The scoring chalkboard is the fun-sucker of any darts game.
There’s a film in this, you know… Aliens target Earth. The only way to defend ourselves is to crack their missile codes, except that they’ve flooded our atmosphere with a brain-numbing toxin! “Where are we going to find an army of people who can do rapidfire arithmetic whilst intoxicated?!” wails Pierce Brosnan, doing his ‘world leader’. Cut to: typical British street. A pub door creaks open to reveal a blinking Bruce Willis, wearing a XL T-shirt proclaiming him as a member of the Dudley Dog and Duck Darts Team…
Not a British actor, then?
Of course not a British actor. That’s not how movies work. But, darts looks like it might shed its rep as a game enjoyed by sneery men in pubs. Smartboard, the culmination of several years of work at world-class dartboard manufacturer Unicorn, does the maths for you, via a Bluetooth connected app.
Lawks. It doesn’t require some crappy battery-powered darts, does it?
Nope, you can use whatever darts you like, from the included red and blue pair up to your engraved competition specials. There’s a hole in the Smartboard’s power button – it’s AA battery powered – in which you can magnetise the end of your dart. The sensors in each of the board’s segments pick up the vibe when it lands. Unicorn says the dart will remain active for days of play.
I don’t think I can play for days.
You sure? Unicorn’s iOS and Android app, of course, has the classic ‘501’ game – you can choose the level of maths assistance you want it to give, up to telling you exactly what you need to hit to win – but it also has a bunch of other darts games to suit different skill levels. Killer, Round the World, Cricket – darts might well be 2017’s Wii Sports for house parties.
Hmm, except an inebriatedly-operated Wii controller doesn't make a million tiny holes in your floorboards.
One hundred and eighty! As in, turn that frown upside down: Unicorn will sell you the board for £250 (S$435), but it’s also doing a number of bundle deals including a stand for the board, protective surrounds and floor-saving ‘Oche’ mats.