(Topic ID: 289558)

What’s your opinion on Popeye Saves the Earth?


By RobinRobin

60 days ago

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Topic Stats

  • 47 posts
  • 36 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 58 days ago by Banker
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

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#1 60 days ago

Has anyone have any feedback on the Popeye Saves the World pinball machine? Has anyone played it? Should it be in collection? Need advice?

#2 60 days ago

Should be burned. Terrible game

#3 60 days ago

Waiting for the movie before I decide.

#4 60 days ago

Owned a few and not too bad a game. Was plagued with bugs early on ( software) , and the playfield view is somewhat obstructed. Williams Super Pin series with quite a bit going on.

#5 60 days ago

Well deserved of its shitty reputation, but it does have some of those famous 90s Williams charms. The sound is fantastic, the art isn’t bad, and it certainly doesn’t look or feel cheap.

It also feels half baked and over baked at the same time, and you just the feeling the whole project was a bit of a disaster. I’m sure the old timers who worked there have some stories.

It has several massive but useless “toys,” and probably the worst upper playfield in pinball history with impossible to understand goals and no apparent reward. The rattly left ramp contraption and the finger slicing roulette wheel thing are both not fun, most shots are obscured, and the game just feels like a mess.

When these were $900 I was “hey buy one for the hell of it all day” but at current 90s pin pricing I could never justify bringing this thing in even on a lark. You don’t see them cheap enough anymore to make it worth the trouble.

#6 60 days ago

Not as bad as many people will lead you to believe. Quirky with a decent amount of things to shoot for. A little on the easy side for the experienced players. Not worth looking far and wide for, but if one pops up locally at a decent price, it's worth grabbing and playing for a while to see if it resonates with you. Mine lasted a bit longer than I expected.

#7 60 days ago

Honestly, the hate is undeserved.

It's a great game with deep gameplay. The theme is a bit strange but I feel most of the hate originates from Steve Richie badmouthing Python.

At least Python was willing to create a game with actual features, unlike the 6k bare bones Led Zeppelin.

Link to comments
https://groups.google.com/g/rec.games.pinball/c/Brmc4Jdbn3s

#8 60 days ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

Well deserved of its shitty reputation, but it does have some of those famous 90s Williams charms. The sound is fantastic, the art isn’t bad, and it certainly doesn’t look or feel cheap.
It also feels half baked and over baked at the same time, and you just the feeling the whole project was a bit of a disaster. I’m sure the old timers who worked there have some stories.
It has several massive but useless “toys,” and probably the worst upper playfield in pinball history with impossible to understand goals and no apparent reward. The rattly left ramp contraption and the finger slicing roulette wheel thing are both not fun, most shots are obscured, and the game just feels like a mess.
When these were $900 I was “hey buy one for the hell of it all day” but at current 90s pin pricing I could never justify bringing this thing in even on a lark. You don’t see them cheap enough anymore to make it worth the trouble.

This, plus it will take you forever to sell it.

#9 60 days ago

Its good for parts.

#10 60 days ago
Quoted from Cheberha:

Honestly, the hate is undeserved.
It's a great game with deep gameplay. The theme is a bit strange but I feel most of the hate originates from Steve Richie badmouthing Python.
At least Python was willing to create a game with actual features, unlike the 6k bare bones Led Zeppelin.
Link to comments
https://groups.google.com/g/rec.games.pinball/c/Brmc4Jdbn3s

ST:TNG was Steve's design while Barry and Python were making Popeye, as you likely know, which was full of "features". Why are you comparing Popeye to Led Zep? For the record LZ shoots 100x better than Popeye, and the rules are way better already. Doubt you've played it. And once you start playing the wizard mode multiple times in one game, Popeye gets old. It's really not that deep at all. Nonetheless, still better than some give it credit for.

#11 60 days ago

Some game had to be the worst wpc game Popeye with its obstructed views is that game. Enough said.

#12 60 days ago
Quoted from Cheberha:

Honestly, the hate is undeserved.
It's a great game with deep gameplay. The theme is a bit strange but I feel most of the hate originates from Steve Richie badmouthing Python.
At least Python was willing to create a game with actual features, unlike the 6k bare bones Led Zeppelin.
Link to comments
https://groups.google.com/g/rec.games.pinball/c/Brmc4Jdbn3s

Yeah “Popeye is better than LZ” is a searing hot take but I have a hunch it’s not going to age very well.

Those Williams old timers are always bitching about each other but I’m gonna take Steve’s side on this. Popeye was a terrible game driven by a creative lunatic who had clearly lost his touch that Williams forced down distributors’ throats - no Popeye? No mortal kombat 3. Tough titty.

That’s the only reason they made so many of those Popeye shit piles - it’s a truly awful game nobody wanted then and nobody wants now.

And the playfield still looks like a toilet seat.

#13 60 days ago

I put Popeye Saves The Earth in the same catagory as Bugs Bunny's Birthday Bash.

Terrific themes ruined by terrible gameplay.

Whenever I see either at a show, I struggle to get through an entire game and usually drain on purpose just to move on to another game.

-1
#14 60 days ago

Not a fan very repetitive and the upper playfield looks like an eyesore.

#15 60 days ago

It sucks. People who worship at the wet sloppy altar of Python think it's the best ever game designed, outside of Bugs Bunny's Bash.

Terrible waste of a great IP.

#16 60 days ago

I think the theme execution is awesome and love the way it looks. Python's signature playfield design and art integration brought to its absolute limit... For better and for worse. The playfield looks so much like a boat it would probably float. I've never had the opportunity to play one that was tuned well (Only one I ever played had the Bluto scoop ejecting balls STDM) but I've read through the ruleset a few times before and it sounds like a game I'd enjoy. I feel like it's over hated, but I can't say that for sure until I get more time on it myself.

#17 60 days ago

You have to get used to it... I've always heard it was a bad game. And compared to other wpc games it is..

Played a few games on location, didn't really like it. Wasn't set up correctly, some shots were difficult to make, and it's a confusing game.

It has nice sounds and a lot of animations, but because of the animations are playing you often don't know what else has just completed or what you should do, it doesn't give instructions on what exactly to shoot.

Last year I was able to buy one and started to learn it (there's a good rulesheet made by someone in the owners group here). I appreciate it but don't enjoy it much.

There's a lot to do of modes and multiballs..
You need to learn the rules to know what to collect. Competitions players will only go for bluto multiball as that's where the big points are.

It has many mechanisms, it's a full playfield, but you wonder what they add to the gameplay.. they don't add fun..

If you consider Popeye more like a pinball-like novelty machine like Pinball Circus, instead of a pinball machine, then you start to like it maybe more.
It's a playfield full of ramps, pinball mechs, looking like a boat with animals.. not much to do with the popeye cartoon theme you know. The theme doesn't make sense..

I've posted in the owners thread here asking how it would play without the upper playfield.. imo probably better and you could still reach the wizard mode..

#18 60 days ago

Haven’t played too much yet but when it got delivered to my parents house my mom saw olive oil wearing a bikini on the back art then gave me a mean look .

#19 60 days ago

It isn't the worst of the worst like some say it is, but it isn't a great game considering the era BW game it is. You can't see half the playfield and it plays pretty clunky.

PS -- You're just up the road from me it looks like. Welcome to Pinside and to the hobby!

#20 60 days ago
Quoted from The_Director:

It isn't the worst of the worst like some say it is, but it isn't a great game considering the era BW game it is. You can't see half the playfield and it plays pretty clunky.
PS -- You're just up the road from me it looks like. Welcome to Pinside and to the hobby!

At the point you are trying to come up with the handful of games that may be worse than the one being discussed, the battle is already lost.

I think it’s tim Arnold who said 5 percent of pinball machines are great, 5 percent are awful, and 90 percent are good.

I roughly subscribe to this theory. Wherever it may fall in the shame 100 listing, Popeye clearly resides in that awful 5 percent.

#21 60 days ago

I have seen this , but can't honestly find it. Someone had PopEye pinball placed in their pool.....

#22 60 days ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

At the point you are trying to come up with the handful of games that may be worse than the one being discussed, the battle is already lost.
I think it’s tim Arnold who said 5 percent of pinball machines are great, 5 percent are awful, and 90 percent are good.
I roughly subscribe to this theory. Wherever it may fall in the shame 100 listing, Popeye clearly resides in that awful 5 percent.

Well, yea, if you look at it that way which does make sense, Popeye probably does hit that bottom 5% haha.

#23 60 days ago

The boat brow blocks a large area of the playfield from view, hiding the ball's movements. That alone is one of major detracting factors. It's always a bad idea to obscure where a ball is located on the playfield.

#24 60 days ago

People were bagging on Popeye way back in the 90s. It's like the first game I remember reading about where nearly everybody was calling it a dud on google groups or wherever it was. I think I only played one once maybe 15 years ago but don't remember if I liked it or not.

#25 60 days ago

I’m in the minority here but I really like the game. I’ve owned it before and would get it again if the chance arises.
In saying that it’s not for everyone and I understand that so I’d never push others to get one. It’s one of those titles I think you would definitely have to put some time on before buying one.

#26 60 days ago

I would rather castrate myself with a blunt rock on top of a lockdown bar then to play or own Popeye.

#27 59 days ago
Quoted from PaulCoff:

I be would rather castrate myself with a blunt rock on a lockdown bar then to play or own Popeye.

Tough but fair.

#28 59 days ago

I always want to like it since I love both the character and oddball pins, but the ball is obscured too often, and it's really hard to get around that.

#29 59 days ago

She has made a couple of post and they are about 2 of the worst games ever made.

#30 59 days ago

Flat Bluto or 3d Bluto?

#31 59 days ago
Quoted from chad:

Flat Bluto or 3d Bluto?

The flat one is just sad. Both the Popeyes I ended up with had the 3d version.

By the way, 30 posts and nobody has called it Poop-eye yet?

#32 59 days ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

When these were $900 I was “hey buy one for the hell of it all day” but at current 90s pin pricing I could never justify bringing this thing in even on a lark. You don’t see them cheap enough anymore to make it worth the trouble.

This applies to a lot of games in my opinion. Back when they were cheap as chips, bringing in a game was no big deal. If you really hated it you could drop the price of the game 50 bucks and away it went. Occasionally you would get lucky (like I did with Getaway) where the game ended up being a gem, and you just kept it. Pretty much every game fit the description of "good value". The amount of fun was always worth what you were paying.

As for Popeye, I never owned it. Playing it on location and at other peoples houses was enough for me to know I never wanted one. It just isn't fun... at all. If someone offered me a 900 Popeye today would I buy it? Only if I already had a buyer willing to buy it from me.

#33 59 days ago
Quoted from woody76:

She has made a couple of post and they are about 2 of the worst games ever made.

Let's hope she goes for the "Thoughts on Thunderbirds" Trifecta

I recently bought a Popeye for route. Earns pretty well. I think it's best for location play

#34 59 days ago
Quoted from DaveH:

This applies to a lot of games in my opinion. Back when they were cheap as chips, bringing in a game was no big deal. If you really hated it you could drop the price of the game 50 bucks and away it went. Occasionally you would get lucky (like I did with Getaway) where the game ended up being a gem, and you just kept it. Pretty much every game fit the description of "good value". The amount of fun was always worth what you were paying.
As for Popeye, I never owned it. Playing it on location and at other peoples houses was enough for me to know I never wanted one. It just isn't fun... at all. If someone offered me a 900 Popeye today would I buy it? Only if I already had a buyer willing to buy it from me.

Yep...I used to have a rule. If a WPC game comes up for sale - any WPC game - in good shape for $1100 or less, I'm buying it. I probably bought 20 games with that ethos. I was able to ride that all the way up till around 2011!

#35 59 days ago

It probably won’t kill you... but do you really want to take the chance?

#36 59 days ago

Popeye definitely has the late Anghelo feel to it and you can get an understanding of how the pinball circus was cut from it in a way without having any guidance/collaboration from other designers like Ourselor, Ritchie, or Treadua.
Taxi would be a better choice for me if you are looking into designs by Anghelo.

#37 59 days ago

Add one more "Robin" to your name should you buy one:
Robin... Robin... Robin...

#38 59 days ago

this game had so much potential; great license. however, the PF is barely visible with the boat upper pf. unfortunately, the mech on the right is cool, but poorly implemented. the PF otherwise is totally barren.

we all wish the game was more packed with features like Roadshow, TAF, or TZ...this game misses the mark

#39 59 days ago

I'm going to speak for Taxman who has gone to that great arcade in the sky. He would have said it was one of his favorite games, and he did the Color DMD coding for that game. So that's one vote for NOT the shittiest game ever. RIP, Dave.

#40 59 days ago

There is no B/W game that I dislike as much as Popeye. There are very few pinball machines that I dislike as much as Popeye.

Don't buy it unless you are sure you like it and it is at a very low price. It completely deserves its poor reputation.

#41 59 days ago

Most of the people that complain and hate the Popeye pinball machine do it with a passion that has built up over the years of listening and reading insider industry stories about the drama that surrounded the title during its release. Many have probably not even played it, and the ones that have went into it with a stigma. The only good part about this has been that it has kept the price low for those of us that don't care about that crap.

The upper playfields is one of the better upper playfields in pinball. There is actually a point to it. You are not just bashing targets. Seriously, name more than one or two better upper playfields that have this kind of skill and agenda.

The whining about shots being blocked and that you can't see the upper lane rollovers is the most ridiculous regurgitated nonsense I keep reading. They are easier to see than Fish Tales and Ghostbusters (to name two off the top of my head). The call outs are funny. The code is not polished, unfortunately, but its not a deal breaker for me. And like someone mentioned above, its a pretty easy game if you are going in to beat the wizard mode. however, the game play is super fun and has many different ways to be approached. I used to own one and will again one day.

Now let's hear more stories about Steve Ritchie, and the designers, and how much moulds cost, and all the great things that have nothing to do with game play... Yay!

#42 59 days ago
Quoted from beelzeboob:

I'm going to speak for taxman who has gone to that great arcade in the sky. He would have said it was one of his favorite games, and he did the Color DMD coding for that game. So that's one vote for NOT the shittiest game ever. RIP, Dave.

So glad he did this. Color DMD is a must for this game. Then again, they are pretty much a must for every game in my opinion.

#43 59 days ago

I *thought* I wanted one until I played it at Allentown once. It wasn't great, but I wasn't in a home environment to really try it out. This is the best video done on it so you can decide for yourself.

#44 59 days ago
Quoted from RobinRobin:

Has anyone have any feedback on the Popeye Saves the World pinball machine? Has anyone played it? Should it be in collection? Need advice?

I owned one and I enjoyed it. It's a solid, challenging game with plenty going on that looks really nice. It always kept me interested. I only sold mine to buy a Transformers Pro and honestly that was a huge mistake as I wanted Transformers gone within the first couple of weeks. With Popeye you usually hear the same complaints, often from people who have never played the game or played it very sparingly. I thought the "I can't see" complaints were a bit overhyped. Those two gobble hole shots are big and the shots both feel good. You don't need to see the shot all the way to the gobble hole to make it and the pops even help knock the ball in there on a missed shot. The other big complaint is the environmental theme. It didn't bother me, it was Popeye overall so I could take it or leave it. Biggest complaints for me were the upper playfield rules were really lacking. Finding Sweetpea in the maze is harder than beating the wizard mode. Also there is a fun shot up there only for an EB that hardly ever lights. The modes and rules could be a bit more fleshed out too. The whole right side of the game from the skill shot, to the right side of the upper playfield to the right drop down ramp just really feels underutilized. Popeye is one of those games that would really benefit from a home grown code update to help add depth/meaning to some aspects of the game. Overall, it feels like at some point in development the decision was made that what they had was good enough and it looks like development stopped cold at that point which is too bad.

I paid $1000 for my first one. It was a routed, filthy game but cleaned up very well. If I had the room, I would pick up Popeye again, but not at $2500+.

#45 58 days ago

Most of the hate is derived from ball obscurity. The multiball and start mode hole can’t be seen while playing. The left outlanes were blocked by the solid blue animal ramp. Pinball Life has solved the outlanes being blocked by making a translucent yellow animal ramp.

The pops and top rollovers lanes are visible through the port hole of the upper playfield as long as you are tall enough.

The code is good enough, it has a Wizard mode of finding Olive - which for me is very hard. If mutant spinach multiball was added to the code it could have boosted up the game.

#46 58 days ago

The game deserves the bad reputation, it's simply boring to play. The game does kind of look fun from afar, but I get bored really fast playing it.

Will I play a few balls on it if I see it in the "wild" somewhere? - sure, it's still a pinball.
Would I ever buy it to my pin collection? - no, never.

#47 58 days ago

Only lasted a few months downstairs , one of my grandchildren liked it, definitely not a keeper .

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