I had the opportunity to visit Tilt Pinball Bar in Minneapolis yesterday and played quite a few games of Houdini. Prior to this, I only played a few games down in Orlando at The Pinball Lounge. I will use the rest of this post to share my experience and opinions.
Overall, I really enjoy playing the game. My first game last night was over 700k. Granted that was my best game of the night but I had more in the 500k range.
I did not find the game annoyingly difficult at all. Sure it is challenging with some tight shots, however, I could make all of them with just a bit of practice.
The key lane shot was not as hard as expected. I could hit that more often than not.
The shot to left that goes through the bumpers and to the stage is a great shot. I was hitting that shot with regularity. Many modes were started at 2x due to being able to hit that shot while the stage was open and the ball ending up in the stage. I absolutely love that shot.
The inner loop is challenging from the left flipper. It is tight. However, from the right flipper, I could backhand it greater than 75% of the time.
The right ramp is not that hard at all. Hit that pretty regularly in modes and jail escape.
The orbits are some of the easiest shots.
The milk can is definitely the hardest but I hit it directly from the flipper quite a few times. I would say 1 out of 4 on average.
I am by no means an expert at pinball. Nor am I trying to brag of my ability and/or luck. I am merely sharing that the game isn’t so hard where it can’t be enjoyed. If you have some reasonable level of ball control, these shots can be made. Most with pretty good regularity. Completing modes is very doable and with 2x mode scoring, points can build up quickly.
Trunk catapult worked 100%.
With all that said, here are the negatives that I noticed. Granted, this could be how the machine was set up.
I experienced a lot of airballs. Balls bouncing in catapult shot, jumping onto wire forms and even jumping over flipper or outlanes. Maybe it is due to excessive flipper power however, I wonder if the shots I could make would be more difficult if flipper powers was reduced.
Decorative artwork on top of flipper was knocked off. All cosmetic but likely from airballs that I mention above.
Stage door artwork damaged from repeated hits from ball.
API grand video screen faded in and out. Sometimes blacked out, sometimes ok.
Some wear on right scoop. Even though there was Mylar there, some wear was evident.
Overall, I love the game. I am going to try to go back tomorrow to play some more before I head back to Atlanta. I hope these observations and opinions are helpful. This game is still close to the top of my list for next purchase.