arkuz's ratings

Pinsider arkuz has rated 11 machines.

This page shows all all these ratings, and forms arkuz's personal top 11.

Rating comments

arkuz has written 11 rating comments:

3 years ago
Seems to me like this is the last Stern with any kind of substantial world under glass, and one of the more original layouts from them ever. Everything in support of the theme here is excellent (the art, the music, the toys and callouts), and really seems like the most successful theme integration in Stern's history. I would wager Gary is a fan of the Ghostbusters IP above all others they have licensed.

The game play and shots are fresh and original, while the toys and gimmicks are undeniably entertaining. Yes, when the magnaflip dumps the ball STDM you want to scream bloody murder. And yes, that precludes it from being a precision shooter worthy of sniper competitions. But pinball is not just about control and perfect shots. It has to include the occasional kick in the nuts, why else position the height of the pinball body right there? (I guess that's why some players have learned to play by leaning in :-)

Complaints about airballs, the steep right ramp, center shot drains, kick outs, lanes, etc. are all addressed in this forum with all sorts of adjustment suggestions. For me, that's part of the fun of owning a game -- tweaking its action to perfection. And the new rules do a good job bringing everything together more understandably, but I recommend adjusting them as well -- keep the ladder steps something you have to earn, otherwise it becomes a bit too easy. Not sure why anyone can complain about the ladders: you have 3 to choose from and can work your way between them in any order, adding to the game's lastability.

Regarding the designer's infamy, bear in mind that pinball is hard, and a huge team effort. No sense in punishing the whole team just because of one member, and no reason to abandon the game. Consider how many other mouths were fed in such a perilous industry simply by your choice to own it.
3 years ago
This is my second time around on owning this game, and should have held on to it first time around in the 90s. I wasn't quite as exposed at the time to all of the games in the world to appreciate its uniqueness.

The art and sound package is a masterpiece of creative and aesthetic commitment to the theme, which includes some intentional ugliness as it should. Let's all appreciate how hard it is to get something like this to market anymore (Metallica and Walking Dead being exceptions to the rule). And not only is the multiball kickout a unique mechanism of interest to techies, it also makes for a wonderfully surprising attract mode when it shoots out all the balls on its own. And much love for the ball-holding magnet -- an early use of that feature (following on from Gorgar if any others).

While everything this game offers in terms of rules and action are rich and exciting for the period, one does eventually master the shots and you, as a human, can "destroy Centaur"! So perhaps the only con here is not having an extra display digit -- rolling it over, like with all SS machines of the era, requires you paying attention to mark it. Doing so multiple times becomes annoying to track. I started another thread soliciting info on how to fix that, with some great responses.

Lastly, I must recommend getting an overlay for the playfield. My machine has wear, and slight cupping in spots while waiting for me to spare a full work week to do a PF swap. In the meantime, I grabbed an overlay for it and it really came to life as though brand new, zippy fast and smooth!
4 years ago
Fast, fun, brutal, great! A palette cleanser in a largish collection, a maniacal torturer if the only game. It teases you with "just one more time" endlessly, abusing you raw with that one last shot to make that it won't let you have. But like the jackpot winner at the $5 slots who goes home rich, you'll get your Do-or-Die or Jericho moment to eventually get another high score on the board, once in a while.

With a subwoofer the audio is sublime. Art matters to me a lot, and the playfield is kinda just there in that regard, but I really like the BG -- it's simple, clean, elegant rather than gaudy. I'm a comics fan, IM in particular, and prefer this art rather than a comics treatment. It's just very well done, as was the movie.
5 years ago
At first I wondered what all the fuss was about, but it took a little while to get the mechanicals into perfect shape on my game (AS relay and score reel fussiness hell). So when I was playing to test it I was not doing so for fun and thought I was going to get rid of the machine once I worked out the kinks. But, uh, no. It's a keeper!

It's an EM that actually involves strategy. Go for the jokers to get your drops to add up, or focus on the drops to get some bonus action? You can chase the jokers and lose the ball before you get a single hand. And the jokers are not just pure luck -- you can shoot up the left side lane to get to the joker lanes (of course it might also overshoot). You can get good joker action shooting the ball up at the pop bumper. Yes, that's "pop bumper" singular and that's all it needs, especially with fresh bouncy rubbers.

But perhaps the most useful strategy is to focus on the return gate first. A well aimed bounce off the right queen or left jack from either flipper will get you through the right side lane, and cut the odds of outline death in half. Returning the ball to the shooter gets you another chance at a joker via one of your multiple skill shot choices.

Lastly, your version of RF might have the pins at the top of each outlane guide which are surprisingly bouncy and maddening disrupters of all attempts to control drains.

So yeah, for a multiplayer EM, there's a lot going on, and keeps you coming back. And it's more fun to compete, I believe they say, quite accurately in this case.
6 years ago
Definitely more fun than the theme suggests. Gomez hit a home run with game play, flow, and fun factor on this. Will be enjoying it for a long time.
6 years 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!
6 years ago
Not sure why all the hate for the gameplay on Voltan. Sure, it's a simple layout, but acquiring all the target items is still reasonably challenging, and the spinner shots flow well and are very satisfying, especially when taking a break from a modern stop-and-go style game. Make sure the pop bumpers are tuned up and energetic, set the back legs high to make it steep, and it's plenty high-speed fun in a classic old-school pinball way. This is the only game I have that has these particular electronic sounds (like old video game bleeps) so they are also a nifty change of pace. The electronic chimes are most certainly not good, and I can't imagine anyone using that setting. The art, of course, is beyond compare.
6 years ago
Recently finished fixing up this game and am really enjoying it. I love the art and color scheme, plus the endorsement from my wife: "You're keeping that, right?", bless her. Collecting bonus only from playfield shots makes for more interesting game play, and the left side wiggle lane with random special features (gate, 100 pt bumpers, extra ball) gives novices a potential edge, so all ages can enjoy this together.
7 years ago
I have a large collection of many higher rated games, but I still enjoy playing Gilligan's Island, particularly as a palette cleanser (some here would clearly argue as an enema). Yes, it's very basic, but I bought it for that reason -- as others here have stated, it's a good entry-level machine for family and friends. A buddy with a collection that includes TZ, AF, and other top games has had this for years, and I always came back to it after time spent battling the other machines (and after a number of drinks), and I began to crave having one for myself. It's fine as the only machine in a household of novices, otherwise it works best in a collection. It's not a gimme to get through Kona, and it's always fun to do a few rounds to try and get there. It's not a competition-oriented machine, nor is it about playing for points as much as for the clear and understandable yet reasonably challenging goal of collecting the ingredients and nailing Kona. I mean really, anyone walking around comparing points on games is being a bit silly anyway, nor is it fair to complain about broken switches or other mechanical details. Play a working version of this, with expectations tuned to what it is, and enjoy!
7 years ago
This is a fun game, some challenging shots and good flow. The playfield is an early example of well designed asymmetry. The newton ball is a tough shot to nail precisely enough to reach the target which makes it a good challenge. The rules follow standard Bally spell the words bonus scoring, which is fine by me for a game of this era. Art package is gorgeous. These machines were built well, the playfields and backglasses seem to have held up great over the years.
7 years ago
Definitely a fun game for a number of go-rounds, enjoyed playing it at VFW Pinball. The playfield art is wonderfully eye-popping. The backglass actually seems reminiscent of the Dr. Who serial "Robot", the first with Tom Baker. Besides the other criticisms here, I would add that the robot ramp, while colorful, would be better as a wireform or transparent, as it obscures the playfield a bit, and particularly the targets at the right.

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