DHPL Team Challenge League Rules

I. Overview

The Die Hard Pinball Team League (DTC) is a CASUAL competitive league, with an emphasis on getting out for a night to play some pinball with a group of friends and having a chill time. It’s an excellent format for all skill levels and ages. Its emphasis is on fun, teamwork, and team competition.

The DTC is a coed team pinball league that is played at Arkadium Retro Arcade in Sherwood Park, AB. There are two distinct seasons:

  • Fall/Winter: September – December
  • Winter / Spring – February – June

The games will be played on every second Thursday (January/July/August will be a break). Each team scores match points based on the results of the individual pinball games anywhere from 1-4 points on each game. At the end of each game the team with the most match points records a match win, while the other team records a loss, there is also a scenario where the teams can tie. League standings are based on a simple win/loss/tie record. The final league night will involve playoffs with teams in a true double knockout format. The top three teams at the end of the year receive end year cash and prizes. 


Teams consist of at least 6 players. Of these, 1 players will act as the team “Captain” Captains are responsible for organizing their team and corresponding with the league about match results. Captains also serve as team representatives in each of the matches. Prior to the start of each season Captains must register their teams, submit their rosters to the league. If a team would like to make a roster change, at any point during the season, then that team’s CAPTAIN must submit a request to the DHPL for approval. 

  1. Roster Breakdown
  • Teams consist of at least 6 players, and a maximum of 8 teams
  1. Roster Limitations
  • NEW: No team can have a team value of more than 12 for a given team. A team can be grandfathered if it has all of its original team members from the start of play, however, if at any point they use one of their spare players they must have a team value of only 12 for that given night.
  • IFPA Rank: 1 – 250 = 5 points
  • IFPA Rank: 250 – 1000 = 4 points
  • IFPA Rank: 1000 – 1500 = 3 points
  • IFPA Rank: 1500 – 2500 = 2 points
  • IFPA Rank: 2500+ = 1 point
  1. Roster Changes
  • Teams may add players to their roster at any point during the season provided they drop one of their players to make room for new players.
  • Any player that is dropped from a roster may NOT return to that same team at any point during the season.
  • Dropped players MAY be “picked up” by other teams.
  • Teams may have players come onboard as subs. Subs are not part of a team’s roster and don’t need to be added or dropped.  It should be indicated on a scoresheet if a sub is used for that match.
  • NEW: Anyone on your team roster of 6 can be used any night of team league, however, a drop in sub not on your list cannot play in finals.

III. Match Play and Scoring

Each match consists of 5 cumulative games (2 Best Score, 2 Split Finger, 1 Alternate Shot) where each player receives a score between 1-4. The team with the highest score when completing the full bank of 5 machines will win that match, the team with the lowest score with lose that match, if there is a tie then it stays a tie. Teams will play twice a night on an assigned bank of five machines. The schedule will be posted so each team knows whom they are facing on what particular bank of machines.  

Matches are designed to feature 4 players from each team. A team may compete with only 3 players in attendance, but they do so at a penalty (see: Attendance). If they have less than 3 players then they forfeit all of the games that night. As well if a team has more than 4 players it may sub in a player after a game is completed however, it must honor the 12 point rating rule for any potential swaps.

  1. All matches are scheduled to start at 7:00 PM.
  2. Prior to the start of the first round the captain will fill out the lineup sheet
  3. There will be two players from each team that will start play on machine 1 and 3 on the starting bank. 
  4. No single player may compete more than once in any round.
  5. The home team declares their lineup first, selects the game formats for each machine and will play in the second and fourth spot in every game of that round.
  6. Once game-play order is set, it cannot be changed.
  7. Should one player launch and play another player’s ball, intentionally or otherwise, then he or she is “playing out of turn.”
  8. Playing out of turn will result in the automatic disqualification of the offending player’s ENTIRE score in the game being played. And they will be given an automatic 0 for that game. 
  9. The player whose turn was affected, will have the OPTION to replay his/her entire game as a result.

IV. Standings

League standings are based primarily on a simple win/loss/tie record, based on 14 games. Season long cumulative match points are used to break ties at the end of the season, Breakdown

  1. # of Wins
  2. Head-to-head results between the two teams in question.
  3. Total number of points accumulated
  4. Coin Flip

V. Playoffs

  1. If there are eight teams we use Challonge software:
  2. First Round: 1st vs 8th, 2nd vs 7th, 3rd vs 6th, 4th vs 5th
  3. For playoffs, same rules except:
    • The best seed has choice of bank
    • The best seed has choice of position 1/3 or 2/4
    • No bank of machine can be picked again by the same team in the entire playoffs
    • If there is a tie, there will be a one game tiebreaker with all 3 or 4 team members (if an EM) playing one ball on the next numbered machine. (The total score of all players will be the tiebreaker)

VI. Attendance

League play is structured with the assumption that at least 4 players from each team will be in attendance at every match. In order to maintain the integrity of the competition, we ask that each team strongly adhere to this rule. Teams are highly encouraged to have a list of spare to accommodate those unforeseen occasions when one or more players is unavailable to compete. Teams may compete, at a penalty, if only 3 players show up (player receive a zero each game), but any less will result in a forfeit. Should a team repeatedly attend with fewer than 4 players, then they may be asked to step out of the league.

Tardiness And Early Departure

  1. Matches should start on time if at least 3 players from each team are present.
  2. If someone is missing but know they will be showing up then put the player as the 4th player and plunge their ball until they arrive. 

VII. Other Notes

  1. Players ARE allowed to coach their teammates during game play.
  2. Rules regarding malfunctions, playing out of order, etc., will be based on the DHPL rules. A TD will make any rulings. 
  3. Extra balls are to be plunged if they are mistakenly on. 
  4. If a player displays unsportsmanlike conduct or threatens the safety of any individual or machine, then that player should be reported to the League.
  5. The League will investigate the incident and, if necessary, disciplinary action will commence.
  6. Mild infractions will incur a warning
  7. If a player receives two warnings during a single season, then that player will be suspended for the remainder of the season.
  8. Multiple suspensions may result in permanent expulsion from the League.
  9. Extreme misconduct will result in permanent expulsion from the league.
  10. All disciplinary actions will be at the sole discretion of league officials.