(Topic ID: 141338)

Need a suggestion for my first pinball purchase


By kirkbauer

3 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 32 posts
  • 27 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 years ago by whisper
  • No one calls this topic a favorite

You

Linked Games

No games have been linked to this topic.

    #1 3 years ago

    OK, for now I only have space for one machine in my home so I wanted to reach out for suggestions on my first (and possibly only?) pinball machine purchase.

    I certainly play and enjoy pinball but I certainly am no expert. I do find that I rarely understand how to get points and spend most of my time just trying to keep the ball moving with little to no strategy. I'd love to own a machine so I could get to know the best way to trigger certain effects, etc. I also hope my daughter could play it, so a kid-friendly theme (or at least one that isn't non-kid-friendly) would be a big plus.

    I'm an engineer type so I like multi-step goals so that I have to achieve a series of challenges to unlock something neat. I really enjoy unlocking multiple simultaneous balls, accessing alternate areas, etc. For example, at a recent trip to the Pinball Hall of Fame in LV I was intrigued by the Family Guy/Shrek games with the mini pinball game that can be unlocked (although I never figure out how to unlock it, just did it by accident once), and I thought the Circus game was neat with the multiple levels (not that I'm going to be able to afford one of those, or even find one unless it gets remade as I saw here on the forums). It reminds me a little bit of Revenge of the Gator, a Pinball game on the original Gameboy where you could access higher and higher levels and then when your ball falls down it puts you on the previous level.

    So I guess I'd prefer something with some unique aspects and/or some puzzley sort of things, and available documentation on how to play the game and achieve various goals. I am strange in that points per-se don't do it for me; I much prefer unlocking something cool rather than simply scoring points.

    Money isn't a huge issue although I'd prefer something in the $5k range rather than $10k because like most people I don't have an unlimited supply

    #2 3 years ago

    Would wizard mode be "unlocking something cool" ? If so, you have quite a few choices at 5k although kid friendly might knock the choices down a few.

    #3 3 years ago

    Simpsons pinball party. Usually under 5 k for a nice one. Super deep rule set and a family friendly theme. Plus it has alot to do.

    #4 3 years ago

    It seems like you're a bit unfamiliar with pinball right now. Maybe you should play some games and look at some rule sheets and tutorials and then decide which one you want to buy.

    #5 3 years ago

    Dont do it or you will end up like us freaks!

    #6 3 years ago

    LOTR is fun for kids and has the deep code that will be fun for you to learn.

    #7 3 years ago

    Download the Pinball Arcade app, and give that a try. It has a good selection of tables available, and it's a pretty good virtual equivalent for the real thing. Plus, it costs a heck of a lot less and takes up less room than the real thing.

    Once you become familiar with the games that are available, you might be better able to narrow down what you might like to actually own. Some games have better replay value than others.

    That said, Blackwater 100 is challenging, and has a multi-stage approach to getting a ball from one level to another. However, it's a rare game, so don't expect to be able to find one cheap. On the other hand, that multi-stage approach to the game is pretty much the entire game, so once you beat it, it might lose some replay value for you.

    #8 3 years ago

    X2 on pinball arcade, I just downloaded a bunch of tables tonight. Gives a great representation on each game.

    #9 3 years ago

    X3 on pin arcade and +1 for tspp although once your decent ball times can get long.. Same for lotr. Either good or bad depending on what your going for..

    #10 3 years ago

    Monopoly

    Good used one will be about 2500
    Kid friendly and three flippers
    Wizard mode
    Parts available

    Don't worry you'll find room for #2 later

    #11 3 years ago

    Eight Ball Deluxe

    Great FIRST pinball machine, family friendly, and challenging for the novice and expert.

    Other reasons to choose this machine:
    1) Its not over complicated in game ruleset and direct in purpose so it can be understand by all
    2) The artwork is fantastic and blends into many types of house styles and furnishings
    3) A good example of the game is not going to cost any where near the cost of a late model solid state machine
    4) Technically it is not a complex game, with much less to go wrong, and is a reliable game (when properly restored) with not many "achilles heels".

    The last reason is more important than most people realize.
    Why?
    I cannot begin to tell you the number of first time buyers who purchased "Twilight Zones" only to realize they have no idea how it works, and when it breaks, you have a 300 lbs doorstop, that somebody else (pinhead) will haul away for profit. Don't make the mistakes of THOUSANDS of others, only to "hate pinball because the game never works" because you will.

    You DO NOT need to spend $5,000-10,000 on a good pinball machine.
    I don't know where that money number is coming from unless you are looking for a popular themed solid state machine that is "collectable".
    Even then, we are talking about example of machines that are superb+, HUO, or NIB.

    Use the resources here as a guide, but prices are FAR from absolute.
    Some of them are completely off the rocker.
    Just because its an "Addams Family" does not make it worth $7000, when the playfield has magnet burns, all the inserts are worn off on the playfield, its missing the cloud topper, and cabinet has Freddy Krueger marks on the sides.

    Another option is to download Visual Pinball versus Pinball Arcade, because you can test THOUSANDS of games for FREE.

    BTW, there is no such thing as "one pinball machine".
    It always starts that way, and never ends (628 machines owned and counting).
    Let me know when when you pass double digits, because it will happen.

    #12 3 years ago

    One option is to go for something with an extensive ruleset; Lord of the Rings and Simpsons Pinball Party were mentioned above, both are good options. Wizard of Oz is an excellent game for inexperienced players but definitely not in the price range you're talking about. I haven't played them much, but Pirates of the Carribean and No Good Gofers seem to have plenty of stuff to do as well.

    Alternatively, pick a hard game that will take a while to master. In a one game collection, you don't want to do everything there is to do within a couple of weeks of getting the machine. Again, Lord of the Rings and Simpsons Pinball Party are good choices, as are Centaur (not kid-friendly), The Shadow and Fireball.

    #13 3 years ago

    X4 on downloading the Pinball Arcade.

    Honestly do that before opening your wallet, you will learn what you like and what you don't like by playing it.

    #14 3 years ago

    Addams Family.. Everyone's loves this game at my house kids and adults..

    Or whitewater/funhouse

    #16 3 years ago

    Pirates of the Caribbean - overall a really fun game which appeals to everyone; different shots with various multi-ball modes, cool light show, fun toys and sound effects, good objectives to make progress through. Just a great game that will provide that will set the pinball hook deep enough that you will be selling that couch to make room for several more machines...

    #17 3 years ago

    x5 on getting Pinball Arcade. That's how a lot of us, including myself, got into pinball. I played some pins in the 90s but never knew about a lot of other great pins. I didn't even know they still made new pins. Youtube videos of gameplay are also helpful in learning about pins. Neither is a true representation of what a pin is like to play but at least you get an idea of what you like. Everyone will recommend a pin they like but that doesn't mean you will like it. Rankings mean little. Great games can be found in the middle and bottom of the list. Some games are very complex with some modes that are near impossible to achieve. Other games are very simple and can get old pretty fast. Prices are all over the place so it's good to learn as much as you can before diving in.

    Something else to consider is that it's tough to find one pin that has everything you want. You will quickly be wanting more pins. Sometimes you just want a quick fun game and other times you want something deep to get into. As you own a pin, your skills will improve and you will probably end up changing your opinion on what you like/dislike in pinball.

    #18 3 years ago

    My advice: Don't listen to anyone's opinion on this site. Form your own opinion!!

    Take the suggested title names that fit "family friendly" and seek out a pinsider that has a few in their collection in your area.
    Use the map feature here on pinside to search by game title and find owners around you.

    I do not recommend forming an opinion based on publicly located pins. These are never working correctly and it won't give you the full experience as one that is babied by a collector.

    #19 3 years ago

    A long ways off still but in June is the pinball show in Atlanta, where I see is where you're from. You could play Pinball Arcade and hopefully some collectors pins in the meantime and then if you narrow it down some try someof those and other pins at the show. On the other hand might want to play as many pins as you can and then see if you can find a good one before then. Just some thoughts and hope you find one that you and your family really like.

    #20 3 years ago
    Quoted from WesleyCowan:

    A long ways off still but in June is the pinball show in Atlanta, where I see is where you're from. You could play Pinball Arcade and hopefully some collectors pins in the meantime and then if you narrow it down some and then play pins at the show. On the other hand might want to play as many pins as you can and then see if you can find a good one before then. Just some thoughts and hope you find one that you and your family really like.

    #21 3 years ago

    LOTR or SM would be two good choices- both fun, family themes with deep rules and awesome yet hard to reach wizard modes.
    However, as others have said, go out and play as many titles as you can to form your own opinion.

    #22 3 years ago

    + RBION and WPT to the common list of affordable, deep games that always comes up. OP, you're basically asking for a <$5k game with good rules and modes. This covers a HUGE number of games, other people won't be able to decide what you really like most.

    #23 3 years ago
    Quoted from kirkbauer:

    OK, for now I only have space for one machine

    Change House. Now!

    Quoted from DefaultGen:

    + RBION and WPT to the common list of affordable

    Good choices!
    Easier: WCS94 and Stargate.
    Harder: BSD - well...not exactly family friendly, except if you have vampires in your family.

    Quoted from kirkbauer:

    and available documentation on how to play the game and achieve various goals.

    Check PAPA videos tutorials. There are aimed towards tournament play, but you may learn a lot from them.
    http://papa.org/learning-center/video-resources/tutorial-videos/

    #24 3 years ago

    So many great games out there. Find something with a theme you like in the top 50 that's available.

    #25 3 years ago

    My suggestion is get a bigger house or space for more games

    #26 3 years ago

    I think NGG (No Good Gofers) is a great 1st game. Has a mix of ramps, orbits, bash figures, great flash bulb lighting, spinning disk, one of the most challenging ramp shots (hole in one) music is fun and comic call outs are great.

    Don't need to spend time modding the game, it's pretty packed playfield... other than maybe upgrading the bulbs, speaker upgrade. Great family game for all ages. Seen them sell anywhere between 3750-5000 depending on condition. Happy Hunting!

    #27 3 years ago

    Hey man, welcome to the addiction. The Pinball Arcade is a great place to learn about a wide variety of pins, but as others said, no digital recreation can really compare to the kinetic feeling of a real game.

    Here are some other suggestions based on your comment about enjoying progression and unlocking new areas or mechanical events on a game: (and trying to keep suggestions under 5k)

    Funhouse -- hit ramps and targets and lanes to put Rudy to sleep, shoot into his mouth to wake him up and start 3-ball Multiball, then go into the trap door for jackpots. Not the deepest rule set for the long term, but super fun for kids and adults, and the animated head is pretty amazing mechanically.

    Bride of Pinbot -- really awesome artwork, and a very neat progression mechanic as you try to bring the robot bride to life. There is a billion point shot that throws off the entire scoring of the game, but it is still pretty fun to get to the point where her heart starts beating and an astronaut exclaims "my god, she's alive"! (Which also starts Multiball). This is actually my 7 year old daughter's favorite game.

    Other games that have a whole lot going on mechanically or rules-wise:
    Twilight Zone
    Star Trek: The Next Generation
    No Good Gophers
    Medieval Madness (very expensive, though)
    Monster Bash (also pretty pricy)
    Lord of the Rings
    Star Trek
    Spider-Man
    White Water
    Wizard of Oz (no game has more going on mechanically, but this one is expensive)
    Road Show
    Champion Pub

    #28 3 years ago

    Honestly though a lot will come down to what happens to come up for sale for a decent price in your area. You will want to physically inspect and play any game before you buy it! Stay flexible. don't get locked into finding one specific title, or you could be looking for years.

    #29 3 years ago
    Quoted from pezpunk:

    Honestly though a lot will come down to what happens to come up for sale for a decent price in your area. You will want to physically inspect and play any game before you buy it! Stay flexible. don't get locked into finding one specific title, or you could be looking for years.

    Is anyone actually patient for their first game, or at all? Does anyone remember that guy who was going to buy one restored B/W game per year and had it planned out to like 8 years? Anyone know the status of that collection? Maybe he's 2 games in now!

    #30 3 years ago
    Quoted from Pdxmonkey:

    Monopoly
    Good used one will be about 2500
    Kid friendly and three flippers
    Wizard mode
    Parts available
    Don't worry you'll find room for #2 later

    this. good family theme game. can pick up a real nice one for under 3k.
    then you can find room for 1 more to put next to it.

    #31 3 years ago

    If I were you, I'd look at Stern Star Trek Pro.

    Lots of fun, would be a great first pin...could be had for under 5K. Call up Cointaker and work a deal.

    #32 3 years ago

    Nascar/Grand Prix is a great game to started easy to get the hang of and a good universal theme that most people understand because its car racing, and theres lots of modes to complete , hauler miles to collect, try to get in 1st position also collecting champ letters to unlock the mini wizard mode and the major wizard mode after modes are done, there is more to do to, goes well when we have guests around who are not huge pinball players or never played before because its understandable, and wouldn't break the bank.
    Definatly another vote for Monopoly super fun family friendly game or even Junkyard would be good to. Way to many to choose from..
    Good luck!!!

    Promoted items from the Pinside Marketplace
    $ 7,499.00
    Pinball Machine
    Operation Pinball
    $ 37.00
    Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
    The MOD Couple
    $ 89.99
    Lighting - Led
    Lighted Pinball Mods
    $ 22.50
    $ 38.00
    Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
    The MOD Couple
    $ 44.00
    Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
    Lermods
    $ 5,599.00
    Pinball Machine
    Classic Game Rooms
    $ 69.99
    Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
    Lighted Pinball Mods
    £ 80.00
    Playfield - Decals
    Sillyoldelf Mods
    $ 229.99
    Lighting - Other
    Lighted Pinball Mods
    $ 104.00
    Boards
    nvram.weebly.com
    $ 10.00
    Electronics
    Yorktown Parts and Equip
    From: $ 9.99
    Eproms
    Matt's Basement Arcade
    $ 42.00
    Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
    ModFather Pinball Mods
    $ 209.99
    $ 499.99
    Cabinet - Toppers
    Great American Pinball
    $ 24.25
    Lighting - Other
    The MOD Couple
    $ 49.00
    Cabinet - Other
    Chrome Candy
    $ 15.00
    Playfield - Decals
    Metal-Mods
    $ 10.00
    Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
    ModFather Pinball Mods
    $ 38.00
    Electronics
    Yorktown Parts and Equip
    $ 15.00
    Cabinet - Other
    Siegecraft Electronics
    $ 12.00
    $ 26.99
    Lighting - Interactive
    Lee's Parts

    Hey there! Got a moment?

    Great to see you're enjoying Pinside! Did you know Pinside is able to run thanks to donations from our visitors? Please donate to Pinside, support the site and get anext to your username to show for it! Donate to Pinside