Of the several ball and cue games that can be played online, 8-ball pool is one of the most popular; it’s also the version of pool that most people are familiar with. 8-ball pool, sometimes called stripes and solids, is the second most competitive pool game after 9-ball and is popular around the world. When online games started becoming popular, pool was an obvious choice – most people already knew how to play it, it can be played alone or in a tournament and a pool table fits conveniently on the computer screen.
It’s easy to find sites that offer free online 8-ball games, although perhaps not as easy to choose one – there are dozens available and the only way to find a site that you like is to check out the various features and extras. You should check for good, strong graphics and a well supported site that will allow many people to play at once – a poorly supported site can mean a slow response time for you. Free sites are supported by advertising and the pop-up ads can often be annoying.
Free online 8-ball sites offer various different options for playing the game. Some sites give you the opportunity to invite other players to have a game with you; these are generally known as private tables. Etiquette has it that the player who opened, or offered the game first, is the first player to shoot. Poolgameonline.com offers players different options, including 8-ball; 8baller.co.uk is a trusted site that also has some good sound and cisual effects. Most sites require you to register, although many are free to play once you have registered.
If you need to practice before competing in a tournament, different sites allow you to practice by yourself against another player, or against the computer. Like other similar online games, your computer’s mouse is used to take the shot and allows you to control the strength of your shot. On most sites, you designate the pocket by using a downward pointing hand on the screen. Easypooltutor.com has plenty of tips and articles on basic skills and advanced strategy. Practicing with other players is considered to be the best way to become proficient at the game.
Sooner or later you may feel that you are good enough to play online 8-ball for money. There is no shortage of sites that will allow you to do that, although you should be particularly careful when choosing a site. And practice is essential – someone who is a real life pool expert isn’t necessarily going to be a winner online.