Most challenging yard game ever. Is my thought as I sit down to write the review of the Paddlezlam game. We have been testing out yard games for years, so when we saw the Paddlezlam game we knew we needed to check it out and see how it compares to the numerous options for the yard game aficionado.
We got our Paddlezlam game in and knew there was no time like the present to start learning about a new yard game challenge. Paddlezlam comes with two large, orange cones that each have a hole in the side. This is the scoring zone. You are attempting to get the ball into the top hole, or the side hole (to win it all). There are also 4 paddles that you will use the volley the included balls back and forth to try and score.
Now lets take a look at the rules and scoring. Information provided from the Paddlezlam website:
RULES AND ASSUMPTIONS
- All official PaddleZlam games are played to 21 points.
- Players paddles or body cannot make contact with the gaming cones when attempting to score or face losing any points accrued during that exchange.
- Receivers can move anywhere within the playing area to redirect the ball, including in front of the cone if necessary.
- No player substitutions are allowed in the middle of a game or tournament/league play. For tournament/league play, once play begins, teams must play every game with the same partner.
- A Wipeout shot holds no point value, but simply takes out all the points of the opposing team.
- A team must achieve an exact score of 21 points to win, and teams must complete an equal number of turns (except when an Instant Win is scored).
- Any disputes over the score, rules, or a certain play must be decided before the game is over, unless the dispute happens on the game-deciding play. Disputes should be resolved prior to completion of a game or series.
- Players cannot cross the front of the cone when serving or the resulting hit will be disqualified and result in a loss of turn.
- Players may use their own professional Pickleball paddles to give them a competitive advantage during league play and other tournament style events.
- The Pickleball must remain airborne and never hit the ground in order to remain in play.
- If a cup holder is used on the back of the cone, it becomes part of the cone, and would be considered as a viable scoring option.
- Bounce-outs are counted as points provided the ball makes contact with the surface beneath the cone (ie. gymnasium floor, pavement, grass, etc.)
- Either you or your partner directly impact the side of cone: 2 points.
- Either you or your partner hit the ball into the top of the cone: 3 points.
- Either you or your partner hit the ball directly into the center hole: Instant Win
- Either you or your partner assist the ball it into the side of the cone: 1 Point
- Either you or your partner assist the ball into the top of the cone: 2 Points
- Either you or your partner assist the ball into the front center hole: 3 points
- Your partner serves you the ball, you lob it up in the air, they run down and spike the ball against the side of the cone: 3 Points.
- Your partner serves you the ball, you lob it up in the air, they run down and spike the ball into the top of the cone: 5 points.
- Your partner serves you the ball, you lob it up in the air, they run down and spike it into the front center hole: Wipeout.
We quickly learned that this game was way harder than we anticipated, so we came up with the beginners hack of flipping over the cone, so you have a larger hole to try and tap the pickle balls into. This helped as we learned the game and I’d recommend trying this as you work on increasing your Paddlezlam prowess.
As we played we started to get better with the assisted shots, but the direct hits and Paddle Pass scoring was still our nemesis. Let’s focus on the Paddle Pass more as this is the unique play that you call out prior to executing to get big points. You get more points because well it’s HARD to execute properly. You have to be in sync with your partner as you sprint to the other cone to try and ZLAM it in.
Speaking of Zlamming things into the cone it’s tough to play on a hard surface since the ball will bounce out. You will not have this issue if you play on grass. We placed the the bag and a jacket in the bottom of each cone, so it would absorb the impact of the ball and not have it bounce out if we made it.
The sprinting aspect of the Paddlezlam is what really gives you the hard work out. Running back and forth while trying to have the perfect shot takes a high level of perfection.
PROS: great work out, new challenge, easy set up, ability to modify the cone to a larger opening, portable
CONS: game is tough and can be frustrating as you work to perfect your skills, harder to play on concrete
Overall, this is a game that will give you a great work out and new challenge. The biggest issue is that some people may lose interest due to the challenge of this game and not take the time to perfect their skills with Paddlezlam.
Learn more about this game and get your own by visiting PADDLEZLAM
We never get paid to give our opinions on products, so you know you are going to get the truth! We were sent a sample game to test out with the understanding that we’d give our true thoughts.
Written By: Luke Lorick 11/14/20