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post #1 of 316 Old 03-21-2006, 04:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Robert Wood and I got to talking about pinball machines, and it made me wonder what anyone's favorite would be. He listed this ancient relic that should be in the Smithsonian as his fave:

http://mirror1.ipdb.org/images/1173/1173f1.jpg

Me, I prefered these:

http://www.pinballrebel.com/game/pin...rk_pinball.htm

http://www.sternpinball.com/Lord-of-the-Rings2.shtml

Anyone else?
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post #2 of 316 Old 03-21-2006, 04:49 PM
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Rent this space ! cheap
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post #3 of 316 Old 03-21-2006, 05:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Adams Family...always a fave. Hardest part is finding one that works.
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post #4 of 316 Old 03-21-2006, 05:21 PM
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I prefer the electro-mechanical relics, spyder, cause I'm a relic too.

Some of the Gottlieb pins produced in the 1950's are truly among the finest examples of the golden age of American industrial art ever conceived.
Although little known outside pinball circles, an industrial artist named Roy Parker was one of the Rembrandts of industrial art. He created the artwork for more than 300 different Gottlieb pinball machines (and as many as 1000 all toll).

This is one example. The name "Dragonette" was a double spoof of, one, the "Dragnet" TV show which was popular at the time, and two, an inside the industry joke. Jessica Dragonette was actually the name of a third rate lounge singer who was a regular attraction at the pinball trade conventions of the period.
Hidden within the backglass artwork are a dozen or more inside jokes taking shots at among many things, the head of the pinball company himself, Dave Gottlieb.

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post #5 of 316 Old 03-21-2006, 05:34 PM
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I dunno if you're aware of it, spyder, but that 'Cactus Canyon' you mentioned in the other thread is now selling for almost ten grand. That's four times what it sold for brand new in 98.
It's now the priciest pinball machine of them all.

Pinball is becoming a thing of the past now. There is only one manufacturer left (Stern). And I doubt they'll hold on for much longer.
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post #6 of 316 Old 03-21-2006, 05:44 PM
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Here's a real relic for you. I picked up one of these about 20 years ago and it's one I've managed to hang onto. It was made to coincide with the 1933 Chicago Worlds Fair.
That picture of the Fair you see on the playfield is a jigsaw puzzle of sorts. The different pieces which make the picture are turned over by dropping the pinballs in the right holes. It's all accomplished with a complex and finicky mechanism of levers, linkages and springs.



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post #7 of 316 Old 03-21-2006, 07:41 PM
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We have a getaway machine in the basement it is pretty sweet!!
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post #8 of 316 Old 03-21-2006, 07:50 PM
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I grew up with an old Bongo EM machine, though the machine that really got me into pinball was High Speed. That was probably the first time I saw ramps on a pin, plus the music and top light was always fun.

I own a World Cup Soccer '94 right now, though I think my favorite of all time would have to be Theater of Magic, with Addams Family a close second. I remember liking Cyclone a lot too. And South Park is always good for a laugh, though I don't think I've had the pleasure of playing one with a profanity ROM installed.

One of these days I'll have to head down to Santa Cruz to drop some quarters in machines I haven't played before. It's gotten pretty hard to find a place with a selection of pins in good shape period.

Scott
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post #9 of 316 Old 03-21-2006, 08:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Top 100 Pinball Machines Site:

http://www.pinside.com/opinion.top100.asp

Amazing how many are based upon movies! What I do love about the ones that were done is that they were true to the films themselves. LOTR is particularly so.

I had totally forgotten about Midieval Madness! That's easily one of the hardest machines to find and one of the hardest to keep healthy. (Those damn trolls!)

Pinbot and The Machine: Bride of Pinbot (Robot boobies) forgot about those too. Damn.

Jurassic Park. The game was almost as loud as the film. Bad ass.

GORGAR! This totally brings back so many memories! I used to have dreams of that machine screaming that out to me. It was amazing how people immersed other games would whip their heads around when it echoed through the arcade..."GORGAR!"

Monopoly. Easily one of the worst built machines ever. Seems like I personally broke two brand new ones within 3 weeks.

Xenon! So many pretty colors. I remember just watching without even playing.

Star Trek: The Next Generation! Extra ball? Make it so.

I never got to see a Circus Voltaire. I've had tons of people tell me it's fantastic, but something is always broken. Unlike Monopoly, it's supposedly due to tons of fantastic moving dynamics, not shoddy build.

Funhouse. Nothing like a pinball with a creepy clown the likes of the one in Poltergheist to give you nightmares.

White Water. Endless looping possibilities. Reminds me of Cactus Canyon.

Sorry guys, I don't have any faves that Moses himslef played like Robert does.
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post #10 of 316 Old 03-21-2006, 08:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm wondering what the concensus is with flipper style preference? There were those that had the pointy ends that seemed to have only a little bounce to them and those that had the rounded ends that the ball would careen off of like crazy. I found a few that were a cross-breed of the two and seemed to like them the most. Anyone else have a preference?
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post #11 of 316 Old 03-22-2006, 06:14 AM
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Here's my favorite-- Haunted House. It's a three level, multiple ball machine. The lower level (basement) is backwards. Haven't played one in maybe 20 years. I was going to drive up to Milwaukee in my wife's truck for a huge pinball/video game auction this weekend with the hopes of scoring one, but other plans prevailed.
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post #12 of 316 Old 03-22-2006, 09:32 AM
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I think the hardest part these days is finding somewhere to try the games before sinking a small fortune on each game. I just picked up a High Speed and am loving it. I just missed on a Simpsons Pinball Party for $1800 the other day. Still kicking myself for that one.
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post #13 of 316 Old 03-22-2006, 02:14 PM
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I currently own:

Theatre of Magic
Revenge From Mars
Monday Night Football
Independence Day

Gone, but not forgotten:

Twilight Zone
Maverick
Star Wars - DE
Simpsons - DE
Jurassic Park
Flash Gordon
Party Zone
Wipeout
Genesis
Earthshaker
Apollo 13

Of all these my favorite is Theatre of Magic. I'm currently doing a complete restoration on my second favorite the Monday Night Football.

I would love to find a Creature from the Black Lagoon. And, I'm really looking forward to seeing the new Pirates of the Carribbean pin from Stern this summer.

Cheers,

Brad
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post #14 of 316 Old 03-23-2006, 02:57 AM
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My current favorite is The Simpsons Pinball Party, but I still tend to put the most plays on my Getaway. At parties, the guests all seem to love Scared Stiff the best (tho' I haven't had a party since TSPP was added) Twilight Zone and Theatre of Magic round out the lineup. I enjoy them all.

I have room for one more. I'm leaning toward Creature from the the Black Lagoon. If Medieval Madness wasn't so insanely expensive, it would be in the running.

I remember liking Nip-it when it was new. I liked Phoenix a lot 'cause I could beat it like a drum. "Fonzie" Eight Ball was a good game. But I think the best game I ever played through my youth and college years was Firepower.
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post #15 of 316 Old 03-23-2006, 10:24 AM
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I own:

Stargate
Lord of the Rings

Use to own:

Maverick

I like Stargate and Lord of the Rings about the same, and didn't care for the Maverick. Probably going to pick up another machine in the next month or two if I can find some sort of unshopped project in the eastern Iowa/surrounding states region--not much available that's close to me unfortunately.

Taylor34
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post #16 of 316 Old 03-23-2006, 02:10 PM
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Capt. Fantastic and The Brown Dirt Cowboy

http://www.ipdb.org/showpic.pl?id=43...=0&picno=23465
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post #17 of 316 Old 03-23-2006, 02:14 PM
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The ones I spent the most hours, in utter joy, and got the most replays out of:

8 Ball Deluxe (quit talkin and start chalkin)

Cyclone (Ride the Comet!)

The Games
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post #18 of 316 Old 03-23-2006, 03:20 PM
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My favorite pinball machine of all time is Gottlieb's Play Ball (1971). My family had one when Iwas a kid and we lost it in a house fire around 1980. I didn't get back into pinball until after college when Jokerz! and Cyclone came out in the late 80's. Those were two great pinballs! I was a computer programmer at the time and traveled almost every week, so I spent way too much time playing Jokerz in the Atlanta airport waiting for flights.

I currently own Twilight Zone, Cirqus Voltaire, Safecracker, Monster Bash, Harley Davidson (Sega), and a to-be-restored Play Ball. I don't think I can choose a current favorite - probably because I don't play too often. I guess my two kids (three years & nine months) seem to always be calling my name - both literally & figuratively!!!

I'm really hoping to find one of the new Lord of the Rings pins to play - I've heard great things about it...
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post #19 of 316 Old 03-23-2006, 04:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Funny thing about the Lord of the Rings pinball is that damn magnet atop the center ramp is typically broken, causing the ball to jump sideways. The worst part of this is when you finally get Fellowship, Two Towers, and Return of the King all finished, you finally get to battle Gollum to destroy the ring. Just shoot it up that center ramp over and over and over...

For those of you that don't want to know, don't read the spoiler on what happens when you destroy the ring. For those that do, let me tell you all something that will save you all the most frustration you could ever bear...
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
once you finally destroy the damn ring, you'd expect some giant bonus of around 50-100 million points, at least. Guess what you get? A paltry 5 million! You can get 5 mil by just hitting the flippers like a chimp on crack! Worthless. Most devastating bonus I've ever gotten for so much work on a pinball ever. If the magnet is screwy, forget about it and just walk away forever. Damn near as bad as the trolls in Midieval Madness if they're acting up.


If you ever get one or know the vendor that services them, tell them to disable the stupid magnet and keep your sanity.
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post #20 of 316 Old 03-23-2006, 08:35 PM
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I played countless hours of T2:Judgement day, as they had it at my high school cafeteria in the early 90s. Actually, my gradelevel would probably have been better if it wasn't for that pinball machine - I cut a lot of classes to play on it...
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post #21 of 316 Old 03-23-2006, 09:31 PM
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post #22 of 316 Old 03-23-2006, 09:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spyder696969 View Post

GORGAR! This totally brings back so many memories! I used to have dreams of that machine screaming that out to me. It was amazing how people immersed other games would whip their heads around when it echoed through the arcade..."GORGAR!"

Gorgar was a very cool game. If it sat idle long enough (not like this happened much), it would shout out "You will play me, or I will play you!"

Cyclone (Yes - "Ride the Cyclone!" "Ya pays your money, ya takes your chances!") is one I'd like to pick up one day and restore. It's still my all-time favorite.
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post #23 of 316 Old 03-24-2006, 05:00 AM
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Black Knight without a doubt. It was released in 1980 and I enrolled in college in 1981. It was the first 2 level machine I ever saw and I spent hours in the student union drinking beer and playing Black Knight. Sweet memories.

"There's gotta be some way to hook it up, it's the freakin' future" - Eric Cartman
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post #24 of 316 Old 03-24-2006, 07:46 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomes View Post

I played countless hours of T2:Judgement day, as they had it at my high school cafeteria in the early 90s. Actually, my gradelevel would probably have been better if it wasn't for that pinball machine - I cut a lot of classes to play on it...

"Get the CPU"
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post #25 of 316 Old 03-24-2006, 08:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gojhawks View Post

Black Knight without a doubt. It was released in 1980 and I enrolled in college in 1981. It was the first 2 level machine I ever saw and I spent hours in the student union drinking beer and playing Black Knight. Sweet memories.

I remember being blown away the first time I saw that machine. I rarely played it however, as it was the first machine I saw that was 50¢ a play (at least in that arcade).
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post #26 of 316 Old 03-24-2006, 08:26 AM
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You got it, Spyder :-)
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post #27 of 316 Old 03-24-2006, 04:58 PM
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I got totally addicted to Black Knight.
I'll bet you Black Knight players can relate to this. Once you get profficient at being able to shoot the ball back up that ramp with one shot to keep it on the upper playfield, and then get good at continually shooting the loop around that upper playfield, then you own it. You can play that sucker free for hours.
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post #28 of 316 Old 03-24-2006, 07:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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One thing I find interesting is that the price per credit has generally been at 50 cents for so long, while other venues of entertainment have gone up exponentially in price. How much was a movie back then? A ticket to a pro sporting event? Beer? An evening at the Bunny Ranch?
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post #29 of 316 Old 03-27-2006, 09:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Anyone want to post their (legit) high scores? By legit, I mean, no playing with the options or with the glass off.

For me, the only one I really can say for certain is LOTR: 279,456,000 pts. Cleared the three multiball stages 4-5 times each.
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post #30 of 316 Old 03-28-2006, 12:38 AM
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I owned and operated a route of coin operated games from 1972 to 1981, and repaired them for other operating companies until 1994.

The first pinball game we ever bought was a used Gottlieb Snow Derby. The first new game was Wildlife. I made more money with Big Indian (of which I bought five) than any other game.

I bought the original Fireball back in 1973, probably a year after its manufacture, and it was a loser. People remember it, but they didn't play it. It didn't make money for anybody.

Gottlieb once made a two ended pinball machine with a motorized playfield called Challenger. They made about 150 prototype units but decided not to produce it, and they somehow nearly all wound up in Canada. I think a Canadian distributor was so certain it would be a sleeper hit that he might have been responsible for the larger-than-normal prototype production quantity. In the mid-1970s, I arranged to have one shipped to me, but I never consummated the deal.

I went to the AMOA convention in Chicago in 1976 and saw the first digital pinball machine. It was named Spirit of '76 and was manufactured by a company called Mirco Games, which, according to Wikipedia, was an amusement games manufacturer from 1974 to 1978, but I don't know of any other products that they made.

The hit of that show was a video game called "Blockade", which proved to be a flop when released. Quite often, the hit of the show turns out to be a flop.

Gottlieb was the last company to "go digital". They hired Rockwell to design their processor system, but because they couldn't see beyond the ends of their noses, Rockwell designed a circuitboard that could only do what the electromechanical circuitry it replaced could do, meaning, their games were D-U-L-L. Their first production unit was Pyramid.

Pretty soon, no one wanted to play the electromechanical games, so I had to "cover my route" with the digital ones that cost about 40% more than the electromechanical ones had, which meant I had to borrow a ton of money, but before they ever earned enough to pay for themselves, the next video game boom kicked off, beginning with Space Invaders, followed by Asteroid and Galaxian, and then PacMan, Defender and Galaga, making my inventory of digital pinball machines nearly worthless.

A second problem created by the popularity of the video games was that the customers became more product aware. They no longer asked me to bring them a game: they wanted a specific game, and a month later, they wanted a different one, and they all wanted the same ones at the same time, so we no longer could expect a game to have a lifetime earning curve that tapered off gently over time.

The last two pinball machines I bought were Paragon and Stellar Wars. The week I installed them in an arcade across from the University of New Hampshire, they were the top two earners, but the gross of that arcade, including these two new machines, still went down by a hundred dollars from the previous week. That did not bode well for the future...

I could see that the new video games, which cost nearly $2,000 for the black and white ones and nearly $3,000 for the color ones, were never going to pay for themselves, so I merged with another operator and exited the business a year later.

Within two years, there were bankruptcy auctions held nearly every week where someone could buy these $2,000 to $3,000 games for typically a hundred dollars or so.

Gorgar was a marketing ripoff. It was the first game to utilize speech, and the manufacturer sent out "demo records" which we could play to hear the Gorgar voice, but the records contained several times as many Gorgar utterances as the actual game did.

Black Knight and Haunted House should be sold with, "Out of Order" signs on them. They were nightmares to keep running.

I always got a kick out of hearing the cops say, "He got away." "What?" "He got away." on High Speed.

The machine pictured in the first link in the first post in this thread is Gottlieb's High Hand. I missed the boat on that one. Gottlieb used to determine the exact number of machines it was going to produce before beginning a production run, and I didn't pre-order one so when it sold out, I went without. The pinball manufacturers had to commit to a certain size production run because of the time it took to make the playfields, which had to be annealed.

A year or so later, Gottlieb made an add-a-ball version of High Hand called Captain Card, for use in New York State, where free games were prohibited. I bought one and made it into a replay model by gutting out a credit wheel and other parts from some older clunker (I was a clever dude back then!). When I finally traded it back to my distributor, they said I might as well leave that circuitry in, rather than restore it to add-a-ball. I pity the guy who would have to service it without a schematic for what I had Kludged into it for a credit circuit.

I played the prototype Nip-it on a distributor's showroom floor. It had a plastic alligator to pounce on the ball, but since it didn't hold up well, the production model just had a tubular bar doing the same thing.

Do any of you remember the Gottlied single player game, Eldorado? It had the same playfield as Target Alpha/Solar Ride (Gottlieb always followed the manufacture of a 4-player electromechanical game with a two player model bearing a similar name : Orbit/Outer Space, Jungle/Wildlife, Jack in the Box/Jumping Jack, etc. The 2-player models cost about $200 less than the 4-players). They made a special production run of El Dorado called Canada Dry, to help launch some new product called Bitter Orange in (edit) France. I always thought that the drop target with the Canada Dry logo on it would be a collectible item.
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