What is the difference between billiards, pool, and snooker?

Since we travel a lot and been to a lot of places, we met all types of people. We hang out at bars, drank beers and played a lot of bar games. Billiards and Pool are our favorite bar games ever! That is why I am kinda wondering what are the differences between these sports. I will also include Snooker which I am starting to play as well.

So, are there really big differences between Billiards, Pool and Snooker? Find out below!

To the people who do not understand the world of the pool table, there are three different types of games in this world. These three compile and create a singular cue sport that has more similarities than differences. Whatever said is not wrong until some point saying that all the games use the cue to strike the cue ball that hits the object balls. However, all of these games have a table that has different analogous characteristics. 

However, there are necessary points that need to be shown about the core game model that the three games share in common. The rules and the equipment used in the game used, the cue ball and the table, the games have their unique character. 


The game of billiards in the UK is different as it has no pockets. The goal of this cue sport is to strike one of three object balls present along with the cue ball, after a minimum of three railings.

The table is typically 9.3 feet by 4.7 feet, the American tables are always 10 feet by 5 feet used in a different fashion. The player has to reach a predefined number of points by striking one of the three balls. This type of game in the billiards is known as the three cushions and the most known game by far.

There are different cue games that are played in the billiards tables like the straight rail, a simple version of the cushion game where the player has to hit only two types of object balls. 

The four-ball, a game that increases the number of object balls by 1. 


The earliest reference to the game that is played nowadays in the pool, I.e. the cue games dates back to the 1800s. In the previous case, nobody could for certain say whether this game was inspired by the original billiards or the snooker. The fact is that a simplification of snooker can be seen in the pool games. The snooker has pockets, so does the pool table. The pool table is smaller than the snooker table. 

The most common game of pool is the 8-ball pool game, where there are 7 solid colored and 7 striped balls and the black 8-ball and the white cue ball. The standard dimension of the balls used in the pool is 2.25 inches and the game is played in a table that measures 9 feet by 4.5 feet. 

In this game, you need to use a pool cue to hit the balls. If you are interested to learn this game as well and want to buy a pool cue, just visit this website to get some high-end pool cues.

At the starting of the game, the balls are arranged using a triangle where all the balls are placed, the other thing is that the player arranges the balls and then using striking the cue at the first ball of the triangle, and attempts to pocket as many as balls possible in a single shot.

If he/she fails to pocket any of the balls at that time, then that player loses their turn and they have to the chance to their competitor. The next player then takes the shot. In an 8-ball pool game, if the black is pocketed before any other ball left in the game, then the player who pocketed the black ball loses the game immediately.

There is also a popular version of this game known as the 9-ball pool game. In this game, pocketing the lowest valued ball with the 8-ball wins you the game. 


The Snooker is the primary variation of the billiards that emerged in the world of cue sports and the first mention of this game can be dated back to the 16th century.

The historians are still confused as to whether or not this game originated from billiards or not. However, the similarities of the game cannot be ignored. The obvious differences that the game has are the rules, the design of the table, the size of the ball, and the pockets.

The game of snooker has 21 balls (measured 2 and 1/8 inches), the 15 of them are colored red and do not have any numbers, whereas the other six balls are called the object balls and have different colors. The main objective of the game in snooker is to score more points than the competitor by alternatively pocketing the red balls and the object balls. 

After the red balls are completely exhausted from the table, it is time for the players to pocket the object balls. The object balls are to be pocketed in a predefined order.

In the circumstances where the player is unable to touch a legal ball or pockets any ball else than the predefined one, it is called a fault shot. There are other rules that exist and include the complexity where other rules are taken into consideration. 

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