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United States Patent Application 20160303469
Kind Code A1
Smith; Rodney W. October 20, 2016

Gaming Apparatus for Sliding Target Games

Abstract

A gaming apparatus for a sliding-type game is disclosed. In the preferred embodiment, a length of a sliding surface is provided with an underlying target area and playing pieces are slid along the surface to land over desired targets. Magnets may be used to provide additional challenge. Many possibilities of use are possible as the apparatus may lend itself to various game scenarios.


Inventors: Smith; Rodney W.; (Logan, UT)
Applicant:
Name City State Country Type

Smith; Rodney W.

Logan

UT

US
Family ID: 1000001838339
Appl. No.: 15/072665
Filed: March 17, 2016


Related U.S. Patent Documents

Application NumberFiling DatePatent Number
62148328Apr 16, 2015

Current U.S. Class: 1/1
Current CPC Class: A63F 7/0088 20130101; A63F 7/0005 20130101
International Class: A63F 7/00 20060101 A63F007/00

Claims



1. A gaming apparatus comprising: a. a sliding surface; b. at least one magnetized puck; and c. a target with magnetic affinity, positioned under the sliding surface; wherein the puck is slid across the sliding surface towards the target and magnetic interplay between the puck and target affect the behavior of the puck as it slides towards the target.

2. The gaming apparatus of claim 1, further comprising at least one magnet, positioned underneath the sliding surface on the target wherein the magnetic interplay between the puck and magnet further affect the behavior of the puck as it slides towards the target.

3. The gaming apparatus of claim 2, further comprising a substrate unto which the sliding surface is positioned.

4. The gaming apparatus of claim 3, the target being countersunk into the substrate.

5. The gaming apparatus of claim 3, further comprising a backboard proximate the target.

6. The gaming apparatus of claim 5, said backboard interfacing the substrate and being removable therefrom.

7. The gaming apparatus of claim 1, further comprising a substrate unto which the sliding surface is positioned.

8. The gaming apparatus of claim 7, the target being countersunk into the substrate.

9. The gaming apparatus of claim 7, further comprising a backboard proximate the target.

10. The gaming apparatus of claim 9, said backboard interfacing the substrate and being removable therefrom.
Description



CROSS-REFERENCES TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] This application claims priority as a perfection of prior filed U.S. provisional application No. 62/148,328, filed Apr. 16, 2015 and incorporates the same by reference in its entirety herein.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0002] The present invention relates to the field of games and more particularly relates to a sliding target game which may utilize magnets for enhanced difficulty.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0003] Games are a form of amusement found in most civilizations. Games may be made of any material readily available and may incorporate concepts, designs, beliefs, or any aspect of human civilization. As human civilization has advanced, games have become more and more complex and often utilize discoveries of nature that a civilization has incorporated.

[0004] Friction is one such discovery of nature. One common type of game that has been invented requires a player to slide a playing piece, which will be termed generically as a "puck," over a surface at a distance so as to have the puck stop sliding in a particular target. One such game is shuffleboard. Magnetism is another discovery of nature. Magnetism when used in games can create either attractive or repulsive forces and it is often used to trigger switches or allow controlled movement of playing pieces across a board.

[0005] The combination of magnetism and sliding friction in a single game presents many possible game variants as the combination can present difficulties in not only estimating the strength of a slide to overcome friction in just the right amount and estimating release angles, but also estimating sufficient force to overcome, or even utilize, magnetic repulsion and attraction. Many games with multiple rule sets may be developed for such a gaming apparatus.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0006] One embodiment of the game apparatus features a smooth sliding surface positioned over a substrate. The surface may be a polymer such as Poly(methyl_methacrylate) ("PLEXIGLASS") or any other suitable surface and should be of significant length compared to the puck pieces that are slid upon it. A friction reducing material may or may not be applied to the surface. One end of the surface is defined as the head, the other the foot, and a target may be placed between the surface and the substrate at the head. For use with magnetic applications, it may be helpful if the target is fashioned on a sheet of ferrous or other magnetic metal. Pucks are then slid from the foot of the surface to the head in hopes of stopping over the target. The pucks may be magnetized and additional magnets may be added to the target. Barriers may border the sides and head of the surface and the head may rest on supports so as to reduce pressure on the target and any associated magnets. Various game scenarios may be developed for the apparatus, including using additional target areas and placing supports in other places along the length of the surface to create an undulating effect or placing the surface on a uniform substrate for a totally even playing surface.

[0007] The more important features of one embodiment of the invention have thus been outlined in order that the more detailed description that follows may be better understood and in order that the present contribution to the art may better be appreciated. Additional features of the invention will be described hereinafter and will form the subject matter of the claims that follow.

[0008] Many objects of this invention will appear from the following description and appended claims, reference being made to the accompanying drawings forming a part of this specification wherein like reference characters designate corresponding parts in the several views.

[0009] Before explaining at least one embodiment of the invention in detail, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of construction and the arrangements of the components set forth in the following description or illustrated in the drawings. The invention is capable of other embodiments and of being practiced and carried out in various ways. Also it is to be understood that the phraseology and terminology employed herein are for the purpose of description and should not be regarded as limiting.

[0010] As such, those skilled in the art will appreciate that the conception, upon which this disclosure is based, may readily be utilized as a basis for the designing of other structures, methods, and systems for carrying out the several purposes of the present invention. It is important, therefore, that the claims be regarded as including such equivalent constructions insofar as they do not depart from the spirit and scope of the present invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0011] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of one embodiment of the gaming apparatus.

[0012] FIG. 2 is a top plan view of the gaming apparatus of FIG. 1.

[0013] FIG. 3 is a sectional view of the gaming apparatus of FIG. 2, taken along line 3-3.

[0014] FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the gaming apparatus of FIG. 1, modified by additional support.

[0015] FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the head of the gaming apparatus of FIG. 1, with magnets applied to one position in the target area.

[0016] FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the head of the gaming apparatus of FIG. 1, with magnets applied to a second position in the target area.

[0017] FIG. 7 is a perspective view of the head of the gaming apparatus of FIG. 6, in use during a game.

[0018] FIG. 8 is a perspective view of one embodiment of a puck for use with the gaming apparatus.

[0019] FIG. 9 is an exploded view of the puck of FIG. 8.

[0020] FIG. 10 is an alternate perspective view of the puck of FIG. 8.

[0021] FIG. 11 is an exploded view of the puck of FIG. 10.

[0022] FIG. 12 is a perspective view of an alternate puck design.

[0023] FIG. 13 is a perspective view of an alternate puck design.

[0024] FIG. 14 is a perspective view of the foot of the gaming apparatus of FIG. 1, with a target placed underneath said foot.

[0025] FIG. 15 is a perspective view of the foot of the gaming apparatus of FIG. 14, in use.

[0026] FIG. 16 is an exploded view of an alternate gaming apparatus.

[0027] FIG. 17 is a close up view of the gaming apparatus of FIG. 16.

[0028] FIG. 18 is a perspective view of the gaming apparatus of FIG. 16.

[0029] FIG. 19 is a sectional view of the gaming apparatus of FIG. 18, taken along line 19.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

[0030] With reference now to the drawings, the preferred embodiment of the gaming apparatus is herein described. It should be noted that the articles "a", "an", and "the", as used in this specification, include plural referents unless the content clearly dictates otherwise.

[0031] With reference to FIG. 1, the preferred gaming apparatus 100 comprises a long sliding surface 110 positioned upon a substrate 105. The substrate may be a bare floor or table or it may be a secondary sheet, as depicted here, to help increase friction between the sliding surface and an underlying surface. It is worth noting the secondary sheet, as is shown, may also provide a queue area for pucks 160 as well as an increased friction area should a puck return after play. While not necessary to basic function, side rails 120 may be added to help keep pucks 160 on the sliding surface 110. A back board 150 may also be added for similar reasons. Both of these structures may be used or eliminated depending upon user preference and/or game play. At the head of the sliding surface 110, supports 130 raise the head and provide a slight incline to help transition the sliding surface 110 over the target plate 140, which presents a target 145 for a given game. Target plate 140 is ideally made of ferrous metal or some other magnetic material and the target 145 may encompass all or a portion of the surface area of the target plate 140. In play, a friction reducing agent, such as a type marketed as "shuffleboard wax" may be applied to the sliding surface (grains 115 in FIGS. 1 and 4).

[0032] Target magnets 170 may be added to the target area to increase play challenge and difficulty (FIGS. 2 and 3). Ideally, target magnets 170 are positioned on the target plate 140, about the target 145. The position of the target magnets 170 may vary on the target 145, as shown in FIGS. 5 and 6. In the depicted target 145, a goal of the player may be to land a puck 160 on one of the depicted target stripes for a given point value, as shown in FIG. 7. Positioning the target magnets 170 outward, as shown in FIG. 5, allows the pucks 160 more space in which to reside over a target magnet 170 or more space to move around if repelled by the same target magnet 170 as compared to the inward positioning shown in FIG. 6. Thus, for the basic concept described herein, the arrangement shown in FIG. 5 would be easier on players. Of course, this is but one example of possible gameplay. In other games, magnets may be positioned on any area of the target 145 so as to provide obstacles or goals or may even be positioned along the length of the sliding surface 110. It has been found, however, that the target magnets 170 and magnetized pucks 160 perform better when the target magnets 170 are positioned on a ferrous metal or other surface with magnetic affinity. Pads 175 may be placed on the target magnets 170 to help cushion the interface with the sliding surface and also serve as a buffer for the magnetic field.

[0033] Pucks 160 may be a very simple construction, as shown in FIGS. 8-11. Ideally, a puck 160 will have a cap 162 positioned upon a collar 164 which is in turn fastened over a low friction base 168. Between collar 164 and base 168, a magnet 166 may reside. If magnetized, the puck base 168 should be a smooth metal so as to not interfere with the magnetic field. The depicted magnet 166 is a ring or donut magnet as this is the preferred construction, however any shape of magnet will perform according to the basic tenants of the invention. A ring magnet presents the added benefit of being able to house other structures, like batteries, switches and indicators, which may add interactive elements to puck 160 and game play. Different caps 161,163 (FIGS. 12 and 13) may also be employed for different gameplay or for providing space for additional elements to the puck 160.

[0034] It is readily understood that different strengths of magnets will cause different interplay between the puck 160 and target magnets 170. It has been found that the use of class 8 target magnets 170 and class 5 puck magnets 166 provide good interplay between the puck 160 and target 145. However, it is readily understood that this is a preference of the inventor and is not limiting to the invention as a whole.

[0035] An alternate embodiment of the apparatus (FIGS. 16-19) provides continuous support of the sliding surface 310 on a thicker, supporting substrate 305. A hole 335 in the substrate 305 provides for positioning of the target plate 340. The target plate 340 may or may not be supported by a pad 330 (FIG. 19). The thickness of the pad 330, if used, alternately may or may not allow for the use of target magnets (not shown). Back board 350 may be made to interface directly with the substrate, such as by the interfacing teeth 315, 355 illustrated in FIG. 17. This particular embodiment allows for no slope of any kind on the playing surface by countersinking the target plate 340 into the substrate 305.

[0036] Other variations may be used to provide different forms of game play. Additional supports 180 may be positioned underneath the sliding surface to add challenge to a game (FIG. 4) such as adding a hill obstacle or by providing a launch area (as shown) onto which pucks may be placed before being released onto the target area. Other targets 245 may also be used (FIGS. 14 and 15) and positioned anywhere along the sliding surface 110 for different games. Target plates 240 may or may not have target magnets 170.

[0037] It is to be readily understood that the construction of the gaming apparatus lends itself to great versatility and adjustment. Various thicknesses of substrate may be used to create a varied playing surface. The sliding surface may be positioned on the substrate in a manner to lengthen or shorten the apparatus and may be manufactured in a manner to allow for obstacles or hazards by merely leaving holes in the sliding surface. Side rails and the backboard may be alternately removed or differently shaped for other playing effects. Positioning of the magnets on or about the target plate may be adjusted for different games and such positioning may be affected by the thickness of the substrate underneath the plate or spacers about the plate. Different target plates may also be designed for different games.

[0038] Although the present invention has been described with reference to preferred embodiments, numerous modifications and variations can be made and still the result will come within the scope of the invention. No limitation with respect to the specific embodiments disclosed herein is intended or should be inferred.

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