If you can imagine a game of scaled-down soccer played manually with unbridled enthusiasm, you’ve got a sense of the fun that is foosball. This game-room staple can deliver a powerful adrenaline rush to players, who develop physical and strategizing skills while triumphing over opponents.
Foosball takes up less space than a pool table, and it’s a lot safer than darts. So if you’re looking for an awesome addition to your home entertainment choices, or a portable version to take on the road, keep reading. You’ll learn what to look for in a quality foosball table and why these models are considered among the best foosball table options available.
- BEST OVERALL: KICK Legend 55″ Foosball Table
- RUNNER UP: ESPN Arcade Foosball Table
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Giantex 27″ Foosball Table Soccer Game Table Top
- BEST MIDRANGE: Atomic Pro Force 56″ Foosball Table
- BEST UPGRADE: Tornado Tournament 3000 Foosball Table
- BEST PROFESSIONAL: KICK Titan 55″ Tournament Foosball Table
- BEST TABLETOP: Rally and Roar Foosball Tabletop
Popular Types of Foosball Tables
Experienced foosballers often have their top foosball table preferences, but those new to the game may not realize the differences. Various equipment preferences and styles of play have given rise to subtle variations in table design and construction.
Italian foosball tables are typically built with a glass playing surface and use a plastic ball, making the game faster and more challenging to control than other types. Player pieces (known as “foos men”) are usually made of plastic.
Most Italian tables have single goalies and spring-loaded bumpers at the ends that increase the ball’s bounce when the rods are moved. While there is significant variation in table construction, Italian tables often offer a wild, reactionary, somewhat chaotic game, but still allow for passing, bank shots, and trick shots.
French tables are made with soft playing surfaces (such as linoleum) and use lightweight cork balls. They often feature telescoping rods that move in and out only on the handle side, which makes them a safer choice in smaller spaces.
The heavy, unbalanced players are typically made of metal. The combination of heavy players; a light, grippy ball; and a soft playing surface makes for a slower, somewhat sticky game that accentuates finesse.
American foosball tables are made with hard, rigid surfaces that promote fast play. Choices of ball and player run the gamut of available materials. The tables usually look boxy, with straight legs. Materials and construction lead to a blend of German and French styles of play, but the overall design is very diverse.
Some American tables are plastic toys for kids, while others are built to integrate with home furniture. Still, there are tables that focus strictly on tournament-quality play.
German foosball tables employ a hard playing surface with banked corners and plastic players with boxed feet. To allow for precision movements, the players are mounted directly to the rods as a single piece. The tables are built with stiff, slippery components for high-speed play and maximum movement of both ball and player.
Spanish futbolin tables have several features that set them apart. The players are positioned in a more realistic soccer formation, with one goalie, three defensive players, three midfielders, and four offensive players, which makes for more challenging play.
Other table styles use one goalie and two defensive, five midfield, and three offensive players. The players are made of heavy metal with two feet spread apart, rather than a single toe. On some Spanish tables, the playing field is curved to force the ball toward the centerline, making it difficult to keep the ball in front of the man.
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Foosball Table
The best foosball tables are made of quality materials that hold up to years of consistent, aggressive play.
Foosball tables may be built to look like arcade games, stylish furniture, or works of art. The bodies of these tables are made from such materials as laminated MDF board, plywood, plastic, and metal. Heavy materials like metal and wood provide a sturdy base that holds up well to aggressive play. Lightweight materials are most common in portable or tabletop models.
Playing surface materials affect the overall game experience. Hard, slippery surfaces like glass, plexiglass, and acrylic make the ball bounce and roll faster. On solid wood and linoleum surfaces, the play is more controlled.
For the greatest stability, a foosball table should be well weighted. Aggressive play can easily shift the table around if it’s too light. Competitive adults may want a stationary table that weighs at least 200 pounds that’s best for aggressive play.
Others find that lighter tables in the 100- to 200-pound range are adequate while allowing for relative ease when transporting. Portable versions are considerably lighter, and while such tabletop games tend to shift during play, nonskid feet help reduce sliding.
Foosball Table Size and Type
Foosball tables are manufactured in different table types. Choose the table based on the space available.
- Traditional foosball tables measure about 30 inches wide and 5 feet long, and they weigh hundreds of pounds. Players stand on either side of the table for competitive, physical games. If there is space, a traditional table can bring the foosball tournament experience home.
- Coffee table foosball units are ideal for those without space for a dedicated piece of furniture. These tables are the size and height of coffee tables, with the playing surface enclosed in glass. Two players kneel on opposite sides of the table to play.
- Tabletop foosball tables vary in size, from miniature games to tournament size. Typically, they’re used on a dining table for family game night, then stored away when not in use.
Children and adults who are just learning to play or who play occasionally for fun may be satisfied with an entry-level table. But those who take the game more seriously and wish to improve their skills may appreciate premium details.
In addition to a sturdy weight, side rails that are about 1.5-inch thick add durability. Counterweighted foosball men with pointy, crosshatched toes provide better control of the ball. Unlike shiny plastic balls, textured balls are ideal for improving skill because they grip the toe and play on the surface best.
Game Play Preferences
The style of play is affected by the playing surface material, the foos men, playing rods, and ball. Hard, smooth surfaces lend themselves to fast play and more bounce. Textured or sticky surfaces allow more finesse and control. Some tables combine elements to lead to a mix of speed and technique.
American foosball tables vary significantly in construction methods and materials, and they often blend the materials and styling that’s common to European tables for a unique play experience. Pay close attention to the size, weight, and material specifications listed by the manufacturer to ensure you receive the quality you expect.
Although many foosball tables have a single goalie, some feature three goalies per side. Goalie configuration is related to the playing surface. Single goalie tables have ramped corners that force the ball back toward the center, while triple goalie playing surfaces are flat.
The flat surface and triple goalie configuration are less expensive to build, and many experts consider this type of table to be an easy table for beginners.
Playfields may be flat, ramped at the corners, or curved toward the centerline. European tables with ramped corners use single goalies, which means gravity forces the ball back into play. These tables usually emphasize speed.
American flat playfields use three goalies in a configuration that emphasizes passing. Spanish tables use curved playfields to emphasize midfield play. The ball gravitates toward the centerline, and players must use a unique backpinning technique to control the ball.
Hollowed-out solid steel rods provide the best balance of strength, rigidity, medium-heavy weight, and mobility when compared with either thin-walled hollow pipe or solid steel rod. Wooden or tacky handles with an octagonal shape provide the best control, with the least chance of slipping.
Counterweighted foos men contain a weight in their heads that’s equal to the weight in their toes. This counterweight (or counterbalance) setup allows the foos men to stay in a horizontal position for better ball control. Without the counterweight, the heavier toe would pull downward, disrupting player strategy.
Leg levelers and a sturdy platform are featured in high-quality foosball units. A level table ensures that the ball plays fairly on the playfield. Wide metal feet with threaded levelers twist in and out to fine-tune the height of each corner for perfect placement. A sturdy platform eliminates sway and wiggle in the table. Legs and braces must secure tightly, and pedestal bases make a sturdy platform as well.
Aesthetic features add to the experience of the game. Graphics and decals can help personalize the table—with favorite team names, for example. Scoreboards, cup holders, table covers, and other accessories also are available to make the game more functional.
Our Top Picks
This guide narrows the playing field to the following foosball tables using the shopping considerations outlined above. Whether you’re looking for a pro-quality table or something just for kicking around, there are many options. The following are some of the best foosball tables organized by category.
The KICK Legend foosball table is built with attractive swooping lines in a warm chestnut color, and it looks more like fine furniture than an arcade game. The set comes with two official KICK Premium balls, two KICK Soccer Style balls, counterbalanced men (13 red and 13 blue), and a uniformed foos men set (26). The American-style table can be configured according to the players’ choice of single goalie or triple goalie play.
The 143-pound KICK table includes convenient end ball returns at each end and slide scoring on each end. This unit features a 1/2-inch-thick playing field, 5-inch threaded leg levelers, 5/8-inch semi-solid stainless steel chrome-plated player rods with easy-grip ABS handles, and premium bearings.
This full-size arcade-style foosball table is 56 inches long, 28.75 inches wide, and 34.5 inches high, a great size for most home game rooms. Weighing 92 pounds, it will stand firm through serious competition. The frame is solidly constructed of MDF, with a metal base and a fast PVC laminate playing surface.
The 5/8-inch chrome-plated rods are easy to assemble without tools. The included set of 26 players are hand-painted in two team colors. Large 5-inch leg levelers provide full panel leg support for added stability. The manual bead scoring system keeps it simple and adds a touch of tradition.
The compact Giantex 27-inch soccer arcade is built to fit on a table or countertop, at 27 inches long, 14.5 inches wide, 9.5 inches high, and weighing 12 pounds. It is built light enough to take anywhere, stores easily, and is resilient to withstand high energy play. The cabinet is constructed with engineered wood, the playing surface is plastic, and the rods are made of alloy steel.
This kit includes 18 players; three rows of three players per side. Soft rubber grips make the rods easy to control, even for beginners. Ball returns and manual slide score counters are located at each end.
The Atomic foosball table is a quality full-size model for a value price. It’s built with sturdy MDF lumber with attractive bamboo laminate. It features heavy-duty legs, 3.5-inch threaded leg levelers, and steel parts. The table includes manual scoreboards at each end, built-in end ball returns, and hollow chrome steel rods with comfortable octagonal rubber handles.
The Atomic foosball table is built for a three-goalie configuration, and it comes with 26 robot-style players. The 60-pound table is light enough to move easily, but stout enough to stay in place while playing. The anti-skid pads on the feet add more stability.
Tornado’s Tournament 3000 foosball table is 56 inches long, 30 inches wide, and 36 inches high. This 355-pound table provides ample stability. The professional tournament-quality stainless steel frame and alloy steel base is built for decades of competitive play.
Heat treated, chrome-plated rods with nonslip eight-sided handles and thin wall split competition bearings offer buttery-smooth action and outstanding control. The counterbalanced players with sharp corners and larger cross-hatch area improve ball handling. A scorekeeper records the score and game count.
This professional foosball table is 55 inches long, 30 inches wide, and 36 inches high. At 190 pounds, it is heavy enough to stay put during play, but not impossible to move if needed. It features durable stainless steel construction for lasting strength and stability. The 1/2-inch-thick playing field offers fast play with improved control.
This set comes with two sets of 26 players each: one counterbalanced set and one uniformed set. It is easy to configure for either three goalies or one goalie with the included ramp kit. Premium bearings and semi-solid stainless steel chrome plated rods provide smooth play action. The table is configured with side ball returns and slide scoring on each side.
The Rally and Roar table soccer features padded leg protectors for use on a tabletop. The 16-pound game features a flat playfield and three-goalie configuration. The game comes preassembled and ready to play with two foosballs.
The nine foos men in each set per side, made of durable, lightweight ABS plastic, include three goalies, three defense, and three offense players. The rods are made with 1/2-inch steel and ergonomic, slip-resistant rubber handles.
FAQ About Foosball Tables
If you have lingering or new questions about selecting and using a football table, here’s where you can learn a little more about foosball and get started with your new table. Below is a collection of answers to some common questions.
Q. What is the best foosball table brand?
Tornado, Kick, and Garlando are among the foosball table brands with the best reputations for quality. Tornado tables are used in professional foosball tournaments all over the world. Kick offers high quality at competitive prices. Garlando is an Italian game table generalist, with excellent table tennis, air hockey tables, pool tables, and foosball tables to their credit.
Q. How do you pick a good foosball table?
With so many sizes and styles to choose from, first narrow down the type of table you want. Then compare details like table weight (heavier can be better for aggressive play), sidewall and playing surface thicknesses (thicker is usually better for stability), leg levelers, and the brand’s reputation.
Q. What size is a standard foosball table?
A full-size foosball table is 30 inches wide and 60 inches long.
Q. How many people can play on a foosball table?
Full-size foosball tables have four handles per side, while smaller tables may have only three. On a full-size table, game play features either two individual opponents or two teams of two players, each controlling four rows of foos men from opposite sides of the table.
Q. How do you set up a foosball table?
Assembly instructions vary significantly among different models. It typically takes two or three people about 3 hours to assemble a full-size foosball table. Tools needed usually include a screwdriver, an Allen wrench, a level, and possibly a hammer. Inspect the parts, parts list, and manufacturer’s instructions before starting.
- Attach the playing surface to the table base.
- Attach the sides and rods to the assembled table base and playing surface.
- Attach the sides at the four corners.
- Attach the legs, levelers, and leg braces to the assembled tabletop.
- Insert rods into the sides of the table and attach the players.
- Attach rod handles and rod stoppers.
- Lubricate the rods with silicone lubricant. Some manufacturers include rod lubricant with the kit.
- Fit the goals, scoreboard, and serving holes to the table.
Foosball really can be fun for all ages and abilities. The game fosters hand-eye coordination and strategic skills, and offers a genuine rush of fun and excitement. Foosball tables come in a diverse array of sizes and styles to fit virtually any home, office, or recreational space, indoors or out. It’s possible to enjoy foosball almost any place you spend your downtime.