Desperate for some couch co-op Pool action? Have six dollars laying around that’s just making you mad? Super PowerUp Games has a release for you! It’s 8-Ball Pocket, and it’s one of the most barebones titles I have played in a long time.
8-Ball Pocket is a Gamerscore game, that isn’t the easiest to get Gamerscore in. That’s a bad thing, and it’s six dollars US, which is a bit deep for my tastes. This game will see you playing one specific type of pool, in one area with a few different-looking tables. The only thing that changes is their color, but still, it’s something in what is otherwise a real light on content product. It’s a game of pool that you can play solo in a ridiculously unfair arcade mode, or with up to four players total in local multiplayer.
That arcade mode does have a global leaderboard, but its limited-shot approach feels unfair to the point of driving me mad. You have a set amount of shots and every time you do not pocket a ball the meter goes down once. The ball physics feel mediocre at best, and the press and hold a to start power meter ramps up far too quickly. The only other controls are to aim your stick and choose where on the ball you’ll hit it. Putting back or forward spin never felt quite right, with momentum not carrying through properly. A full-powered shot felt like I was a toddler with a broken arm most of the time. You are far too weak, or the balls simply have too much mass. As this is all there is to the game the fact that it doesn’t feel good to play immediately kills any potential.
Graphically it looks like a 10-year-old mobile game running at a decently high resolution. The music is a mix of jazzy tunes that blend nicely into the background, and the crack of the cue onto the ball can sound satisfying at times. Occasionally the mix of sound effects was too low and it felt like I was hitting a pillow with a feather. There really isn’t anything else to the game, it’s arcade or versus mode and they both play the exact same.
This feels like it’s a cheap Gamerscore game, but it’s neither cheap enough or easy enough to get the full 1000 achievement points. If you can get this for a couple of bucks on sale it might be worth frilling away your time, but even then I’d say give this game a pass.
Xbox Series X
- Jazzy Beats
- Poor Value
- Plays Poorly
- Unfair Arcade Mode