New Variations On 8-Ball Games

Practice and Build Solid Positioning Skills

Billiards eight ball corner pocket

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There's nothing quite as much fun as adding your own "spin" (pun intended) to 8-Ball games and other pool games.

Try 8-Ball Deluxe, A New Variation On A Classic

To go "deluxe" in your choice of 8-ball games, play with standard 8-Ball rules, adding your brand of local rules, or whatever you prefer, but with a twist:

Each group must be sunk in numerical order as in other rotation billiards games. That's 1 thru 7 in number order for the "low balls" or "spots" and 9 thru 15 in ascending order for the "stripes" or "high balls".

Helps to Build Solid Positioning Skills

Deluxe Eight Ball will help to build solid positioning skills for regular Eight Ball. Besides being a fun challenge, moving the cue ball around more precisely will make regular 8-Ball seem a breeze, simple and pleasurable.

Deluxe is considerably more difficult, however. In 9-Ball you know where your next shot ought to be set up and you must do much the same here. And using ball-in-hand rules will alleviate some of the difficulty by allowing the lining up of two or three following shots in your run after an opponent's scratch.

As with Eight Ball in general, combination shots are legal and tend to play a larger part in the game because of the greater number of balls on the table--as do the enemy balls on the table opposing the run. Pro players who can run 3 to 5 racks in Nine Ball on a regular basis (Don't be discouraged, keep practicing) find it more difficult to run as many Eight Ball racks!

Gopher Eight Ball

Gopher lets you shoot at any of the fourteen non-8 balls at the table to retain your turn. If your run gets stuck or for defense or any other reason, if you are stripes you can shoot a solid whenever or vice versa.

Thus you can "go for" the big run but if you miss, you are merely a "gopher" for the other player, enabling them by running their table. Get it?

Eight Ball Yourself, A Challenging Variation

Eight Ball Yourself by taking two stripes or two solids plus the eight ball and "racking them" somewhere along the head spot anyway you like, in a little cluster, as long as it's not the old triangle shape. Next:

1. Break 'em up. If one sinks, it has to go out on the table somewhere random. Smart breakers will break more softly in the early rounds.

2. After the break, take ball-in-hand and, well, put the cue ball in your pocket. Now is the time to think deeply. Think for a minute or so about how to run those two balls using the gentlest possible strokes and with little spin or english.

3. Run 'em both then add a ball and start again. How high can you get before you fail to run out in a single inning? Can you get seven racks done? The key step is really #2. Think before you shoot.