Whirlwind (Williams, 1990)


Total rating

This game got 660 approved ratings and currently scores 8.017 out of 10 points.

This ranks the game #44 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.


Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game design: 8.158

Artwork: 7.829

Sounds/Music: 7.264

Other Aspects: 8.254

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Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) Pinside.com staff & moderators rate this game. 7 of us have rated this game.


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 234 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 234 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 10.

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3 days ago
I love Pat Lawlor designs...just not this one. The playfield always seems a bit too contrived for my liking, with little natural flow. Lawlor's games are known to be stop n' go, but even Earthshaker and Funhouse have better ball flow than Whirlwind. I find the "claustrophobic" complaint that others have about Lawlor's games fits this game well, with less obvious places to shoot from the main flippers. The game integrates the theme really well, but for me, it still falls behind Lawlor's other work.
30 days ago
This machine was quite fun. interesting spinners on play field and a fan on top of back glass that reacts to the game. Fun
35 days ago
Classic Lawlor!
51 days ago
A very fun game, I wasn't expecting to like it as much as I did.
53 days ago
Pros: The fan and the spinning discs, the sounds and lights
Cons: repetitive gameplay.

If i can choose a Pat lawlor's game, i prefer the Addams
74 days ago
Whirlwind was one of my favorite pins to play back in the early 90s. I loved when the fan would start to blow during the storm. The spinning discs on the playfield are also a really cool gimmick. The game has some really nice artwork, the callouts are funny, the light show is cool and the sound tracks during game play are iconic. My game does not have LED for the GI lighting and so I find it to have rather dim general illumination. To me it appears as if the number of GI lights around the perimeter of the game table are not enough to light this game properly. I will be adding LED bulbs to the GI circuit soon which will improve it. Overall a great pin.
4 months ago
Excelent pinball with an excenlent flow and playfield. A must have pinball
5 months ago
Really fun game. The rules aren't that deep. Great addicting game.
7 months ago
Pretty difficult game, not too deep, but a lot of fun. One of the best of its time.
7 months ago
Simple yet challenging pin that I picked up on a whim and will most likely keep for a while. My favorite pin I own right now!
7 months ago
Great game. I love the topper and modes. The game is fast and flow is great. I love the theme.
8 months ago
Of the games I've had, this is the one that keeps me coming back for more. Uh Oh! Look like rain!
8 months ago
"The storm is coming..."

100% Classic Pat Lawlor at his finest, just like its partner Earthshaker.
Hopefully, his "trinity game" get produced someday based on his concepted design.
Be patient, watch the pinball skies for an angel.

No, this was not Funhouse, RoadShow, or anything else he made.
Certainly not Grand Prix or Roller Coaster Tycoon, his two WORST games.

Solid shots, good ramp action, and the spinning disks.
Ruleset is easy to understand and follow, and fun.
Good windup challenge shot for jackpot during multiple, which he has used on many other machines such as The Addams Family later.
Good artwork, basic on the playfield, colorful and artistic on the backglass and cabinet.
NOT an overrated game, and a family classic.
The working fan on the game really is just a still extra pizza slice with full toppings, that Stern is TOO CHEAP to include in games today with their designs.

If you are Bally/Williams System 11 fan, this game is a must have.
8 months ago
A good, solid Williams pin but not my favorite. Rules and PF layout just seem to elude me. Decent flow and a hard pin (which I usually like) but just CANNOT GET INTO IT.

The fan is a nice toy.
9 months ago
This is a unique and fun table with several aspects that make it stand out: spinning discs to throw your ball every which way, and and awesome fan on top which sucks you in to the storm theme. The artwork is fun, lighting is nice and bright, and there are plenty of varying shots to make it interesting over and over again.
9 months ago
This machine is just one of the greats in my opinion. The flow of the game is amazing, and I personally just love the sound effects and music. It's like an 80's video game in its music, and it just never gets old to me. I like how ruthless the outlanes can be because it really makes it one of those "live by the sword, die by the sword" games to play. You could outscore the best of them if the other player just gets unlucky sometimes.
I marked it down in "game rules" because if you do eventually get deep into the game, you start to run out of multiballs and you also just don't have much to work towards anymore. The skyway tolls are "free" after 99 of them, so it's just a flat 200k points.
I also find that there needs to be some more lighting in the playfield, so I've added a few lamps to mine.
Overall, this will always be one of my favorites. I will NEVER part with this machine.
10 months ago
This game never gets old. Lawlor is the man
10 months ago
Whirlwind is a classic! I think that the only thing I found got annoying was so much scoring emphasis on the upper flipper hitting the ramp shot.
11 months ago
Great system 11 pinball. One of the top 5.
Love the theme and fan blowing.
I wish I bought one years ago.
11 months ago
Fun, good layout.
1 year ago
I think I just like simpler machines. I expected it to grow on me over time, but it never really did. I can see why it is highly rated, but for me it isn't quite my thing. Plays fast, but the rules set I never fully followed.
1 year ago
The only non DMD in my collection but one of the most played by myself and my friends. The spinning disks are a great feature which really integrate the theme. The multi ball isn't a gimme every game and the jackpot shot is a seriously tough one. Nail a few jackpots in a game, get the mega door award and you'll come away with one of the best feelings in pinball.
1 year ago
did not like the spining disk wen it first came out and always played f.h or a.f gave it a shot and was amazed by the fun and great play this machine had...six pop bumpers!! for sure top 3 alphanumeriec pins. classic pin u cant go wrong with..been tryin to find a good one over the last ten-fiffthten yrs and always miss out or it not nice enough,i hope to free up space and get one someday....keeper !!!!
1 year ago
On my want list great to play love the spinning disk ball can go anywhere. An oldie but goodie
1 year ago
This game is pretty good for a non dmd. I really like this game now because I got to play one in great condition.
There are 234 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 10.

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