Mölkky® rules

Generally, you can play Mölkky® with as much players as you want. A number of three to six players shows to be best practice. In the beginning you place all twelve skittles in form of a blunt triangle on your playing field. The lowest number must point towards the throwing line. (see pictures). Depending on the difficulty level, you mark the trowing line in approximately three to four meters distance to the skittles. On a rotating basis all players throw using the throwing dowel the so called "Mölkky" on the skittles. If a player hits, he receives either the number of points marked on the skittle (if only one skittle falls) or the sum of fallen skittles (if more than one skittle falls). A skittle counts as "fallen" if it does not lie on another skittle or on the throwing dowel. A throw without a hit or stepping over the throwing line is seen as "missed shot". In case a player or team has three missed shots in a row, the player or team has to leave the game. Mölkky® is won by the player, who scores exatly 50 points first. If someone throws more than 50 points, his or her point account will be set to 25. After each throw all fallen skittles will be placed exactly on the spot where they knocked over. Additional rules like the 37-point-rule or Mölkkout might apply as well.


  • 12 skittles numbered 1 to 12
  • Plane field: sand, mowed lawn, sports ground, street, ice...
  • min. 1 throwing dowel

Game preparation:

  • Setup of skittles
  • distance to throwing point approximately three to four metres (3,5 steps)

Game course:

  • Each player (two to x) throws onto the skittles on a rotating basis.
  • For each player the following applies:
    • One skittle falls: the player receives the number on the skittle as points
    • More than one skittle falls: the player receives the number of the fallen skitlles as points.
    • Only skittles which do not lie on another skittle or the throwing dovel count.
  • Skittles always are placed where they are fallen. Usually, the field gets larger and the distance between skittles rises within one game.    

This procedure is repeated until one player wins or all players had to leave the game.


  • The aim of the game is to reach exactly 50 points. The one reaches the number first is the winner. 

Other rules:

  • Throwing more than 50 points - for example knocking down three skittles in a stand of 48 points - results in falling back to 25 points.
  • In case of three misses - missed to hit any skittle three times in a row - the player is out of game.
  • Trespassing: after the throw you must not move forward into the gamefield - i.e. in the direction of the skittles. This rule especially applies in tournaments. In case of violation the throw is considered as a missed throw. Keep in mind: 37-points-rule
  • To determine the starting team or the starting player, a coin can be thrown or a Mölkkout can be played.

Throwing technique:

There is no required throwing technique so that this can be adjusted to match a particular throw. The simplest is a straight or slightly ballistic throw of the dowel in lateral position. Smash throws from above or Kubb throws are also used.