Foosball is a game played by two or four people across a foosball table. The game is based on soccer and is therefore sometimes known as Table Football. It can vary in size, and many small ones are made specifically for children.

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Foosball Table Design

A full-size one is generally about four foot long and two foot wide. A standard table has eight rows of playing figures fixed to horizontal metal poles. Each player controls four rows of these figures. The poles are pushed and twisted, and in this way the players can move the foosball-players around, pass the ball between the players and shoot at the goal.

A large number of different designs exist. Some are very simple and budget priced. Some are very elaborate and sleek. Some companies have manufactured very luxurious tables available for players to buy for their homes. You will often find a pay foosball table in a club or bar. These are solid tables and designed to be extremely robust. Foosball is played at a professional level with national and international competitions taking place.

Design Of  Professional Tables

For this reason, you will sometimes see a foosball table being described as professional or competition standard. The rules of tournaments include specifications about the tables that are used in the competitions and, of course, these standards are high. Professional level foosball is seen as a legitimate sport by most of its players and fans. It is undoubtedly an extremely skillful game and, like in any other sport, the players will perform better with the best quality equipment available to them. In the case of foosball, this is around the quality and mechanics of the table being used.

A good quality foosball table is solidly constructed with have brackets holding the sides of the table and the playing surface in place. The playing surface will be supported by a framework and will be made of a thick and hard wearing material to reduce the possibility of it warping over time. The side walls and surface will be slotted together for strength and additional support. On cheaper models where this is not the case, tables can become damaged quite quickly as they do see a lot of vigorous action!

How Design Effects Game Play

Differences in the design of a table have a significant effect on the way that the game will play. Some tables, for example, have sloped corners to help keep the ball in play and within reach of the playing figures. Other tables do away with the need for sloped corners by having an extra playing figure in each corner to reach the ball. The surface material will also change the flow and speed of play. The ball also changes the way the game plays out. Foosball table balls can be made of wood, cork, plastic and sometimes metal. The material of the playing surface and the ball changes the friction and the grip. This significantly improves the feel of the game and the control that the player can have over the foosball match.

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