Finally finished reading through the hundreds, literally, of notifications and messages on FB.
To answer some of the questions above, as well as the most common questions asked during the Twitch Feed..
Guinness really do set LOTS of criteria
The attempt must be held in a venue, open to the public for the whole duration and must also be free to enter. I chose to do my attempt at the hospital I work in.
My hands must be on the flipper buttons at all times the ball is active, and I must plunge a new ball as soon as the last drains.
There must be 2 independent witnesses invigilating at all times. The original criteria was that these witnesses must be unknown to me, as well as being "experts in the field being attempted" I queried Guinness, due to the fact that there are so few pinball players in the UK, coupled with the fact that I attend the majority of shows as well as run about 20% of all the comps in the UK, it would be impossible for me to comply with this. They replied that I was allowed one of my witnesses to be from the pinball community and known to me, but not a family member. The other must be a person with a professional qualification, upstanding member of the community (such as a policeman, accountant, or medical professional) but unknown to me or the other witness. To comply with this I approached a member of the hospital communications team, who out requests for eligible staff members to volunteer some of their time. Witnesses were also only allowed to do a maximum 4hr shift before having to pass over to somebody else - they weren't allowed to return until a 4hr break had been taken.
The attempt must be held on a single, "industry standard" machine (which had to be approved by Guinness beforehand). I was allowed a back up machine (of the same type) to switch to in the event of a terminal malfunction.
5 minutes break were accrued for every UNBROKEN hour of play. i.e. If I played for 1hr 1min - I would earn 5mins break, if I played for 1hr 59mins I would still only earn 5 minutes break. I was allowed to take these accrued minutes at any time I wanted, and didn't have to take all of the break at once - effectively banking accrued break time.
The whole event had to recorded from a static camera, with a clock in view (not a time stamp) and sent to Guinness
I chose WPT for a number of reasons
I own one, and had access to a duplicate machine to use as a backup
It has a very deep rule set to try and combat boredom
It has a number of multiballs to again combat boredom
There are plenty of animations, which slow the game down, allowing me to take a few seconds breather
Despite what the perception is of Stern machines and their build quality, I trusted it to get through the full 30hrs.
My plan was to play in 3 or 4 hr shifts, but not take the full accrued break - just enough time for me to use the toilet and have a ciggie. This was all going to plan until 20hrs in, the centre drop target bank was not resetting correctly, I used 27 minutes of my accrued 28miutes to try and allow the machine to cool down, and change the coil settings to soft.
I also had an issue with the one way gate at the top of the right ramp getting stuck and trapping the ball, this was fixed during one of the earlier breaks.
These were the only 2 issues I had for the whole 30hrs. The flippers were still as strong as they were at the end as when I started.
Food and drink
I was allowed to eat and drink during the attempt, as long as it did not interrupt the challenge. So I had bite size nibbles and had a mouthful of tea every now and again during animations.
I now need to catalogue the scores of every single game I played to submit to Guinness, as I had forgotten to ensure that the witnesses were doing this. I also need to fill out numerous forms detailing the whole of the event, as well as submit media articles, photographs etc.
Once that has all been sent to Guinness I believe I will find out whether they accept the record in approx. 6 weeks.
More important to me than breaking the record, and even raising money, was raising awareness of Prostate Cancer. The record was just to generate publicity in the media. If I had said I'm going to play pinball for 30hrs, the response would likely have been so what? The fact that it broke a Guinness World Record meant that newspapers phoned me and printed the article - raising awareness.
Having said that the money raised will go to a very worthwhile cause and will be put to good use.
I would ask 2 things of people:
1. Most importantly please visit my the Just Giving page, read the story behind the attempt, and share via your social media. If you feel that you would like to donate that would be fantastic, but not essential.
2. I believe that I could have extended the record by a significant amount of time. I chose not to for a very simple reason. If someone else out there has a cause or charity that they are passionate about I would like them to have the opportunity to do a similar challenge. That is raise the record by 2hrs up to 32, then let somebody else do the same,etc. etc. That way there will be a number of opportunities for people to raise money rather than someone simply setting a record of 100hrs taking that opportunity away.
I know I have no real authority to ask people to do this, but before anyone sets out to break the record, I would just like to ask what is it that you are trying to achieve? If it is to raise money and awareness, you only need to creep over the line to do that. It will then give somebody else the chance to do the same.
Thanks for reading, if anyone has any questions, or comments, I'd be happy to try and answer them.
Many more articles and photos of the event can be found on my FB page