Object of the game8-Ball is played with 15 numbered object balls and the cue ball. One player tries to pocket numbers 1 to 7 (solid colors) and his opponent tries to pocket numbers 9 to 15 (stripes). The player pocketing his group first and then legally pocketing the 8-ball wins the game.
Legal break shotTo execute a legal break, the breaker (with the "cue ball in hand behind headstring") must either
(1) pocket an object ball, or
(2) drive at least four numbered object balls to the cushion.
If he fails to make a legal break, it is a foul, and the incoming player has the option of
(1) accepting the table in position and shooting, or
(2) having the balls reracked and having the option of shooting the opening break himself or allowing the opponent player to rebreak.
It is a foul if the cue ball is pocketed on the break. The opponent then has "cue ball in hand behind headstring" and not "cue ball in hand" .
If the 8-ball is pocketed on the break, the breaker may ask for a re-rack or have the 8-ball spotted and continue shooting.
If the 8-ball and the cue ball are pocketed on the break, the breaker may ask for a re-rack or have the 8-ball spotted and continue shooting with "cue ball in hand behind the headstrin". The 8-ball is then placed on the foot spot. If this is not possible, e.g. another objest ball is on that spot, then it is placed on the footstring as close as possible to the foot spot.
Open tableThe table is "open" when the choice of groups (solid or stripes) has not yet been determined.
Legal object ballsAll object balls are legal if the "table is open". If a choice of group has already been made then only the object balls of one's group are legal object balls. The 8-ball only is a legal object ball if all balls of one's group are pocketed.
Choice of groupA choice of group is determined after the break with the first pocketed object ball only if the 8-ball hasn't been scratched.
Loss of gameA player loses the game, if he commits one of the following acts:
- He plays a foul while he pockets the 8-ball.
- He pockets the 8-ball on the same stroke as the last of his group of balls.
- He pockets the 8-ball before it is a legal object ball.