(Topic ID: 55104)

Best EMs for tournament play?


By jlm33

7 years ago



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  • 74 posts
  • 43 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 6 years ago by Rat_Tomago
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders

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#51 6 years ago
Quoted from Prmailers:

Space Mission.
But I am biased, of course...

I'm not biased. However I'll cast my vote for Space Mission. Tough shot to set up for that spinner. Just when you think your going to nail that thing. Turret sucks hits the moving target and turns that 1000 bonus off.

If they only would have placed drop target banks on each side. Still a great 4-Player pin regardless.

Well I'm a little biased...

OHEMIO

#52 6 years ago
Quoted from DNO:

My problem with Fireball is mostly the lock stealing.
How about Flip-Flop?
Capt. Fantastic?
Surfer?
I usually prefer regular size flippers as opposed to shorties.
Inlanes are nice too.

In a tournament, Fireball is most often played as a single player game in order to minimize the "ball lock stealing" and "sudden end of ball" issue transitions from one player to the next.

#53 6 years ago
Quoted from sosage:

In my VERY STRONG and VOCAL opinion -- Fireball is one of, if not the, absolute worst game to put in a competition. Hands down. Everyone hit your skill shot then flip a coin to see who wins. I've never seen any player, tournament grade or otherwise, convincingly control this table.
Some good ones not mentioned:
Volley
Joker Poker
Wizard
El Dorado
Yeah, yeah, yeah, Volley isn't 4 player but that doesn't matter. You just have 3 of the 4 people wait it out and record everyone's scores.

Regarding Fireball, your are either doing something wrong or playing with very bad players.

#54 6 years ago
Quoted from GrandPrix:

I was reading the rules of the PAPA tournament coming up in Aug. When you qualify do you play one game through on each machine to get your score, or are you always taking turns with 3 other players?

You play to qualify first on a bank of machines. Here is the official way "qualifying" works:

"When a player is ready to play a qualifying round entry, he or she approaches the bank of machines designated for the division corresponding to the entry. The player must select the appropriate subset of those machines to be played for the qualifying entry. The exact counts of machines in each bank and machines to be selected per entry may vary from division to division and from tournament to tournament. A typical example might be a bank of nine machines, from which five are selected for each entry.

No machine may be selected more than once on a single entry. These selections must be indicated on the player's scorecard before he or she begins play. The player then provides the scorecard to the scorekeeper for the division. The scorekeeper will indicate which machine is to be played next by the player, or will indicate that the player must wait. At no time may the player begin play on any machine without being instructed to do so by the scorekeeper.

Players may select a different set of machines for each qualifying entry. Players may not change their selections once they have been accepted by the scorekeeper, except in case of malfunction, or with the express permission of tournament officials.

The player will play his or her selected machines at the time and in the order designated by the scorekeeper. At the end of each game, the player will request that the scorekeeper record his or her score before leaving the machine. It is the player's responsibility to ensure that the scorekeeper takes down the score, and to doublecheck the recorded score for correctness.

When all games for the entry have been completed, the player must sign his or her entry for the scorekeeper, who will regularly submit completed entries for scoring. Players may not take their completed entry from the scorekeeper. "

If you qualify, which itself is quite a feat, you move on to the "point based 4 player group type rounds". These are those rounds you may have seen on the PAPA blog page at http://papa.org/blog/

PAPA qualifying can be a very frustrating and isolating experience in a lot of ways. It is just you and the machines. There are so many people having so many individual failures and triumphs, that a lot of times the event turns into more of a "camping with friends in the parking lot" experience. It is a pinball social event where I end up talking about pinball more than playing it most years.

If you want to just start playing pinball in 4 player groups, then the match play Pinburgh tournament may be a better experience for you. In that tournament, you play in 4 player groups for all games unless there is a tiebreaker of some sort.

#55 6 years ago
Quoted from GrandPrix:

Not having played very many different machines, how would you rate Grand Prix? To me it seems like high scores are very much luck. But, my game has some glitches. If you hold the left flipper out to catch it has a twitch (making the only way to catch being - drop catch), it will flick the ball up instead of remain solid. Other than the right bank of bonus lights still not activating it plays pretty solid. The gap in the elbow of the drain chute really tests your skill in catching balls & the drop catch is essential. However, many times the ball will drain coming from the top without even reaching the flippers. Would be nice to hear some opinions from tournament players.

I played this for the first time at CAX this year and thought it was a cool little game (I actually went back to it a lot). From what I played it wasn't a crap shoot at all and was completely controllable. The extreme basics seemed to involve raping the spinners to build bonus/get 1K spins, get into the bonus hole up top and then make a decision on when to cash out the bonus on either spinner.

My problem with Fireball is the layout of the discs and the slings. Maybe I'm using too much hyperbole discussing the game (okay...you can control it, but it has to cross that minefield and preferably land on closed flippers for tap control), but I really feel the physical design crosses the line into quarter eater territory. This is coming from someone that feels 99% of the time, drains in pinball are avoidable.

Quoted from snyper2099:

Regarding Fireball, your are either doing something wrong or playing with very bad players.

Condescending assumptions...

#56 6 years ago

This mod eliminates the spinner rape. Makes it so the bonus only advances once per cycle rather than 3. Detach these 2 wires on both spinner units,

gpmod.jpg

2 weeks later
#57 6 years ago

I think Four Square is the best tournament EM. It rewards you for aiming and hitting your shots. Also, it is a game with mini flippers and inlanes.

#58 6 years ago

Since I grew up playing EM games I would just like to comment on a few items.
1) Please make a difference between games without and those including flipper return lanes. Regardless you have two inch or three inch flippers these lanes makes ball control far more controlable.
2) If the game has no flipper return lane(s) I suggest five balls per player as the balance between skill and luck on these games is (far) more towards luck.
3) For games like Fireball - to be more precise the Bally games and the few Williams games with zipper flippers - also five balls. Average game time on these games may however be a lot longer.
E.g. I had a Fireball. The ball might be lost within ten seconds. When the flippers were closed it would be more like ten minutes. If you learn the skills you may play endless. Same goes for Nip-It and a bit less for 4 million BC. That said, these games are great to play for other purposes. Fireball would be great for Pingolf. Just try to get all three balls in front of the plunger.
Besides you can steal locked balls they even will stay put in their ejects when the game ends so you may start a game with two balls locked.
4) Do not avoid two-player games and by all means put in one player games. The latter have the great advantage to have 'memory'. As mentioned before there is no need to clear everything for the next player/ball. If you e.g. get your hands on a Bally Grand Tour, just try to light all ten cities on the back glass and you understand what I mean.
5) I every now and then take my Bally Bow and Arrow to a show and it ends up in the classic tournament quite often. Another difficult but fair game might be Old Chicago.
6) As a short cut to selecting a EM game you can stick to one simple rule: Make shure that at any time in the game there is always at least one shot worth going for.

#59 6 years ago
Quoted from WarLokBlackOut:

E.g. I had a Fireball. The ball might be lost within ten seconds. When the flippers were closed it would be more like ten minutes.

I like watching "newbies" playing Fireball.

#60 6 years ago

Fireball
Alligator

Mars Trek honorable mention just so fast....

#61 6 years ago

El Tres tres:

Gottlieb:
Atlantis
Card Whiz / Royal Flush
Abra-Ca-Dabra

Williams:
Space Odyssey/ Mission
Strato-Flite/ Super Flite/ Astro-Flite/ Star-Flite
Klondike

Bally:
Wizard
Time Zone / Space Time
Aladdin's Castle

El Quatro Espana:
Faces
Super Straight
Faces
Bird-man!

#62 6 years ago

So, since about every Segasa EM game is being mentioned I like to add Super Straight. Played it during Pinburgh and the skill factor on that game is worth a go.

#64 6 years ago
Quoted from jlm33:

Joker Poker is great, but the EM version is rare and expensive - might look for the SS one (which is good too!).

Ah, so I was lucky to see both versions next to each other early March during FlipExpo in Le Treport in France. Playfield is exactly the same, gameplay is not. The solid state version has a bit more bite you can say thanks to the electronics.
Maybe we should add Mata Hari to the list, after all 170 games were built as an EM. Only saw one at the Pinball Expo next to a EM Evel Knievel.

7 months later
#65 6 years ago

I would ask any tournament director to NOT consider the multiplayer versions of El Dorado (Target Alpha, Solar City and Canada Dry). Once those drops are down, the game does not reset them and the game falls flat on it's own (ruleset) face. If you are dealing with solid tourney players, you WILL see all 15 drops down in more than a few games. Then you are going to get that look from the players that says: "Really?"

#66 6 years ago

Anyone can play pretty well with three inch flippers and inlanes.

The true players are the guys who can control the ball with no inlanes and the two inch flippers.

#67 6 years ago

Girdiron 2 player head to head or a Chicago Coin Firecracker.

Fireball is good 4 player.

#68 6 years ago

No one mentioned Bally's Freedom or Night Rider. 4 player EM's, fairly solid, nothing too crazy on them.

#69 6 years ago
Quoted from Caucasian2Step:

I would ask any tournament director to NOT consider the multiplayer versions of El Dorado (Target Alpha, Solar City and Canada Dry). Once those drops are down, the game does not reset them and the game falls flat on it's own (ruleset) face. If you are dealing with solid tourney players, you WILL see all 15 drops down in more than a few games. Then you are going to get that look from the players that says: "Really?"

Yeah I agree. Still why I think Fast Draw is a great choice...

#70 6 years ago

Mars Trek, SuperFLite, and Night Rider are all solid tourney EMs, IMO. And Sonic's Prospector and Super Straight.

#71 6 years ago

This is also the ideal thread for a newcomer, like me, to add to his wish list and to watch out for for a 2nd machine, and 3rd, and 4th, and,,,,,,,,,,,

I'd like to see an official poll on the top 10 machines on the recap list that jlm33 has posted above.

#72 6 years ago
Quoted from jerrytoo:

I'd like to see an official poll on the top 10 machines on the recap list that jlm33 has posted above.

Would love to add a poll, but normally limited to 9 choices and there are at least 12 listed.
Which 3 would you remove?

#73 6 years ago

>>> Which 3 would you remove?

The list I was looking at, posted about 8 months ago, appears to have at least 30 machines in the list and I didn't even count the other machines added by others to this point.

#74 6 years ago
Quoted from EMsInKC:

Anyone can play pretty well with three inch flippers and inlanes.
The true players are the guys who can control the ball with no inlanes and the two inch flippers.

Exactly! Play those 2 inch flipper games for a few hours and you will roll every 3 inch 70's game you own.

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