Pinball Machines! The Best Ever Played

Hello, I sure miss the early 90’s when Pinball Machines really took off! This is when they started getting more ramps and cool targets to shoot at! My most Favorite pinball machine of all time is Terminator 2: Judgement Day!!! The playfield is loaded with great artwork/details from the movie, Also T2 was the first pinball with the dot matrix screen, which made it even more cool! When this machine was new, I remember having to wait in line to play! My second favorite pinball machine was the Addams Family! For the same reasons above, also a no-problem wait to play! Now, sadly to say, (as of 1999) The best pinball maker ever, Williams (williams also makes under the Bally name) Has stopped making pinball machines (forever) due to little interest and ongoing losses, now what do they make? Pisses me off, CRUMMY GAMBLING MACHINES! Yep, no more new pinball machines to look foward to, but there are tons of stupid gambling machines for gullible fools to throw their money away on. The early 1990’s ruled in the arcade, you had several great videogames to play, Streetfighter 2, Mortal Kombat, and when those machines were packed, you could play some GREAT pinball! My Favorite Pinball Machines in order are:

  1. Terminator 2 ( I love it, so I bought it!)
  2. The Addams Family
  3. Whirlwind
  4. Gilligan’s Island
  5. The Getaway (High Speed 2)
  6. High Speed

If you want to enjoy your favorite pinball machine, You better buy it asap, for they are getting harder to find in decent condition!

I was in Japan in '92-'93, but pinball was popular here too. Then I was on a college campus for a chunk of '93, and the pinball fun continued. My big faves:

  1. Twilight Zone (powerball!)

  2. Addams Family

  3. Whitewater Rapids (name correct?)

Another machine, though older, that made an impression on me was “Bad Cats.”

Yes, it was quite an era.

Pinball is the greatest arcade amusement ever and I’m very saddened at the loss of the industry. Pinball is not something you can emulate at home like any other arcade game. My dream is to buy a house with a room just for pinball machines. Three must-haves are:

  1. Star Trek: The Next Generation
    Wide body cabinet, tons of moving parts, voices of all 7 original cast members plus Q, Riker’s secret poker game (you could only get to it if you knew the trick), dozens of goals to reach (I made it to warp 9.7 once). Just an incredible machine.

  2. Addams Family
    Why do I love this one so much? One word…“SHOWTIME!!!” When multiball was about to start, and the lightning flashed and the chair warmed up, I’d always get chills!

  3. Funhouse
    That talking puppet head gives me the willies!

I’d also love to have Whirlwind, Time Machine, Strange Science, Cyclone, Invasion from Mars, Playboy…gawd, I’d be in such heaven.

I’ve long felt that one of the most fun jobs in the world would have to be a mechanical engineer in the pinball industry, designing boards and figuring out how to make the gimmicks work. :cool:

I don’t remember which game it was, but there was one with a little helicopter on the board, with a featured top rotor that would spin.

Jurassic Park – great mechanical ball trap feature! The ball trap is backed by a plastic T-Rex neck & head. When the ball is trapped, the T-Rex mouth opens and issues a mighty roar, and the whole neck assembly swoops down, mouth agape, to swallow the ball, just as the dino did to the man in the outhouse.

I also remember High Speed fondly – police light, sirens, and lots of fun.

Lethal Weapon III – horrible movie, but a great pinball game with lots of computerized options in the backboard display (like the flipper shootout) and a generous, amateur-friendly spirit to it (even I could keep a game going for awhile). Tragic early-90’s dance-pop tunes, like the C+C Music Factory’s “Everybody Dance Now”.

Adams Family – doesn’t this one have a neat coffin gimmick or something? I’ve played it a couple of times but was dismayed by its tightwad, unforgiving play – i.e., the flippers were small and spaced far apart, IIRC. In any event, I could never get a good game going on that one and swore I’d never waste money on it again.

Just a few weeks ago, I dragged a friend visiting from out-of-state to a local mall video game arcade where I could keep up my running acquaintance with the T-Rex – only to discover that the last two pin games were gone.

What’s the best bet to find pinball these days? Billiards halls? Bowling alleys? Neighborhood bars (preferably the ones with a pool table in a back room)?

Chuck-E-Cheese? :o

I can’t believe no one has mentioned “Mars Attacks!”

Yes, the movie was beyond stupid but it’s the best pinball game I have played.
The only place I can find it these days is a laundromat 20 miles away or on Rehobeth Beach, DE boardwalk.

“Addams Family” is a close second.

A friend of mine fixes arcade games for a living and he is on the lookout for a “Mars Attacks” pinball game for me.

Terminator 3 or nothing at all.

Sing along with Arnold as you play:

Shoot here and here.

Another old-school pinball junkie reporting in, sah. It’s so depressing to see pinball being nothing more than a dusty curiousity these days, especially given the advanced games from the '80s and '90s.

As for favorite/best pins, the absolute best has to be High Speed. Great theme, great music and sound effects, nice board layout, a great balance of gimmicks and and old-fashioned shooting skills. Nothing compares to starting the chase and then making the getaway, knowhutImean? :wink:

Of the pins already listed, I’d gladly jump on a Terminator 2, Star Trek: TNG, or Addams Family if given the chance. Pinbot was also a fun one, especially with the way the robot’s face opened up, though I didn’t care too much for the sequel.

Related topic #1: Am I the only person who was never too thrilled with the Data East pinballs? Williams and Bally did good stuff (since they were essentally the same company), but DE’s pins always felt like the flippers were waaaaaaaaaay too powerful – you couldn’t fine-control your shots the way you could with the Williams.

Related topic #2: Just IMO, but the best computer/console pinball games available are those from Littlewing. Amazingly realistic physics, deep and complex rules, terrific layouts, beautiful art. Anyone agree/disagree?

Damn, now I’ve got an itch to go find a few pins…

I love pinball machines, both old school and new school. I don’t always remember the names, but I do remember the games. Some of my favorites:

  1. Gone Fishin’
  2. Gilligan’s Island
  3. Addams Family
  4. Star Trek Next Generation
  5. Poker - not sure about the name, but you had to ring up cards of different suits. It’s a pretty old one, pre ramps and stuff.

Those are some that I remember. Most cities have at least one business that caters to refurbing and selling these. In my some day dream house I’ll have a full size billiard table and 2-3 pinball machines. Maybe even an old Space Invaders video game if I can find one.

The most original game I ever saw would have to be Gottlieb’s Class of 1812. I never got very good at it though, not like Star Wars or World Cup Soccer. I was playing the hell out of those machines…until one day I found they weren’t playing like they should. Damn arcade owner probably messed with them to increase tunrover.

Theater of Magic. I have a friend so good at this one that you can go and get a bite to eat at the local drive-through while he’s playing. Scores over 10,000,000,000 are not unknown with him.

Eight Ball Deluxe. An old-time Bally game, this one is pretty damn fun once you get over the idea that 3,000,000 points is a very good score. Also it has pretty simple replay requirements.

Hyperball. A Williams game from the early-80’s. It might not count as pinball as you controlled a gun that shot out pinballs at moving LED targets. Fun as hell, but even more easily broken. :frowning:

Call me kooky, but I actually miss the pinball games from the very late 60’s/early-mid 70’s. The kind that were still a dime, or 3 games for a quarter and had real bells and such.

But over all, my favorite is JOKERZ. It was a blast to play, and the sound effects were hillarious.

Black Knight had promise, but unfortunately if you didn’t hit that middle ramp correctly, your ball would just drain as it rolled back. :mad:

Picture links to the games I listed above:

Theater of Magic

Eight Ball Deluxe

[. Click on the photos to enlarge.

A [url=]description](][/url) of Hyperball.

Let me fix that above Hyperball photo link:

Hyperball. Click on photos to enlarge.

I’ve gotta throw in with Aadams Family too. Any clue what one would be worth? We’ve been getting games for an arcade room (so far a Pachinko machine, a Pachi-slo machine and have plans on a MAME cabinet) and would LOVE to have one of the more popular pinball games…but the popular ones also seem to be the most expensive. (gee, wonder why? :smiley: )

Did most of my playing in the late 1970s, most of my faves are from that era.

Funhouse- yeah that was a cool game. Love that creepy Jack in the box guy

Whirlwind- a very well designed game… love that ‘feel the power of the wind’ voice and the old man ‘now get out’.

RoGo- a simple but addictive game from the late 70s. We used to play it in the dorm and measure our manhood at 10,000 points per inch.

Atlantis- Love the way that you had to shoot for the sequential targets and if things worked out just right, you could get 4 in a row on the right side.

Monte Carlo- My first pinball love. Haven’t seen it in years.

Jack in the Box- Simple game of shooting the row of 10 targets, way too easy for most of us.

Fireball- that spinning disk was cool.

Paragon- one of the better ‘big table’ games. A lot of ways to play strategically.

Wizard- cool for the music and for the way the little wooden things would flip sequentially when the ball passed by them.

Ah the memories of countless hours in the arcade hall…

My favorites (in no particular order)
Addams family
Theater of Magic
Whitewater Rapids
Twilight Zone
Junkyard something something

Our local Dave&Busters has a few pinballmachines but the angle is to low to properly play…the balls roll over the field as if covered in molasses

Just fond a site called the Internet Pinball Database. You can put in just about any of the names we’re tossing out here and it brings you back a page with lots of information, including detailed photos, inside the cabinet photos, ratings of each game, how many were produced, production years, etc. Here’s an example of one of the many versions of Monte Carlo.

A very cool site.

I can’t decide if you people are deprived, depraved, or just crazy. I cannot BELIEVE no one has mentioned the ultimate:


Nothing else compares! This is the pinnacle of human achievement.

Also, Star Trek Next Gen and Star Wars and Jurassic Park were fun.

Man, this brings back memories. My last two years in college (1992-1993), I used to sell plasma for pocket money, and I honestly think that my plasma profits were at least evenly split between food and pinball.

My favorites were Addams Family and Whitewater Rapids. Ahhhh…good times. :smiley:

What’s funny is that most of these games has a sound-bite that just sticks with me. The ultimate one is from the Indiana Jones game: “You cheat, Dr. Jones!”

From Star Trek Next Gen: “We don’t have time for your games”

From Gilligan’s Island: “Nice coconuts”