other surface. Furthermore, it will be appreciated that the game could be used with other than a ball as is described below, but could also be used with other objects such as bean bags, washers, or other objects. For purposes of explanation and convenience, the game described herein will be described as a beer pong game.
 Returning to FIGS. 1-2, there is shown a game kit 50 comprising a plurality of different-sized containers, and in particular a plurality of first containers 100 of a first size and having a first size designation 110, a plurality of second containers 200 of a second size and having a second size designation 210, a plurality of third containers 300 of a third size and having a third size designation 310, and a plurality of fourth containers 400 of a fourth size and having a fourth size designation 410, wherein the pluralities of containers 100-400 are preferably stacked (FIG. 1) within a package 60. While FIGS. 1-2 show a package 60 that is preferably clear, transparent or semi-transparent, it will be appreciated that other packaging may be used that is not clear, such as a cardboard box or some other type of packaging, for example. The first size is preferably the smallest and/or shortest, and the fourth size is preferably the largest and/or tallest, with the second size being greater than the first size and the third size being greater than the second size and smaller than the fourth size. While four sets of containers 100-400 are shown, it will be appreciated that the kit 50 should include at least two different-sized sets of containers such as shown in the kit of FIG. 3 in order to provide a size variation, and it will also be appreciated that more than four differently-sized containers may be used as well.
 In addition, the kit 50 may also be provided with at least one, and preferably a plurality of balls 70 for throwing into the containers as will be described below, as well as instructions 80 that are provided as an insert within the package 60, or that would be printed on the package (not shown), for playing a game using the containers and balls. FIG. 4 illustrates one embodiment of a kit 50a provided with four sets of containers 100a, 200a, 300a, and 400a, balls 70a, instructions 80a and at least one and more preferably a plurality of paddles 90a, where the number of paddles is preferably an even number such as two or four for playing singles or doubles beer pong. Additional features may be included in the kits 50, 50a such as, but not limited to (all not shown), scorekeeping pads and writing instruments, a net and net supports, and other equipment.
 The size designations 110-410, which are optional although preferred, can be pre-printed on the containers 100-400 if desired, or applied as labels or decals or the like, and can follow any variation of sizing conventions. In one embodiment shown in FIGS. 1-4, the size designations 110-410 are alpha-numeric and are indicative of different bra cup sizes, where size designation 110 is an "A" cup (the smallest cup size, for example), size designation 210 is a "B" cup, size designation 310 is a "C" cup and size designation 410 is a "D" cup. FIG. 5 illustrates one embodiment of an additional size container 500 having a size designation 510 of a "DD" cup. Other designations are possible. For example, FIG. 6 illustrates cups having simple numeric designations "1," "2," "3," and "4." FIG. 7 illustrates cups having a baseball theme with size designations of "First Base," "Second Base," "Third Base" and "Home Plate." Other designations are possible. In addition, as discussed above, the size designations may be provided on the containers, or applied by the players, or written on, or the like. Furthermore, the containers may be disposable or reusable as desired, where reusable containers are preferably sturdier and intended to be dishwasher safe and the like, whereas disposable cups may be akin to throwaway plastic cups.
 FIG. 8 illustrates one embodiment of a playing field 600 of containers 100-400 on a playing surface in preparation for game play, where such playing field 600 may be, for example, situated on opposite sides of a ping pong or beer pong table as shown in FIG. 9, and wherein players (not shown) on opposite sides of a table take turns trying to throw or bounce a ball 70 into their opponent's containers in order to force the opponent to drink from such container. In one example, a simple triangular arrangement 600 may be formed by placing one first container 100, followed by two second containers 200, followed by three third containers 300, followed by four fourth containers 400, and so on if desired, in order to form a graduated arrangement of containers from the smallest/shortest dimension (i.e. container 100) to the largest/tallest dimension (i.e. container 400). The rims of the containers do not necessarily have to touch, although they may touch if desired. Each container is preferably filled with enough liquid to maintain the container upright during normal game play. For example, each container may be filed with a quarter or a third of liquid, such as water. Other material may be used. Alternatively, containers may be used that are weighted (not shown), or containers may be placed into separate holders (not shown) that provide additional weight or that maintain the containers in an upright position.
 In one embodiment, each size container may be filled with a different liquid or a different beverage as desired, or each container size may be representative of a different liquid or beverage. It is preferred if the playing field 600 of containers is filled with liquid that is not to be imbibed by the players because during the course of play, the ball 70 may hit the floor, become dirty, or otherwise contaminate the contents of the containers within the playing field 600. Additional side fields 605 (FIG. 9) of drinking containers 100-400 may be placed near each player, where the player drinks from the drinking or side field 605 rather than the playing field 600 of containers. So, for example, all of the containers 100-400 in the playing field 600 may be filled with water or some other non-alcoholic liquid, while container 100 from the side field 605 may be filled with beer, container 200 from the side field 605 may be filled with vodka, container 300 from the side field 605 may be filled with rum and container 400 from the side field 605 may be filled with gin, wherein if a ball 70 lands in container 300 on the playing field 600, the player must drink the rum from container 300 in the side field 605 rather than the water from the container 300 in the playing field 600. Of course, all of the containers may be filled with non-alcoholic beverages, or alcoholic beverages, or combinations of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. So, for example, for children or teenagers under the drinking age, all of the containers 100-400 in the playing field 600 may be filled with water or some other non-alcoholic liquid, while container 100 from the side field 605 may be filled with apple juice, container 200 from the side field 605 may be filled with pineapple juice, container 300 from the side field 605 may be filled with orange juice and container 400 from the side field 605 may be filled with tomato juice. Other drinks are contemplated.
 In one embodiment, the sinking of a ball 70 within a container on the playing field 600 causes that container to be removed from the playing field 600, wherein the losing player will have removed all of his/her containers from the playing field 600 (as a result of sinks) before his/her opponent. Alternatively, the players may keep track of the number of sinks and end the game when a certain number is reached. In this example, each size container might optionally have a different point value, such as, for example, the largest container (400 for example) might have a point value of 1 because it is the easiest in which to sink, whereas the smallest container (100 for example) might have a point value of 4 because it is the hardest in which to sink, or vice versa. In another game play embodiment, each player must work their way up the container sizes and must sink in the smallest container(s) first and must clear all of the containers from a certain size before proceeding to the next size container. So, for example, in the playing field 600, the ball 70 must be sunk in container 100 first, then each of container 200, then each of container 300, then each of container 400, otherwise a player sinking out of order (i.e. container 300 before container 200) will achieve no points or recognition from such sink.
 The variations in size and height provided by the different sizes of containers 100-400 allow for an infinite number of different field arrangements. FIG. 10 illustrates one embodiment of a playing field 625 having a diamond-shaped configuration having a plurality of fourth containers 400 in the middle of the field 625, flanked by third containers 300, and then second containers 200, and then first containers 100 in a graduated formation. Other configurations are possible. A plurality of first containers 100 are grouped together to form opposing ends of the playing field 625. Other field configurations are possible, such as shown in FIG. 11 with playing fields 650, side fields 655 and a ball 70, wherein at least two first containers 100 are positioned adjacent to each other, and wherein the grouping of first containers 100 are positioned adjacent a line of second containers 200, then a line of third containers 300, then a line of fourth containers 400. In the playing fields 625 and 650 of FIGS. 10-11, the number of different sized containers in each playing field is the same, such that there are three of each of the containers 100-400. Other arrangements are possible.
 Once the playing field and optional drinking or side field is arranged on a playing surface, each player takes turns and attempts to throw or bounce a ball into their opponent's container. The rules of play will then dictate who drinks what and under what circumstances, etc. Certain rules of game play are described above. In one embodiment, a player must sink in order of container size as described above. In another embodiment, a player sinking into an opponent's container of one size causes the opponent to drink from that container size plus the next largest container size. In another game play embodiment, a player may call a size container in advance before attempting to sink in that size container, and if the player sinks in the called size, the opponent must drink double (two of the same size containers, or one container of that size and one container of the next largest size), and if the player misses then the player that attempted the shot must drink from his/her own container of the called size. Other game play variations are possible.
 While the present invention has been described at some length and with some particularity with respect to the several described embodiments, it is not intended that it should be limited to any such particulars or embodiments or any particular embodiment, but it is to be construed with references to the appended claims so as to provide the broadest possible interpretation of such claims in view of the prior art and, therefore, to effectively encompass the intended scope of the invention. Furthermore, the foregoing describes the invention in terms of embodiments foreseen by the inventor for which an enabling description was available, notwithstanding that insubstantial modifications of the invention, not presently foreseen, may nonetheless represent equivalents thereto.
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