"Street Level" pins smaller... true?

(Topic ID: 200079)

"Street Level" pins smaller... true?


By DennisK

10 months ago



Topic Stats

  • 21 posts
  • 13 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 months ago by doughslingers
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

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#1 10 months ago

Hello all,

I remember the IPDB note that was on the Gottlieb "street level" pin series, as follows:
---
A "Street level" game, which were an experiment by Gottlieb towards designing a simplier, single level (no ramps), slightly smaller and cheaper game. They did not sell very well, and only six models (Premier's 1990 'Silver Slugger', Premier's 1990 'Vegas', Premier's 1990 'Deadly Weapon', Premier's 1990 'Title Fight', Premier's 1991 'Car Hop' and Premier's 1991 'Hoops') were made.
---

The "slightly smaller" aspect confuses me. In terms of overall dimensions, I think it is clearly untrue. Silver Slugger, Title Fight, and Car Hop (H: 77", W: 27", D: 52", Weight: 260 lb.) have the same dimensions as Lights...Camera...Action (the first System 3 and only Sys3 to come before the "street level" line-up). Hoops is only 75" in height (the only dimension different), but that matches Cactus Jacks and Class of 1812 (two System 3 games just after the "street level" series ended; Cactus Jacks is the same weight but Class of 1812 does weigh more).

Vegas and Deadly Weapon are 26" wide (otherwise their dimensions match Silver Slugger, Title Fight, and Car Hop). So, are these the only ones "slightly smaller" than Gottlieb's full-featured pins (I didn't research to see if 26" was otherwise common or not)? Was it something else (less actual playable space on the playfield and/or the playfield being smaller despite the cabinet size)? Or is the IPDB statement wrong (as a majority of these games have cabinet dimensions on par with the full featured titles Gottlieb released around the same time period)?

#2 10 months ago

I haven't noticed a difference in size of the cabinet, but if there is one, I would guess it would be the height of the cabinet body.

#3 10 months ago

Not significantly smaller than other games of the era. A few inches shorter, that's it.

In keeping with the 90s Gottlieb ethos, however, they are significantly shittier than other games of the era.

#4 10 months ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

In keeping with the 90s Gottlieb ethos, however, they are significantly shittier than other games of the era.

Tell us how you really feel?

Hoops and Vegas are pure crap. Deadly Weapon is actually decent player, but the sounds and call outs are awful. Car Hop is fun too. Have never played Title Fight or Silver Slugger.

#5 10 months ago
Quoted from ForceFlow:

I haven't noticed a difference in size of the cabinet, but if there is one, I would guess it would be the height of the cabinet body.

Ah, that dimension isn't on the flyers so I may measure that (I have a Silver Slugger... but I don't own any other Gottlieb games, still, if everyone was around the same size it may be *good enough* for me to get a sense of it).

Quoted from CrazyLevi:

Not significantly smaller than other games of the era. A few inches shorter, that's it.

Shorter in the way ForceFlow mentioned (cabinet body), or do you mean in some other way?

#6 10 months ago

I never noticed a size difference and have owned Title Fight and Vegas. Title Fight was ok game, backbox animated boxers were cool. I liked Vegas and would buy another if it came around, real simple game, ugly color on cabinet.

#7 10 months ago

Title Fight is actually descent.

#8 10 months ago
Quoted from vdojaq:

Tell us how you really feel?
Hoops and Vegas are pure crap. Deadly Weapon is actually decent player, but the sounds and call outs are awful. Car Hop is fun too. Have never played Title Fight or Silver Slugger.

Back in 2004 it thought it would be fun to collect all the street level games as they were cheap, parts were plentiful and I had the space at the time to pull them all together. Of course, I hadn't had the chance to play all of them at that point, either. Ended up buying all of them except Deadly Weapon and Hoops. Played those at PAPA and decided I really didn't have to have all of the street level pins, ha!

Did playfield swaps on Title Fight, Car Hop, Vegas, and Silver Slugger. Easiest swaps ever, look underneath the playfield and you will find a map of where everything should go.

Most of the street level pins just have boring playfield layouts, cheesy callouts, and kitschy art. Not great fun to play. Hoops has to be worst of the series. Kids like Title Fight because of the animated backglass with the two fighters, Car Hop has a great theme with some cool art and special nostalgia scoring where the points and sounds are like back in the 1950s, but it can be downright boring to play. Silver Slugger has some promise but the callouts will drive you nuts--"there's a drive", art is just plain wierd on that one. Vegas could have been a great pin as the playfield multipliers and cashier shot can be very rewarding, but only with the red flipper coils. Unfortunately, the easy loop shot kills Vegas for tournaments as you can just loop that thing all day long. I never really got into Deadly Weapon after playing it at PAPA.

One other consideration, I owned most of these for 5-10 years and after going through them once, I didn't have to ever fix anything else on them ever again. Very reliable, dependable games.

#9 10 months ago

Not to digress from size too much, but...

Hoops seems very polarizing. I've not played it. I've heard it didn't rely much (at all?) on mystery awards, so very non-Gottlieb of them in that case. I know some people really like it from a tournament game perspective.

Silver Slugger seems to have balanced scoring, but mystery awards are the only way to get a multiball, so that's going to annoy some players.

Those are really the only two I know anything about.

#10 10 months ago

I like prize fight, very unique gameplay and I am a sucker for old school backglass animations. Hoops is not that bad, cannot speak for the randomness of the awards but we had fun playing it at The Sanctum last time we were there.

#11 10 months ago
Quoted from ForceFlow:

I haven't noticed a difference in size of the cabinet, but if there is one, I would guess it would be the height of the cabinet body.

Finally got around to some comparisons, and this accurate. The back area runs about the same height as Firepower, so the playfield remains pretty close to the glass (no ramps to accommodate). So, it saved them a bit of wood.

Scooby Doo mystery solved, thanks all!

#12 10 months ago
Quoted from BrianBannon:

Hoops has to be worst of the series.

If by “worst” you mean “BEST”, then I fully agree!
A well taken care of Hoops is a beautiful (playing) thing.

#13 10 months ago

I just bought a Hoops with an NOS playfield installed.

I can understand how it can be a bit polarizing. It's very straightforward and basic, but it's saved (IMO) by the nice rules, cheesy music, and cheesy callouts. You'd have to be a little crazy to want Hoops in a small collection, I think.

#14 10 months ago

Hoops has some simplistic yet very fun shots - unique to any pin I've ever played.
Example: The left spinner goes up and around, comes out the front....when the natural shot is to hit the top left loop from the other direction.
It's pretty cool actually.

Silver slugger has 3 nice spinner shots, but is very random - mystery awards too important.
Title Fight is fun too...as long as it's set up level and with a good incline.

DWeap, CarHop, Vegas...far more limited games.

PAPA has all of them - except SS.

2 weeks later
#15 9 months ago

Part of the purpose of this thread was to help me in a research project I was doing to gather "street level" information for a podcast episode I was planning. I did finally get that all done and assembled (I had to find time to listen to some past Gottlieb interviews... finally happened). This size discussion is a very minor part, but here's a direct link to that part of the show if you'd like to hear what the designers thought of the effort, why it didn't work, and some various specifics and trivia related to that time in Gottlieb's history: https://soundcloud.com/user-465086826/episode-47#t=23:17

Thanks again everyone who weighed in on this, it was very helpful in trying to gather up what I could about Gottliebs of this vintage.

#16 9 months ago
Quoted from DennisK:

Part of the purpose of this thread was to help me in a research project I was doing to gather "street level" information for a podcast episode I was planning. I did finally get that all done and assembled (I had to find time to listen to some past Gottlieb interviews... finally happened). This size discussion is a very minor part, but here's a direct link to that part of the show if you'd like to hear what the designers thought of the effort, why it didn't work, and some various specifics and trivia related to that time in Gottlieb's history: https://soundcloud.com/user-465086826/episode-47#t=23:17
Thanks again everyone who weighed in on this, it was very helpful in trying to gather up what I could about Gottliebs of this vintage.

Never heard of the podcast before but gave it a listen. Very impressive and a nice listen. Great talk about the Gottlieb games with some very interesting information, nice back and fourth between the hosts and none of the usually snarky “Gottlieb Sucks” talk that often comes into Pinball podcasts.

#17 9 months ago
Quoted from Matesamo:

Never heard of the podcast before but gave it a listen. Very impressive and a nice listen. Great talk about the Gottlieb games with some very interesting information, nice back and fourth between the hosts and none of the usually snarky “Gottlieb Sucks” talk that often comes into Pinball podcasts.

Glad you enjoyed the segment. We've been around a while but we're a fairly small podcast. Mixed gaming, so that won't appeal to everyone (we're probably 70% pinball and front-load that segment for convenience), but we do it for fun and I've wanted to do something like the street level for a while, but it took a while to gather everything up to a level I was comfortable declaring comprehensive. Everyone already knows all about Williams and why they were popular. I've always been interested in the less successful/less known stories, like Playmatic, Sega of Tokyo, etc. Harder for me to do ones where background materials aren't in English though.

As for Gottlieb itself, I don't have strong negative feelings towards them in part because I think it's better to just judge on a game by game basis (obviously Gottlieb's development cycle being so short compared to Williams means you'd statistically expect better games out of Williams, but each game is unique and should be judged on its own merits and flaws). Besides, shows are generally the only place I see Gottlieb games, so I have relatively limited experience with them (whereas it is easy for me to find a collector or a location with an "A list" Williams game).

#18 9 months ago

I just listened to the segment a few days go. There was some interesting nuggets of info there that I wasn't previously aware of. Nice job

A lot of folks do automatically dismiss this era of games, and it's nice to see someone take an interest in them and their history.

#19 9 months ago

Yes they are shorter in over all length, you really don't notice it though until you stand the game up on end. Gottlieb called it "street level" pins but in reality they were produced to save money on wood, weight and materials. Making the game a few inches shorter would not make an operator want to buy the game as they were waaayyy behind the times compared to Williams and Bally in the same era which were making far better games that people actually wanted to play. People only played those Gottlieb's at the time because the other games were filled with stacks of quarters on them. Gottlieb was very old school and felt they could compete with the old "less is better" thing. Turns out they weren't further from the truth and within ten years from the end.

John

#20 9 months ago
Quoted from Dayhuff:

Yes they are shorter in over all length, you really don't notice it though until you stand the game up on end.

I did not catch that originally when I focused on the height of the cabinet. Comparing to my limited selection of other games, it is definitely the smallest in cabinet length, by approximately 3.5". Making note of that so I don't forget, thanks!

4 months later
#21 4 months ago

I have a 6 Gottlieb Street Level pins set up and can be played at Central Drive In Theater Norton Va 25273. All only 25 cents to try 3 balls per play.

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