Shuffle Pool

This is mainly a gambling game. Any number of players can play. The order is predecided by any method. The reds are arranged in a hollow triangle, with the colours enclosed in them as shown in the diagram. The object is to first 'qualify' for playing at the coloured balls by potting at least two reds. Before potting the reds, hitting a coloured ball first in any stroke is a FOUL, and adds one more red to the number of balls the player must pot to qualify.

After qualifying, the player is entitled to play the coloured balls, and he selects his ball by a blind draw from a box with slips or tokens numbered from 2 through 7 (yellow to brown). He is not required to inform the others of his ball, and the game is over when he pots his ball in one of the corner pockets. A qualified player may pot any coloured ball in any of the corner pockets.

Thus a player who qualifies later may draw a ball which is not on the table; he can now declare his ball 'dead' after potting one red, and qualifies again after potting another red. However, it is not necessary to declare dead: he can attempt to prevent the others from winning by potting all the other coloured balls.

Qualified players can pot red balls too. A red ball can be potted in any pocket.

The first to qualify is always at an advantage, as he can prevent others from winning by potting their coloured balls. A foul committed after qualifying also must be followed by a red pot before the player can play at a coloured ball. A game is over only when 1. A player pots his ball, and shows the 'check' to the others, 2. Only one qualified player is on the table, and all red balls are gone.

All players who need more reds than are present on the table withdraw. Snookers are not permitted to be laid to players who are to attempt a red: if such a snooker is laid, the ball must be placed by the next player at a position on the table from which at least one coloured ball is visible (a snooker for this game is defined as a position from which no part of the ball on is visible; if one side of the ball on is playable, the ball is not snookered). It is allowed to pot one coloured ball using another (if a player is qualified), but not using a red. A coloured ball is returned to the table and laid against the centre of the top cushion only if it is potted by a player who is not qualified or a qualified player on a red due to a foul.

These rules vary from billiard room to billiard room, and can be freely (though consistently) changed. Handicapping is usually done by increasing the number of reds to be potted before a person can qualify.

Design copyright 1997 Heikki Ylinen. All rights reserved.