Lure Of The Silver Ball

By MrPin61

July 20, 2018

9 months ago

For me arcade games have seemed to always been part of my life. I can remember as a child in the 60's standing on a chair to play the gun game at the mall. As I got older I played the pinball and baseball games at the bowling alley, pool halls & arcades. So it was only natural in 1977 at the age of 16 I bought my first game from a guy who had a coffee shop. I still own that game, Pleasure Isle, and had no idea at the time how rare it was with only 235 units manufactured. I became friends with the coffee shop guy who was also a local college teacher, and spent a lot of hours with him learning how to repair and service EM games.  My friend Peter and I bought a few games from him, always flipping them for a profit.

Peter opened a Sub store with a partner in 1978 and that was right around the time electronic games were arriving on the pin scene. I fell in love with the brand new Bally Playboy he got in that store, and knew I had to have one for my own. So it was off to a distributer and $3,200 later I had a brand new Playboy delivered to my door. My parents almost killed me when they found out what it cost. By this time I was attending monthy auctions in Toronto where I was buying 3/4 games at a time to flip. These were great times as every acrade wanted the new electronic games and the old EM's were being dumped going for $50/$100 on average. I don't think I ever paid more than $200 for a game "78-"79.

I found I really liked the 1960's era games and Gottlieb's in particular. And this is what I mainly collected & sold over the years. There were a few electronics that came and went but they just did not have the character that I enjoy with the EM's.  This year I sold my near mint Playboy as I rarely played it, and started to dig out my older games. A problem with the spinner function on my 1968 Gtlb Spin Wheel is what brought me here. Seems like a great resource, with many friendly and knowledgable folks. Just thought I would share my back story with you...Kerry

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