I spent all of my newspaper money on my namesake.
However we had a Big Deal in our garage for a few years. The neighborhood dads congregated at our house every Friday. I learned to hustle pinball, pool, and poker. Essential life skills.
Gottlieb Wild Life, Farmington MI, 1973. A local pizza parlor had it along with a Williams Swinger.
I was 9 years old, my dad suggested I try one of them and put a quarter in WL for me. I didn't much want to at first cause I was afraid I'd be terrible at it. From that first quarter I was hooked -- and my dad regretted it ever since.
But only a couple more visits/play sessions followed there. A strip mall fire took the entire place out later on. But the seed had been planted in this pinhead-to-be's brain . . .
My first memories of pinball is when I was 15-16 and discovered T2 in a candy store, man that pin was so amazing with the cool callouts and the robot head. Then I discovered Addams Family and some other classics.
In my 20's I had almost forgot about pinball but then I found a Black Rose in my college cafeteria and I started playing some pinball again.
Then came a period about 15-20 years of studying, work, girlfriend/wife, kids and pinball took a backseat again. It never really left my interest but I simply didn't have time or energy for it then. At about 40 when life finally started to calm down a bit (kids got older, knew what I was doing at work, had a better economy and a large house with space) I felt it was time to get a pinball of my own. First one, then two and now few years later I'm up to 7 and thinking about moving them to the garage to get space for more pins, it's crazy addictive
Quoted from Chisox:
orgar in 1979. Gorgar speaks! That blew my mind.
Yep that was a big deal. I remember lines out the door to play that game.
Favorite game when I was a kid playing in the arcade at the mall was Haunted House. As a teen I played an Addams Family at the local horse track. Addams was the first pin I ever bought... almost 19 years ago now. Still have it and currently 14 more on hand.
High Speed during the Summer of ‘91. Went camping with my aunt, uncle, and cousin up in Wells, Maine. Think it was called Outdoor World at the time. While they had plenty of things to do (on site mini golf, swimming pool, and resort activities) , they had a small game room that consisted of a Rampage, a Ms Pacman cabaret (that has a poor monitor and the gameplay was flaky at best), and High Speed.
Wasn’t into pinball during that timeframe and as much as I enjoyed Rampage...most of my quarters were spent on the High Speed in that game room. I loved it! Thought someday down the line, I would own one. While I never did, I managed to get a Getaway as a nod for that memorable trip.
As a young kid, I got my first taste of pinball with a Heat Wave machine at a restaurant across the street from where I lived. But I didn't get hooked until found pinball in bars years later. The first machine I recall playing frequently was Lost World.122968710_356167365488130_7714763558608180244_o (resized).jpg
For me it was a Buckaroo.
I was lucky enough to grow up in the 60's, down the Jersey shore, just walking distance from Barnacle Bills Amusements and the Seaside Boardwalk. Bills had a Buckaroo we played the heck out of, loved it and was one of the 1st machines in my collection and still have it. Once you have one you have to add a Cowpoke too and so many more....
Growing up there was a putt putt that was the place to be for any kids bday party. Main premise was mini-golf, but had ski ball, some redemption games, an arcade, and a decent stack of pins. Pizza, party area. Anywho. Any bday party i went to i always dumped the bulk of my tokens in pinball - usually TAF and Whirlwind. Like someone mentioned earlier - "IT"S SHOWTIME" on TAF and the fan/spinners (never got to MB i dont think) on WW were cool as hell. First pin I bought was my WW from Blackbeard - it's bolted to my floor. Only way it's leaving is for one in better shape. Have a new set of ramps, pops, plastics, ramps, and a Marco Gold waiting to go in it. Have 3 pins now - MET pro, WW, RBION. Wanna round out with 2-3 more. JP Prem, and possibly Creech, TAF, or TZ.
I don’t remember the first pin I played, but it was an EM in a bar that let a kid come in. My mom was visiting a friend and they sent me down to the corner pub with some dimes because I was bored. It must have been an EM because tilt disqualified the player.
The first game I remember was Doodle Bug, in the bait shop where we'd gone for vacation. I was 13. Spent a lot of that vacation trying to keep the doodle bug going.
Quoted from Hazoff:
I’ve always thought that Rudy’s head resembles Gene Rayburn from Match Game.EAD57B38-3988-43EA-B03A-BB852CFBF04A (resized).jpeg
Gottlieb Buckeroo at one campground in PA we used to visit in the early 70's and a Gottlieb Outer Space we visited in VA. Those were the days........
Quoted from WIZ:
Gottlieb Buckeroo at one campground in PA
Not many campgrounds have gamerooms/arcades anymore. I have similar memories. Good times for sure.
I was broken in on Gottlieb Add-A-Ball machines in Hartford, CT starting in 1973 by some high school buddies. We would go to Stanley's Smoke Shop and get a roll of dimes, and play Card Trix and Stock Car for hours. We would just take turns playing balls - we had no concept of playing competitively against each other. It was a cooperative effort of men against machine to make the game last as long as possible. It was your job to earn at least one extra ball every time you were up...I learned my nudging and short-flipper skills during those sessions.
We also played a lot of Pop-A-Card across the street from school at the hot dog place. It was 2 games for a quarter, so a little more expensive. But hey, it was newer and in better shape than Stanley's two well-worn ones, both from 1970.
When I moved back to the Chicago suburbs in 1975, I started looking for pinball and mainly found it in bowling alleys. The arcade explosion hit around 1978, and there were pinball and video game arcades everywhere.
I've never had to go very long without pinball in almost 50 years of playing - many great memories. I have 20 machines now, the most I've ever had. One of the few things besides music that I have done life-long.
I'm still keeping an eye out for a nice Pop-A-Card ...
There is nothing quite like putting that machine in your living room.
My favorite was theater of magic. I bought it first, making sure I started in the right place.
Nothing like owning that game. Arcade gamers feel this satisfaction too. With thier donkey kong cabs.
I will need to get some 70s-80s era games.
I have seen some nice collections to now try to emulate, forever. Like John weeks collection in banning.
I would ultimately like to make an arcade in Orange County/ Los Angeles.
You will all be invited...
John weeks collection in banning helped get me hooked. As well as about twelve other collections.
Aim high boys and girls. I'm going big or going home.
Grew up with a 1965 Williams Pretty Baby in the basement. Fish Tales was the game I had to own grown up.
Sunset. A 60s game was in my house first. I learned EM guts as a 10 year old. Fixed relays and contacts every week. A few years later, replaced it with Dixieland and Flipper Cowboy. Between those three EMs, I knew there would always be a pinball machine in house...
Quoted from Reid420k:
Hey, trying to find a post. But I am curious what pinball was the one that got you "hooked" "the bug" "addicted"
I feel alot of people have good stories...... and on weird pinballs too...
Use to have a Dk arcade machine 4 years ago but sold it and ran away from hobby (lost interest in hobby and friends weren't as interested to come play) a friend told me i should check out the pinball bar that just opened up.... I thought hey why not they have arcade games. m
When I arrived i noticed most if arcade games there were not what I was into (space invaders, outrun, street fighter 2, ect) so I tried a few pinballs... can't remember what ones.. just what ever ones looked cool. (Batman, stranger things, addams family.) All my games seemed to not last that long or had nooooo idea what was goin on... so I was just about to give up when I noticed the street fighter 2 pinball in corner......I'm not a fan of arcade game but I figured its just a theme....3 hours later im still trying to beat all the fighters(got down to 2 before wizard mode)....and that was it... I was hooked... I came back the next day and spent another 4 hours on machine. Thought it was best pinball around..until I joined pinside.....everyone knows how the rest goes... couple months later I had a pinball machine
Toss up between Fire Power, Meteor and Genie. Used to play them both regularly at Golf n' Stuff in Norwalk back in the Eighties. Golf n' Stuff pretty much got me into pinball. They had two arcades and the biggest selection of pins in the area back then.
I turned 13 in 1977, when arcades were everywhere, and played anything I could get my hands on, but I distinctly remember KISS and Evel Knievel being favorites back then.
Fast forward - early 90s, my buddy was building a house, and I used to help him on the weekends. We'd have lunch at the local bar, and they had a T2 that we played every time we were there. Another friend called me at some point, and said the little sandwich shop in town had a T2 for sale. I ended up buying it, and that rekindled my love of pinball.
When I was 13 in 1982 my nextdoor neighbor's family bought a Mata Hari. Between his family of 5 and me that machine ran 24/7 like a British taxi! The following Christmas my folks bought me my Meteor. I played it all day and night through Christmas break and every free minute when school was back in session. After that I'd play anything I could find in the wild but my mom didn't want me going to arcades so I would usually stumble across a single game at a 7-11 or something so I had to play whatever I had access to. I remember dropping a lot in a haunted house, a devil's dare and either a Comet or cyclone, I can't remember. Last time I was at California Extreme I played a haunted house and couldn't figure how I put so much money into one. I love the music but the play was kind of meh.... I did like the basement playfield though. I guess that's what kept me feeding it all that time!
I also used to skip my college history class to play Sinbad, in the Harford Mall FUNCADE USA.
To bad the instructor was the President of the college, I failed that course!!
Quoted from Hayfarmer:
Sinbad. Used to skip history class in college to go play at bowling alley. 2 years ago, found a huo in Denver, and now its bolted down here!
First game I remember playing is a Gottlieb Big Brave at the
local bowling alley. 1 game for a dime, 3 games for a quarter. Games that got me hooked, Evel Knievel, Night Rider and Strikes and Spares
Quoted from PinNickleby:
Evel Knievel, Night Rider and Strikes and Spares
Those and Playboy hooked me when I was young.
Metallica hooked me again in later years.
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