Back to the Future: The Pinball

Pinside rating

This game received 102 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 6.797 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #307 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game Design: 6.377

Artwork: 6.89

Sounds/Music: 7.059

Other Aspects: 6.86

Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) staff & moderators rate this game. 1 of us has rated this game.


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Found 52 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 52 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 3.

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48 days ago
This game is terrible. One of the worst i've ever played. The artwork is plain awful and doesn't honour the theme at all. The game feels clunky and the rules are poor. The music and callouts could have been so much better too... Frankly i can't wait till the moment someone will remake a back to the future machine... the proper way.
67 days ago
IMO, this is HANDS DOWN the highest priced game/quality ratio I've ever seen. If this lacked the license nobody would be talking about it. So many missed opportunities, we can only hope someone gets another shot with this theme as we got with TMNT. Good call-outs from Doc, the occasional Biff. While the various music options are nice it's akin to having control over the radio as your wife drives you to her parents house. It looks GREAT in a collection but it lacks the defining characteristic of a good pinball machine: That "one more game" feel.
1 year ago
I mean it's ok. This is one you would play for the theme. Recognize key parts of the theme. Then leave wanting it to be more. The ramps are pretty freaking cool. The vuk and lock are cool. Clocktower is cool. Layout is a good one really.

But it's just too shallow in every aspect of it. Not enough to do with that movies. No mjf. No biff. You want there to be more. For a 30 year old pin it's pretty good. But you want more.

Honestly for it's age it's fun and it's worth spending time on!
1 year ago
What a waste! This game, no matter how much it sells for these days, is just a bummer for those who love the franchise. What could have been!

-Not a bad layout, with decent easy shots up the ramps and down the habittrails
-The theme! Should have been a grand slam, but sadly is more like a great theme thrown on top of a decent layout with simple rules
-Not a bad game for young, inexperienced pinheads
-The score, at least some it, is presented during gameplay
-Paul Faris artwork on a real mirrored backglass

-Seriously wasted the theme. Not enough integration and overly simple rule set. Somebody place remake this theme!
-No MJF license included with a BTTF license
-Weak audio. While the soundtrack is there, it's so 16-bit quality, it just doesn't cut it. Not enough callouts (and no Biff?!! Where "what are you looking at butthead?" Maybe I didn't play it enough to hear this)
-Weak lighting
-Terrible gimmick-factor. Flux capacitor, DeLorean miniature car, the clock tower, bolts of lightning, hover boards...none of this is there
-This era of DE pins were pretty cheaply made. The game just feels cheap compared to the same era B/W models

TAKEAWAY: If this were a pin based on any other theme, maybe I wouldn't be so hard on it, but it's BTTF!! How do you mess that up? Let the fanboys pay ridiculous's a hard pass for me.
1 year ago
Theme is amazing but unfortunately the rules are too shallow. Great sounds and lights for it time but not having micheal J fox hurt it. Should be rated higher.
1 year ago
This game will never leave my collection. However, it’s my least played. Let’s be honest I love it because it’s back to the future and plays Huey Lewis and ZZ Top songs. The game is quite repetitive and lacking real depth.
1 year ago
I love BTTF, but I don’t love the pinball. The rules are criminally shallow, they could have done so much more.
2 years ago
I played it twice in our local arcade. The first play was a look see try out. The 2nd time was a waste of my money. Just can't get into this one.
2 years ago
Left ramp all day. It's such a bummer to see what could have been one of the greatest themes ever totally flop in the game play. We have a BTTF at our local arcade, and I rarely play it.
2 years ago
My wife was all set up to let me buy this one and then she looked at it and that yes turned to a very strong NO. Im guessing many many people have mentioned it but wow the artwork is just so bad. michael j fox doesnt look anything like him and the way they are standing it just gives me a super strong creepy vibe. sorry love the move though
2 years ago
Have many newer pins and only so much room , but this will always be in my collection.
Love the callouts!
Enjoy the colorful art.
Sound for Era is amazing.
Theme is Excellent!!!
Getting rarer by the year.
Find one and never let it go.

Well new games kept coming out and were to good so I let BTTF go in Hope's stern makes a updated BTTF.
3 years ago
As others have said, this isn't the best game out there, but Back to the Future is a must for an 80's movie fanatic like myself. I absolutely love having this game in my collection just for its vintage charm and relative rarity. I do have fun playing it, but I can't get caught up in it for hours like I could on my other machines. I would never consider selling or trading this machine because of how much charm it has for what it is, but something tells me that Stern should try to get likeness rights and try to do an updated machine before it's too late to get some of the actors to sign on. A modern-day BTTF pin could be absolutely mind-blowing.
3 years ago
I wish it were better, but unfortunately its just not.
3 years ago
This game had so much potential just like everyone says.

Excellent sound quality and music
Paul Faris’ playfield and backglass art looks intricate and complicated (NOT the cabinet)
Alpha Numeric animations look ok

Boring and flat rules
Game gets extremely boring
Call outs get repetitive
The amount of potential this game had and what it really is now is saddening
Sound effects are not great
Price is way too expensive for what it is due to the theme

I love DE, but they could have done so much more with this theme. And to put someone who has nothing to do with the movie or franchise as the main character on the play field is just wrong. The audience for this game is people who absolutely love BTTF and just want this as a cool looking piece of equipment that they play occasionally play, not for someone who actually wants to play pinball.
4 years ago
Great theme and fun/simple game. I never thought I would own a BTTF. I always thought this title seemed to sell for a higher price tag based on the cult following of the movies more than the game being good. I agree that it’s a simple linear ruleset with limited objectives, but it is still very fun with decent lastability. I really like how the art ties in all 3 movies, however it sucks MJF didn’t want to be a part of it : (
4 years ago
One of the greatest themes in pinball history. The backglass and playfield art are fantastic for the era (in spite of no MJ Fox). The gameplay is very simple, yes AND not deep at all. It is not a game you go to if you want a deep experience but as far as a fun machine with a fantastic theme at a decent price, its a keeper. Not many around all things considered. Getting rarer all the time.
4 years ago
Cool Theme, if your into the BTTF movies you'll love it, fun to play, unfortunately there's some so much room for improvement no hover boards, no Michael J Fox, no light up Flux capacitor ect ect.
Wild ramp and crazy powerful flippers. Really impressive lights and great music.
Parts are hard to get,
4 years ago
Back to the Future is an iconic theme. This pin is good for entry level and casual players to understand rule-sets and game play strategy. That being said, many advanced pinball players will find this a bore after a couple of rounds as it follows an extremely linear rule-set.

Some people love to insult this game, but there's definitely a place in the pinball world for shallow games that are good for newer players.
4 years ago
I wanted to love this one so bad but it's not good. Aside from the sound when you initially press the start button the sound is terrible. The game is klunky and I wish they'd been able to use Michael J Fox. Not a fan.
5 years ago
I owned this game for 3 years and played it almost daily. They could have done so much more with it in regards to the theme they had to work with. Really basic rules, hit the drop targets, lock the ball, repeat, multiball ramp millions. All of that said.... I really love this game, its simple and straight forward so you just play it to beat your high score over and over again.
5 years ago
Yet another pin that could've been so much east really dropped the ball with this....shame williams didn't have the licence.
6 years ago
Back to the Future lacks complexity for seasoned players and it lacks intuitive game play for beginners. Most shots are straight up and back down (could use an orbit instead of extra-wide ramp bases), and the call outs are not helpful. Missing the skill shot (which is typical, even with the extra-wide "1885" ramp base) generates one of the most annoying noises I've ever heard an SS make. If the game wasn't BTTF themed, I don't think I would have played it more than twice. Unfortunately, even after giving the game ample time to grow on me (because I want to like it), it is a boring, annoying waste of floor space.

I played BTTF on location with 3 balls per play on free play. I wouldn't recommend anyone purchase this game, and I'd only recommend playing the game so you can see how a fun-looking game can be terrible.
6 years ago
BttF is my favorite movie franchise. Unfortunately, this game does not do the franchise justice. At all.. This is just a run of the mill and shallow late 90's Data East game. It plays very much like Playboy, The Simpsons and Phantom of the Opera. Which is a major shame, considering how much cool stuff there is to work with from the 3 movies.

BttF is a missed chance. If anything, this theme deserved the treatment that Indiana Jones got from Williams a few years later.
6 years ago
A good game in its own right. Nostalgia reigns supreme in this one. The layout is okay and the rules are easy to follow but aside from the ramps, there isn't a ton of flow. The game's strengths lie in the theme, music and sounds. Each lock brings on a different tune, the sounds (in stereo no less) are quite good thanks to data east's sound board and the light show is excellent (if the dozens of flashers are working properly). An enjoyable game if not remarkable worthy of a few plays, just be careful of the clock tower eject It can be a straight down the middle drain.
6 years ago

- Really good sound... hey, at least it's better than BSMT2000.
- Nice, strong flippers.

- Rules amount to "shoot ramps a couple times, shoot ramps for millions, repeat".
- Skill shot is more important than anything else... take high score? Really?
- Fun fact, Michael J. Fox was so embarrassed by this machine that he wouldn't allow his face to appear on the backglass!
- New spinners are guaranteed to spin at least twice! Now attached with honey instead of superglue!
There are 52 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 3.

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