Enter the world of Virtual Pool, a pool game so real we are sure it will improve your actual pool playing. It has all the angles, all the shots of the real game - and then some! Take a lesson from a pro, learn trick shots or take a historic multimedia tour of the sport.
Four great pool games played by professional rules: 8-ball, 9-ball, straight pool, and rotation.
- Full motion video library: learn the history of the sport or take some trick shot lessons.
- Realtime physics and geometry: designed by physicists and mathematicians to be the most realistic pool simulation ever. Full simulation of all physical action including friction, speed, collision and roll. True computational ball tracking.
- Easy multi-player modes: challenge a friend on your computer, or play on two computers via network or modem. Or take on the virtual opponents.
- All feel and control of the real game: your mouse interfaces directly to the cue for realistic control. Ease back gently for a soft touch, or stroke hard for a double rail bank.
- Realistic 3-D perspective & graphics: take a walk around the table, look left and right, zoom in for a closer look, then line up your shot just like you would on an actual table.
~from the back of the box
If there's one traditional sport I'm likely to be any good at, it's pool. And with the promised realistic physics of Interplay's Virtual Pool from 1995, I might just get the practice this homebody needs to make it so.
I spent way too much time playing Virtual Pool for what was supposed to be a quick mini-review. In that time, I can honestly say that their promise holds true. The physics in the game are incredibly impressive. The balls act predictably when hit depending on the speed of the cue. The slightest change in power affects the movement of everything on the table. For example, a full-force whack could mean your target will bounce back out of the pocket when a light tap is all that's needed to pot it.
Now, take all of that technical expertise and apply it to a control scheme that works very well. You can master the use of the mouse very quickly, though a brief read of the manual or tutorial may be needed to know what the keyboard does. Moving the mouse on its own will change the camera (and therefore the cue) position relative to the cueball. Holding the left mouse button in conjunction with this will zoom the camera in and out parallel to the cue. The right mouse button, which I initially thought would move the cue ready for a strike, instead brings up a menu in the DOS version or nothing when playing in Windows '95.
You'll need to tap 'S' to lock your aim (press 'A' to go back and change it if you need to), then swing the mouse to hit. The speed and distance of the mouse swing determines the strength of the hit, which is surprisingly accurate.
While I found using the 'S' key to be counter-intuitive at first, I began to appreciate the choice the more I played. If you're forced to hold a mouse button while you shoot, it may affect the speed you're going for. There are other keys to alter your angle on the ball so you can get some spin or view the table from above, but it's not imperative to know or even use all of them unless you take pool really seriously.
Included on the disc are a number of neat videos detailing trick shots and a surprisingly in-depth and entertaining history of the game. Couple that with some ever-so-90s licensed music for the Windows version (both are included as they offer slight differences you may find interesting), a variety of playstyles and some ageless 3D visuals and you have one of the best billiards games ever released.
To download the game, follow the link below. This exclusive installer uses the DOSBox Daum build of DOSBox 0.74 running Windows '95. Manual included. Tested on Windows 10.
IMPORTANT - Remember to shut down the emulated version of Windows before exiting DOSBox. This could potentially result in errors, lost saves and corrupt data. Press Ctrl-F9 when it is safe to do so.
File Size: 420 Mb. Install Size: 751 Mb. Need help? Consult the Collection Chamber FAQ
Virtual Pool is © Interplay Productions & Celeris Inc
Review, Cover Design and Installer created by me