Foosball tips #5: 2 bar shots and concepts

Standard

Often times when playing offense I feel like a cheat: the opponent goalkeeper is either bad and gets scored on almost every single time, or, even when he’s good, the game itself puts him at a disadvantage and he still loses, which kinda robs the offense player of his full credit.

On the opposite – you basically can never fail as a goalkeeper because the expectation is so low, and a good block feels like much bigger of an achievement. Plus, when playing in a bar or smth, it is better to be a goalkeeper – that way, if you’re good, you have a much clearer win condition. Imagine playing with your girflriend who is not soo good at foosball – no one would like to lose in a situation like thatl. But, you can do the ‘heavy lifting’ and carry the game from defense. Basically, a good goalkeeper can make or breake the game.

There are many more reasons why imho it’s better for you to play defense, but esseintially – not only can you block, but you can also score in pretty creative ways.

And the second part is what really insipred me to write this post.

1) Enemy 3 rod -> enemy goalkeeper -> enemy 5 rod

If you’re new to it, only focus on outplaying opponents 3 bar when shooting from defense. If you’ve never practiced your shots to go through 5 bar (5 bar is incredibly variable in terms of position plus stacked players, and at first you simply don’t have the necessary level of control over your shot to succeed). There are common tendencies, but that would be more suitable for a separate guide about 5 bar, which in itself is a rich topic to explore.

You already have to shoot the ball through 3 bar and 2 goalie rods, so allow 5 bar to rely on chance, make sure the shot is executed properly.

2) Spray > Square

When shooting classic 2 bar pull shot from the goal, every technical aspect is the same as with the 3 bar. What changes is the viability and hierarchy of available shots. Here’s what I mean: on 3 bar long pull shot to far post is obviously associated with squaring technique and is basically the cornerstone of your game. If you can shoot that all other holes open up.

Vanilla long pull shot

Vanilla long pull shot

full pull shot from 2 rod

full pull shot from 2 rod

But on 2 bar you very rarely are forced to use this shot. I don’t mean it’s not important, it’s just that since the battle happens between your single dude on 2 bar and his single dude on 3 bar, it is better for you to not  focus on long squares.  And it’s not even the right terminology, since it’s 90% dead bar shot.

So tl;dr – squaring may be better to outplay opponent blocking you on 3 bar, but spraying is a superior technique for hitting the goal.

3) Mid > 1 and 5 posts

Spraying is also very handy if you’re trying to hit somewhere around the middle of opposing goal. Every noob goalkeeper starts off with positioning his goalie at one of the posts (1 or 5), plus center is such a wide and tricky area to defend. And sprayed balls are even more deadly. Abuse it, unless it is getting figured out by your opponents.

Your available range with a short pull

Your available range with a short pull

Your available range with a normal pull

Your available range with a normal pull

Your available range with a max pull

Your available range with a max pull

So adding up to the previous point about spraying the ball – use different shots and positions to bypass opponents 3 bar, but in your mind try also to shoot middle area diagonally (by spraying) and not 1 or 5 positions.  1 and 5 are extreme points of what you’ll be doing anyway, so you’ll learn them naturally. You still should practice hitting posts!

4) Push shot and viability of different shots.

Push shot works much better on 2 bar. It’s still worse than pull shot, but it can be another option in your arsenal.  Unlike 3 bar, where the process revolves around two shots (pull/snake shot) you can play much more versatile on 2 bar and it won’t look cheesy.

vanilla push shot

vanilla push shot

You can fake push shot with the closer dude to center pass and shoot  push kick.

Why he did that?

Of course I can’t know for sure and it’s a huge speculation, but imho he simply had to come up with something unorthodox because his opponent (who himself is a legendary player Robert Mares) blocked his previous, more vanilla shots, relatively well.

Why it worked?

Well, that’s the problem with blocking, eventually goalkeeper runs out of options and either has to pass or think of something new. And that new shot is not in your ‘library’ yet, you were focusing on standard blocks and a tiny surprise factor is enough because of how incredibly fast any shot can be performed. And btw foosball really, really rewards this stuff, you can perform complex shots in a split second, if you have practiced them earlier :> Ryan Moore is an amazing player, but anyone can do that, it just takes practice.

Also ‘mini kicks’ are a really good way to shoot, as in, instead of doing the full push or pull, you kick the ball lightly and then finish off with a shot. There are many more examples like that.

5) Don’t be that player

One thing I strongly dislike is when people roll the ball to ehm the high ground/ramps (on Tornado the equalent of that would be a slow pass from the dudes on goalkeeper 3 bar to 2 bar and then shoot) and shoot when the ball rolls back. Or people play of the wall too much. It sucks to be a prisoner of your very own next shot. It will get blocked.

Off the wall #1

Off the wall #1

Off the wall #2

Off the wall #2

So if previous four were do’s this is a giant don’t. It is a very bad habit that obviously mainly players from Europe are guilty of , but what is the real problem is when you allow the balls position dictate what shot you will execute.  Your opponent on 3 rod has eyes too and he also knows what shots are possible from the current position.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *