World Championship Snooker (PlayStation 1, 2000)
I felt it was time that I had another look back at one of my favourite classic computer games, and it’s another sport one. I have several snooker/pool games, so I’ve decided to review one of those (now isn’t the time for an “is snooker a sport?” debate), and it’s the PlayStation 1 version of World Championship Snooker so bowties at the ready.
There were various modes in the game, and all the regular rules were applied, which really did make it feel like you were playing the game for real. There were also angle indicators to help you with your break building if you wanted to take a chance at scoring a maximum 147, and there was also a creepy-looking referee who would respot the balls even though he hadn’t taken them out of the pocket. How did he do that?
There were also several professional players who were the biggest names in the game at the time that you could play against, including seven-time World Champion Stephen Hendry, who had won just about every competition going in the game, and if you were feeling really ambitious, you could take a computer-generated version of him on in a 35-frame match at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield as if you were competing to be the winner yourself.
You could even customise your own player, even down to what colour waistcoat they wore! World Championship Snooker also had a good TV-presentation style to it, which included a scoreboard appearing on the screen, and commentary from Dennis Taylor, who is another person who knows all about winning the World Championship in a memorable style.
I remember that World Championship Snooker was also praised by critics at the time for its accurate sound effects. But I am not referring to the various sounds such as the balls connecting with one another and falling into the pocket, but the various coughs and applause of the studio audience which really created a unique authentic feel.
World Championship Snooker was popular enough with fans for there to be some sequels released on various formats including the PlayStation 2 and PC. I have enjoyed watching a lot of snooker on TV over the years, but I am rather useless at playing the actual game myself, so this version was definitely the best alternative for me, and it was good to revisit over 15 years later.