Pool is the kind of game which most of us plays with friends in pubs, while having beers, smoking cigarettes and generally having fun. Still, it can be a bit disheartening if you keep missing those holes and if it’s always the others who win. I have never been really good at real life pool so the fact that I keep winning and get trophies at Pure Pool is a refreshing experience for me.
There’s a smooth jazz music in the background and people are talking to each other in the pub where the pool table of Pure Pool is standing. We can’t really see the people, neither the musicians, nor the rest part of the bar, but actually I didn’t really care. Why not? Because Pure Pool so much focused on the game, and it has such gorgeous graphics, that everything which is outside the pool table is just in the game to set you in a gentle mood.
Are you a pro? Yes? No? You will have fun either way!
Perhaps the best feature of the game is that it can be fun for both professional and inexperienced players. Since I am an absolute amateur at pool, I was pleased to see that the game stretches a white line to show where the ball will go after getting hit and also a greenish yellow line where another ball will go after being struck. It helps you a great deal if you are noob pool player like me. If you are a master player, the game will simply show the player where the cue ball will strike the intended target, which simulates the actual game of pool a lot more.
There are quite a few game options in Pure Pool features as well. The two main game modes are 8- and 9-Ball. 8-Ball is a standard game of pool that’s played with eight balls on the table, where the first player to pocket a ball gets that shape for the rest of the game. 9-Ball is based on pocketing the balls in numeric order rather than by which balls are either solids or stripes.
Climb up the career ladder
Pure Pool also have a rather massive Career Mode, which varies up different other game types along with the separate 8-Ball and 9-Ball careers, such as Speed Pot (pocketing all the balls in a set time), Perfect Potter (pocketing all the balls without missing), Checkpoint (pockets as many balls as possible before a timer expires), and Killer (pot a ball and lose a point), among others.
Each game is accompanied by three Accolade stars, which are predetermined feats that must be fulfilled in order to earn them, such as “Pocket three balls consecutively in corner pockets” or “Come back to win from three balls behind”. After you have completed the first Amateur Career Mode, you can start the next level of difficulty: the Pro and ultimately the Master Career Mode. So while the game is very easy to get in it’s getting hard to master while winning each levels of difficulty.
Shiny balls and great physics
The game also sports some nice graphics, with both the balls and pool table being very realistic looking. Programming the behavior of the balls must have been the most difficult job for VooFoo Studios – but fortunately the physics of the game are nothing short of excellent. It’s almost scary how realistic is the behavior of each and every balls after being struck. While I am not an expert of pool games, I could still appreciate the realism and great graphics of the game.
“Friends will be friends?” Well erm… not really…
Unfortunately there’s one hiccup which takes away the crown of Pure Pool: the multiplayer is rather badly implemented. A feed at the top of the screen is constantly updating the player with the names of other players jumping into the game, but the list of names is based on whoever gets in the game, regardless if it’s your PSN friend or not. It just streams a list of unknown players which is annoying.
Want to play against a friend who also owns the game? Well Pure Pool has a Friend’s List, but nothing appears in it. There is no option to add players to that Friends List anywhere in the game, and the list doesn’t include players from the PlayStation 4’s list of friends either. This means that if the player wishes to find a friend to play a game of pool, then the player must sift through a long list of the online players and find that friend.
First pool game on the PS4 is a success
While Pure Pool is a rather simple game, and the multiplayer problems takes away a bit from the whole experience still it’s an addictive and very enjoyable pool game for every kind of players. It’s very easy to get in instantly, the career mode is well executed, and it has great graphics. In the sudden ocean of the indie platformer games it’s also a refreshing change to play something else.
+ Easy to get in for pros and beginners alike
+ Great graphics and even greater physics
+ Career mode is well done
– Trying to play with friends in multiplayer is confusing mess
Publication: 2014 July 30