The Hobbit (Jersey Jack Pinball, 2016)

The Hobbit

Pinside rating

This game received 260 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 8.275 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #23 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game design: 7.588

Artwork: 9.029

Sounds/Music: 8.54

Other Aspects: 8.054

Rating comments

There are 123 rating comments for this game.

Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) staff & moderators rate this game. 1 of us has 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 123 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 123 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 5.

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1 day ago
One of the best looking games ever made. Looks more modern than most games out there. Sound is superb.

But, unfortunately it's not fun to play. Never recovered from a bad playfield design. 4 flippers, then 3 and the third is fairly pointless.

This game needed to be a narrow body as now game times are way too long and it doesn't have hooks to keep playing it.
37 days ago
For perspective, I owned, loved and regret ever selling WOZ. I was in on The Hobbit, but got out because of the Elaut scandal and rumors about financial troubles at JJP. I count myself as a JJP fan, and I am a huge fan of Keith Johnson's coding. I'm really glad that JJP appears to have stabilized and is now shipping The Hobbit.
I have played The Hobbit 3 times now. Once, early in the code at Rocky Mountain Pinball Showdown '15, once recently at the 2Up, and today at Arcade Amusements in Manitou Springs, CO.
It is a beautiful game. It is just gorgeous, perhaps the best looking game since WOZ. Definitely among the top 10 prettiest games of all time. If they had done direct printing cabinets like early WOZs, it might take the #1 spot on looks alone.
However...the playfield is laughably empty. The ball floats around the playfield like I'm playing an 80s Bally or something. I wonder if they did this intentionally as a response to the difficult maintenance of WOZ. If the ball is really slow and there's nothing to hit, nothing can break, right?
Can this shell of a game be salvaged by Keith Johnson? If so, this will (further) solidify his reputation as the GOAT programmer.
40 days ago
probably one of the most beautiful games ever made.
41 days ago
I liked this machine, but ultimately decided to get a Wizard of Oz instead for my collection. THe game is fun to play, but dare i say "easy", as balls last forever, multi balls are pretty simple to achieve, and balls hardly ever go down the drain. (of course that last part just might be me comparing it to the Ghostbusters machine i play every day with the wide open spot between the flippers).

I like the playfield, and while at first it seemed barren compared to the Wizard next to it, the pop ups are a lot of fun and create a challenge. I liked the animations and voices of the machine and call outs, but i was a little disappointed in the gimmicks and toys. Smaug is good looking but ultimately doesn't do much.

Summary: Great game, good play,
44 days ago
Just had the game for a few days and still can't get the grin off my face, even when I'm in bed. That being said so far It's very fun, the game play is great , the sound is awesome, and the backglass/lcd screen is cool too. I think this game should last for a good amount of time in my small collection because of how many different modes to play and try to complete. The game also plays pretty smooth and has a lot to shoot at, drop targets, ramps, orbits, a captive ball, and even holes that kick the balls out to the ramps! Yup It's a keeper!!
46 days ago
I had no idea what was going on but I was kicking this games butt and getting all sorts of rings and crap. I am sure this would all make sense to me if i watched the movies. Someone please buy me this game
46 days ago
Lots going on...but it's all lost on me. Much like JJ's Wizard of Oz, the game is an assault to the senses. Looks good, sounds good, shoots fine, but dip my nuts in sweet cream and squat me in a kitchen full of kittens I have no clue what is going on. The game is an exercise in excess. I'm a guy that needs games to be a bit more simple. I want a dime store novel, but Hobbit gives you...well, the entire works of Tolkien. I have a feeling it has a lot to do with that backbox screen. Lots of information there, but I'm just not looking at it. I've been trained to focus on the playfield. Characters, clips, numbers and animations are all too much for my pea-sized brain I guess. No complaints of the "bare" fills up nicely with the pop-ups, and they are used in interesting ways. Maybe I'm just a 35-year-old curmudgeon that can't keep up with the times...but the Hobbit is a bit too excessive for my liking.
64 days ago
gave it a slightly higher rating because of it's age...all the effects are there
66 days ago
Pretty awesome pin. Much to do and although the layout looks simple it still has a lot of variety.
Some may not like the long ball times.
80 days ago
Good/great - absolutely stunning visuals, lighting and sound. Intricate and deep rule set. Innovative playfield. Wide body design.

Could be better - beasts can be intrusive. Can feel excessively multi-ball driven at times. Can be challenging to know what the objectives are during MB modes.
80 days ago
Quality is written all over this game. Jersey Jack is definitely the leader in building a quality game. The Hobbit has everything and keeps you coming back for more. It's extremely beautiful, and the LED screen showcases some action packed scenes. The software is very impressive; again, high quality here. I was blown away with this pin when I first saw it on the road that I had to buy one. I play it every day. 10/10 in my books.
81 days ago
This is as close to the perfect game as it gets. The theme, the technology, the way the game pulls you into an adventure is unlike any other game I've played. I liked it so much after playing it on location I bought one.
82 days ago
What a great playing game !
Sounds and visual are top notch.
I play with Bose headphones via the built in headphone jack.
A little hard to learn at first to learn the rules 31 modes with 3 wizard modes
The playfield and shots are very entertaining and sometimes hard !
Very good build quality and last ability
The pop-ups are noisy when reseting though

Time will tell if it's a keeper AA++
83 days ago
So you know that girl in high school that everyone wants to date because she has amazing style and basically the hottest girl in school? Then when you finally get a yes to prom everyone says "WOW you're going to prom with Alicia? Holy she's HOT!" Then you get to prom, everyone is staring at you because you are prom king and queen then after the night is over you realize Alicia had so much beauty and hype but did not have time to explore who she was as a person inside. This was hobbit for me. A beautiful, well-lit machine that everyone wants to play. I just didn't have enough time to get to know the machine.
85 days ago
This game gets full marks on sound, animations, music, quality. The animations and video is so polished, playing the game reminds me of a high end VLT in vegas when you unlock special modes. Just excellent design. Ruleset was incredibly deep.

Re-played this on a dialed in machine. Super impressed overall! I would like to own this some day.
85 days ago
Didn't like it at all when it came out. UNTIL I got to play it a lot at a friends place. It really grew on my and I had to own one asap. It brought real change to my collection.
86 days ago
The LCD screen is such a huge addition to these machines. Great game-play and has RPG elements to it. Very deep game-play. Love it
3 months ago
A really great second offering from JJP. How can you not love Gandolf screaming "JACKPOT!." There is an open playfield but the pf toys that pop up underneath, along with the rollover, and drop targets make up for that. The many modes with multiball add on is great. There's just so much to do. I don't care for the "arrow" left outlane kicker because I've had many a ball shoot directly into the opposite (right) outlane, but I can live with it. One of my wishlist tables that will be a far reach for me unfortunately.
3 months ago
As a transition from Ghostbusters Premium- its the Hobbit for the win!

Definitely a shooters game to the max- needs dialing in like any other pin, but nothing unusual about the process- unlike GB which required tons of modifications to make the game playable.

Build quality is just on another level than the basic Stern boxes of today- which seem more appropriate for routed games for money making rather than collectibles for the home.

I've barely scratched the surface in the Hobbit like most others. Its got the depth of an RPG video game crossed with a pinball machine.
3 months ago
A beautiful machine, great audio visuals and mostly excellent build quality. However, 2-3 weeks of owning and I was done, for all the technical tour de force I found the game wanting, few shots that are satisfying and big scores are all about the over the top multi-ball which turns it into a random event. For all the animation and gusto of the scree, you never have time to appreciate it in game. For those that liken it to a RPG, you've obviously never played one! The rule set appears complex, deep and very interesting to start with, but it just does not deliver. A great shame in my book.
3 months ago
The most gorgeous game I have ever seen. Unfortunately I found the game play monotonous. I love playing it on someone else's dime.
3 months ago
A masterpiece! Going to get one.
3 months ago
Really an amazing game, deep rule set, fantastic artwork and sound and a very immersive game. Quality is second to none and there are a lot of little things that have been done that put the game over the top. Only knocks are that it is very hard to figure out for a casual player, the modes may seem somewhat repetitive and the shot variety can feel limited. In a home environment you have much more time to appreciate and try to understand the game. On route, you will never be able to figure it out. Theme integration is about the best out there.
3 months ago
Amazing game. Layout and Gameplay could have been a little better. Also, the Smaug toy/gimmick could have done a little more, but overall. Amazing package, with a price to match.
3 months ago
Have the Black Arrow SE model and absolutely love it. Its a blast to play. Very deep rule set, 31 modes and many multi balls. It's a beautiful looking game and it's built with quality and has lastability in any collection. Can't recommend it any higher.
There are 123 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 5.

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