(Topic ID: 336564)

Which game got you into the pinball hobby?

By Nintegageo

1 year ago

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    There are 91 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
    #1 1 year ago

    Mine was Who Dunnit?

    In 2017 I think? I had been browsing arcade machines and stumbled across a WD machine. I played pinball when I was younger, but it was just hitting things and staying alive. I didn't know a pinball machine could be that deep, complicated or goal-oriented. I know it seems laughable by modern standards, but it really intrigued and impressed me.

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    #2 1 year ago

    Jokerz, 1989. Then it was High Speed, and next Big Guns.

    #3 1 year ago

    Theatre of Magic and Bride of Pinbot

    #4 1 year ago

    I kind of have 2 answers. From my childhood, my dad found a busted Wico Big Top on the side of the road and (partially) fixed it up. He never got it fully working, but working enough to hit the ball around and make some chime sounds, which opened my mind to the idea of being able to fix up pinball machines.

    I didn't think about pinball for years - decades - until recently when I was bored with video games and had tinkered around with some electronics for a little bit. I started to think about that old Big Top machine and realized that pinball was a perfect intersection between gaming and tinkering with electronics, so I started looking for a game I could fix up. Almost immediately I found an old busted Genie somebody was selling for $200 and I dove in feet first. A few months later and I had this:

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    #5 1 year ago

    My dad had a Williams Grand Prix in his motorcycle dealership when I was a kid. The nostalgia of that game is what got me into the hobby. My first though was Williams 4 Aces. Thought it would be cool to have "one" to relive those memories.

    #6 1 year ago

    My first pin was T2. After that, I was officially hooked. Before that, I thought it would be cool to own a pinball machine, but I never understood why since I didn't play them too much on location. There's something almost magical about having one at home and playing anytime I feel the desire that ultimately drew me in.

    #7 1 year ago

    For me, it was NOT my Twilight Zone. But about 7 or 9 years before that, one of my neighbors had a Meteor. I went over and played it OFTEN - and whenever it broke or needed maintenance, I'd "help" by watching. I was.. probably 8 or 9 at the time.

    #8 1 year ago

    used to good to the local arcades every weekend when they opened and played all the games left over when they closed the night before !

    The first purchased game was a $800.00 TAF , great condition , no issue other than it that stunk of Pizza shop smell!

    #9 1 year ago

    When I was a kid, my Aunt & Uncle had a Mills Cannon Fire that we used to play every time we'd visit. Fast forward about 10 years to the Gottlieb Luck Hand in the local bar that got me to realize that there was more going on than just batting the ball around.

    #10 1 year ago

    The first pin I ever "owned" was an EM Gottlieb "Royal Flush" then shortly after that another EM from Gottlieb "Hot Shot".
    4 decades later and countless owned & sold pins, the fever lives.

    #11 1 year ago

    Pinball Arcade on the Playstation. It was free and came with TOTAN, if I remember correctly. Played it non-stop, bought a few, then learned that the very tables I was playing could be found at a local barcade. I think I played Dr Dude a ton because you could win free games at a low replay level, and that made me feel good.

    Good times.

    #12 1 year ago

    Aladdin's Castle, played at an arcade in Myrtle Beach, SC in 1977 (see my story: https://pinside.com/pinball/community/pinsiders/readypo/stories/be-back-by-dinner)

    Only game I currently have two of (one to play, one for the eventual top to bottom restoration) Extra BG too, because why not.

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    #13 1 year ago


    #14 1 year ago

    Led Zep got me re-introduced to pinball during the Covid ridiculousness here in Illinois. Needed something to do since there was no where to go and been hooked ever since. Love my rock pins!

    I know my P’s had a Fireball in our basement when I was really young but I don’t remember it…

    #15 1 year ago

    Ghostbusters, I guess - right after it was released it was at a comic book/gaming convention I happened to attend. I stayed at the booth which had Ghostbusters for hours. that same weekend, 2 people who do not know one another - independently told me I should get a pinball machine. So I did - a TAF.

    #16 1 year ago

    I had a friend in high school with a High Speed at their house and I absolutely loved it. Planted the seed!

    They later got an F14 also.

    #17 1 year ago

    Black Knight in 1980. But that was just playing location games. Bought my first game in 1996 that started the collection. I'm ashamed to admit it was Hurricane.

    #18 1 year ago

    jacks open

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    #19 1 year ago

    Moved into a new house. Had ping pong, shuffleboard and pool table, but nothing I could play by myself. Wanted a golf simulator, but ceilings were too low, so bought a golf themed pin. Hooked from there.

    #20 1 year ago

    I loved playing as a teen in the 70s, arcades were everywhere, but didn't really think about it much til I picked up a KISS in my early 30s, followed shortly thereafter by Space Invaders.

    But it wasn't until I got T2 a couple years after THAT - a game w speech, multiball, awesome light show, that I really got back into it - they came fast and furious for several years after that.

    #21 1 year ago

    Fireball baby. In the K-Mart, right by the entrance.

    That backglass art, that spinning disc and those zipper flippers. It’s was love at first site. I think I was 10.

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    #22 1 year ago

    The first one I really enjoyed was DE JP in 1993.

    The first one that got me HOOKED was AFM in 1995-1996. Took me 20 years, but I finally got one in 2016.

    #23 1 year ago

    My parents ran an amusement park when I was a kid (Tropical Island Golf and Games Funpark in Greer South Carolina). My favorites were South Park (sue me) Addams, Star Trek TNG, and Demo Man. Park closed down in 99 just before Bally/Williams shut down their pinball division. I remember running across a LOTR one time in Hawaii and a Whirlwind one time when I was dating my wife, but did not see a pinball machine in the wild until I stumbled into Crabtowne USA in Glen Burnie Maryland and spent all day on an STTNG. I remarked to my boss one day when talking about where to grab food that they had pinball and he mentioned he had pinball machines at home and that he'd bring one into the office if I was interested. Brought out a Avengers (2012) pinball machine. I snuck into work early for months to play that. I was hooked. 5 years later I've rotated 50ish machines through my basement and have completely fallen off the deep end. I'll always have a soft spot for Avengers.

    #24 1 year ago

    In 1982 my dad died my senior year of high school and my mom bought me a 77 Williams Big Deal that I played almost constantly to keep my mind off my pain. I played as much pinball as I could when my ex wife left me in 1998. Pinball has been there during the greatest pain of my life. There is a healing power of pinball that I introduced my wife to when her mother died. I know some people do not think of pinball as a need, but it is for me.

    #25 1 year ago

    As a kid of the 80s, it was Pinbot (the bassy sound track stuck with me) and High Speed, then later on Taxi and Whirlwind.

    #26 1 year ago

    The Lawlor classics: FH, WW, Earthshaker, TAF. Also Comet.

    #27 1 year ago

    1978 Bally Playboy it was new out of the box in my boyhood friends garage. His dad was an operator “Tallyho Amusements” at 16 I played the hell out of it learned it loved it. Fast forward to 2000 career going, disposable income bought my first game Williams High Speed!

    #28 1 year ago

    Twilight Zone (1993) -- Love the game (bought one for home use in 1999 and still love it).

    #29 1 year ago

    It was 1987 and I bought a Williams BigBen.
    Then the flood gates opened.

    #30 1 year ago

    Eight Ball Deluxe LE

    Non-working. Was my first pin purchase and pin repair. If I recall correctly it was dothedoo and Lovef2k that helped me through my repairs nearly 10 years ago. I've since sold and repurchased the game 2 more times. Currently owning the Bally 84' model. One of the best single ball pins IMO.

    In the pic you can see the EBD and my son playing Pac-Man. He's now 11 years old.

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    #31 1 year ago

    T2 and DEJP I remember playing on location as a kid.

    Bride of Pinbot many, many years later was my first pin purchase and what got me into the hobby proper.

    #32 1 year ago

    I'm a bit weird - I got into it entirely from computer pinball games at first. Starting with this one:

    Then the Pinball Construction Set that everybody knows, then Pinball Fantasies and Epic Pinball, then the Pro Pinball series.

    The first real machine I ever knew was a High Speed at the local Chuck-e-Cheese around the late 80's. I only started to seriously learn and play real machines in the mid 90's, starting with AFM and Jack-bot.

    #33 1 year ago

    TZ some 23 years ago when I was fairly active on rec.games.pinball.

    A recent pinside join date doesn’t mean one is a pinball newbie.

    #34 1 year ago

    Wizard! Played it as a kid and have owned at least 6.

    #35 1 year ago
    Quoted from vikingerik:

    I'm a bit weird - I got into it entirely from computer pinball games at first. .

    You were simply foretelling our previous generation of noobs. The pre-COVID boom was fueled by "I played AFM on my ipad!" types.

    #36 1 year ago
    Quoted from vikingerik:

    I'm a bit weird - I got into it entirely from computer pinball games at first. Starting with this one:

    This just reminded me of this, which was my first pinball experience growing up. Good ol' Space Cadet!

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    #37 1 year ago

    I played as a kid at a local department store. Years later, I convinced my wife we should get a pinball machine for our new house. Hadn't played one in years, but saw a T2 for sale on Craigslist. It was advertised as "shopped", by a local operator, for $1200. I didn't know what "shopped" even meant. He delivered it and I was immediately hooked.

    The more I played it, the more I noticed some bulbs were out and it was dirty. I replaced the bulbs and thought I was now a pinball tech because I discovered you can lift the playfield and change bulbs.

    From then on, I learned more and more and realized the seller had lied about the machine being "shopped". In a span of about 5 years, I sold my T2 and I added TZ, MB, AFM, STNNG, AF and IJ. Never paid more than $3500 for a machine and stopped buying because of the high prices. I missed T2 so much, that I eventually bought another one. All my machines have been fully torn down and 100% restored by me. I actually ended up liking the restore process more than playing them.

    #38 1 year ago

    The manager of the arcade I worked at taught me how to actually play (pay attention to the rules, try to control the ball when possible, etc) on an Earthshaker -- that was the "light bulb" moment for me.

    #39 1 year ago

    My first pinball was a Rocky and Bullwinckle. That was 1998. Then I sold it 1999 because I needed the space. Re-entered the hobby I think around 2006 with a Roadshow and then it took over my life ….

    #40 1 year ago

    Spent a lot of time at places my parents were hanging out, lucky for me the sports bars and horse track usually had a few pins. BSD will always remind me of sketchy horse tracks, T2 of poorly lit sports bars, and CFTBL of the pizza place down the road.

    Flash forward to COVID, a Munsters pinball review came up on YouTube. Totally watched the show as a kid, and reintroduced pinball as a thing in the world to me. It was way out if my price point, and hadn't made any connections to be able to even know where to start with buying a pin. But found Jack Dangers vod of blowing up MB, and inturn found out about the SW Comic home version. Much more affordable for me, but still needed to test the waters with the Mrs. After some convos bought the SW COMIC Pin, and after convincing Id only get pins on big birthdays got a Sth pro and modded it up.

    Love playing tournaments when I can, and still play both Sth and SW Comic Pin regularly, and even have visited the Pinball Hall of Fame in Las Vegas. Cant wit till I turn 40 and get my next pin!!

    #41 1 year ago
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    #43 1 year ago

    used to hang out at Beth's Cafe in Seattle (semi famous for it's 12-egg omelettes and being open 24 hours) in the early 90's and they had a jukebox that played 45's and a Police Force. i'd always been an arcade video game fan over pinball. but stuffed with bottomless coffee and hash browns and a scratchy "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" in the background, that Police Force really caught my attention and got me to play more pinball.

    i had a few arcade games starting about the same time, but didn't get hard-core into collecting until the mid-2000's when we bought a house. Police Force was the first working pin i picked up based on those memories (after a pretty hammered DE Simpsons project), and i still have it to this day.

    #44 1 year ago

    1974, 1st job at my neighbor's swim club. One of my duties at 14 yrs old was to clean the 5 pinball machines in the snack bar. There was a Kings & Queens and other 60's Gottlieb games. The next summer a High Hand appeared. The balls automatically were feed to the shooter lane, how modern. I was given instructions on changing light bulbs and putting the coins in rolls.

    You never forget the smell of a EM's internals.

    #45 1 year ago

    Flip Flop and Old Chicago back in the mid-late 70s. Then I really got hooked on the EBD in the local pub. We burned a lot of smokes and that glass was always full of quarters. Xenon, Silverball Mania and Black Knight were close but EBD still holds up to this day. I just picked up one for old time sake and sure glad I did.

    #46 1 year ago

    Tales of the Arabian Nights in a restaurant at a resort in France 1998. Found a Terminator 2 near the pool area and played some Scared Stiff on the boat home.

    Got some photos of the games somewhere.

    Went back four years later and TotAN had been replaced with a Sharkeys Shootout and Terminator 2 near the pool by a Goldeneye.

    #47 1 year ago

    I totally ignored pinball during the arcade heyday. When I was an adult, I happened on a TZ in a bowling alley. For whatever reason, that planted the seed. I had to have one. I casually searched for a game until I picked up an F-14.

    #48 1 year ago

    Dirty Harry was my first pickup, then Data East Star Wars about 2 weeks later, then came the addiction !

    #49 1 year ago

    My brother bought a Gottlieb "Subway" from an arcade back in 1977. He still has it. I bought a "Hearts and Spades" shortly after, but didn't keep it very long. My second game was a Gottlieb "Play Mates" which I found in the trash.
    It took me several years to get to it, but I got it reasonably presentable, and sold it just about four years ago.
    We didn't really start seriously collecting until we discovered pinball shows. The rest, after several hundred games, is history!

    #50 1 year ago

    Bride of Pinbot.
    Still here..and still speaking…

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    There are 91 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.


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