Project Description

Eight Ball

Overview & Examples

Eight ball, sometimes called stripes and solids, is a pool game popular in much of the world, and the subject of international amateur and professional competition. The game is played on a pool table with 6 pockets. Eight-ball is played with sixteen balls: a cue ball, and fifteen object balls consisting of seven striped balls, seven solid balls and the black 8 ball. After the balls are scattered on a break shot, the players are assigned either the group of solid balls or the stripes once a ball from a particular group is legally pocketed. The ultimate object of the game is to legally pocket the eight ball in a called pocket, which can only be done after all of the balls from a player’s assigned group have been cleared from the table.

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Traditional Formats

Eight ball is traditionally played as a singles competition, but doubles play is often also used in intramural competition. Additionally, team eight ball is sometimes used. In team play, a team is usually comprised of four or five individuals. In four-person teams, two team members play singles matches against the opposing team while the other two players compete in a doubles match. In five-person teams, one singles and two doubles matches are played. The winner of two of the three matches wins the team match-up. For eight ball, co-rec distinctions are typically not made.


Eight ball is generally self-officiated by the participants. A court or game “monitor” is sometimes used to record game results, check in participants, handle any disputes among participants, and ensure matches finish on time.


Eight ball has numerous organizations which all claim their own set of rules, including the World Pool-Billiard Association, American Pool-Players Association, and others. The basic rules governing, breaks, turns, pocketing, etc. are similar across organizations.

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