My girlfriend and I just finished a road trip throughout Arizona, Utah, Nevada, and California, including a one-night stop in Vegas. Of course we had to stop in at PHoF.
- Just about every game we played was working perfectly. Oddly enough, all the EMs played fast and lively with no identifiable errors while the System 11 and newer games seemed a bit more long in the tooth. I imagine the more modern games get more play, hence more maintenance is needed. The staff, including Tim, were all running around fixing games the whole time. We went once earlier in the day, broke for lunch and a dip in the Mandalay Bay pool, then came back until close. Upon our return, we noticed the lineup had changed in a number of spots. This gave us the impression that they take maintenance seriously. This allowed me to play 2001 which wasn't working earlier in the day.
- The novelty games left the biggest impression on us. Challenger was hilarious, very fun head-to-head game. Pinball Circus is a rite of passage: I wish Python could have brought it to market, though I understand why it didn't happen. The best one of the day, however, was Sega Basketball. Wow, what an experience! Why no arcade/redemption game manufacturer has glued a bunch of pink & purple LEDs to this and "remade" it is beyond me; it's perfect for that environment. I can just picture a roomful of people hooting and hollering over this game. Though I think Sega only made 15 or so, it looks like similar games were also made by Midway and Taito. I'd love to own one someday!
- All the staff were friendly, helpful, and attentive. That being said, whenever someone (probably a kid) made a loud WOOOOOOOO!! or yelling sound, about 15 seconds later, Tim would get on the intercom 1984-style and say "YOUR ATTENTION PLEASE, YOUR ATTENTION PLEASE - THERE IS NO_ YELLING IN THE PINBALL HALL OF FAME. THERE IS NO_ RUNNING IN THE PINBALL HALL OF FAME," or words to that effect. This became a running joke for the remainder of our road trip whenever someone was being too loud in a restaurant or whathaveyou. I understand why he does it--if people want wild, screaming kids, they can go to a redemption arcade--but it still cracked us up. My girlfriend even got to witness Tim kicking some people out, so she really got the whole experience. She thought he was being mean, but I explained the PHoF is less of an arcade and more of a personal collection we are invited in to view and play. If you invite the public into your space and they don't follow the rules or even common sense, you're not going to be too kind when asking them to leave, are you? After acquiring ten years of public-facing customer service experience, I certainly wouldn't.
All in all, it was a wonderful experience: the place a had a positive tone, everyone I saw of all ages was enjoying themselves, smiling, and having fun. Not sure when I'll be back in Vegas given how expensive it is nowadays, but I'd certainly make PHoF part of the trip!