Hey all! This project has been quietly worked on since around early October, with conceptualizing going further back. I wanted to wait on posting about it until there had been some decent progress made.
Building a pinball machine has always been at the back of my mind ever since picking up my first machine (William's Fun-Fest) nearly a decade ago. Since then I've built plenty of video games, including two Fix-it-Felix's and a couple of original designs, however pinball has always remained elusive. There's a small journal of sorts where I scribbled down different playfield and component concepts over the years, but nothing was ever concrete. Recently though, while working on a dungeon crawling mobile game, an idea came to me; how about pinball with puzzle like elements? Something that still has flow, but tests your noggin as much as your reflexes. The concept continued to evolve until settling on something similar to a rouge-like; where every time you start up a game, the machine's program randomly(within set parameters) rearranges the order in which the puzzle components on the playfield need to be solved in order to unlock certain modes or features.
As for the theme, it came down to a coin toss between Zelda and Dungeon & Dragons. Both have been big influences on me growing up and I want to pay homage to them in someway. I believe Zelda may have won out since my roommates D&D game came to an abrupt close right around the time Breath of the Wild released, putting a thumb on the scales some. That said, I'm sourcing much of the style of this game from the original NES games; The Legend of Zelda and Zelda II: Adventure of Link.
Anyway, enough chat'n. Let's play with power tools!
To get started, there's an old operator who lives near me that has a couple of parted out machines. Many of them are EM and early SS machines, which is the era I wanted to target for this game. A few dollars later and I came home with a William's Big Deal body and Alien Poker head:
After a day or so I set out to patch, sand down, and prime the head.
Then a trip down to the hardware store to pick up some paint.
Over the course of a week the head received roughly four coats of hunter green to give it a base color.
Meanwhile as paint layers dried, I hopped onto the computer and began designing the head stencils: