Training Center for Competitive Pinball - What Machines Belong In It?


By Nuclear_Waste

5 years ago


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  • Latest reply 5 years ago by tracelifter
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    #1 5 years ago

    If you were putting together a group of 10-20 machines with the sole purpose of honing your skills and learning rule sets in order to improve your overall tournament play, what machines would you absolutely have to have in the collection?

    Obviously, you never know what you're going to get at a tourney, but I'm sure some machines are better than others in teaching overall skill.

    #2 5 years ago

    I have had 75+ titles in the last 12 years, and there is only one that stands out to me that actually made me a better player- Wheel of Fortune. With the wide flipper arrangement, and the absolute necessity to nudge frequently, and also NOT flipping as much as possible during multiball, the game really changed how I play pinball. After owning it, my scores went up considerably on my other machines.

    #3 5 years ago

    TSPP, TZ, BSD, LOTR, Shadow, AFM, MM, Tron, Whirlwind and GNR would be my ten.

    #4 5 years ago
    Quoted from kwiKimart:

    TSPP, TZ, BSD, LOTR, Shadow, AFM, MM, Tron, Whirlwind and GNR would be my ten.

    As much as I love TSPP and LOTR, I was thinking that they maybe would not be good for this purpose since they rarely show up in tournament play due to their long game times (right?). Is that fair to say, or do they teach stacking so effectively that they are actually excellent tutor machines?

    #5 5 years ago

    WoF for exactly what ralphwiggum said, and I'd also suggest adding these:

    JD - You must set it up hard, but if it is truly nasty, you really have to think about what you're doing to score high on it.

    Count Down - It's a classic Gottlieb game that requires precision in your shooting and handling of one single ball to get higher scores. And often, tournaments aren't just all DMD era titles.

    3 Coins - We've used this for a few past MGC tournaments, and I love it because no one knows how to play it. Check out the flipper gap if you think that WoF has much of one. The game requires a real understanding of how important a precision plunge is, as well as a lot of strategy to know when to flip, when to wait, and when to hold your flippers up. It may have short flippers and be old, but it teaches you a *lot* about how to control a ball.

    #6 5 years ago

    Countdown is a solid choice--may help handle EM configurations too. I would add 2:

    WPT--pretty fast game, solid layout with very long basic shots (orbits, ramps, scoops), plus good precision drop target practice and the mini-pf for using small flippers (helps with older EMs). And the level of depth/strategy is second to none, so you can practice strategic assessment too.

    Lost World: Fairly straightforward fan layout but extremely fast with balanced scoring. Plus, each of the 5 modes don't share a single shot between them, so you have to be proficient at ALL shots on this game.

    And DEFINITELY an EM with long flippers, and one with short ones. (At least one should *not* have inlanes.)

    I wouldn't consider TSPP, and only one of AFM/MM to get more variety in. WOF would be very interesting , and most of the shots are also longer (harder) ones.

    #7 5 years ago

    I think JM is perfect if you want to work on speed, loops, precision shots and close, continuous left and right ramp shots on the left and right flippers (at high speed).

    #8 5 years ago

    I honestly think that TSPP is a great pin to learn how to stack modes. Yes, the gameplay is long, but it's worth learning how to stack.

    #9 5 years ago

    No Fear
    No pops and a lot of narrow lanes.
    No slop shots, they get you an instant drain and a PLAY BETTER!

    #10 5 years ago

    Gotta have Tommy in that line-up....duh....no brainer lol;)

    #11 5 years ago
    Quoted from tracelifter:

    No Fear
    No pops and a lot of narrow lanes.
    No slop shots, they get you an instant drain and a PLAY BETTER!

    Along this line of reasoning, T3 might be a good alternative here. Very narrow lane/ramp shots, and lots of timed combos for them.

    #13 5 years ago
    Quoted from StevenP:

    tracelifter said:No Fear
    No pops and a lot of narrow lanes.
    No slop shots, they get you an instant drain and a PLAY BETTER!
    Along this line of reasoning, T3 might be a good alternative here. Very narrow lane/ramp shots, and lots of timed combos for them.

    Yup, T3 is another good one even though the "Shoot here und here" gets old rather quickly.
    Hurry ups and timed shots always get me jacked up and make me blow the shots so these are essential thing to overcome to improve game play.

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