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(Topic ID: 257301)

What are the all time best themes for pinball

By rai

11 months ago

Topic Stats

  • 34 posts
  • 24 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 11 months ago by o-din
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders


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    #1 11 months ago

    I’m specifically not asking for what your favorite theme is, I don’t care if you like Thin Lizzy. I’m asking what are the absolute best themes ever with universal popular appeal to the most people.

    I’d have to say:

    1)Star Wars
    2)Harry Potter
    3)The Beatles
    4)Lord of the Rings
    5)The Simpsons
    7)Wizard of Oz
    8 Star Trek
    9)Fast and Furious
    10)Indian Jones

    #2 11 months ago
    #4 11 months ago

    Back To The Future
    Stranger Things
    Led Zeppelin
    Labyrinth (w./ David Bowie)
    Walt Disney World: Under Glass (based on theme park rides and attractions)
    Never Ending Story
    Princess Bride
    Space Balls
    Die Hard
    Harry Potter
    Beetle Juice

    #5 11 months ago

    Disney World, my wife would buy that one for sure. Have to get a fast pass to start an attraction.

    #6 11 months ago

    World Poker Tour

    #7 11 months ago

    I think you are going to have a heard time separating general themes (rock groups) with specific pins (Aerosmith) for example.

    #8 11 months ago

    I think a Pat Lawlor JJP "Saw" pinball would be a match made in heaven. With all the physical traps etc., would open up plenty of unique ideas for his genius design.

    #9 11 months ago

    I think some people have understood the topic of this thread differently than I did.

    #10 11 months ago

    Movies and comics seem to work the best, although companies are really pushing rock n roll band themes a lot the last few years.

    #11 11 months ago
    #12 11 months ago
    Quoted from Fizz:

    I think some people have understood the topic of this thread differently than I did.

    Yep, Labyrinth, princess bride, never ending story and Goonies are not major themes.

    More something like Mario Bros / Nintendo Land.

    #13 11 months ago

    Probably not popular on pinside, but ya would have to add....


    #14 11 months ago
    Quoted from rai:

    Fast and Furious

    Have not played that one yet, but am looking forward to it.

    #15 11 months ago

    Those are all licenses!

    The best themes for pinball are

    fantasy (mm, bk, bk2k, D&D, Got, ect.)
    Space (afm, ect)
    Superheros. get the idea

    #16 11 months ago

    I wish somebody would make an Outer Limits as a companion to Twilight Zone. It would be a great theme. Sorry if that's off topic.

    #17 11 months ago
    Quoted from o-din:

    Have not played that one yet, but am looking forward to it.

    Mission Impossible (Tom Cruise) would be great also.

    #18 11 months ago

    Dragonball Z baby gimme Goku gimme Vegeta

    #19 11 months ago
    Quoted from rai:

    Mission Impossible (Tom Cruise) would be great also.

    I could see a Smart Bomb button on that game.

    #20 11 months ago

    Everything else...

    #21 11 months ago
    Quoted from rai:

    Mission Impossible (Tom Cruise) would be great also.

    No way dude. Original TV cast

    Unknown (resized).jpg
    #22 11 months ago

    Star Wars
    Indiana Jones
    Back to the Future
    James Bond
    Jurassic Park
    Lord of the Rings
    MM and AFM are great original themes
    Guns n Roses
    The Beatles
    Led Zeppelin
    The Rolling Stones
    Twilight Zone
    Star Trek
    Stranger Things
    Monster Bash
    Die Hard
    Mission Impossible

    #23 11 months ago
    Quoted from rai:

    Disney World, my wife would buy that one for sure. Have to get a fast pass to start an attraction.

    Incorporate the 4 major Disney World theme parks *excluding the water parks (rumored soon to be 5)
    -Magic Kingdom
    -Hollywood Studios
    -Animal Kingdom

    From each park highlight some of the major attraction / rides:

    MAGIC KINGDOM elements
    Cinderella CASTLE - BALL LOCK
    Main Street USA
    Space Mountain (playfield gets all starry spacey / changes with LED / Lighting)
    Splash Mountain (white water type ramp while the song movin' along comes on songs of the south etc)
    Big Thunder Mountain (can be riding on two rails habitrail with train sounds and western voice call outs)
    Haunted Mansion (background haunting ghosts song 999 room for one more call outs)
    Skyliner (takes ball upper area / different area similar to the flying monkey in WOZ)
    Monorail or People Mover (physically have it transport / move the ball)
    Small World theme song with dancing dolls in all languages as pins are global gotta represent.
    Carousel of Progress - can have it turn / spin and reveal different scenes utilizing Batman joker toy from dark knight
    Alice in Wonderland Mad Tea Party the Tea Cups can be the pop bumpers or spinning pop bumpers ?
    Walt Disney World Railroad - Outer loops
    Enchanted Tiki Room - just have a interactive mechanical bird with that theme song
    Under The Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid - can be achieved with LED lighting
    Dumbo the Flying Elephant magnet attaches and lifts the ball up
    Seven Dwarfs Mine Train - Hi ho song playing where a million LEDS..... SHINEEEEE
    Jungle Cruise - LCD Mode need to escape trader sam
    Tron Coaster - loops / light cycle

    EPCOT elements
    Around the World Showcase (different music from different areas of the world)
    Soarin' Back box / LCD can have some cool flying through the world clips
    Test Track - Spinner speeding up the car
    Frozen Ever After -MODE song / defeat snowball guy (Marshmallow)
    Journey Into Imagination With Figment - Little Spark song, he can be drop targets randomly appearing as he does that on the ride
    Spaceship Earth - BALL LOCK
    The Land
    The Seas with Nemo & Friends
    Guardians of the galaxy cosmic rewind

    Animal Kingdom
    Tree of Life - BALL LOCK
    / Tough to be a bug LCD game save the ants ?
    Expedition Everest roller coaster
    Kilimanjaro Safaris - Save animals from the poachers, SIMBA 1 SIMBA 1
    Avatar Flight of Passage -LCD flying scenes / floating rocks
    Dinosaur - Mode safely transport baby dino back, crazy LED red lights as it ends

    Hollywood Studios
    The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror- Ball drop on the back glass
    Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith inverted loop
    Toy Story Mania!... have this as an LCD / Backbox game
    Fantasmic! - LED sorcerer Mickey on LCD
    Star Wars flying in millennium falcon
    Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway

    Donald Duck
    Daisy Duck
    Jiminy Cricket
    Winnie the Pooh
    Buzz Lightyear
    Mike Wazowski
    Chip 'n' Dale
    7 Dwarfs
    Snow White.... & all the princesses
    Hitch Hiking ghosts

    Mickey Ice cream bars
    Dole Whip
    Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake

    They have an insane amount of material to work with

    #24 11 months ago

    Not my personal favorites, but the games I feel have the best overall theme to appeal to the most pinball fans. I only went with games that were actually produced, but if I were listing games that haven't been made I'd include Harry Potter, The Matrix, Scooby-Doo, Grimms' Fairy Tails, H.P. Lovecraft, and several of the Nintendo licenses; Zelda, Metriod, Castlevania, Mega Man, Pokemon.

    Indiana Jones
    Jurassic Park
    Lord of the Rings
    Star Wars
    Terminator 2

    -TV SHOWS-
    Game of Thrones
    South Park

    Batman (all)
    Iron Man
    Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

    Dungeons & Dragons
    Harley Davidson

    Attack From Mars (Aliens)
    Cactus Canyon (Western)
    Medieval Madness (Middle Ages)
    Monster Bash (Monsters)
    Wrath of Olympus (Greek Mythology)

    #25 11 months ago

    Judging by all the machines ever made, and assuming the companies generally are in tune with what sells, wouldn’t the list look more like this:

    Rock bands
    Sci fi
    Anything in which drawings of boobies, butts, and crotches fits in

    #26 11 months ago

    Interesting that for all of the rock band/music themed pinballs out there that there are relatively few mentioned here. I think a big reason for that comes down to story.

    The vast majority of the titles listed ultimately have built-in stories/bases for stories that many people are already familiar with. The designers play off that story and the images it invokes to create an immersive, integrated experience for the player to participate in.

    Music, OTOH, from the average person's perspective, is a passive activity: most of us just listen to music that has been created; we do not get to participate in creating music for an AC/DC or an Iron Maiden or a Guns N' Roses. The closest we come to interacting with a band is at a live concert. So while we rock out to the music while playing, there is no inherent story accompanying the game which players are already familiar with so the designers must create a story/goals for the game. I humbly submit that's it's much harder to do this. I also acknowledge that when done well music games can be just as great as the best movie/TV show licensed games with pre-existing stories. And as we've all seen, games of each type can also be huge disappointments regardless of their license.

    Tommy was a rare example of music that had a built-in story. Even if it did not have the huge pinball connection, there was a story in the music and I think that made it easier for folks to relate to a game based on it.

    But it is interesting to see the relative lack of music/band-themed games showing up.

    #27 11 months ago

    Card games/poker.

    #28 11 months ago


    #29 11 months ago
    image-3 (resized).jpg
    #30 11 months ago
    Quoted from o-din:

    No way dude. Original TV cast[quoted image]

    Although you really need Peter Graves in the cast.


    #31 11 months ago

    Playing card games
    rock/metal bands

    #32 11 months ago

    Anything with Sly Stallone.

    #33 11 months ago

    Nobody mentioned BINGO yet?

    #34 11 months ago
    Quoted from GRB1959:

    Although you really need Peter Graves in the cast.

    If you want to go that new, it needs Spock, the Coors dude from Lebowski, and Barney talking jive.
    p7895802_b_v8_aa (resized).jpg

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