Space Shuttle (Williams, 1984)

Space Shuttle

Pinside rating

This game received 184 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 7.644 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #108 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game design: 7.834

Artwork: 7.739

Sounds/Music: 6.501

Other Aspects: 7.88

Rating comments

There are 83 rating comments for this game.

Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) staff & moderators rate this game. 3 of us have rated this game.


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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 83 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 83 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
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29 days ago
A classic machine that saved pinball. It's beginner friendly with simple to understand rules, easy two or three ball multi ball, and an awesome theme. I love space themes and for 1984 the Space Shuttle was all the rage. The play field is full of cool artwork and the mirrored backglass is no slouch either. There isn't much I don't like about this machine, one of the machines I'd love to own someday.
68 days ago
A timeless classic. Never gets old. Plays fast. Amazing design.
4 months ago
I finally got to play a well-maintained Space Shuttle table. It is a beautifully themed table that does a great job of capturing the feel of NASA in the 80's.

The table plays well. The left and right ball locks seemed to be the hardest shots; otherwise, I wouldn't say any shots were overly difficult. That doesn't mean this table is necessarily easy. Well-aimed shots are essential as there really isn't much chance for sloppy points like on some tables.

Increasing the bonus multiplier is as easy as lighting the U-S-A rollover targets, allowing for some huge bonus points. The multiball is fun and not too hard to start. Lock one or two balls then hit the left/center ramp.

The table seems to play fairly. The left and right outlanes aren't pure evil and I didn't experience too many balls down the middle.

My only criticism is that of the right ramp. It's essentially a dead end and doesn't feel satisfying at all to hit. Ball goes up, ball comes back. I would like for it to at least transport the ball to another area of the table. Oh well.

Overall this is a solid Williams table and one I would be happy to have in my collection.
7 months ago
This is a highly regarded classic for a reason -- it never gets tiring to play, the flow is great, the sounds are cool, it's just always fun. Our local league has only a handful of members with sizable home collections, yet three of us have this game!
9 months ago
Great system 9 machine. Pretty simple concept, but a blast to play. I love the backglass on this one. Has recently become a crowd favorite in my small collection. Tough game to beat for the price.
10 months ago
Only game in my collection that's not for Sale for two reasons ... first reason is that I handsomely over paid for the game ... and second because it's a blast to play ...

easy to grasp rule set...but not easy to beat the mulit ball ........keeps calling me back to play just one more game ... I believe the game shows as a low value because most of these where heavly route and are not typically found in mint condition ..there are a lot of beat up ss out there but there's a very limited amount of clean play felids available so it makes this game hard to refurbish with out breaking the bank the pinside price is does not reflect a shopped game if you can find a good condition game at the current price you won't loss money if you end up not wanting to keep this game
11 months ago
I will admit that I like this machine because I seem to be quite good at it. It is one of a small numbers of machines that I have not been defeated on in tournament play.
11 months ago
Great game that saved pinball!!!! For the casual player, it is perfect. Airlock save, center ball save, ringing bells AND sound effects. Classic. Plus manipulating USA with the flippers to increase bonus is another great idea. Great system 9 game, and one I'd take over most modern pins. Plus, with LEDs, this game looks and plays as modern as any DMD game! I could play this game over and over. Great fun and theme.
11 months ago
Space Shuttle is a classic game with simple rules and extremely fun gameplay. The layout is excellent and allows for some great, rewarding shots that are beginner friendly but still tough to master. The spinner shot is very rewarding and the addition of the side drop targets offer some extra incentive to hit the shot just right.

Like many 80's games, the sounds are a bit repetitive but I like them and feel that they add to the experience. Multi ball is very fun and can be total chaos at times. With multiple players, it's possible to lock a ball and then have another player "steal" your multi ball which makes for some fun competition.

Overall, a fantastic, fairly simple game with the ability to keep pulling you back for more.
1 year ago
A classic. My arcade staple for almost a decade growing up. I remember how sad it was when it was no longer there waiting for me. For its time, it was an advanced machine, and fun to play. They nailed the theme and was one to always draw a crowd.
1 year ago
The first pinball machine I ever played--it was at the Showbiz Pizza on West 38th Street in Indianapolis. I finally owned one a few years ago. Always loved the Space Shuttle on the playfield.
1 year ago
Great older Williams system 9 game. Doesnt have all the bells and whistles that the newer games have but is true pinball fun.
1 year ago
Absolutely love this game. For 1984, it really impresses me. The way the lights spell "Space Shuttle" during startup. The occasional speach and bleeps/bloops. It's friggin' cool for 80s kids with a NASA obsession. Multiball is pretty easy to achieve. I'm in the process of restoring mine but there's no way I could ever get rid of it. Just too fun to play.
1 year ago
A really great System 9 game. Great play-ability for those new to pinball. The theme still holds strong and it's probably one the best space themed pins in the non-DMD era.
1 year ago
3...2....1...Launch Space Shuttle which is a timeless classic and a blast to play. Please keep in mind this is 1984 and it's finest a whole new endeavor of game play. In my opinion this pin has the best back glass of any Williams Pin, it is gorgeous in the dark. My game was changed to led and the rockets flickering red and orange really draw a crowd, plus when the attract mode spelling of space shuttle is spelled out this is awesome! This pin is fun to play and the music and sounds are 1984 aka infatuation with anything space related. This pin has a bell and a space scream when the ball drains that would rival any ring tone today. I absolutely love this pin and it took me a long time to track one down with a trade, it will not be leaving my collection! Own one if you get the opportunity!
1 year ago
Pushed the boundaries of early 80s pinball tech, and for that reason it's an iconic title. That said, game play isn't good. Not I game I find myself wanting to play with any regularity.
2 years ago
very poor design, funny little pinball
2 years ago
This is the game I think of when I think back to the game room in the rear of the small convenience store near my school that my friends and i met everyday. Simply a classic and playing it brings me back to simpler times.
2 years ago
I admit that I am a bit biased with this. I played the heck out of it as a kid and now that I can play it any time I want it's just as fun. It's easy to play, theres no complex stuff just shoot the ball and try it get it in the air locks or the ramp. I think the thing that drew me to it was it was the first pinball game I ever remember talking and with that big booming voice it just was amazing. It doesn't matter if you suck it was just fun to hear that voice.

There are not allot of voice clips but that makes it better. it doesn't need to keep talking, only at just the right times. The sound effects are fun and interesting, the music, if you can call it that is ok but kinda repetive and the sound effects stop the bg "music" to play so it is a bit odd. Theres no real moving parts gor gimiks. the shuttle just is for looks. the table doesn't shake or anything but thats just fine.

it's well layed out and fun to play. It's not hard or tough to figure out and the graphics on it look great and fit the theme well. this is my 2nd fav pinball game and well worth playing!
2 years ago
For its time this was a pretty cool pinball machine. Completing the letters multiple times gives you extra ball. Easy to get the ball lock and then to initiate multiball. A lot of points can be rewarded through making the center shot during multiball. I do find the sound effects to gradually get annoying. Although they are spacey and trippy. No cool music just sound effects. I would own this for the right price.
2 years ago
Game Design: Simple layout that is easy to understand. Spell "shuttle," and lock some balls. Aiming is key, and with a bit of luck from the "shuttle" score value, you can do well. Smart programming eliminates straight down the middle drains by popping up the ball saver when the game senses an incomplete ramp shot. Light shows are fun, the game is balanced, unique drop target placement, and overall the gameplay experience is very good.

Sounds/Music/and artwork: This is where the game really misses the mark, in my opinion. Stagnant background sound wears on your nerves. It doesn't fluctuate with ball time or score, and it never changes. Even games like Firepower and Gorgar before it had background sounds that would change as you played. Worse still is the speech. It's hard to understand, muffled, and not diverse at all. It is clever that the game yells at you when you drain down an outlane when a high shuttle reward is lit though (special or extra ball), I'll give it that. Artwork is so-so. Cabinet artwork is utilitarian and clean, and the backglass is near photorealistic, not something I'm particularly a fan of. But on the playfield, the astronauts are firing guns. Why? What are they shooting at? Why does the shuttle program have guns? What's the conflict? How is firing an artillery gun even possible in space when there's no oxygen to act as an oxidizer? For a game that banks on it's realistic theme, this factor alone really misses the mark. What is neat though is that the artist cleverly future-proofed it by adding a drawing of the Hubble Space Telescope, something that was still under development at the time, and wasn't launched until the early '90s.

Overall: I can overlook the artwork annoyances, but not so much the sound ones. The game does have killer gameplay though, especially when compared to offerings from other manufacturers at the time, and that alone is worth the ticket price.
2 years ago
My first Pin ever......excellent.......over and over again....
2 years ago
I was sort of surprised just how much I liked this table... this is one of the easier tables to understand. I found out everything I had to do within my first game, I think. There aren't any "tricks" that are difficult to follow. The ruleset is very simple, but it's not so simple to get high scores on this table. Space Shuttle plays very quickly, and you need a quick trigger finger to keep balls in play. Multiball is very easy to release on this table, be it two or three. It's satisfying to "launch" the shuttle, hitting that middle ramp to start multiball. The sounds are quite good considering the year this machine was released, too. This is a very underappreciated machine. I'm not super fond of the cabinet art or the backglass, but the game plays very well.
2 years ago
Space Shuttle has its moments, but ultimately it usually just frustrates me. The game has a few features I enjoy - the static rollover skill shot, the hard-to-get ball locks, but easy multiball once those ball locks are settled, and the outlane saver gate which reminds me of the EM gates that I enjoy.

Sometimes sluggish, but sometimes a fun time, I'd recommend playing Space Shuttle on location, but I don't know about owning it. It seems challenging enough to have in a collection, but I think I'd get tired of it quickly.
2 years ago
Every bowling alley in my area seemed to have one of these in their game room, when I was a kid.
Loved the pop-up heat shield and the multi-ball sounds. Hell all of the spacey bleeps, bloops and buzzes have a great early 80’s funkiness to them. The wave over light show when locking a ball is pretty cool too.
As an older player, there may not be a ton to shoot at I still find the game compelling. I’m sure some of that is nostalgia but fun is fun and this game is that.
There are 83 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 4.

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