I didn’t get the 900 Global WOLVERINE, but heard so many players whose opinions I trust talk highly of it that I decided to get the WOLVERINE DARK MOSS.
And I am so glad I did!
Both balls feature the S70 Pearl coverstock and the Lacerate 2.0 symmetrical core, but the green DARK MOSS has the 4,000 Fast finish, while the blue WOLVERINE was 1,500-box shiny.
(The WOLVERINE was one of the six Storm Products balls that USBC ruled couldn’t be used in its national tournaments but were legal for other competition. I later wrote this lengthy story after three experts explained how variance factors in testing with even official calibrated durometers in special stands like those used by USBC mean its reported ball hardness tests shouldn't be valid in ruling the six Storm balls too soft.)
I chose my standard pin-under strong drilling for the DARK MOSS, with the pin under the bridge and CG kicked right. With my PAP of 4 7/8 over and 5/8 up, the numbers are 4 3/4 pin-PAP, 4 3/8 MB-PAP, and 4 5/8 pin buffer. (The Lacerate core numbers are nearly identical for 14, 15 and 16 pounds, so my review should apply for all those weights.)
The DARK MOSS was way stronger than I expected, handling more oil than I thought it would be able to and making a strong move down lane. Is 4,000 Fast that much stronger than box shiny?
I used my DARK MOSS on a house shot, and the Del Ballard 34 and Dick Weber 45 patterns in practice at Ten Pin Alley in Fitchburg before heading to the PBA50 and PBA60 tournament in Jackson, Michigan.
And I found the DARK MOSS to simply be too much for Ballard and not enough for Weber.
I had expected it would be good for Ballard, but I struggled to get it to the breakpoint, even after some carrydown. In contrast, the Storm INFINITE PHYSIX got there fairly easily once there was carrydown and produced a great reaction. I expected it would be the opposite.
But the DARK MOSS looked very good on Ten Pin’s house shot so instead of changing the surface, I left it home when I headed to Jackson. I had a twinge of regret when I struggled on Weber because I at least would have tried the DARK MOSS. But there’s no guarantee it would have worked.
I was glad I didn’t change the cover after I got home and headed to the SSBA senior tourney in Clinton, Iowa.
The wet-dry house shot played best with a direct angle — curving it created massive over-under once the lanes transitioned, regardless of the ball.
Once I figured that out, I used a 900 Global REALITY and then transitioned to the DARK MOSS, staying with a fairly direct line just inside 10-board throwing it as hard as my 60-year-old bones can.
I earned the top seed by more than 100 pins and used the DARK MOSS in a title match I lost 258-236 with a solid 9-pin in the ninth costing me the chance to win in the 10th.
But I also learned something on the practice pair during the semifinal match: it was hooking so much that I couldn’t play straight, so I moved in about 8-and-5 and found a great reaction swinging it from around 15 at the arrows.
The DARK MOSS went through the pins great, digging out a lot of 10s and leaving just that one solid 9.
I would compare the DARK MOSS to the Storm DARK CODE in motion, and perhaps in hook if you put 4,000 Fast on a DARK CODE.
I can guarantee I will be bringing the DARK MOSS with me every time I head to a tournament for the foreseeable future. The only exception would be very high or low volume patterns.
I can’t imagine a bowler who wouldn’t benefit from having a DARK MOSS — I think that highly of it. Too strong? Shine it up. Not strong enough. Hit it with a 500 or 1,000 pad.
Anyone who reads my reviews knows I’m honest when I consider a ball a dud for me, so you can believe I mean it when I give the DARK MOSS a 100% endorsement.