(Topic ID: 246834)

What do you look for in location pinball?


By zrbrt

8 days ago



Topic Stats

  • 51 posts
  • 41 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 day ago by cjmjmm2006
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders

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    There are 51 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
    #1 8 days ago

    Pretty much the title -- but, what do you look for in location pinball? How do you decide where you will play? What makes you come back?

    Personally I scout for new locations using pinballmap. I typically skip over any location with one (or two) games, unless they are games I have never played. I come back if the location has a lot of games, or a smaller number of games that are really well maintained.

    What about you?

    #2 8 days ago

    I like to search out uncommon games.
    Segas things like that

    #3 8 days ago

    Customers.

    LTG : )

    11
    #4 8 days ago

    We'll maintained machines.

    #5 8 days ago

    To be honest I don't anymore, but games I don't own and don't play a lot would be my #2 thing...obviously I won't drop monies if they are in shitty condition.

    #6 8 days ago

    Usually go to try something new or rare. I'd go back just to play if condition is good, audio can be heard, and machines are reasonably level. That eliminates almost all places unfortunately. I mostly just play at home or shows these days.

    #7 8 days ago

    In order of importance for me:

    1. Quantity and quality of titles
    2. Clean and well-maintained machines
    3. Cost of games
    4. Quality of nearby bars/restaurants
    5. Overall game setup (for example, does the lack of PDI glass strongly affect being able to track the ball due to overhead lighting? Do any games have ColorDMDs, does the location remove center and outlane posts that come installed in the game?, etc)
    6. Overall atmosphere of venue

    #8 8 days ago

    Games that work, are maintained, and LEVEL.
    Selection isn't a huge factor, if there is a game somewhere and it works I'll play it.

    I mostly just go to SS billiards because there is a full time tech named Prada on site, and LTG is there to help when she is stumped.

    #9 8 days ago

    Strippers and blow!!

    Lol. Sorry couldn’t help myself!!

    Quantity and quality is what I go for.
    Even if I own the game I’ll drop a few quarters in one that’s on location. Have to see if it plays different than mine.

    #10 8 days ago

    Locally new stern LEs and JJP LEs are $1 a game. I look to play the newest games and ones that are fun to play. My main spot Uptown Pinball in Martinsville VA has everything on free play and i get to play for free-

    #11 8 days ago
    Quoted from Coz:

    Locally new stern LEs and JJP LEs are $1 a game. I look to play the newest games and ones that are fun to play. My main spot Uptown Pinball in Martinsville VA has everything on free play and i get to play for free-

    How does that work?

    #13 8 days ago

    You don't pay for anything?

    #14 8 days ago
    Quoted from zrbrt:

    Pretty much the title -- but, what do you look for in location pinball? How do you decide where you will play? What makes you come back?
    Personally I scout for new locations using pinballmap. I typically skip over any location with one (or two) games, unless they are games I have never played. I come back if the location has a lot of games, or a smaller number of games that are really well maintained.
    What about you?

    I like a large selection of games that are well maintained...however...I am in a large metropolitan area with lots of locations, and what REALLY sets them apart are unique games.
    I am sick of seeing the same 5 stern games everywhere. Give me some JJP, american, spooky, EMs, williams system 11, early ss, golden age bally, etc.

    #15 8 days ago

    We are lucky enough to have a location in SF that has 50+ machines, so going there is a no brainer. Once in a while I look on Pinball maps for some specific games that Free Gold Watch doesn't have.

    #16 8 days ago
    Quoted from zrbrt:

    You don't pay for anything?

    My friend owns Uptown Pinball which is about 30mins from me. He has a great location with lots of arcade and redemption games along with about 25pins. Everything on free play-he charges $10 a day. We’ve done a few deals and he lets me come for free. Most of my visits I spend more time helping fix a machine and just talking Pinball. He just got a Beatles gold and Munsters premium, and also lots of 90s bally-Williams. Since we’re friends and it’s free, this is my first option and a lot of fun.

    When I go play at other locations, I normally go to a barcade type location. Full of games and pins, where I pay $1 a game for all the latest and greatest pins. I normally go to Boxcar bar arcade in Greensboro NC since they always get the latest stern, JJP and American pinball pins. Playing for a dollar a game seems to be the norm for newer titles

    #17 8 days ago

    BEER, open before 3pm.

    #18 8 days ago
    Quoted from jahbarron:

    BEER, open before 3pm.

    Nothing like a little day-drinking

    #19 8 days ago

    Unusual games/early SS and earlier games will draw me to a location. Because most locations have the latest Sterns and the 90s classics, and it gets old.

    #20 8 days ago
    Quoted from Daditude:

    Nothing like a little day-drinking

    Yeah. I have mid-week off days so daytime is my prime time. I don’t really care how the game plays as long as the flippers work. I’m not out specifically to play pinball- mostly out to socialize and drink, but I chose where I go on whether they have a game or two.

    #21 8 days ago

    On Long Island, what I am looking for in location pinball is a pinball to play on location.

    #22 8 days ago
    Quoted from jahbarron:

    BEER, open before 3pm.

    Agreed.

    Location and distance from my home sometimes plays a factor in where I choose to go. Add a good selection of well maintained games and I'm coming back often.

    #23 8 days ago

    Love em all, but I sincerely appreciate an operator that goes the extra mile in regards to upkeep and maintenance.

    #24 8 days ago

    I travel a lot for work and find myself in a different city about once a month.
    I'll go to the pinmap and find the city I'm in a look for the places with the most pins.
    Unless there is not much listed with multiple pins, I generally skip over places with one or two pins.

    It normally boils down to one or two places that look the most interesting to me, then I get in an Uber and go check them out.
    Sometimes I even checkout a couple places in one night.

    Things that are important to me (in no specific order).
    1) Pins that I don't own, rarely get to play or have never played.
    2) Good condition machines that are well maintained (nothing worse than showing up to find broken pins that are in a horrible state of disrepair).
    3) A good variety of different titles. Mainly stuff ca.1980s-modern. I'll play earlier stuff, but it doesn't interest me as much.

    #25 8 days ago

    Location to a point. Where I am when I travel... I look for game locations. I'm not always about the title. I can find a good game in just about any title as long as the came works and is clean.

    I've played at dozens of bars, pincades or even restaurants (One had great BBQ but really horrible games). 6-7 B-list titles with major issues: dead flippers, broken smash toys, dead switches AND a DE Star Wars that had the dirtiest playfield I've ever seen. If that was not bad enough they had the nerve to have postcards advertising PPE like they actually cared about the games.

    I played a super clean Doodle Bug and a Bon Voyage that was AWESOME! Fast, clean and super fun.

    I also played an AFM last month at a major pincade in Chicago that kept resetting. <blurg>

    faz

    #26 8 days ago

    How well the games play and selection.

    #27 8 days ago

    I might go for a certain game I have never played. But when I go out of state and have a few places to choose from I go for a place with mostly classics that are well maintained.

    #28 7 days ago
    Quoted from arcademojo:

    How well the games play and selection.

    Especially if it's newly released titles. That's the only way I get a chance to play them.

    #29 7 days ago

    Frequently support locations with a variety of well maintained games, cool pinheads.

    I’ve passed on others in higher crime areas or with too many creeper regulars.
    All about supporting pinball but no thanks.

    #30 7 days ago
    Quoted from Vino:

    I’ve passed on others in higher crime areas or with too many creeper regulars. All about supporting pinball but no thanks.

    Sounds like Emporium!

    #31 7 days ago

    Latest games and safe environment. Couple creepy places i just feel like im looking over my shoulder the whole time

    #32 7 days ago

    I prefer a place where games are on free play and you pay by time. I won’t pay $1 a game because that will always lead to SDTM frustration for me. $10 for an hour works for me.

    Game Vault in Morristown has great collection of pins and classic videos and all are well maintained, lots of color DMD and a great town for good eats.

    #33 7 days ago

    Not exactly the answer that you are looking for, but I don't look for location pinball. There is a great location not to far from my house and I never go there because it is easier to just go into my gameroom and play. If I see a game in a movie theater or bar, I don't pump quarters in it because I will only be disappointed by poor maintenance. I do make the trip to Orlando to go to the Pinball Lounge when they have a big gathering or a tournament. It is a wonderful location with tons of new Sterns, TNA, WPC games, etc. The bottom line is that I don't play games when I see them on location. I play the games in my collection and occasionally at friends collections. When I do play on location, it is a "destination location" like the Pinball Asylum, Pinball Hall of Fame, Silverball Museum or Pinball Lounge.

    #34 7 days ago

    I love a places that has many different eras of games in good condition! 80's to modern and games that have a good value for the cost to play. Places that has beer is definitely a plus!!!

    #35 7 days ago

    As a newer operator, I can echo the need for quality maintenance. For me, dirty or broken machines ruin everything. It has been exhausting for me to travel to the location and tweak or maintain the machines, but I firmly believe that is what it is all about.

    I make very little money with the ones I have had in the location, but just added two brand new ones in hopes that it might draw more interest. That said, all I ultimately care about is people enjoying these works of art. I think many people in my generation just missed the pinball era and I aim to fix that. Often I will help people understand the rules or throw them free credits so they can practice.

    I am curious to see what people think about that strategy.

    #37 7 days ago

    I'm a huge supporter of location pinball. I don't care who's it is, what game. My kids love to play. I do care about the game working right. My daughters, especially the oldest, knows the rules so when something is not right she begins to freak out. Haha. Most operators around me know me. I will get a call sometimes because my signature is the "triple 20" in the change machine. I allow my kids and myself $20 each so 3x $20 is a nice surprise for an op.

    I just want to see it grow and see the community come together. I've met a ton of people by stopping in to chat etc with patrons of Helicon Brewing, Voodoo Brewing or Starport. Many have reached out to me on here to talk pinball or ask me to stock a site they frequent with games. I appreciate all the love and do my best to show it back.

    #38 7 days ago
    Quoted from Aniraf:

    As a newer operator, I can echo the need for quality maintenance. For me, dirty or broken machines ruin everything. It has been exhausting for me to travel to the location and tweak or maintain the machines, but I firmly believe that is what it is all about.
    I make very little money with the ones I have had in the location, but just added two brand new ones in hopes that it might draw more interest. That said, all I ultimately care about is people enjoying these works of art. I think many people in my generation just missed the pinball era and I aim to fix that. Often I will help people understand the rules or throw them free credits so they can practice.
    I am curious to see what people think about that strategy.

    i also help if I see people playing my games on location and i can tell they need some help on what to do (when to press flipper buttons etc).
    if im doing collections or pm etc, i also give credits to people in the arcades and tell them to play test for me (esp if they are already dropping coin) and report any issues makes us both happy.

    .

    #40 7 days ago
    Quoted from cjmjmm2006:

    I'm a huge supporter of location pinball.

    I wish I could give you more than one thumbs up.

    LTG : )

    #41 7 days ago

    I travel enough to know that I look for pinball- and certainly have seen my share of location games.

    #1. Well kept games that play even better
    #1b. If your games are dirty pieces of shit I leave without dropping a dime- seriously. I refuse to pay for garbage and dont enjoy playing it so stopped doing do as it only pisses me off. Happily this seems to be less and less common!!!!!!!!

    Preference is a mixed line up- I dont love newer Stern so if I get to choose I will go to a spot with classic titles.

    #42 7 days ago
    Quoted from zrbrt:

    Pretty much the title -- but, what do you look for in location pinball? How do you decide where you will play? What makes you come back?
    Personally I scout for new locations using pinballmap. I typically skip over any location with one (or two) games, unless they are games I have never played. I come back if the location has a lot of games, or a smaller number of games that are really well maintained.
    What about you?

    Priority for me nowadays with my limited time is location. It has to be near me or it can only be on rare occasions. Once in a while I like to sneak out for a couple hours after the kids go to bed and that doesn't work if I have to drive 45 minutes one way to get to a location. I don't need drinks and food personally, normally when I go to play pinball I'm in there for one reason. TVs are nice to have the game on in the background as a distraction, but aren't a deal breaker either. Also the games have to play like they should. They don't need to be museum pieces with a bunch of added on lights and junk, but they need to play right to get me to drop more than $1.00 in them or get me to come back. For me, function tops quantity too. We have a location locally with the most games of anyone, but the condition is always a coin flip and some issues don't get fixed for months or years. I got fed up with game malfunction after game malfunction during tournaments and finally said enough was enough and I haven't been back there in years now. We are lucky to have lots of options here locally, so I can be choosy.

    #43 7 days ago
    Quoted from LTG:

    I wish I could give you more than one thumbs up.
    LTG : )

    Thanks Llyod. In all fairness, I never seen the logic behind not wanting to pay a little to get enjoyment from something. If I am out, I grab a drink from the bar, food from the counter and drop some coin. If you as a collector/player/hobbist does not believe that this helps push coin op forward then we have a big difference in opinion.

    #44 5 days ago

    if the games are in good condition and well maintained

    #45 5 days ago

    Strong flippers.

    #46 5 days ago

    Leg bolts. Eight per machine.

    #47 5 days ago

    I’m happy with one nicely playing game and beer. The deal breaker for me, as an old fart, is shit music. Fortunately, bars catering for my age group generally play rock

    #48 2 days ago

    Knockers! The pins have to have knockers!

    #49 2 days ago

    Games fully functional and level. Everything else is gravy.

    #50 2 days ago

    I definitely support location pinball as it gives me access to titles I couldn’t otherwise play. I wish you could hear more of the games but between screaming and music it’s a challenge. Clean, reliable, new releases, and rare pins are what I enjoy. The best location spots are the random places you don’t expect to see a machine.

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