Frontier (Bally, 1980)

Frontier

Pinside rating

This game received 41 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 7.808 /10

7.808

Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #62 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.


Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game design: 8.117

Artwork: 7.408

Sounds/Music: 6.41

Other Aspects: 8.023



Rating comments

There are 14 rating comments for this game.


Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) Pinside.com staff & moderators rate this game. 1 of us has rated this game.

9.014

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Ranking history

An overview of this machine's ranking over the last years. Lower is better.


Rating history

An overview of this machine's rating over the last years. Higher is better.


Found 14 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 14 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 1.

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9.477/10
4 months ago
My first pinball. Really love it!
9.267/10
9 months ago
Finally have found one of these on location. This game is a forgotten Bally Gem. The artwork if fantastic all around and I love the Bob Seger as Jeremiah Johnson Theme. Nice layout and a blast to play. Simple but difficult rules to complete as the bonuses, extra balls, and specials are reset between balls. Wonderful pin, I love all the details on this one. Great drop target placement, both a 3-bank and a 4 in line . Pops give a ton of action, and the spinner up to upper lanes is greatly satisfying.
7.730/10
10 months ago
This is the pinball that I grew up on. Love this game ever since I played it.
10.000/10
10 months ago
How can you not love a game with such a beautiful layout and nicely comlpemented rule set!
Simple yet perfect in so many ways.

Hard game to find and even harder to find in good conditon to be able to judge it right.
8.162/10
1 year ago
If you are a fan of the early SS pins and you have a chance to play Frontier, do yourself a favor and get a handful of games on it. A great layout for an interesting themed pin. Sure the backglass art has something to be desired....but it is a good player. A sometimes brutal game that will award your good shot with drains, but that frustration just makes you come back for more to get more predators.

Crickets, my friends, crickets ;)
9.639/10
1 year ago
I love this machine, it's a skill game and very funny Pinball. For me is the best pinball , and I got it !!!
7.872/10
1 year ago
Really good game with a good theme, good artwork and a really good back glass, good rules, and it also has great sounds
9.014/10
1 year ago
Fun game with a great layout with lots of shots. You will either love the chirping or it will drive you nuts. Outstanding playfield artwork. Backglass is well drawn but I think it would have been better without the giant Kenny Rogers face.
7.491/10
2 years ago
Fun with some surprising depth
8.644/10
2 years ago
I still have separation anxiety from selling this fun, fast, challenging & perfectly laid out game
8.151/10
3 years ago
Doesn't look like much from a distance, the backglass is awful...old dude with facial hair....not all that appealing. However the game is a winner. Collecting the animals makes for fun gameplay. Reminds me of an reversed black pyramid but with better rules and fun.
9.386/10
4 years ago
Frontier is a game that sneaks up on you. Then it eats you alive like the dude with a knife taking on a griz.

The Pros:
George Christian is known for two games: Eight Ball and Eight Ball Deluxe. This is the third game he should be known for. A simple PF and bonus ladder with a shot that has to bounce into the saucer gate from the bumper or shot through the spinner and nudged into the open gate from the top. Why have we not seen this from other designers before (did I miss something)? Inline Drops, a great spinner shot and an interesting dual bonus system makes the gameplay come together. Some of the most intricate PF artwork. A fantastic package from the wonderful talent of Freres, O'Connor and Hudson! Nothing sounds like this pinball game... nothing.

The Cons:
Not enough of them made... pf's get trashed in the bonus count area like most high traffic Bally games do. Luck bounces from the Pop garden to the Bonus Collect saucer make a huge difference in the scores of this game. This deck can be absolutely brutal. Not quite Flash Gordon brutal, but a different more quiet vampiric bleeding out kind of death that happens faster than you think it would.

The Takeaway:
A great game that most people don't even know about. Find it, play it... be pin-challenged and happy. Chiiirp... Chiiirp...

Update:
The slow chiirp increases in speed and the intensity of the game ramps up. Kinda like an 80's horror movie. (watch the first Friday the 13th with the sound turned off to understand how the character of sound plays in a game like this). The spinner is a harder shot than you would initially think it would be, but when you find the sweet spot... its a beautiful thing. Do you shoot for the inline drops? Nudging skills to get the ball to drop on the bonus saucer from the top arch are in demand! That first target lights the spinner for 1k, but it also opens the bonus collect gate. Are you going to make your points on ripping the spinner? Or collecting the bonus? Decisions, decisions...

This rating is Coast to Coast approved!

Update V2:
The more I play this game, the more I like it. I have tried to buy even a beater game for crazy dollars and can't seem to land this deck. The indirect bonus collect shot is calling me from the upper arch. More nudging skills required!

Update v3:
On the want list. We shall see what happens in the future for a possible acquisition. Big ups to Kevin Carroll at Lyons Classic Pinball for introducing me to this righteous table. Simple, but never easy. Considering the vintage, it is one of the best single ball pinball games of it's (or any) era. A true player and a friendly reminder that Kenny Rogers was a bear chested, bowie knife wielding, grizzly grappling, man's man of a manly man... man.
6.986/10
5 years ago
Pros: Nice table layout and in-line drop targets
Fast table with challenging shots.

Cons: Very difficult pinball (mean drainer)
Artwork
Sound (crickets) drives me nuts
5.979/10
5 years ago
I never could really get into this one. I'm not big into the western theme or hunting but the game didn't really sell it for me. While the shot layout was nice, it felt like just hitting random things. All shots just happened to have animals on them. The sound just wears on you as well. Those annoying, screeching noises which I assume are birds.
There are 14 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 1.

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