There are many fun games that you can purchase to make your home a little more entertaining, ranging from board games to sporting equipment. In between these two categories, you’ll find table games, which tend to be based entirely around a table, like pool, foosball, and air hockey.
If you want to pick up a new game table, you need to choose the right option, and two of the more popular choices are foosball and air hockey. Both of these games revolve around scoring on your opponent, though one is based on soccer while the other is based on hockey, so it’s up to your preferences.
In this guide, we'll be going over foosball tables; then we'll look at air hockey tables. Once we've examined both of these game tables, we'll take a look at hybrid foosball and air hockey tables. By the end of this article, it will be much easier for you to pick the right table for your needs in the air hockey foosball debate.
Foosball is like a miniature form of soccer in which you control the players using long rods that they’re attached to. While the players are fixed and cannot move up and down the field, they can still move from side to side and rotate, allowing them to “kick” the ball towards the opponent’s net.
This game features a high skill ceiling, and there's a lot that you can do in foosball with a bit of training. If you're willing to put in the time and effort, you'll find that foosball tends to be a little more rewarding than air hockey. Things like curving your shots or putting a spin on them are all possible.
One key advantage to foosball is that the tables usually aren’t as expensive as air hockey tables due to their relative lack of complexity when compared to them. The simpler nature of foosball tables also means that they’re more reliable and less likely to break, only needing periodic oiling of the rods.
Finding a quality foosball table is usually less work than finding an air hockey table that you can rely on. If you decide to go the used route (which will cut down on the price of your table), then you'll be much more likely to find a foosball table that still works without any problems.
When it comes to the gameplay itself, foosball is better suited for several players, as there are usually four rows of foosmen per team. This makes the game ideal for two teams of two players, with one controlling the defense and goalkeeper while the other has their hands on midfield and attack.
There are different skills to develop based on the position that you play. For example, the defending player will need to have better reflexes than the one up top since you’ll need to be able to block shots with both the defense and the goalkeeper. The attacker, on the other hand, will need a powerful shot.
Since foosball tables don’t need a fan to run properly, you’ll also find that they’re quieter than air hockey tables, ensuring that you’re able to play without disturbing the house. You can also usually find foosball tables which are more compact with ease, while smaller air hockey tables usually lack reliability.
Air hockey tends to focus on a different set of skills than foosball, and some would say that you’re involved in the game more directly. Since you hit the puck with the mallets yourself while playing air hockey, you may feel like you’re influencing the game a little bit more than you would in foosball.
Of course, this is just an illusion, and the mallet just replaces the foosmen, but it's up to you to decide on your preference. Whereas foosball is a little slower and strategic, you'll find that air hockey is a little more action-packed and reflex based, so you'll need to have a quick reaction time.
In air hockey, a strong hand is often praised as that will make it easier for you to fire shots past your opponent, but it won't do much for you without accuracy. Air hockey, unlike foosball, is a bit less of a party game because it is usually only contested between two players who try to score on each other.
Air hockey tables feature a fan beneath the playing surface, resulting in the lift that is needed to make the puck glide. Unfortunately, these fans have a history of being unreliable, and they may need frequent replacement, making air hockey tables a little more expensive over their lifetime.
There’s also the issue of price, as air hockey tables tend to be a more expensive option, so you may need to purchase a smaller model to get a reasonable enough price. If you’re willing to spend the money though, then you’ll be more likely to get a quality air hockey table that is more reliable.
Also known as a foosball air hockey table, these models are designed to allow you to play both games for the price of a single table. Aside from saving you money on a whole new table, you’ll find that these game tables will take up much less space in your game room overall as you’ll only need one.
Most of the time, all you’ll have to do to switch the game you’re playing is to flip the table over. A hockey foosball table will usually be mounted on bearings so that it can be smoothly flipped when you want to play the other game.
Keep in mind that these tables may tend to cost a little more than single-game tables, but they’ll cost less than buying two separate ones.
Thank you for taking the time to read through our comparison of these two popular game tables. The debate between which of these games is better will continue to rage on, and we hope that we’ve made it easier for you to decide on the best option.