I was lucky enough to grow up in the heyday of Arcades "late 70's and 80's", and it seemed like every Bowling Alley, Restraunt, Bar and Laundramat had Pins, Bowlers and Video games to dump my allowance into. It was also a time when a kid could get on his bike and take off for the day without checking in every 10 min, and walk into a Bar and play some pinball and nobody batted an eye.
While I loved Video Arcade games if I had a choice of dumping quarters into an Video game or a Pin the Pin won every time. I guess it was the magic of the mechanics and watching the ball make its way through the playfield, dissapearing here and reappearing there. Looking through the glass into the outhole to see where the ball went when I lost it.
When I was in Jr High the Nintendo hit the market and sadly that seemed to be the start of the downfall of coin op games. Once I got a Nintendo for Christmas I was saving my quarters to buy another game for the Nintendo, and I guess like all the other kids my age didn't stop by the Arcade, Bar, Bowling Alley or Laudramat all that often and the pins and other coinop games started to dissapear and the Arcade closed down. By the time I finished Highschool you couldn't find a pin anywhere in my area, a few of the larger towns still had Arcades with only one or two pins in them and within a few more years they were gone too. So over the period of 6 or 7 years the console games seemed to kill pinball.
Fast forward a few decades and my Daughter started to get the video game bug like all kids so we bought a console for her and after watching play them for a while I decided She needed to play a "real" game, pinball. The search began and within a month or so I found a Hollywood Heat that I picked up for a reasonable price, like all used pins it needed work. I have an engineering/electronics background so it was right up my alley. So I got it all fixed up and working and it was odd to come to the realization that she had never even seen a pinball machine before let alone play one. We played the heck out of Hollywood Heat and everytime She would have friends over they all wanted to play pinball. So it was nice to introduce some other kids to pinball even if it was an old Gottlieb.
Fast forward another few years and we have eight pins in the house, I found Pinside and come across Chuck over at CP pinball. The oldest Daugther "11 yrs old" and I play league at Chucks place with a bunch of others who refuse to give up on the mechanical marvel that is pinball.