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Sure, pool is best played by two people. After all, it is a whole lot of fun and it is of course designed primarily as a two player game.
However, you probably don’t have a constant stream of people who want to go against you. So, what can you do if you have a pool table, but you are by yourself?
Well, luckily for you, there is some variety out there, quite a few pool games that you can play by yourself. Some of these games are a bit harder to master than others, but they’re all quite fun and easy to learn too.
Why Play Pool on Your Own?
You might be wondering what exactly the point of playing pool on your own is.
Well, simply put, if you have a pool table, but don’t have anybody to play with, then you may as well put it to use. After all, pool tables, even the cheap ones, cost hundreds of dollars. If you plan on getting your money’s worth, somebody should at least play on it every now and again, even if it’s just a solo game here and there.
Moreover, there is also the fact that practice makes perfect, or at least so they say. If you aren’t very good at pool and you want to get some practice in, playing by yourself may just be the best way to go about it.
Playing some games on your own can go a long way in improving your skills, so the next time you play with other people, you might actually be able to beat them.
5 Pool Games You Can Play by Yourself
Let’s go over a list of popular one player pool games so that you have something to keep yourself busy with and get some practice in at the same time.
#1: Fifteen in a Row
For this game, rack up the balls the same way as you would for an 8 ball game. Then break just like you normally would. You have to pocket a minimum of 1 ball on the break, and if you don’t you have to re-rack the balls and start over again.
If you pocket a ball on the break, keep shooting until you miss. The point of the game is to get 15 balls into the pockets in a row without missing a single shot.
If you miss a shot, you start over from the beginning. You don’t have to choose balls to pocket or stick to an order, but you certainly could if you want it to be more challenging.
#2: Solo 8-Ball
This is one of the most popular solo pool games that you can play.
Sure, this is usually played by two people, but there is no reason why you can’t play a game of solo 8-ball. Here, rack all of the balls just like you would in a normal game of two player 8-ball.
Make sure that the 8 ball is in the center of the other balls, with the other balls being arranged in no particular order.
Now, make a break, and then try to sink all of the solid balls and then all of the striped balls. The other way around works just fine too. Be sure to not pocket the 8 ball until the very end.
Yes, you can play a game of pool with no more than 3 balls.
This game is all about strategy. Here, all you do is rack up 3 balls in a triangle shape, then break, with the aim being to sink all 3 balls in as few shots as possible.
The break counts as a shot, and misses or scratches count as 2 shots. The aim is to take as few shots as possible. This is a really quick game and usually does not take long to play.
If you get really good at it, you may even be able to sink all 3 balls on the break.
#4: Ghost Pool
Ghost pool is yet another great solo pool game that you can play. Start off by racking up the balls the same way as you would for a game of 8-ball, with the 8 ball in the middle, surrounded by the other balls in a random formation.
Now, break the racked balls and then put the ball in hand.
You can now place the ball wherever you want for each shot. You have to make every shot. If you miss a shot, the imaginary player you are playing against, the ghost, wins the game. If you miss any shots, you must start over from the beginning.
#5: Baca Ball
Yet another great solo pool game, Baca ball is a variation of 9-ball, but instead of being played by two people, it’s played by only 1 person.
With regular two person 9-ball pool, the point is to pocket your balls, in ascending order (lowest numbers first, all the way to the highest number).
Of course, here you don’t have an opponent, but the point is still to pocket your balls in ascending order in as few shots as possible.
The point is to get the lowest score you can, just like in golf. Here, start with 10 points, and each time you scratch, fowl, or miss, you add a point. Most people will play 10 rounds of this to see if they can get a perfect score of 100.
As you can see, there are plenty of solo pool games that you can play without any opponents.
Some of them can be really fun and they will all help you get better at this great sport.
This way, the next time you go to face real people, you’ll have a much better chance at beating them.