|Insight Pearl Reactive
|Cherry / White / Obsidian
The Roto Grip Critical Theory gives us the same core as the Theory and Infinite Theory wrapped inside a new pearlized reactive cover that is unlike other pearls on the market today. The majority of other pearlized shells are shined to maximize the length. The cover and core match up of the Critical Theory allowed the testers to have their best look on the heavy oil test pattern. With big oilers like the original Theory, as the ball is used and oil is removed from the heads, energy is lost and carry percentage suffers.
With the Critical Theory, all three testers were able to use the ball on the oily pattern even after testing for around an hour. This tells us that this is a high performance ball that most players should be able to use the entire series on league night. All three testers could play in their respected comfort zones on this pattern, with small moves deeper into the oil pattern to keep the ball in the pocket as the pattern broke down. Tweener was especially fond of the Critical Theory’s increased movement in the back end, allowing him the room to either slow his speed and move deeper into the oil or increase the speed and go down the boards without sacrificing any carry. No surface changes were needed on this pattern.
Those with higher rev rates will need to adjust the cover when it comes to using the Critical Theory on medium oil patterns. For Stroker, we went with a 1500 polish finish which seemed to get the job done. Cranker and Tweener added a coat of polish to theirs to get more length.
Drier patterns will require the Critical to be highly polished and, even then, only those with lower rev rates will have much of a reaction.
Sport patterns on the medium side will offer the best look for the Critical Theory with its 4000 Abralon finish. More surface will be required when it comes to heavily oiled sport patterns.
What we liked most about the Critical Theory was its strong, consistent read of the lane from release to the pins. There are few pearls that offer this much total hook.
Shorter and lower volume oil patterns will cause the Critical Theory to read the lane too early making it hard to find the pocket. Adding polish will help increase the length but a weak layout will be needed as well.
The Critical is overall one of the strongest current releases from Roto Grip. This ball creates enough friction to handle any heavy oil patterns and some medium oil patterns. The cover takes surface adjustments with ease if more or less traction is needed.