(FAQ) Game Rules - 8 Ball (variations)

(About the Author)

These series of "Game Rules' provide rules of many different games for the pool table. The rules here have been simplified from the official versions - to make them a little easier to understand.

There are other games that have been invented, copyrighted and generally available to the playing public. Web searches will turn these up and the rules printed out for use.

8 Ball (coin-op table)

On a coin-operated table, any ball that falls into a pocket is gone from the table (except the cue ball which does return). Therefore, no balls can be re-spotted, including the 8 ball if it goes in early (loss of game by whoever made it go in). Otherwise, local 8 Ball rules apply.

8 Ball (Chinese)

Please note that the name for this style of 8 Ball is not the way that 8 Ball is played in Asia. (If you attempt explaining how to play this style of 8 Ball in Taiwan, Singapore, or China - you are going to have a hard time getting the idea across.)

After the break, object balls are caromed off the cue ball into a pocket.

Carom combinations are allowed (ball into cue ball, then combo in a ball).

All other playing rules apply.

Ball in hand allows moving one of your balls and position it for the carom to a pocket.

8 Ball (bar rule notes)

If you are a consumer of adult beverages, you have occasionally (or more) frequented bars or taverns or pubs or cocktail lounges where a bar table is in regular use. Generally it will be a coin operated 3-1/2 x 7 table with a wall rack of beat up house cues. It's purpose is to provide entertainment to the patrons while they consume quantities of alcohol.

Because every set of balls costs money, and people want to get the most entertainment possible, a set of very complicated rules has been established to extend the amount of playing time between the necessary insertion of money.

The standard bar table game is eight ball. There is some similarities to pool hall rules, in that one player or team has solids, and the other stripes. Once all balls in the group is pocketed, the eight ball is next.

Every shot must be fully called - not just ball and pocket, but every incidental action along the way. This includes every carom and cushion that occurs with the object ball until it reaches the pocket.

Cue ball is always played where it lies. Only on a scratch is the cue ball allowed to be placed and only within the kitchen.

Do not EVER be obvious with a defensive shot. In some bars, intentionally and obviously playing safe can get somewhat dangerous. The viewpoint of a bar player is somewhat medieval in nature. "Always attempt some kind of offensive effort." If you were to try and explain that that kind of effort will let them win - they'll just smile and say, "You have to try."

If you do play defensively, disguise the shot. (Don't forget to apologize when you accidentally don’t leave him a shot.) After all, you don't want to be called a dirty pool player or cheater or shark - right?

Keep in mind that people have gotten into fights of all kinds, just to settle a point whether a shot was legal according to the localized bar rules, or not.

8 Ball (1-15 side)

This is a common version of 8 Ball often played in lodges and senior centers. Decades ago, it was the most common version of 8 Ball played in the United States.

Regular 8 Ball rules apply according to the location.

The player with the solids (1-7), must make the 1 ball in the designated side pocket (usually the right side when standing at the head of the table).

The player with the stripes (9-15), must make the 15 ball in the designated side pocket (usually the left side when standing at the head of the table).

The FAQs of Pool & Pocket Billiards


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