Pinside rating

This game received 32 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 8.207 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #39 in the Pinside EM Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game Design: 8.189

Artwork: 8.474

Sounds/Music: 1.841

Other Aspects: 8.247

Pinside staff rating

None of the Pinside.com staff have rated this game. Sorry, no rating from us.

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Found 18 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 18 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
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67 days ago
I'll start by saying I put over 100 games on my Apollo before rating.
For 1967, this machine is phenomenal. It may or may not be the first to have orbits, but it's most certainly the first to have them match the theme so perfectly. With the space race well underway, and only two years shy of a moon landing, Norm Clark's design with the orbits and countdown sequence, along with the accompanying artwork by Art Stenholm, is a masterpiece. It's one of Williams' best EM's that stands up to some of the best EM's from any manufacturer (even you Gottlieb) for theming and most importantly, fun!
The backglass is beautiful and the bagatelle feature is great. Anyone who tries to tell you the bagatelle's random 50/300/special scoring system is unbalancing needs to play more, and play better. This is a nudgeable playfield! And if you play enough, then you can enjoy extended game times and higher scores. Certainly high enough that a 50 or 300 point backglass bagatelle bonus doesn't matter. I rolled the game for the first time a few weeks ago and it felt AMAZING!!! 10,644 points. The bagatelle made little to no difference in the final score, and even less difference in the 8 specials (free games) I was awarded. I love this game so much! I just wish it had more than just the two bells. Having several bells of different sizes or chimes linked to the four pops and three upper stand-ups would have better simulated the controlled explosive chaos of an Apollo rocket liftoff. But that's just nitpicking. This machine rocks!
1 year ago
Seems to have a couple ofways the game drains right down the middle. But that's minor. It's a really fun game an cool theme. Has good build up and you can start scoring well afternoon practice. Definitely worth your time!
2 years ago
Fantastic game, cool shots up left and right side, as well as the shot to smoke the advance buttons and hitting the top center target - just awesome. Game suffers from not so great lighting on the playfield. Backglass bagatelle switch blades very susceptible to cracking, and very hard to find a replacement - I crafted my own but it was tricky. Williams slow score motors of the time give the score reels a clunky, lower quality feeling as well. That being said, great overall game with a uniquely fun playfield.
2 years ago
The orbit show around the entire top of the play field is super satisfying, as is the launch countdown sequence. Great theme, great player.
2 years ago
I really like the theming of this one.
2 years ago
Bought this a couple of months ago. Took a while getting it working well and scoring correctly. Now that it does, play it almost every day. Find myself playing almost as much to try to get a back box rocket shot on every ball, as for high score. The only improvement I would want on this game, is a spinner on each of the orbits. (Ok, yes I am an em spinner head)

Most I have ever paid for an EM, especially since it wasn't in great condition or scoring correctly. And don't regret it. Talked to the seller after getting it working correctly and all the metal polished and he asked if I would sell it back. I said sure, $100,000. Will certainly take less some day, but will be a while.
3 years ago
Neat theme on this one.
4 years ago
I can't in good conscience give this game less than a 6/6 in any category. If I were to penalize it for something it would be the small flippers, but that seems unfair. For my part, I choose to judge games based on the standards of the time, mostly. I like modern flippers, code, and art, but compared to other games of this era I think this game is just about as good as it gets.

Art package.
Orbits on an EM!
Hitting the ball straight up the center and getting a bunch of rollovers and then the standup in the back is a great pinball moment.
Bagatelle board in the back, just for fun.

So I ask you, what's not to like?
5 years ago
This is the replay version of blast off. It is very fun!! I love the variability, each game feels different from the last. I highly recommend this Pin.
5 years ago
My favourite 60's Williams. I played it when it first came out and still play it today. A special machine for me.
7 years ago
Apollo was way ahead of its time. In 1967, there wasn't any competition. What other game had a backglass bagatelle game which "launched" when the countdown goal was met? What other game had a sequential rollover countdown goal? What other game had an orbit shot? How about a ball save feature to return the ball to the launcher? The only thing this game was missing was cool music and/or a video. I've taken care of that on my machine by adding a "moonlite theatre" topper on mine that plays the following video while the ball is in play. Now the game has two goals, to complete the countdown and launch the rocket AND to keep the ball in play long enough to see the Double Feature playing on the screen. Here's the vid I've got rockin the machine to... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Omz4Jqs7aJY. It's never been better and everyone who plays it is shocked that it is from 1967. Awesome EM game with no peer except the add-a-ball version "Blast-Off" which is currently rated #1 and this one is rated #77 even though it is essentially the same game. Go figure.
8 years ago
I first played this at Louisville Arcade Expo 2015, and loved it. I was recently lucky enough to find one that only needed minor work a couple hours away.

I'm no EM expert, but this is quite possibly my favorite 2" flipper game. The rules (counting down to 0 to launch) are very compelling; simple and addictive! The backglass is some of my favorite 60s art - nothing too "out there," but looks great and harbors a bagatelle. The playfield layout is great; trying to count down multiple numbers with one shot up the middle is great, and the orbit shots feel ahead of their time. Just a fun, fun game, and it looks great to boot!
9 years ago
I played this for the first time at Allentown Pinfest 2014.
Even though the playfield layout is simplistic and the objective rollovers are hit via luck more than skill, I still found the theme to be beautifully developed and the game was very fun to play. The backbox animations just added to the overall appeal.
I can see it getting old fast in a smaller collection, but a great novelty pin for the occassional player.
9 years ago
Both Blast Off and Apollo are really superb games. I loved playing these and was always attracted to the cool back box animation and the artwork itself. The game isn't the easiest and the main fun is to get the launched balls into the right channel in the back box. More luck than skill? Possibly, but the game is fun and this adds to it. Not dis-similar in design to Alpine Club, with the 10 rollover buttons in the centre, this is a really flowing game. Cabinet looks cool too. Certainly a game on my radar if in good condition.Norm Clark was amongst the finest designers in the World and proved it with this one and Moulin Rouge which is also a brilliant game.
9 years ago
Apollo is a great Williams game. The backbox animation is outstanding and fits the theme well. Targets are varied and well thought out. For its age it really has stood the test of time.
10 years ago
Apollo is one of the most enjoyable em games out therr
. From the rocket launch and use of the back glass its a classic. The theme is fantastic now as when it was made. It has lasting power and replayability. Everyone at the club loves playing it.
11 years ago
Apollo is one of the finest EM games ever created.

The Pros:
Great shots to shoot at, the 1-10 targets in the PF require at least 3 shots up the pf to light them all. Great action in the pops and the orbits are placed perfectly. Alternating lights on the orbits keep your shots up in the air. The bagatelle is implemented incredibly well into play. Art Steinholm laid down a brilliant art package, one of the best ever to be seen on a pinball game.

The Cons:
The only thing that would have made this table better, are inlanes. The bagatelle can make the difference between a good and a great scoring game. You can't really nudge it to add skill to what you get for points. I don't own one.

The Takeaway:
I will have one in my collection some day. One of Norm Clark's best.
12 years ago
The game has a good theme and backbox animation. The launch sequence is pretty interesting and a good gimmick for the time period. The ball drains rather easily, however I usually set my games at the hard level so I'm not so sure how much that affects the gameplay. As far as gameplay goes, the game does tend to get boring quickly.
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