Totem (Gottlieb, 1979)



This was/is my first pinball. It has gotten me totally involved in this exciting world of classic pinball restoration.

The machine was a bit of a mess when I purchased it, lots of water damage, rust, mold, mildew...just poorly kept. Sadly, I believe that a majority if not all of this damage occurred at the place I purchased it, which is a pinball/arcade game repair and sales outfit that has more holes in their roof than actual roof.

The backglass, however, was gorgeous, as was the playfield and I had never seen this machine before. I fell in love with it instantly. I rescued it from the hell it was living in and have been working on it ever since. I have had it for 3 1/2 months (at the time of this posting) and probably have a solid 1 1/2 months of work left on it, maybe a little less.

It has been informative, exciting, perplexing, exhilarating and all sorts of other feelings and emotions all rolled into one. I wouldn't trade it for anything. I am excited to see the machine come to life and then to buy another one to add to my home Tiki bar.

Pinball aside, there is a feeling that comes from taking something that was left for dead and reviving it. A really good feeling. I know the machine is in-animate, but it just looks proud sitting there on its cleaned, restored legs and cleaned restored interior.

If you are pondering joining the ranks of pinball restorers - I recommend it. Don't let the people portrayed in "Special When Lit' dissuade you - we are not all like them, in any way...other than loving pinball machines.


D. Gottlieb & Co.
6,643 produced


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Design team

Game Design: Ed Krynski Artwork: Gordon Morison

Pinside rating

This game has been rated by 6 Pinsiders.
9 more approved ratings are needed for it to be eligible for the Top 100 ranking.

Owners / Wishlisters / Places to play

33 Pinsiders have this game in their collections.
2 Pinsiders have this game on their wishlist.
1 public location known where you can play this machine.

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Merchandise & Memorabilia
2015-03-29 20:19 (2 days ago)
USD 12

Gottlieb TOTEM Machine Flyer Original & Mint

Merchandise & Memorabilia
Manuals & Guides
Replacement Parts
Merchandise & Memorabilia
Manuals & Guides
Replacement Parts
2014-02-22 (13 months ago)
USD 19

Gottlieb Totem Pinball Rubber Ring Kit

Replacement Parts
Replacement Parts

Price estimate

We have not seen this game for sale in the Pinside Market.

Recent Pinsider scores

The most recently logged high scores by Pinsiders.

SkeebWilcox scored 2014-09-17
posted 2014-09-17
GeminiTwist scored 2014-09-16
posted 2014-09-16
malkneil scored 2014-06-03
posted 2014-06-03
Doodbird scored 2014-04-14
posted 2014-04-15
Doodbird scored 2014-04-03
posted 2014-04-03
nisse2ears scored 2014-01-23
posted 2014-01-23

Instructions card

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On the forum

There are 46 forum topics linked to this game,

“Totem” multimedia

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