Day #204: Pool Nation


There really is nothing like hanging out on a Friday night at the local pool hall.

Oh, you didn’t know? I’m a bit of a “shark” as they like to say. “9 Ball Wilkens” they used to call me. Yeah, I don’t like to brag, but I did once run the table to save my nephew-nope, wait, that was Uncle Phil. Totally not me at all. Sorry, I’ve had concussions.

I do enjoy the game, in fairness, though my only real life experience would be in the basement of a friend here and there when ping-pong grew tiresome. Like golf, I feel it translates better to a video game format anyway, letting me make a complete fool of myself whilst occasionally lucking into amazingly unlikely trick shots. Pool Nation, in particular, is really good for this, ensuring that a fair number of my irresponsibly reckless shots manage to bear fruit.

I imagine if I were betting actual money in the real world, I’d be a bit more conservative (and probably much worse), but the paper-thin caricatures that fulfill the role of your opponents never really feel like much of a threat. Granted, on this lazy Friday evening, I wasn’t exactly looking for a challenge, more content to listen to adult contemporary and make full-power shots at crowds of balls until things happened, just like our forefathers intended.

There’s really not much beyond that, but my is it pretty. Amazing how good you can make a game look when you don’t have to worry about rendering things like character models or animations, just shiny, lovingly crafted billiard balls. I have to admit that I do wish that there was a chance to dive a bit deeper into the “culture” of billiardsing, either through some sort of underground league or at least a trip to the jukebox every few minutes. I can’t really feel immersed in the experience until I’ve awkwardly stumbled back into someone and made them spill a drink, causing the music to suddenly switch over to Skynard as I prepare to use my once sporting pool cue as a defensive weapon.

You can really tell how familiar I am with billiards when my train of thought defaults to bad movie fights. In fairness, my brain has a seasonal residence there anyway.


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