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Pinball ressurection.

Started by Jutter, March 18, 2013, 11:33:11 AM

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Jutter

The arcade died, and like a Phoenix the private pinball parlor rose from its ashes.
Playing pinball has never been more fun, and the pinball industry had to go all-but-belly-up in order for it to happen. Many of those tables from the old arcades (and other places) ended up in the hands of private collectors. Some of which have combined forces to set up private pinball parlors. It's all still pretty underground; you have to know where to look, and how to get invited. But pinball is coming back, and this time around you can keep your change in your pockets because the tables are set to freeplay!

Alongside all this, other devolpments led to a growing pinball-fanbase. Those collectors had to come from somewhere, and there's only so many the arcades could spawn.

Building a video-pinball machine used to be undoable, but... as cumbersome tv-tubes made way for Plasma screens that -though flat and light enough- still ran too hot, ultimately reaching the 'Goldielocks-zone' with LCD and LED screens, and meanwhile phones started turning into mini-touchscreen computers with big tabletcomputer siblings shortly after... and I'll wrap that sentence up here... pinball got a digital cousin. Virtual Pinball. This started out as a grass-roots thing. Open-source software like Visual Pinball, PinMAME and Future Pinball (much more powerfull than EA's early 8-bit Pinball Construction Set efforts) allowed hobbyists to imitate real pinballtables on their computer. Flipping the image sideways, allowing for portrait mode, made it possible to turn a PC into a video-pinball machine. Commercially pre-built virtual pinballcabinets, that utelize the software, cost an arm and a leg though.
More accesible perhaps, is The Pinball Arcade (for mobile and console). Farsight Studios has the rights for Gottlieb, Bally/Williams and Stern. At 26 tables and growing it's an impressive collection of top-tables, and you do have to pay five bucks per table to get the best damn simulations out there, but Farsight always lets you fully play their 'table of the month' for free. That game's only been around for a year though,  and before that sub-par fantasy-pingames with dodgy physics were the norm, so these are fairly recent devolpments.

Here is where it all comes together. Pinballmachines have found a new environment, private collections, where they can be freely played. And thanks to pinball-computergames, you can walk into one as quite the budding pinballwizzard, already well familliar with the rulesets of a pinballmachine you've never touched before. It's truelly a new breed of playing-experience, for a new breed of players.

There's also some bigger places with huge collections (the Pinball Hall Of Fame in Vegas, and PAPA headquarters outside of Pittsburg), but if you're looking for something closer by, check out websites like Pinside.com. You might need to do a bit of digging and networking, but once you've struck gold, and you're invited to a pinball party, you'll be in arcade gaming heaven.
No religion for me thank you very much; I 'm full of shit enough as it is.

Being flabbergasted about existence never made anyone disappear in a poof of flabbergas, so nevermind why we're here. We ARE here.

Thumpalumpacus

I'm a big silverball fan.  They've got a great arcade/dealer in Austin, sixty or seventy tables dating back to 1965 or so.
<insert witty aphorism here>

Rechar

Owning a pinball machine is on the bucket list for me. Just to have one sat there in the house (maybe with a few other classic arcade games), would be awesome incarnate.

_Xenu_

I have fond memories of pinball machines as a kid. Not the super simple ones from the 70's, but the more fleshed out 90's ones.
Click this link once a day to feed shelter animals. Its free.

http://www.theanimalrescuesite.com/clickToGive/ars/home

Jutter

http://pinside.com/pinball/map/where-to-play

The private collection I visited (De Koog, Alkmaar) is also on this map. Some 20+ nineties tables. They had two of my favorites there: Monster Bash and Scared Stiff, so I primarily played those. Familly Guy's also a cool table with it's Stewie-themed mini-upper playfield. Entry five euros. One-fifty for a beer. They organize pinball nights almost every friday, and the place is less than an hour traveling from where I live.

Should anyone ever find themselves in the Amsterdam (N. Holland) region, I recommend asking for an invite through here: http://pinside.com/pinball/contact , and have yourself a blast.
Or maybe this map will provide you with a sweet spot near where you live. Good luck.
No religion for me thank you very much; I 'm full of shit enough as it is.

Being flabbergasted about existence never made anyone disappear in a poof of flabbergas, so nevermind why we're here. We ARE here.

Thumpalumpacus

A couple of posts I made in another forum on the subject:

Okay, this ain't a Who thread, this is about pinball and your favorite tables.

Growing up, that bug bit me early and hard.  My favorite games were:

Eight Ball, one of the first machines I mastered:



Flash, which was perhaps the fastest table I've played:



The first multilevel, Black Knight:



The laundromat down the street recently put in T2 by Williams which is a pretty rockin' game.

This thread is for posting your favorite games and telling us stories about them.  Go!

*********

Also, I'm glad they have tuned ads on this forum.  The ad at the bottom reminded me that I hadn't mentioned "Meteor" by Stern, which was another great machine:



*********

If I had the room, this would be my personal arcade:











There'd be some other tables, and some good old vids too.  But the silverball would be the heart of my gameroom.
<insert witty aphorism here>

BarkAtTheMoon

My family had a pinball machine when I was young. I don't remember the name of the table or anything, it wasn't anything fancy, but we had fun with it. I wouldn't mind getting a hold of the Addam's Family machine. My brother, some of our friends, and I used to play that all the time at the arcade in the local mall. One of the all-time classic pinball machines.

"When you landed on the moon, that was the point when God should have come up and said hello. Because if you invent some creatures and you put them on the blue one and they make it to the grey one, then you fucking turn up and say, 'Well done.' It's just a polite thing to do." - Eddie Izzard

_Xenu_

There's not really much an arcade machine can do these days that a home console can't. Pinball could actually be a good solution for operators. I would love to have a local pinball arcade and would visit frequently.
Click this link once a day to feed shelter animals. Its free.

http://www.theanimalrescuesite.com/clickToGive/ars/home

BarkAtTheMoon

Quote from: "_Xenu_"There's not really much an arcade machine can do these days that a home console can't. Pinball could actually be a good solution for operators. I would love to have a local pinball arcade and would visit frequently.

They've been popping up in bars a lot lately, and that's probably the best solution for operators. Kids aren't that interested cause they grew up with consoles. 20 & 30 somethings are because we grew up at the arcade, so just add beer and liquor. Beyond the Dave & Buster's, a lot of bars around where I live have games in them like the basketball shooting game, skee ball, and the occasional standup or pinball machine. There's even a bar called 1984 that the whole theme is basically as an 80's arcade with beer. Just looked on their facebook and they just unveiled the Addams Family pinball last weekend. Fuck yeah.

http://www.facebook.com/1984Wilmington
"When you landed on the moon, that was the point when God should have come up and said hello. Because if you invent some creatures and you put them on the blue one and they make it to the grey one, then you fucking turn up and say, 'Well done.' It's just a polite thing to do." - Eddie Izzard

Jutter

Quote from: "_Xenu_"There's not really much an arcade machine can do these days that a home console can't. Pinball could actually be a good solution for operators. I would love to have a local pinball arcade and would visit frequently.
Have you checked the Pinside map? You might be pleasantly surprised. I found a (20+ tables) place less than an hour from where I live, with weekly friday pinball night. All the tables on freeplay.

There's only so much about actually standing there playing the real pinballmachine that can be digitally recreated. And perhaps the same can still be said about arcade computergames. But the classic arcade is all but dead. Places where you pay a base entry fee, all the machines are set to freeplay, and extra money is made through catering (food/drink), merchandise (T-shirts, mugs etc.), are a possible wave of the future though. Pinball expos where you can also get your kicks (there was a big one in Texas recently) are growing in popularity.
No religion for me thank you very much; I 'm full of shit enough as it is.

Being flabbergasted about existence never made anyone disappear in a poof of flabbergas, so nevermind why we're here. We ARE here.

PopeyesPappy

Quote from: "Thumpalumpacus"Eight Ball, one of the first machines I mastered:
Ha! I remember that Eight Ball (which you posted twice :wink: ) and the the Captain Fantastic machines.

One of my all favorites.



Probably had something to do with Patty McGuire under the bed.

Save a life. Adopt a Greyhound.


Thumpalumpacus

Quote from: "PopeyesPappy"
Quote from: "Thumpalumpacus"Eight Ball, one of the first machines I mastered:
Ha! I remember that Eight Ball (which you posted twice :wink: ) and the the Captain Fantastic machines.

One of my all favorites.

[ Image ]

Probably had something to do with Patty McGuire under the bed.

[ Image ]

Yeah, that post was an amalgam of a couple of posts on pinball I've made on a couple of threads.  :)

Playboy will always stick in my mind for the slinky little melody played when you got into the Grotto.

So to speak, of course.
<insert witty aphorism here>

SGOS

They could be found in bowling alleys, restaurants and hang outs all over the place.  I played them from time to time; That is if I happened to be in a place that had one.  I never actually went out looking for a machine, so while I wasn't looking, they just faded away.  One day, although I couldn't tell you when exactly, I played my last pin ball game, never knowing it would be my last, of course, and then they just silently passed away.  This thread just jogged my memory:  "Pin ball!  Yeah, I remember.  The death knell sounded with the introduction of Donkey Kong, I suppose."

They were almost impossible to steal.  They had so much mechanical machinery inside them, bells, and rods, and relays, that you couldn't pick one up.  I suspect they have to load the new digital arcade machines with old bowling balls, just so people can't walk out of the place with them.