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1989
Sport: Action
£7.99
£3.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
Firebird BleepLoad

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54
Matthew Denton
Chris Bourne

Pool is a strange game isn't it? It's usually played by fat bellied, beer swilling blokes who hang around pubs (for more details, ask for ALAN).

Now snooker makes it to the computer screen quite often, but bust my balls if Kixx haven't brought Pool to our humble homes - and in fine style too.

As opposed to the usual plan view of the table, 3-D graphics are used which are the weakest thing about the whole game. The table view con be rotated, flipped, zoomed into, zoomed out of and it all happens so smoothly that you might think you were playing the Amiga version (boo, hiss). Keyboard controls for this are easily mastered as are those for actually striking the cue ball, like changing the power of the shot or adjusting the spin. Sound is sparse but atmospheric, with all the right clunking noises of balls against balls.

The graphics though strange and a little sore on one's eyes do look good. But what about the game itself? It opens with a vast array of options, including the chance to play tournaments, two player and practice games and, best of all, a trick shot mode. This sets up the balls in a certain way, and the idea is to pot all the balls with one snot, like all the flashy snooker stars do to get a round of applause and a fat fee.

You can even set up your own trick shots so that you can impress everyone with your potting prowess (even though it may be only two balls at once).

In tournament mode, the computer opponents are all extremely good and present quite a challenge. The game is also surprisingly addictive and will keep you pottering away at it for ages. Although it won't be to everyone's taste it's worth a shot to anyone with a mild interest in this sort of thing.

Label: Kixx
Memory: 48K/128K
Price: £3.99 Tape
Reviewer: Matthew Denton

GARTH: Although the graphics seem crude, there's a lot of game here. And it's actually rather playable - especially with the wealth of options that are available. The 3D graphics are far from excellent, but once you've got used to them, you can put your head down and go for it!

3-D Pool is very satisfying to play and this game is something that you'll come back to time and time again for one more blast around the table.

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HUSTLER

Pool is a game that is really about positioning. getting the white (or cue) ball into the right position. This is done with side, top and bottom.

SIDE - This actually spins a ball so that it bounces differently when it hits another object (especially the cushion.)

TOP - If you hit a cue ball further to the top. the effect is to make it roll further and to continue forward after it's hit another ball.

BOTTOM - Has the opposite effect. In fact enough bottom will cause a ball to roll back after hitting another ball. Useful if you have a straight shot to stop you going 'in off'.

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The cue ball always shoots directly up the table. The trick is to turn the table to get the right shot.

Mighty Mike, the computer player, is a real hustler and hard to beat.

Well here's a mighty tricky shot. But luckily, it's the turn of the play or who's got the stripey balls. Potting one could be tricky.