A recent startup on kickstarter Hexcup has introduced their idea to sell beer pong specific cups that are in the shape of hexagons. It looks great, it’s different, the cups fit together well which is especially pleasing for any persons with OCD. I am of the opinion that these cups will be a fun cottage toy to play a non-serious beer pong game with your friends. However I do not believe these will ever be used in competitive tournaments. This article explains why (it gets really meaningful at the end.)
After discussing this with other competitive beer pong players there are a few things we have noted.
- The cups do not hover on wet surfaces
- Aesthetically pleasing
- Costs more than regular solo cups ($15USD for 22 cups) – this ‘positive’ point is sarcasm
- Balls will not spin in the cups
- No defense during game play
- Most likely never to become widely used by the competitive beer pong community
- It reminds me of Bowling with bumpers on
Now as you’re reading this I’m sure you feel my passive aggressive bitterness towards this company. To clarify I do not have any personal beef with them, and I have no bias or ties to any solo cup company. My negative feelings originate from a few places.
The first and most obvious thing is that these two guys make this prototype and immediately call it “The world’s best beer pong cup”. This really gets to me. Tomorrow I could get a tablet prototype made with a hexagonal screen and say its the best tablet in the world. In my kickstarter I would describe how it is so much better for your eyes, sharing with friends etc. Just because I think my hexagonal tablet is the best does not mean that it is the best.
A more serious concern I have is that by using these cups it will remove a core part of the game; balls cannot spin in these cups. This means no more flicking or blowing spinning balls out of the cup. Now before I go downplaying this it is important to note that beer pong could possibly evolve to not include any defense. I just doubt that is going to happen.
The price. According to the kickstarter to get 1 beer pong set (22 cups) it costs $15USD. That’s $21 CAD. Buying two sets of these cups is more expensive than a barrel of oil! To me, there is a reason we buy red solo cups. They are versatile, cheap, and when they get completely disgusting we can just throw them out, or recycle whatever you do. Hexcup says that their cups are dishwasher friendly. Which is great except that the people who play beer pong (someone like myself) are mainly young men. I don’t know about other guys out there but I HATE doing dishes, and I am not looking to add more dishes to do. Maybe you’re a rich Saudi prince but I can’t afford these cups if I’m going to be using them the way I do.
To be blunt I think these guys are looking to make a quick buck and care nothing beer pong. I say they are just looking to ride the up-curve of the good marketing that plays off the unique ‘freshness’ of this product that will very soon be replicated by every Chinese manufacturer.
Am I jealous? Sure. I ‘d love to make a quick buck, who wouldn’t? There is nothing wrong with wanting to make a quick buck. We all want to make money, that is okay. I applaud them for acting on this idea to do so.
What grinds my gears is that they are not being authentic about wanting to make this ‘quick buck’. Dubbing it and selling it as the world’s best beer pong cup they are now intruding on the sport that I love with all my heart. This is wrong for two reasons. One this is just their opinion. Two, do you know what is the world’s best Beer Pong cup? Beer Pong cups. You know the ones that we ACTUALLY use for beer pong.
For those that know me or are familiar with Alberta Bar Pong you are aware that I am trying to bring the sport of beer pong into bars while being completely authentic. That is just the way I like to do things. I believe I can bring value to Albertans without having to put up cheesy, meaningless marketing lines.
What turns the knife in my chest is how (most likely) these guys are going to ride the up-curve then let the thousands of other manufacturers replicate their non-patented product and it will become just another cup.
Maybe I’m too stuck in my ways. I probably would not have these feelings if they didn’t call it the “world’s best beer pong cups”. Quite possibly I’m ignorant to more change in the sport. Maybe I should copy them and become their competitor. Undeniably I am passionate about this topic (beer pong, not hexcups).
What do you think about the future of this sport and these cups? Am I completely wrong? After all they have raised over 70k. Tweet me @AlbertaBarPong.