(Topic ID: 299632)

Ever Wonder Where Your Games Have Been Before You Bought Them?

By fatality83

53 days ago


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  • 39 posts
  • 29 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 44 days ago by killerrobots
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders

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#1 53 days ago

As the title says, has anyone ever wondered where their games have been prior to purchasing them? Were they maybe home owned all there life or possibly they were an export game from some other country that has been used and abused hard. Possibly they were in a barn collecting dust and mouse poop for many years before being brought back into service. Maybe they were used in a movie or TV show or someone famous owned them at one time. Interesting how some games can almost tell a story like a pinball machine with graffiti or high scores carved into it. Unfortunately, most of the time, it is impossible to know a games true history, so that can only lead us to wonder and speculate. After watching a video on a punk rocker named GG Allin, it got me to wondering. In the video after a concert, he is seen changing behind a Gottlieb Bad Girls Pinball. Own a Bad Girls pinball? You may want to scrub the cabinet really good with some heavy duty cleaner because it is very possible a naked, poo and blood covered man was touching the machine at one point back in 91 in Chicago. I clipped a screen shot of the full video because I don't think most people would appreciate to see the full version. I sure didn't. I am going home and dousing my machine in bleach just to be sure.

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#2 53 days ago

I bought a Star Gazer a few years back. Game needed a new playfield etc. I had the game completely restored. Prior to the restoration I noticed the Time Out Amusements sticker in the inside of the cabinet. This was the EXACT same game that I used to play as a teenager at the Springfield, VA Time Out Amusement arcade. The cabinet was restenciled and painted. I made sure that the sticker was left intact!!

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#3 53 days ago

That an amazing story and you are very lucky to be reunited. I have two games that I own, that I could of played when I was younger, a T-2 and an Addams Family but unfortunately I have no way of knowing if they are the same. One was in a bowling alley where I bowled ever Saturday on a league and one was in a Wings To Go. Both were bought in my state of Pa but they were a few hours away so probably not the same ones but I always wondered.

#4 53 days ago
Quoted from fatality83:

As the title says, has anyone ever wondered where their games have been prior to purchasing them? Were they maybe home owned all there life or possibly they were an export game from some other country that has been used and abused hard. Possibly they were in a barn collecting dust and mouse poop for many years before being brought back into service. Maybe they were used in a movie or TV show or someone famous owned them at one time. Interesting how some games can almost tell a story like a pinball machine with graffiti or high scores carved into it. Unfortunately, most of the time, it is impossible to know a games true history, so that can only lead us to wonder and speculate. After watching a video on a punk rocker named GG Allin, it got me to wondering. In the video after a concert, he is seen changing behind a Gottlieb Bad Girls Pinball. Own a Bad Girls pinball? You may want to scrub the cabinet really good with some heavy duty cleaner because it is very possible a naked, poo and blood covered man was touching the machine at one point back in 91 in Chicago. I clipped a screen shot of the full video because I don't think most people would appreciate to see the full version. I sure didn't. I am going home and dousing my machine in bleach just to be sure.[quoted image]

GG Allin was batshit insane. What an incredible musical performance genius.
The Bad Girls story is awesome! Gotta find out what venue it was at and who operated there at the time!

#5 53 days ago

If history important look for an Arcade pull game ( buy directly from owner ) . You may find lesser cabinet blemishes. Not always depending how much owner keeps control of his business. Depending whom owner uses for tech can have wide range bootleg fixes . Some repair professional , some WTF wheres the fire extinguisher.

Rest easy game should be in good home now .

Shane

#6 53 days ago

It’s fascinating wondering where they could have been. Some great stories pop up from time to time.

I got a Spring Break that came from a frat house once, complete with childish carvings on the cabinet. I swear you could still see the impression of a girl’s ass on the glass in the dust and grime. Who knows what else besides beer was making the lockdown bar stick. It’s since left my hands and the game now resides in a really cool arcade in another country.

When I see a sticker on a game from a repair tech or business, it can go either way. Some I look at like I hit a jackpot, other times I feel like I should do a hard pass. Depends who’s worked on it.

#7 53 days ago

I bought my CFTBL from a guy in Dallas, but at some point it spent time in an arcade in Roanoke VA.

It now resides in Belleville MI, one state over from it's birthplace in Chicago IL. Pretty cool.

Who knows where it was in between.

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#8 53 days ago

One early solid state game that I currently have I bought from someone who said they won it in a radio station raffle back in the 80s.

I don't think any of my other games I've owned have really had any interesting history that I'm aware of. Some do have various stickers/tags/labels from arcades/locations/operators, tax stickers, or had business cards or stickers from previous techs or repair shops.

A number of years back, I did make attempts to buy the broken pins from my local arcade that I grew up playing, but someone else from Connecticut managed to swoop in and snag them all. I was a bit disappointed about that.

#9 53 days ago

I bought my Evel Knievel 2 or 3 years ago, the woman won it in a raffle at a bowling alley for $1.

She did very well on her investment.

It's in the middle of a restore/playfield swap right now.

#10 53 days ago

nope

#11 53 days ago

I picked my Stern Star Trek up from Modern Pinball NYC... Loved that place, love my pin. It was fun finding the bulk of the medical history for this machine here on Pinside: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/what-failed-today-modern-pinball-machine-fails

#12 53 days ago

My Wizard was on location in the game room at the Janzen Beach ice skating rink. I bought from the gentleman who operated the games for Beverly Burback in that location. He said that was the only location the game was in until I bought it. Game has gouges on the sides where kids kicked it with the ice skates.

#13 53 days ago

bought a Surf Side from a guy. He owned an apartment in Oslo, Norway in the early 80s. One of the guys living there was from Netherlands, he brought with him the game.
He left it there when he left the country. Couple of years later he sold the apartment and got a house. He stuck the pinball in the basement and it was sitting there till 2017 when i bought it.

#14 53 days ago

A lot of times it’s hard to prove provenance. Apparently my LOTR was bought NIB by the lead singer of the Barenaked Ladies. Eventually went to a guy in Toronto and now me. Although the cab and pf are super nice(no finger wear and no protectors), the missing coin box, manual, allen key for the head, and key fob makes me think it may not haven been NIB originally….

#15 53 days ago
Quoted from MrMikeman:

the missing coin box, manual, allen key for the head, and key fob makes me think it may not haven been NIB originally….

That doesn't really mean much. Easy enough for those things to get misplaced or left behind when moving/selling the game.

I met one collector years ago who hated coin boxes. Whenever he bought a game, he would always remove it and toss it. I have no idea why he did that.

#16 53 days ago

I picked up a DE Simpsons in 2014 which supposedly was a gift to a sick young girl from the Make-A-Wish Foundation and the "actual company". I never did find out whether the "actual company" meant Data East, or whatever studio produced The Simpsons tv show (which is what guy I bought it from believed), or something else entirely.

Picked up a Gottlieb Bronco EM earlier this year that had Texas permit stickers on it from 1977 78 & 79. The father of the woman I got it from bought it in 1980 and it was in their basement ever since. No idea how it made its way from Texas all the way to New York.

Picked up a Xenon a couple months ago that was part of a hoarder house, along with a few other pins. Was routed at some point in its life but luckily the playfield escaped the usual trashed fate of so many other Xenons. Also luckily, the mouse poop from the hoarder house was very minimal.

#17 53 days ago

My ST:TNG was bought from the original owner who had it on location for just
under one year. Another pin I have (Turf Champ) was used for years at the
Santa Cruz board walk. A few had operator stickers on them so have an
idea of what cities they were used in.

#18 53 days ago

My TAF I bought about 15 years had (and still has) cards behind the coin reject buttons marked in guilders.

So over its 30 year life, this TAF has travelled from Chicago, USA to somewhere in The Netherlands to Canberra, Australia. Resting comfortably here now

#19 53 days ago

If you find a token inside, that can be a clue. I got TZ and Slugfest combo deal from a guy who appeared to have just got them in a house flip and a loose token inside confirmed they were in an arcade on Hilton Head Island at one time.

You can assume if there is a bunch of rust under the lockdown bar it was probably routed and had more than one drink spilled on it.

I got an traded in TWD pro from a dealer in north FL who said it came from south FL. The giant high scores confirmed they were the initials of a top south FL tournament player.

My Fish Tales has the export type 3 coin slots which are labeled 1DM, 2DM, 5DM (Deutsche Marks), and the apron card said 1DM = 1 Speil, so that confirms it has visited Germany more times than I have.

The stories they could tell.

#20 52 days ago

I had the same curiosity when I first started collecting. I thought it would be cool to know the history of the pins I was buying so I decided to write down on a piece of paper everything I knew about the pin and then when I sold it, the note would be in the coin box for the next person to continue if they so wished.

#21 52 days ago

I owned an arcade game once that was in a porno.

#22 52 days ago

I got a four year history with my Getaway. Thought it was pretty cool.

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#23 52 days ago
Quoted from ForceFlow:

Easy enough for those things to get misplaced or left behind when moving/selling the game.

My Lights Camera Action is HUO. The man I bought it from bought it for their kids for Christmas brand new in the box. I’m missing the topper for it because (direct quote) “the wife thought it was ugly and threw it in the trash.”

Similar situation with my WH2O. Also HUO. The man I bought it from is a heart surgeon and bought it, and a NGG, for his daughter NIB. He hired a guy to do playfield repairs, and the repair person walked off with all the paperwork for both games. It still has the goodie bag with all the spare parts though.

#24 52 days ago

Always wanted to meet Antwan who carved his name in my first game Bttf.

#25 52 days ago
Quoted from Coindork:

I owned an arcade game once that was in a porno.

Please tell us more...

#26 52 days ago
Quoted from fatality83:

Please tell us more...

Nothing too out of the ordinary, but I owned a Centipede cabaret that was used on a shoot with two chicks.
There’s some photos floating around somewhere of one chick playing it while the other is eating her box.

#27 52 days ago

It'd be a cool story if you bought Leonard Nimoy's pinball machine.
https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/want-to-buy-leonard-nimoy-s-star-trek-pinball-machine

#28 50 days ago
Quoted from fatality83:

That an amazing story and you are very lucky to be reunited.

Thanks!.. I was amazed when I saw that sticker from Time Out. Definitely was going to keep it in the game.

#29 50 days ago

I've no idea where my TAF have been but probably in a pizzeria, bowling area or similar where lots of young people gathered as it has a proud dick carved into the side of the backbox.

#30 49 days ago
Quoted from Coindork:

There’s some photos floating around somewhere of one chick playing it while the other is eating her box.

Agreed. Nothing too out of the ordinary. I recall that being a common occurrence with that arcade game

#31 49 days ago

I was told by Rob (Gwaxt72) from Rockland Pinball that my BSD came from actor Kevin Dillon’s house. I have no reason to not believe him because he is from the area near his shop and he is a pinball guy. He wasn’t using it as a selling point either because he told me after the deal was done and we were loading it up.

#32 49 days ago

I mostly wonder about the people who played them and what kind of enjoyment was had with them. When I see a game I haven't played before and the playfield is really worn out someone must have found it fun.

#33 48 days ago

I’ve got a super Mario that spent time in a high school wood shop in the Bay Area. They made a custom wood topper that still resides on it to this day.

Not pinball, but I have an original donkey Kong with Raleigh NC arcade license stickers from 88-89 and an Atari cockpit Star Wars that was purchased by a big Star Wars collector and was garaged for 30 years until it was passed in to me.

#34 48 days ago

I am restoring a FH and the playfield is pretty wrecked. I think that way back in the day it got a damaged ball or something because a lot of the ball wear is down to the wood. However someone cut out a bunch of mylar and covered all the wood over (which likely saved it but it still looks ugly). I asked the guy I bought it from if he put them on and he said no and that he had owned it for 15 years. The cabinet is also pretty banged up and the back-glass was replaced with a piece of plexiglass so someone probably broke it. So none of that is so weird but when I started tearing into it to restore it I lifted up the playfield and the underside of the playfield was immaculate, super clean. I also noticed all these pencil marks where someone marked where the mechs sat. So someone years ago essentially restored the bottom of the playfield but not the top, or the cabinet or the back-glass. It is so weird to think about someone putting all that work to just the underside of the playfield. It has made me super curious about the history of the machine.

#35 48 days ago
Quoted from MrMikeman:

A lot of times it’s hard to prove provenance. Apparently my LOTR was bought NIB by the lead singer of the Barenaked Ladies. Eventually went to a guy in Toronto and now me. Although the cab and pf are super nice(no finger wear and no protectors), the missing coin box, manual, allen key for the head, and key fob makes me think it may not haven been NIB originally….

I have a Shadow that belonged to the same singer at one time. It's in amazing shape.
I also have a set of Off Road Challenge racers that I bought from a famous Boston Bruin from Nova Scotia.

#36 48 days ago

My JP DE was an export from Canada, but it didn’t spend much time in that country or on location. It was purchased by a man from Michigan in 1994 for home use, then sold to mmuglia also from Michigan for home use, and I bought from him last year. I normally avoid exports but this one was in too good shape to pass up on.

I left the tag on because I like the history. Anyone from Canada know anything about it? Not sure if it’s an operator tag or a plant bought it for their break room.

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#37 48 days ago
Quoted from evileye:

My JP DE was an export from Canada, but it didn’t spend much time in that country or on location. It was purchased by a man from Michigan in 1994 for home use, then sold to mmuglia also from Michigan for home use, and I bought from him last year. I normally avoid exports but this one was in too good shape to pass up on.
I left the tag on because I like the history. Anyone from Canada know anything about it? Not sure if it’s an operator tag or a plant bought it for their break room. [quoted image][quoted image]

Nevermind, nothing fun to see here. It’s a Canadian thing for electronics.

https://esasafe.com/electrical-products/recognized-certification-marks/

#38 45 days ago
Quoted from killerrobots:

It is so weird to think about someone putting all that work to just the underside of the playfield.

I sometimes start with the mechs. Basically, the idea is to get everything functional before doing a proper tear-down and working on the cosmetic stuff.

#39 44 days ago
Quoted from ForceFlow:

I sometimes start with the mechs. Basically, the idea is to get everything functional before doing a proper tear-down and working on the cosmetic stuff.

You might be right that someone started a restoration, got done with the underside and quit there.

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