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What Are Some Games to Play on a Pool Table?

By Alan Donahue

A billiards table is a popular way for people of all ages to enjoy indoor activities together. The table can be used to simply shoot around, but for players looking for a little competition, there are plenty of pool games to enjoy.


Players are assigned either striped or solid colored balls after the first shot is made. The first player to pocket all their balls and the 8-ball last is declared the winner. If a player shoots the 8-ball in before their last shot, the game ends and whoever shot it in loses.


Pool balls numbered 1 through 9 are used for this game. Players must make each ball in numerical order until they reach the 9-ball. The games are usually played in a series of three because they play quick.

Straight Pool

Any ball can be shot in at any time and by any player. Each player receives a point for every ball they get in. Whoever has the most points after three or five games is declared the winner. Players usually have to call shots and they can also play to a set score like 50 or 100.


A spin-off of the popular basketball game. Players alternate turns trying to make shots. When a player makes a shot, the other player must duplicate the same shot and if they fail they receive a letter. The first player to spell "HORSE" loses.


Three balls are set up on a table and the player has to shoot them in using the least amount of shots possible. Another player must match or beat that number of shots or they lose. This can be played with multiple players or with the difficulty increased by different ball amounts or new records.

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