The Best of the Best
The winner out of these reviews is the table that combines authentic vintage feel with the best playing experience possible. Thanks to its large 240V motor that allows optimal air hockey play, the Riley 4ft 12 in 1 Multi Games Table with 240V Electric motor rises to the top of a crowded field. The fact that it includes an additional eleven game possibilities makes it that much more appealing.
While it might not be the best option for space-starved homes, this table’s easy bolt on leg system assembly and additional whiteboard makes it an attractive choice. The final vote in this table’s favour is the fact that no batteries are required. Consumers will love taking advantage of the AC adapter to power their games!
Why Air Hockey?
Air hockey combines the indoor accessibility of pool with the quick moves and constant activity of ice hockey. The game is less than fifty years old. Invented in the 1960’s by employees of Brunswick Billiards, it harnesses the power of air forced through small perforations on the table’s surface, enabling the puck to “glide” across the surface. In fact, the physics of the game is fascinating, and can be a fun real life look at science!
Though the game reached its commercial peak in the 1970’s, it’s still common to find air hockey tables in arcades. Consumers looking for a table for personal use can find options that range from informal and miniature to large versions that mimic official regulation tables. In fact, air hockey now has a vintage appeal!
How to Choose the Best Air Hockey Table
When you’re shopping for an air hockey table, you ought to consider who will be using your table, and how. Will just you and family members be playing on this table? Will it be used in a youth centre, where crowds will be playing? Will it be the showstopper in a game room, where you plan to throw regular parties? Will it be an addition to your children’s playhouse?
How the table will be used is just as important to consider: are you looking for something dedicated enthusiasts will love? Should it mimic the real thing, or would you prefer something that’s more accessible and less formal? Regular use by lots of people means you should look for a higher-end table made from the highest quality materials. Less frequent use might not require this kind of quality, however.
You should also consider space. A large, open area is better suited for an arcade-style table than a studio apartment. Likewise, a studio apartment might be a better fit for a combination table that folds away. Keeping your needs clearly in mind will help you navigate the available features as you find the best air hockey table.
Air Hockey Table Features
Air tables have many different components and potential layouts. One of the first things you should consider is whether or not your table comes with a fan or a blower and if it does, its size. Some feel like an air hockey table isn’t truly air hockey without the motor that forces that air onto the table surface, but some tables just use a slick surface to achieve a similar effect.
A missing motor might be just fine for a table for children or the occasional use, but serious players will appreciate an air hockey table with a capable fan.
Another feature to consider on your table is the power source. If it has a fan or some kind of electronic score system or electronic puck retrieval, your table will require a power source. This might be an AC adapter or batteries. Naturally, batteries will make your table more portable, but an AC adapter will probably be a more economical choice in the long run, as you won’t have batteries to replace.
Will your table keep score for you? Some do so automatically, while others provide a manual abacus-type of scoring. Either way, this can enhance or detract from the competitiveness of the game itself.
There are now many combination game tables that include air hockey. These tables can be a great option if space is limited, or you are without dedicated air hockey enthusiasts. Some tables include easy-to-convert options like ping pong or billiards and satisfy a desire for a variety of options.
Leg levellers are another feature to look for in an air hockey table. Great play deserves a level playing surface, and levellers help to accommodate carpet or uneven playing surfaces such as tile or hardwood flooring.
Finally, take into account the design of your potential table. Some people might prefer an understated or muted design that won’t clash with the decor, while others want a showstopper and all the bright colours and lights that are possible. Light up scoreboards and eye-catching design can enhance the gaming atmosphere of the room, and also provide fun conversation starters!
The fan or blower, power source, scorekeeping system, table use (singular or combination), leg levellers, and design are all factors that should be weighed against who will be using your air hockey table and why, and how much space you have for your new table.