Game Changers

Instagram's Favorite On-Course Golf Games

By Abby Parsons, PGA
Published on

There are so many on-course games that all skill levels of golfers can play.
The question is, which are the best?
So, I took my curiosity to Instagram and asked my followers: “Hit me with YOUR favorite on-course games!” And they delivered.
Here is a list of the four most-popular/entertaining answers from both amateurs and PGA Professionals alike:
This was the most popular answer to this poll, and I can understand why. This game is made for three players, and here are the rules.
Everyone plays their own ball. There are nine points to be distributed after each hole, depending on who scored the best. The possible point distributions consist of the following:
  • 3 points – 3 points – 3 points = all three players tie the hole
  • 4 points – 4 points – 1 point = two players tie for low ball
  • 5 points – 2 points – 2 points = one player has low ball and the other two players tie
  • 5 points – 3 points – 1 point = players finish first second and third on a hole
  • 9 points – 0 points – 0 points = one player wins the hole by two shots over both players (this one is not a fan favorite, so it is up to you!)
The scorecard for a 9-Point game.
The scorecard for a 9-Point game.
This game is fit for all skill levels because no one is looking at your score; just your points! You can have a great hole and take all of the points, and you can have an OK hole and still walk out with adding to your point total. Try this out the next time you and two buddies tee it up!
Now stick with me here, this one may sound confusing, but it is a lot of fun. This is a recommendation from PGA Coach Ben Pollit, and the game is meant for 4 players. 
On each hole, the players tee off in a rotating batting order, no matter what they shot the hole before. The last player in the order is the “Wolf.” Each player will have four opportunities to be the Wolf, and whomever has the least amount of points through 16 holes will be the Wolf for the final two holes.
The Wolf will watch Player A tee off and decide if they want to be partners, if the Wolf decides “nah,” they will then watch Player B and decide the same thing. That process repeats with Player C.
There can be some pressure as the Lone Wolf!
There can be some pressure as the Lone Wolf!
If the Wolf says “nah” to Players B and C, they can decide to be the “Lone Wolf.” 
Here are how the points are distributed with the scenarios:
  • If the Wolf chooses a partner and that team wins, they each get 2 points; if they lose, the other team gets 3 points each.
  • If the Wolf chooses to play as a Lone Wolf and wins, the Lone Wolf gets 4 points; if the Lone Wolf loses, the other players get 2 points each.
Whoever tallies up the most points wins! If you are gambling, you can bet with a pot, or per-points. Have fun with it!
Pick Up Sticks
If you are ever out on the golf course and want to play a fun and entertaining partner-based game, this one will cause some laughs and creative shots. This one comes from PGA Coach Gianna Augustine.

This can be played with 2-4 people, making sure it is 1-on-1.

Scenario: Player A beats Player B on a hole. Player A gets to choose any club to take out of  Player B’s bag, putter not included. Player B may win their club back if they beat Player A on a hole. Same rules go for if Player A loses a hole; one of their clubs goes bye-bye.
This game is a lot of fun, and it may cause you to use a club or two in a scenario you would not have. Be as nice as you want to your playing competitor!
Bingo, Bango, Bongo
Each hole has three points up for grabs. You can play with however many people are in your group to see who walks off of 18 green with the most points!
Here's the point breakdown:
  • Bingo: This point is given to whichever player hits the green first.
  • Bango: Once all of the balls are on the green, this point is given to whoever hit it closest to the pin.
  • Bongo: The “Bongo” point is awarded to whichever player gets the ball in the hole first.
This game helps with accuracy, and putting! Work on your scoring, and have fun doing it with Bingo, Bango, Bongo.

These are just a few of the fun, beneficial, and maybe even money-making games you can play the next time you're out on the course. Have fun!