Killer Pool review

Thanks to the concept of the ‘pub game’, pool is one of those sports that everybody thinks they’re pretty good at. The combination of easy to understand rules, minimal physical exertion and readily available drink make it one of the best games for the casual sportsman. Casual gaming is what the iPhone and iPod touch is all about, so pool and the App Store should be a match made in heaven. And while Killer Pool is as easy to get into as your pyjamas, it’s also one of the most involving and engaging iPhone games we’ve tried.

It’s main draw is realism. The physics of the game are spot on - so you’ve no-one to blame but yourself if you miss. This means that with practise you really will improve.

The control system is also a triumph. You have a slider on the right hand side that lets you cue back and forth, and you aim just by dragging left and right. There’s also a ‘fine tune’ bar that lets you line your shot up accurately. Dragging up and down on the screen changes your view angle. There’s also a button to add spin to the cueball, which adds yet more realism.

There’s a straight white dotted line that indicates the path the cueball will take - if you’re a real pro you can turn this feature off and line up your cueing unaided.

Your current game is saved when you exit out of the game, so you can play right up until your stop if you’re on the bus. We’d like to see some kind of scoreboard included - if you quit out and then resume your game later it can be easy to forget what the score is.

There are five different pool games to play - from pub-style black ball to the tricky 9 ball, and house rules are explained on an intro screen to each game. There’s also a pass-the-gadget two-player option.

OUR VERDICT

Killer Pool would be nothing if it wasn’t an accurate simulation, and it scores in that department. Thankfully, it’s also quick, slick and very playable, with loads of games and tournament options. It’s one of the best games on the iPhone, and at £1.79, Killer Pool is a steal.

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