Beer pong is a drinking game played at most fraternity parties. You need twenty-four red cups, two ping pong balls, and a long table to play. The cups are placed in a pyramid formation starting with one cup, then two, then three and then four totaling eleven cups on each side. The cups are filled about 1/3 with beer, and one of the remaining two cups is placed on each side of the table and filled with water (this cup is used to wash the ping pong balls after each throw). There are two teams each with two people. Each team starts with a ball. One player from each team takes a turn attempting to throw the ball in one of the cups. Whoever makes a ball into a cup first gets to play first as a team. Both balls are given to the team that shoots first. If a player makes a ball in a cup, one player from the other team has to drink the beer in that cup. If both players make their balls in the cup, both players have to drink from the cups they made and the team gets to shoot again. If both players make their balls in the same cup, they get to shoot again and the other team has to drink not only the cups they made but also three other cups. After one team makes all the cups, the other team is allowed a rebuttal. As long as one of the team members makes a cup, the team gets the balls back. As soon as the team misses a cup, the rebuttal is over and the other team has won.
My informant learned this game when he pledged a fraternity at the University of Southern California. He learned it from his fellow brothers in his fraternity house. This game is usually played at every party they have, and the house even has tournaments of this game. He often plays with the same partner and says that many people play with the same partners once they have found someone they make a good team with.
My informant says the rules of this game can vary from fraternity house to fraternity house. At some houses, they use more cups and make a larger pyramid. At other houses they make the other team drink all the cups surrounding the one cup both players make. At some fraternity houses, this game is known as Beirut. My informant says that this game can also be played with drinks other than beer, such as mixed drinks. He also says he has seen a variation of this game in which chasers were used in the cups, and the players took shots when they had to drink and used the chasers from the cups.
This game can be played by anyone but is mostly found on the college scene in fraternities and in dorms.