jlm33's ratings

Pinsider jlm33 has rated 169 machines.

This page shows all all these ratings, and forms jlm33's personal top 169.

Rating comments

jlm33 has written 167 rating comments:

3 years ago
Pros: sound package, artwork... very immersive.
Cons: PF illumination, tight shots, some reliability issues.
4 years ago
Beautiful machine, good theme integration, love the way the display looks on the backglass.

Shots are way too tight. Spoils most of the fun.
4 years ago
(disclaimer - ranking based on the prototype with 3 rotating disks)

I was underwhelmed by this game. Lighting is relatively bad - but this should be an easy fix. My major beef with Pirates was the layout which I did not like at all. The ramps are not fun, and the upper PF is of limited interest.

on the plus side, choosing a character is fun - Dr Who's style with lots of possibilities. Display is really nice.
5 years ago
Love the toy box, great artwork, decent theme integration, lots of information on the LCD screen, challenging layout.

I have problems doing the "lock" shot; I am more likely to lock ball by chance...
5 years ago
Good flow, nice animations, appropriate lighting

Not a big fan of the skill shot, feels cheap (as compared to Aerosmith), useless hyper loop, boring video mode.
5 years ago
Outstanding playfield layout (one of the best of all times!), Great flow and speed.
Lots of things to do.

Odd theme, ruleset is not intuitive, slow learning curve.
5 years ago
Very good theme integration, great movie clips, great toy (Xeno Head) and original ruleset.

Cons :
Odd layout (feeding the upper flipper is not easy), a bit slow (as compared to Full throttle, another widebody), some bugs remaining, dark GI.
6 years ago
Game looks nice but is really brutal. The right ramp is not very well executed. Many airballs. Game relies too much on skill shots...
6 years ago
Nice original theme
Good shaker integration

My main beef with Earthshaker is that I do not any satisfying shot. The clunky right ramp is the worst. The playfield is cramped. The center ramp is repetitive and seems to be the most valuable shot in tournament mode. Skill shot is not interesting. Not a big fan of artwork…
6 years ago
The more I play GoT, the more I like star trek... I consider ST to be Steve Richie's masterpiece.

GoT rules may be more complex, deeper... and still I am not a big fan of the ram and dragon hurling back the ball at max speed. ST is fast while GoT is too fast for my aging reflexes. GoT Artwork is bad. Really bad. Light show is too much. Video mode is bad...

It does have the Richie genes, making it enjoyable. It does have this "one more game" feeling. But I do prefer TWD or ST over GoT.
6 years ago
Royal rumble may have flaws (repetitive call outs and music, rules that could have been better...) but I would not mind owning it! Excellente theme integration, good PF layout for a widebody and a fully playable upper playfield.
6 years ago
Rotation 8 has one noticeable feature : its automatic rotating playfield. It's cool to play a 4-player game with 3 friends and not have to move. Game play is decent... for a cocktail table. The spinner shot is harder than you think. The central scoop is a must - it lights the flipper, and allows you to get an extra ball after 4 shots. The third flipper may actually help to reach this scoop!

The left part of the playfield could have been better used. This is one example where drop targets would have been far better than standups.
6 years ago
Played this game twice. First as a prototype during festi flip 2014, then during the EPC in Belgium in Fall 2015.

Game has great flow and is fast for a widebody. Actually the fastest widebody I know. Shots are satisfying. Skill shot is fun. Lighting is cool. The LCD implementation is optimal. Rules are solid, if not ultra deep. The learning curve is actually faster than for some recent sterns. I love the modular PF concept. LE glossy cabinet is nice.

Theme does nothing for me, but I have to admit it is well implemented.
Artwork is decent - it improved since the first release but is still not outstanding. The retro lighting of the cabinet artwork is cool.

Cons: Animations and sounds become repetitive after a while. Some airballs in 2014, far less a year later. A few technical issues.

Overall, a very nice first pin from a new company. Andrew is a nice guy to talk with. The whole team is very friendly and eager to chat.
7 years ago
T3 is a pin I found relatively uninspired at start (T2 remade? What for?) but now growing on me. Had to see good players having a blast on it. The RPG (bagatelle on the fronton) is relatively unique. I like it. Rules are simple, and that's good thing. If you find that game too easy, open the outlanes! This one was used for the EPC2015 (including the final) and I doubt anyone found it too easy...
Theme integration is good. Artwork is decent (if you like Arnie!). Overall, a solid game I would not mind owning.
7 years ago
This is a One-of-a-Kind game, that plays like no other (EM on steroids?). First impression when you see that game for real is that it is beautiful and colorful. Game plays relatively fast. The small display on the apron is an excellent idea. Some quotes are really fun. Overall, a real pleasure to play.
7 years ago
I like the playfield layout with many interesting shots. Excellent theme integration. The big DMD is a plus (as long as it's working…) with good animations.
This game is begging for an alternative David Hasselhoff-free translite…
7 years ago
Decent game that was probably lagging behind in comparisons to pins produced during the same period. Rules are not bad - deserves to be played over and over to discover its subtilities. Worth owning if you have space for a number of pins.
7 years ago
I find the artwork creepy (pun intended); I guess this can be seen as a good thing, I simply don't like it very much. Not a big fan of the layout either. The creature hole seems out of place. Add to that repetitive call outs and you will understand why I do not enjoy that pin very much.

On the plus side, some cool animations, good shaker implementation and… if you like spinners, you will love that game!
7 years ago
I finally own this machine.
Pros: tight shots
Cons: tight shots !

On a bad day, this game can be highly frustrating... Overall, a solid pin, with decent artwork. The theme is nicely implemented. I love the references to its Bally ancestor. Kiss fans should be happy with this one.
7 years ago
A decent game I could simply not love. Multiball is easy to reach (not a bad thing) but scoring seems unbalanced (?): spinner rules, for what I know.
7 years ago
You can't deny this is an original / unique layout…
The pin fits the theme.
Looks better in reality than on pictures

The ring is extremely boring. Kills the flow.
Not a fan of this symetrical layout
Understanding the rules is hard.

Unsure if better code can save this one.
7 years ago
I waited several months to rate that pin after playing it for the first time. My first experience was truly abyssal. Now that I found one with code update and most of the worst drains corrected, I can say this pin is far better than WWE, good but not outstanding.

Cool ramps – smooth and clear.
Original skill shot
Interesting (but not family friendly!!) animations
Shot map / layout is original
(Game needs to be set up properly to be enjoyable. You will find the right settings at home, but finding the right one on location is another story)

Artwork is not stellar, but not hideous either.

2 bash toys is one too many. The Well Zombie is kind of ridiculous. The Head bash toy in the barn is even worse. And both seem to have problems registering shots.
Ugly White lightning…
No actor voices
Rules are far from self-explanatory.

Edit #1: the more I play this game, the more I like it.
7 years ago
Amazing PF shot map. Very original, very diverse and well thought. The mini-flippers are really cool.
7 years ago
So surprising I could not find the love that game. Played Lorenz' game, loved it, found another one for sale and ... the magic was gone.

Layout is fine, and you can find the Zaccaria touch is many details. Artwork is below part as compared to other Zaccs, but stil tolerable.
8 years ago
Foreword: technically I am rating the Speakeasy 4 players version - I assume it is strictly identical.

This game offers interesting original and features such as the Flyaway (hanging) targets and sacrifice button (allowing you to nullify out of sequence shots by paying with points). Note I would consider the roulette neither as original (found two decades ago) or interesting. That's too bad because it is a central feature of this game.

Artwork is OK. I had to do some digging to understand the theme.
8 years ago
- decent fit with the theme (if you like this theme… I don't)
- complete ruleset
- Fair variety of shots… at the cost of a cluttered PF

- The ever twirling mini flipper – absolutely awful.
- Becomes repetitive after a few games
8 years ago
Future spa is not bad but is a pale copy of paragon. Worse theme, worse artwork, worse gameplay. I cannot find a single gameplay element for which I would prefer future spa. it has everything people tend to dislike about wide bodies.
I like the inline drop targets (I like them too on Paragon). Game score is bonus heavy as for many Ballys from the same period. The left outlane door is cool.
8 years ago
I was expecting the worst… 24 came as a pleasant surprise. Far from a Top10 pin, perhaps not a game I would enjoy owning for long (theme does nothing to me) but a game I will enjoy playing on location if I can find it again.

- Original layout
- Tight shots, some being far away
- Excellent flow

- Built with the Cheap Stern Syndroma. Photoshopped low quality artwork, cheap looking toys (which work nicely though)…
- Rules seem a bit shallow. I would have to play it more to confirm that impression. But that layout probably deserved better.
8 years ago
Best-looking backglass of all times? (talking about the European version of course...)

Regarding gameplay, my preference is for Pinball Champ over Farfalla... but the later is much nicer and has these outlane flippers which are very, very difficult to master: very cool "toy"!!
8 years ago
The one thing you cannot but notice for Raven is its backglass. One of the worst of all times. But the game is better than that. Give it a try. It is not a hidden gem, but it plays decently. The Helicopter is a cool toy. Building up the bonus multiplier is fun. The left ramp is a bit too tight. Shooting the snipers is fun.
8 years ago
PF layout is actually inspired from Centaur. It's not obvious at first glance, but you can see how it influenced this game if careful. You can't go wrong with good genes like this one, right?

Well... you can!

- Backglass is decent
- What else?

- Generic cabinet artwork
- Indecent ruleset for a game produced in 1984
- Horrible repetitive (and ridiculous) call outs in French. "Ca monte encore !"
- Layout is not as good at it seems.
- Looks cheap in many aspects.
8 years ago
X-men is a better game than I thought initially. It mixes easy shots for beginners (the scoop, Wolverine) and much harder shots (ramps for example).

Ruleset is good, but really not easy to understand at first glance. You have all these flashing lights lit... red arrow seem like a jackpot... bur worth 50,000 points!? Typical Stern. As a consequence the learning curve is slow, but that game deserves it.
8 years ago
- The drive-in theme and the K-I-S-S shot
- Humour and "move your car" animations
- Hologram
- Tight and challenging shots
- Rules are easy to understand, but hard to master…

- Soundtrack
- Busy (too busy?) PF giving poor visibility of obstructed shots
- Ball spend too much time on the lower part of the PF
- G.I.
8 years ago
Fast and Furious... and Unforgiving (especially when playing with wide-open outlanes for tournament mode).

There is no equivalent to Iron Man...
You need an adrenaline fix? Here is the answer.
You have only 2 minutes to play before leaving for work? IM will eat you alive in less than that.
Cool music and call outs

A game I do not own, but I am fortunate enough to have one at home for a few days.

Edit: I am no longer sure about lastabiity. Seems shallow and repetitive after a while.
8 years ago
What I enjoy the most about that game is how easy you understand what to do. Progress through the various objectives is easy to gauge. Great flow. The cannon is a really nice - ACDC's cannon is no better. Theme is cool.

While this game is instantly enjoyable, I wonder if it could become boring relatively quickly. Unbalanced scoring. Reaching Multiball is too easy.
8 years ago
I have mixed feelings about that one. I love the theme, enjoy the elevator. Seeking clues is fun. Hearing the phone ringing is cool. Artwork is decent and layout is original. The theme is well executed.
On the other hand, the roulette is out of place. Animations are fun at start, but grow old quickly. A pin I enjoy playing on location but would not consider owning or selecting for a tourney.
8 years ago
Mustang is a decent game based on a theme I did not consider worth buying... at first. The game is fast and offers a variety of shots. The skillshot is very hard (and therefore interesting). I like the bumper action, and I also enjoy the bumper caps! On the minus side, I find PF artwork really ugly.

Edit 1: the more I play it, the more I love it (and that was with 1.3 code)

Edit 2: The more I play it, the more I love it. Now among my favorite Sterns!
8 years ago
Surprisingly good, given the artwork, theme and lack of ramps. The choice between "present" and "past" is a nice touch. The skill shot is very, very hard.
8 years ago
OK, Pamela is sexy... Backglass is cool. PF artwork is bad. Rules are even worse, with unbalanced scoring. The right ramp seems clunky. The skill shot is boring after a while.

Overall, fun to try for a few games, but ages very fast.
8 years ago
Took me some time to find one. Great looking pin with a unique bagatelle. There might be some skill involved in the bagatelle shots... who knows... for me it's mostly random but really fun... for one or two games.
I love drop targets. It takes time to fully understand the rules... and realize it has the depth of a bingo machine (to be taken as an insult).

Edit: After a few months, the Honeymoon period is over. Forever...
Edit2: Please leave... I need my precious space !
Edit3: Catacomb involves as much skill as a Bingo machine. So happy it is now gone!
8 years ago
Pros: Bumpers. What else? Lots of action there, allowing you to score many points. Too many points...
Cons: First and foremost, the infamous location of the Post down rollover... PF artwork is meh with colors that do not match well.
8 years ago
Pros : good fit with the theme, decent artwork, Original bonus system
Cons : the ten rollovers feel like a bingo or lottery. The central saucer is a deadly shot. Greedy outlanes.
8 years ago
Fast and furious pin. Fantastic layout with shots at every angle for all flippers. I love the one behind the upper flipper. Great lightshow. The pin is hard but not too hard. Steve Richie is the king of flow!

The lock seems cheap. Rules are still not finished (and actually hard to grasp for a beginner). Overall build quality seems OK, but no better. Animations are awful.

Already a good pin, with the potential to become unique once rules are polished.

Edit2: finally came back to a place with that pin. True love. Great flow, ultra fast...
8 years ago
Fantastic game, fantastic theme, wonderful rotating face (perhaps my all time favorite), great voices and light show...

... all of it completely spoiled by unbalanced scoring. A one shot only pin !?

I am really looking forward to BOP 2.0. If there is game that deserves salvation, here is one!
8 years ago
I had the pleasure to play this rare pin recently. The confrontation between the two players is well implemented, especially when playing for goals, non points. The PF layout implement a direct confrontation between 2 players well. Artwork is basic but fits the theme. Note that the game may be played alone.
I found the game quickly boring with its permanent 2 balls multi ball, but my friends enjoyed it. An original addition to a lineup if you find one.

Note: the pictures in the gallery do not correspond to this pin, but to its brother, USA Football. We are talking about soccer here !
8 years ago
A decent table cocktail game. The left bank of drop targets + standup targets is the most interesting area, but can only be reached with the right flipper (at least on the game I tried). Nothing really exciting to shoot from the left and it is very hard to reach the upper lanes. Plays slow.

Despite these shortcomings, the game is surprisingly OK. I enjoyed its layout with the slingshots propelling the balls to the upper part of the PF. Outlanes are not greedy. Building bonus is the key. I would not mind owning one...

PS: you need to give a ranking to the game backglass... interesting concept for cocktail table ;-)
8 years ago
Cool, original way to accumulate bonus on the play field, which is converted into 5,000 points once you reach the top line. The spinner is the way to get there fast...Actually too fast, making this game unbalanced. Stand up targets for only 10 yards are useless. The upper lanes are hard to reach... the varitargets are fine but the spinner is the way to go!! This game should be fun for a while, but I would become bored relatively quickly.
8 years ago
The drop targets are easy but dangerous… but should you aim for 500 or wait until both lights are lit for 5,000 ? Decisions, decisions… You need to hit the central bumper an specific number of times to get the correct target lit, and that’s cool.

Cons : the 1,2,3 lanes are hard to reach ! Lower PF artwork is non existent.
8 years ago
Nice game, cool artwork (isn't she sexy!?) with an interesting bonus feature. The extra ball is lit only at 6 and 8,000 bonus, special at 7,000, but one can actually decide to lose bonus with the vari-target. This is one way to be back in the 6-8,000 interesting zone.

Cons: spinner going nowhere. The right Extra ball stand-up target is nearly impossible to hit on purpose!
Is this a dragon or a lizard!?
8 years ago
Interesting toys - zipper flippers, gator, multiball. Game stress can vary from low (closed flippers, gate open) to much higher when these safety belts are lost...
8 years ago
Very good looking game with great toy/backglass animation. But not completely convinced by its gameplay
8 years ago
Decent game with good artwork. Less thrilled about PF design.
8 years ago
The vari-target is THE shot that should not be missed... it scores a lot of points, but is rather dangerous if you miss. The left outlane is surprisingly lethal as it looks relatively narrow... but many balls will end there! I like the way one can build bonus with the spinners and bumpers.
Cons: bonus seems to be capped at 15,000. What to do then? Vari-target...
8 years ago
Fantastic game I finally could play at Raphael Lankar's Museum in Paris. The multi ball system is great with an automatic launcher. 1956?? Must have been Sci-Fi then!
Really fun to play. Eternall Multiball is not that easy to achieve. Outlane design and spacing between flippers make ball time relatively short. Last but not least, artwork is great. Gorgeous ladies...
8 years ago
You cannot appreciate this pin without its sounds. Music is very addictive and fits the pin extremely well. I guess you might find it annoying after a while, but I did not reach that point ! I was fortunate to discover a very well maintained one in a private collection. That game has flow ! Magnasave is really nice. On the minus side, everything seems to be occuring from the right flipper.
8 years ago
Pros: I love the inline drop targets. (warning: I am biased! I love all inline drop targets!). PF design. Use of the third flipper. Overall illumination.
Cons: some quotes become repetitive. Theme does nothing for me.

Overall, a classic game that fits nicely in a tourney.
8 years ago
Pros: Nice animations, cool toys, video mode, Theme.
Cons: Stand up targets. I find scoring unbalanced. Lighting. Artwork is so-so for me.

Overall, what an unforgiving pin! You pay for every mistake...
8 years ago
Fireball is a legendary pin. I was fortunate enough to play two different machines, which did not "feel" identical (not even close). In both cases, they kicked my sorry a$$. In both cases, I was begging for more.
Great Artwork, Zipper flippers, Kickback, Multiball, the famous and infamous spinning disc, one of the best skill shots of all times... Anything missing? I doubt so.
If I ever give a 10 one day to a pin, it could be for this one!
8 years ago
Pros :
- Creativity and originality
- Humour
- Compactness : the pin that may fit where no other pin would !! So many shots in such limited space.
- Video integration...omnipresent but it is still a real pinball machine. Attracts non pin-heads !
- Animations
- Sound

Cons :
- If you like bumpers, you might be disappointed… they are basically useless here !
- Repetitive and linear after a while
- Kickout must be properly dialed to avoid an instant drain...
8 years ago
Pros :
- Great flow, smooth ramps and excellent PF layout.
- Fast ! (did you notice it's a widebody ?)
- Combo rules mix well with the flow.
- Fits the theme

Neutral :
- Handles… as long as you are not forced to use them … except may be for fun / for a side tournament !

Cons :
- Backglass artwork
- Relatively shallow rules
9 years ago
If you like pop-up trolls and can't afford an MM, try this alternative. You won't get 2 but 5 !!
Ok, they are not trolls but you get the idea. Another good zaccaria table. Doing the ramp to lift these targets is fun.

The main drawback of this table is the upper right PF, with the standup targets. There is no skill shot (?). What seems to be missing is a third flipper in that area (say, Embryon-like). Replace the stand ups by drop targets and you would get an awesome game. Bonus multiplier is too high and is often obtained randomly
9 years ago
Awesome game, great flow, good integration of the theme. Does not look cheap or stripped-down.

Overall, a very good players' game.
9 years ago
Love that pin. The Time expander mini play field is really cool (but probably not so easy to fix!).
The initial strategic choice is a very nice feature - even if some doctors are nearly useless.

I like the sound tract... "Exterminate!!"
Overall, an under-rated pin that has lots to offer and is still inexpensive. I will get one soon or later !

Edit: now I got one. Several months later the magic is still there. Game is ultra addictive!
9 years ago
Edit: now updated. Finally played a game with mature code

Artwork : a step in the right direction for Stern, but I am not a big fan of the style.
Music integration is far from reaching my personal ACDC nirvana.
Animation : Sparky's multiball is cool !
PF layout : I like it ! I love in line drop targets, but couldn't fully enjoy these ones. Can't say exactly why.
GI : cool but the (not-so) Mystery award white insert is too bright.

Conclusion : Cool pin. The Pro version seems a decent choice.
9 years ago
That game is off-the-charts in so many aspects ! Ranking it fairly would mean changing my ratings for all other pins for some aspects... Animations for example. I give the max mark here, and all other pins should be at best 3/6...

A milestone in Pinball history. Great game, so many innovations there!

Only regret: rules are not that obvious for a casual player... too many shots lit.
9 years ago
First impressions after 20 plays - will be adjusted later.

- Original layout
- funny and original toys - the multiball mechanism for example
- decent speed
- Plays like no other.

- General illumination, especially around the flippers. I will have to mod that game to correct that
- Horrible callouts
- Greedy outlanes
9 years ago
A pinball classic that ages well. Very good artwork, dark theme, interesting music… sound is great. Well the demon does not speak much, but that's already a big plus.

The snake pit is a cool shot ! The magnet is nice for a 1979 pin. Overall PF design has everything I enjoy, including 2 banks of drop targets, spinner… Outlanes are greedy though.
9 years ago
Simple game. Not too many interesting shots. The right kickback lane is one of them. A problem is to avoid multiple repetitive returns to this lane by bouncing back on the right bumper. Overall, a solid table, but not one I am coveting...
9 years ago
Not a big fan of that game. No artwork appeal and of course the curse of the asymmetrically-placed flippers... Some innovations deserve to be forgotten. Even the drop targets are ugly.

On the plus side, the bonus multiplier given for the outlanes is an interesting compensation. Scoring is well balanced.
9 years ago
A nice early SS game that is well suited for competitive play. You don't like the dual left flippers? I don't either! Still, mastering them is tricky and requires skill. I love the inline targets, the way you increase spinner value, the top saucer... and of course, the right gate. I love outlane gates. The shot to open that gate is a bit tricky.

Not a big fan of artwork and theme (but, well, nostalgia is still there) but I must admit this is a game I could consider buying if I find one in good shape !
9 years ago
Mata hari is a stunning game. Really beautiful. Although I would have prefered a slightly asymetric design, this game is really interesting to play... the central top saucer is rewarding, but hard to reach. Simple but addictive rules !
9 years ago
I have absolutely no idea who Evel Knievel is or was. Even then, I like that pin. The theme fits well. Nothing highly innovative here, but nothing wrong either... love the Bally top saucer. Best of both EM and SS worlds.
9 years ago
Mixed feelings about that one.

Pro: it has some features I really enjoy, such as multiple rollover buttons that do play a role (increase bonus when lit). The upper right flipper is hard to master

Cons: this is personal, but I could not care less about the theme. Zero interest for Elton John. The double left flipper is a nightmare. Little depth.

Overall a pin I would play occasionally, but would not keep at home.
9 years ago
Cool layout, ahead of its time; great flow... I like the theme.
9 years ago
It may be hard to find this pin in good condition. If you do, enjoy ! This machine is iconic - so much better than the other playboy versions we know. Getting to the grotto via the right orbit shot is extremely satisfying. The music is cool... especially when counting a very high bonus. What to add? Ah...the artwork: Theses girls were sexy in the 70'... and are still now !
9 years ago
The theme is cool, but I have very little love for that game. I hate the three posts behind the drop targets. Outlanes are greedy. It seems much better EM games were produced in the 70's.
Rules are simple to understand, and high bonus and multiplier is a must.
9 years ago
Pro : Good looking, nice. Interesting original layout. The orbit shot is satisfying. I found lightning OK, even on a pro.

Cons : Feels fragile and cheap. Far too many ball hang ups. I don't see / don't understand the lane inserts. The central black widow ramp is very, very tight. I see that as a flaw right now… I understand some may like it after many, many games.

Overall, not as bad as I imagined.
9 years ago
Boring and ugly. What else?
... the audio, which is hard to tolerate.
So many better pins from the same period!
9 years ago
I have schizophrenic feelings about that game.
Right, the PF layout is really original. Here is a pin which is about bumpers! That's cool.
What I enjoy much much less is this infamous Gobble hole... and the Artwork. And the theme.
9 years ago
Flash Gordon is a great game. I often dislike games with a two level PF design but this one is a notable exception. Add the inline drop targets on the lower part and you get a really nice game from the early 80's.
9 years ago
Centaur is one of my favorite game. I still have not discovered all its secrets. But if you manage to keep the ball enough, it really grows on you.
9 years ago
The shield of the god is really hard to master. The small PF animation is a cool toy.
Add to that an interesting PF design - nothing revolutionary though - and you get a very good game
9 years ago
Allow me to disagree once with Caucasian2step...
I like that game. I can't say I love it, it is relatively simple, even basic. There are better games from the same generation.

Still... the swinging target is a risky shot for sure. But sometime worth it. In line drop targets are fine.
The two most important shots are relatively narrow and risky as well.
9 years ago
I found that pin very recently... played that one decades ago, then forgot about it. Big disappointment.
This is a good-looking pin (as I remembered). Unfortunately, rules are somewhat bad, even for that time (Borry Orr's power play is much better, and from the same era, right ?). Sound is bad. Overall, OK for a few games... no more.
9 years ago
A game I really enjoy, especially for the dark quotes from the joker. The crane is cool, and well implemented.
9 years ago
A early Stern that did not age nicely.
On the plus side: the shaker is a cool accessory for this pin. The central "controllable" post is an interesting addition, hard to master. The motorcycle lock is funny.

Then: PF layout is not so exciting and rules are shallow. The theme means nothing to me. The pin seems cheaply built and did not age well on location. Video mode is a direct copy of Guns and Roses.
9 years ago
As someone wrote in IPDB: "beautiful women make beautiful pins" !
Masquerade is another gem from the 60's. 1966 is actually an excellent year... Dancing lady and myself were born then !!

Gorgeous women / outstanding retro artwork, four flippers, four players, and the central "masked beauty" bumper. Going back to the upper part of the playfield is not as hard as on my Star-jet

You need to learn to deal with what appears at first glance as unbalanced scoring (the 100x feature).
9 years ago
Splending game. Beautiful artwork. The upper part of the PF is great. Deep rules. Zipper flippers and the "movable" central post make this game very interesting. The skillshot itself is very interesting - you do not only need to launch the ball with the proper strength, but also at the proper time.

The lower part of the PF is a bit less interesting. Outlanes are unforgiving.

Edit: played it again yesterday... even better than what I remember!
9 years ago
Gorgeous game. I was fortunate enough to play a better-than-NIB version recently. Love it. There are probably better games from the 80's, but that one is a pleasure to play
9 years ago
Great layout. It seems simple but it is challenging. The third flipper is hard to master - getting the top drop targets is no that simple!
9 years ago
I love shrek...the theme and the pin. I was fortunate to have that pin in my home for a few days so I could play it a lot ! Great quote, great layout. The mini PF is really fun and frustrating at the same time. Rules are probably unbalanced (there are so many things to do there... but only a few shots seem to pay). No problem with the callouts: I don't find them repetitive, but I wish I understood all of them.
9 years ago
A cool pin, having the chance to keep it at home for a few weeks is a pleasant surprise!

- Family friendly theme
- nice music, animation and callouts
- good flow, lots of shots including with the third flipper

- unbalanced scoring - Jackpot is too high
- so so backglass artwork
9 years ago
The captive ball spinner is great. Having two pairs of flippers separated by this huge roulette makes gameplay special. I was not so convinced after a few games, but if you can, try it! You probably need many games to fully appreciate it.
Not a big fan of this type of artwork... same year saw Dancing lady, which is sooo much nicer...
9 years ago
A very nice Williams EM from the early 70's. Plenty of action with 4 bumpers, two outholes, two gates… Nice playfield bonus spinner that allows tactical choices (collect bonus in the kickout holes while Triple bonus is selected). Beware of the left outlane which is deadly.
9 years ago
Good game, but not a great game IMHO.
Fast flow, nice music. The supercharger toy is fun at a first, then... so what? Video mode and animations are weak. PF artwork and lightning are decent and fit the theme. The BG is average at best.
9 years ago
A decent pin, with a very satisfying circular whirlwind ramp, and an interesting skillshot.

Not a big fan of the relatively crowded central playfield
The unusually small DMD is probably not so easy to replace.
9 years ago
A cool EM that contains all features I like: central pop up post, gates, possibility to reach the upper lanes via the upper ball return gate, interesting bonus rules for the kickout holes, dangerous but rewarding 10X standup targets.

On the other hand, no a fan of the artwork.
9 years ago
Good game... that I would find repetitive if in my collection. Always a pleasure to play wherever I find it, though.
9 years ago
WPT is a great game with two major flaws. Fortunately both can easily be corrected:
- a truly horrible translite... but alternative ones are available for sale
- (you probably won't notice it but...) French voice are terrible. Revert to english as fast as you can. Even then, sadly, call outs (or rather comments) are boring. Music is so-so. Combine the two and you have the Achilles heel of that pin.

I am not a poker fan but this game raised my interest for a number of reasons:
- a playable upper playfield (better than the one on Elvis). I love upper playfields, especially when no real estate is loss: this one is transparent with the bumpers below
- plenty of drop targets: I love drop targets
- Open playfield with a number of very distant shots
- deep rules and tactical choices to be made with 3X scoring. There are really different strategies to try.
- price ! That game is under-rated !

Overall, WPT is a hidden gem.

Edit: One year later, I still love it.
9 years ago
Sky line is an atemporal piece of art. Yes, you can design a pin around an elevator... which translates into a double animation on the backglass. This Pin is really representative of a golden age and of a lost word. Besides this fantastic art, I actually enjoy the game!
9 years ago
Gorgeous backglass that acts like a magnet to force you to play... and discover this was a trap.
The game is decent but does not live to your expectations f. Too many luck shots and too many risky shots (given these greedy outlanes).
9 years ago
Vulcan is one of my favorites EM in terms of game play. Artwork is OK but nothing special.
9 years ago
Absolutely awful front cabinet / backglass, really nice playfield.
The Pit is a really cool toy but has two major flaws:
- unbalanced scoring.
- it takes too much space on the playfield...main game area is reduced accordingly.
9 years ago
Good pin. I like the artwork but can't say I love it. Excellent music, interesting toys and shots.
The "double score" features kind of ruins my interest for the game. I find it too unbalanced.
9 years ago
Music is...how to say it politely... beyond bad ? So bad you can actually enjoy it ?
Game is OK. Nothing really special, but not a bad pin.
9 years ago
So so game. I like drop targets, but could not really enjoy that game. Ugly backglass.
9 years ago
Pros: Excellent theme integration. Good flow. Reasonable variety of shots.

Cons: uninspired skill shot. Hidden inserts (upper lanes). Unbalanced scoring. Bonus value is a bit too low: what's the point of getting a bonus multiplier when getting a miserable bonus value?
9 years ago
The captive ball has a nice area to cover and my jump from one lane to another. Cool toy (OK - not that much to do besides that). Worth playing if you find one around.
9 years ago
Beautiful artwork, especially the BG. I love pins with targets in line and that one is no exception.
9 years ago
Gorgeous pin in a creepy way. Original PF design. Cool ramps. I love most Zaccaria Generation 2!
9 years ago
Well, nice backglass. Actually one of the nicest I know.
Good PF artwork.

Bottom line: a good machine for decoration. Not for play...
9 years ago
I was fortunate enough to play a beautiful restored Embryo with strong flippers.
Slow ? No way ! I swear you can adjust this. I like PF and cabinet artworl. Not so found of the backglass.
So many ways to collect an extra ball! Indeed the captive ball is a dangerous shot but there are so many different things to do !
9 years ago
Odd design of the right ramp which is hard to reach. Creepy artwork. I actually like the PF, not the BG
9 years ago
Nice theme, interesting toys (I love the Chest!). Good pin with long ball times…which does not mean it is easy (how many times have you completed the 4 winds !?). Some really nice shots, including the skill shot.

Might be repetitive after a while. Not so fan of Backglass artwork. Music is average at best. Some toys are probably fragile. Both machines I found on route had issues with the ship.
9 years ago
Sorry (again) for not sharing the quasi-unanimous praise. I do not love that pin. Tried to, played on 3 different ones, still no love.

I am NOT a Star-Trek fan, that may explains it in part. I find the art bad. Really bad. Gameplay is not that bad, but... can't tell why, no lover their either. Greedy outlanes!

Good animations though. I also like the selection you can make before each ball. Reminds me of GnR.
9 years ago
I am far from being as enthusiastic as most.
- "Hole in one" shot is alway great
- Original bonus calculation
- humour...

... you may find not so funny after a while
- Theme
- Can't love a pin for a single shot...
9 years ago
How come multiball did not become the norm after that pin was released?
Innovative but simple rules. Cool retro Sci-Fi art. Star-jet is a brillant game, that has two minor flaws:
- releasing the captive ball(s) is a bit two easy (3 shots for each ball)
- going back to the top of the playfield is really difficult due to a crowded symetrical PF.
9 years ago
So many shots, so many rules, so many things to do. Great layout: an good example of how one can incorporate a playable upper playfield without taking too much space for the regular PF.

You do not need to be a Simpsons fan to enjoy that pin (well…it may help).
2003 was actually a very good year with LOTR and TSSP. My preference goes to the former because of the theme, but you can easily go the opposite way. Both are keepers. You probably need to own them to discover how deep are the rules.
9 years ago
Not a big fan of the theme but.. why not.
Backglass is **very** ugly - especially compared to its Bally ancestor.
Love the lady on the side cabinet. PF artwork and gameplay are OK - no better than that. Some animations are fun but I would not stand the sounds for a long time.
9 years ago
I felt in love with that Dancing lady the minute I was born. Actually, no, I am older by a few months. I truly love its art. Really.

Even better, gameplay is not bad (for the 60's). Not like these ladies with no brain...

An intemporal masterpiece.
9 years ago
Not a fan of the band, but I have to admit GnR is a great pin... provided it is perfectly maintained.

- fits the theme nicely
- a widebody I like!
- A variety of shots, some of them relatively difficult
- I like the selection one can make before each ball

- The video mode is repetitive and of little interest
- Antoplunger is not very reliable.
- Music can become repetitive after a while
- the upper left flipper seems (relatively useless)
9 years ago
Sorry I do not share the enthusiasm for that game. The upper PF is of zero interest to me (seems clumsy with that single flipper). The worst is that it occupies a lot of space lost for the main PF.

On the plus side: good original theme, nice animations, cool ramps, fast play, excellent flow, wonderful decors.

Edit: I mus confess, with more games, I start to enjoy it...
Edit2: ... now more and more. Ratings adjusted accordingly
9 years ago
Great game, great rules, great flow.
A jewel on my wishlist even if I am not a big fan of theme and Artwork.
10 years ago
I share Lorenz' view on the rules, music, lights and game play (all excellent). On the other hand, I do not enjoy Playfield, cabinet and BG art that much.
10 years ago
Best topper ever (in summer !!). Good theme, Great quotes, nice playfield with the spinning discs. Not a big fan of artwork, though.
10 years ago
Good game, great music, funny quotes, nice video modes, Excellent theme. Always a pleasure playing that pin. Still not #1 on my wishlist, for reasons I can't really explain. Because it's a Widebody, perhaps?
10 years ago
Devil's dare is a great pin. One you will remember. I played that one years / decades ago, and was so happy to find another one at a Pin show. Instant recollection... Fast play for a wide body and inspiring / scary backglass. A keeper.

Edit: after playing it again several times, some of the magic faded. Downgraded accordingly.
10 years ago
Good and original theme, Fun, addictive, fantastic flow. The ramps are very satisfying.
Easy...or so it seems until you see a very good player scoring a lot... then you realize you did not understand the ruleset.
10 years ago
That game is not as bad as its ranking suggests !
The theme is well..odd. Music changes a lot depending on game phase - which is nice -. Scoring is imbalanced by the left loop, which can score millions again and again. Bonus scoring is a bit too simple. But the game has flow and I kind of like its artwork - that's a minority report, I know!

Edit: played it again... found it even better. Now my ratings are way above average (but I do not own the machine!)
10 years ago
Very good game, plays fast despite being a widebody.
10 years ago
I am not an Elvis fan...I apologize for finding the backglass truly horrible. This is probably the reason why I waited so long to play that game. I found it at a Pinshow and played it for a while. Simply couldn't get into it - I must confess that music at the lowest possible level and an ACDC pin nearby much louder did not help. The upper playfield is dull, but the game has some potential. One would probably need many games to enjoy this one - I suspect this is possible, but I was not patient enough.

Edit: found another machine and could play it for a while. I must admit I was a bit harsh. Upgraded my ratings accordingly
10 years ago
I am not a Hockey fan, but I still love this game. One of the earliest SS games (1977). The mini flippers are great, but not easy to master. The drop targets are well located. One could complain about the near-perfect symetry of the playfield - no fantasy there -. Besides that, this machine is well suited for tournament play.
10 years ago
Played at an Arcade, with sound nearly off and bad light. Despite that, given that there were other sterns around, I ended up playing that one more often than not. That was not my initial choice as I do not like the theme and found the backglass ugly. But the more I played it, the more I liked it.
10 years ago
Someone wrote that to appreciate the glo-balls, one has to be in the right environment. I wasn't! To me, the main merit of this game is the demonstration that traditional balls are way better, and that we should stick to them (and forget the price of these balls!). Feeling with these glo-balls is odd - I wonder how much better I would rate this pin with regular balls?
By the way, what are these raccoons doing ? Acting like AFM's martians?
10 years ago
Can't stand the theme, can't stand the music, can't stand the PF layout...
10 years ago
An interesting attempt to hybridize a pin with a video game...and a spectacular failure!!
The pin part is boring, to say the least. The video game is hardly better.

Still, can be considered as a collector's item, because of its unique nature. But beware that the magic vanishes with the first game played on it!
10 years ago
I never tried to play that machine until very recently. Just found the artwork ugly and could not understand the theme. What a big mistake!!
That game is a gem. Plenty of shots - IMHO, best use of a widebody I ever seen. Deep rules, good lastability.
Con: cities are done more or last in the same order, and missions tend to become repetitive.
10 years ago
Great theme (I love Elvira), funny quotes, beautiful animated backglass. Still, not among my favorites. Hard to say why. Shallow rules? Perhaps - but should be deep enough for me. Too simple? I am not an excellent player - At least I can complete the 6 tales of Horror.
10 years ago
Nice simple game, children should like it. I simply do not like this backglass and nothing really innovative for a 1989 pin.
10 years ago
Average game. Nothing really bad, nothing really good. The Mick toy crossing the PF is ugly but a nice idea - you must keep it in mind all the time. Too bad this 2D figure looks so cheap.

Edit: was fortunate enough to play the LE extensively. The outlane and central saves are neat features, hard to master.
10 years ago
Like "Wheel of fortune" CSI theme is far from my favorite. But I learnt to like WoF, and it took longer for CSI...its backglass won't age well... On the other hand, very, very cool toys and nice animations. I like to play it when I find one on route, which is not often!
10 years ago
Awesome backglass, nice theme beautiful cabinet and playfield, fitting sounds but, as someone else noted, perhaps "more style than substance". I am not a big fan of the game flow, starting with a boring plunger skill shot
10 years ago
Well, if you are a South Park fan and consider buying it without playing it first (I almost did that...), better try it somewhere. I found it very, very bad. I erased it from my wish list after two games, would not even consider trying it again after 5 and left the remaining credits.
Some shots are really easy (Kenny for example), I wonder it this would make this game a good start for beginners ? Some features are useless, such as the upper left transparent "playfield" (with nothing to play !)
10 years ago
Cool toys - so many innovations here! You have to try the powerball at least once.

This is the fourth time I change my ratings for that game, always in the same direction: UP !! Isn't it a good sign? Now that I have one at home (OK, not mine!) I really start to enjoy that pin...
10 years ago
The first pin I remember playing. There must have been others before, but I remember vividly the Looping Captured Ball feature. What I did not remember was that besides it, the PF was nearly empty... very little to do !
10 years ago
Nice, fast and addictive... Increase the sound volume and enjoy!
If you can afford the LE version, go for it, although I am more and more in love with the Pro.
I love the LE/Premium's lower playfield... here sadly replaced by this portrait (which I found really ugly !).

I initially prefered the drop targets as compared to the stand-up targets here. Now I am not sure anymore. You get used to it.

The premium is better but much more expensive... real dilemna.

EDIT: Now that the code is mature, a real pleasure to play.
10 years ago
I love Elvira - no surprise I love this pin. I actually prefer it over Scared stiff. Great game with humourous quotes. The boogiemen are just great. The "don't touch me there" if you try to start a new game with no credit left is a nice final touch!
10 years ago
Great humour, original theme, nice animations. Seeing the castle collapsing is a nice reward. Trolls are great, you really want to bash them. Saving the princess is fun.
Still, #1 ? May be not overrated, but overpriced for sure!

Edit: even cooler with a colour DMD. Love it!
10 years ago
Also known as "Canada Dry" in France - and design used for other games as well. If you like drop targets, you will love this Pin ! Sad side is that when most or all targets are down, there is little left to do. Still one of my favorite EM... I love drop targets !!
10 years ago
Most of the pins I have rated are pins I like ! If I don't like it, then I would not play it, and would'nt dare giving it a mark!
Here is one notable exception. It was my favorite bar's only pin for over a year. So I played it beyond raison, and developped a strong allergy to the music. Gameplay is very basic, but logic.
...and this is a 1987 machine ! Much, much better games have been released by then !
10 years ago
Edit: I updated my ratings as I found another machine in great condition, with sound I could hear... Edit2: updated my ratings again... found a machine with new code. Edit3: played it side by side with metallica... and I prefer Met !!

Nice looking game, loved the music but could not fully get into it initially. I do not like the theme very much - and disliked the backglass, but really enjoyed a beautiful light show on the PF.

Cabinet art is nice as well. But to an average (or below average) played like me, the game has limited flow at start, at least when you are inexperienced, meaning I would have had to spend more dollars than my patience allowed! (edit: I have now spent that money, and it's worth it). Many shots are hard (excellent players will like it)...too hard for me to do them in succession. The wolverine figure is a major flaw. It does not help on the left side and...it's ugly. Another problem is that a beginner does not really understand what to do at first glance. Too many shots are flashing.
Clearly a game you need to own to fully appreciate. Must be really rewarding.
10 years ago
Under-rated game. Of course the backglass is horrible - one I truly hate. I have not checked if someone designed an alternative translite, but that could improve the game a lot. Of course I could live without the theme. Still, I love of the retro aspects such as the arrangement of the flippers, which strongly affect gameplay. As someone else wrote, it "it feels more like an ancient EM" (not to be taken as an insult!!). Great light shows as well.
I regret that the code is not finished... but I must admit I never reached the final wizard mode on WPT... so I would probably not notice this shortcoming here.
10 years ago
I wanted this machine because of its backglass and its theme - the Apollo Soyuz encounter. At that time (1975 - a year before the pin) this US-USRR common space project was a nice break during the cold war.
I regret the cabinet art, and not seeing the official logo of the mission. Besides that, the game is nice. The side kick out holes strongly affect game play and strategy - you may love or hate it... or both...
Controlling the ball is really very, very difficult because of these holes. My marks are (way) down accordingly.
10 years ago
Blaphemy too - I hate that pin. Damn outlanes!! Still I played it a lot… how can you explain this? Simply: that was the only pin in the only bar with a PM near my place! So I played it more that I should…like amazon hunt II a year before.
Cool toy for sure - but one thing, whatever lastability has this game, I went past it. My scores may be lower than they should but I tried to compensate the bias!
10 years ago
I love all pins with lower PF!... but among them, this is the one I love the least and played the least. The elektra unit accumulation was an excellent idea - too bad the rest of the game play does not match its potential!
10 years ago
I love pins with a lower PF and that one is no exception. Nevertheless, at the blessed time when pins ruled the planet, I always chose Blackhole first, then Haunted House. HH is perhaps more a collector's item than a player's favorite? Nice art, music. A machine that will be remembered - but would you love it now?... After playing it several times during different Pin shows, my answer is NO.
10 years ago
The central roto target is a nice toy, until you realize how dangerous it is - many of your shots will end in the outlines. So after a few games, I adopted a different strategy, aiming for Black Belt drop targets (to increase red special) and Kata (green special). Depending on settings, you will then be awarded an Xtra ball, or millions of points. Art is OK, and both PF and BG seem to age well.
The weakest part of that pin is its sound, kind of a caricature of "asian style" music.
10 years ago
Absolutely beautiful Pin. Backglass is a true artpiece, and the PF is not bad either. I love in line targets too, so I would probably rate gameplay higher than most.
10 years ago
A nice game I enjoy playing on location but would not buy, at least for now. Nice animations - I really the love the one annoucing multiball. Great stroboscopic multiball. The Martian attack is not bad either.
Note: I swear the french accent is not that french... believe me...
10 years ago
A reference. Great quotes, starting from a difficult skillshot that often ends with the infamous "have a nice swim !". Great toys (I am bluffed with the thing that flips).

I still love to play it on location after so many years
10 years ago
I have not played that game for over two decades, but the memory is vivid !! This game is a myth...
What a blast it was ! That inverted lower playfield was a killer, and seeing your ball lost through the right drain upon "reentry" was the most frustrating thing...
A beautiful legend. Hope it will be mine some day.

Edit: found it - and played two different machines recently. The game is truly beautiful - the US backglass is stunning. A real piece of art. On the other hand, you can really develop a love / hate relationship with the game play - can be slow and frustrating... but in my humble opinion worth it !

Edit 2: Now I own it. This game is really badass. Not one you can play relaxed. All shots are dangerous. A real masterpiece
10 years ago
Eternal thanks to those who designed that vertical playfield. Of course very unusual - it needs time to master it, but it's possible! I spent so much money on that one on local arcades... but that was two decades ago. Still, the magic still works! I am surprised this is still a "one-of-kind" innovation.

The regular playfield is not as good. Granted, the circular ramp is satisfying, but the rest is so-so. Also problematic is the relative unbalanced scoring: go to the upper PF, light ABC, jumpx2...again and again.
10 years ago
I fell in love with that game first because of its backglass. Gameplay is nice - besides the upper left ramp which is very hard to climb...
10 years ago
Also played this one @ LTGs and shared the addiction. I understand some people don't like the soundtrack but found it very, very addictive...

Edit: found it again in Saint Etienne for a Pinball Expo. Spent many more games on it. Love it even more, had to boost ratings again!

Edit again: found a third one! Even better!
10 years ago
One of my favorites themes, so I am kind of positively biased !
Very deep rules, but you can still enjoy that pin when you discover it.
The more you play it, the more immersive it becomes.
10 years ago
Spent 40 dollars on location playing on a brand new LE. It is way better than the Pro I found in a bar in France. The lower playfield is not as bad as it looks, and I actually became addicted to it - seeking songs in which it is activated.
10 years ago
Know what you get if you consider buying this one : a very, very atypical machine. No bumper, no plunger, no skill shot, no slingshot, no outlanes ! But a true memory game and a beautiful backglass. I like it, but many won't...

Edit: A year after buying it, I still love it. Very challenging to get more than two stars with 3 balls.