Black Knight Sword of Rage (Pro)

Pinside rating

This game received 153 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 7.955 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks 3rd in the game group "Black Knight: Sword of Rage". The group itself ranks #33 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game design: 7.641

Artwork: 8.27

Sounds/Music: 7.86

Other Aspects: 7.803

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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This game is part of a group

Note! There are multiple versions of this game!
This is "Black Knight Sword of Rage (Pro)".
The other versions are: Black Knight Sword of Rage (Premium), Black Knight Sword of Rage (LE)

Ranking history

An overview of this machine's ranking over the last years. Lower is better.

Rating history

An overview of this machine's rating over the last years. Higher is better.

Found 63 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 63 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 3.

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48 days ago
ok game at best. not one the better sterns in my opinion. fails to live up to the old games. the knight calls outs are not funny or cool. would have been so much better with just retro sounds and voices.
3 months ago
Played on location. Fun, interesting layout. Different than most pins, which makes it stand out.
3 months ago
There is no doubt that the playfield and cabinet are beautiful. It plays quick and is challenging. A classic/prototype Steve Ritchie style playfield. I believe it should/could have been better, considering it is the 3rd in the series. It should of combined what BK and BK2000 excelled at and made it better and unfortunately I don't think it did.

I was interested in adding this pin to my collection and after playing it a dozen times...I passed.
3 months ago
Black Knight part 3 cool music , pretty good gameplay but not a Great game IMO
3 months ago
Count me as one of the ones who actually enjoy this game. This game has relatively short ball times, but I do enjoy the pro much more than the Premium/LE. I don't think I would buy one NIB, but I would consider owning this if I found a decently priced used one. I really liked the artwork, and the music is pretty catchy. Not the best game Stern has put out in the last couple years, but well ahead of a few others.
4 months ago
This pin never gets old. Battling the black knight is great. The call outs are good and the artwork is amazing. I love the animations on the screen and the game is challenging. This will be in my collection for a long time. Great pin to play..
4 months ago
This is a game I want to love but just can't. It does not resemble what Black knight is meant to be, an upper playfield should be standard on all models. The toys are the saving grace of this machine, ball times are quick and it feels like the game is lacking something the older black knight machines had.
4 months ago
5 months ago
This is my preferred layout, I'm no fan of the upper playfield on the Prem/LE. Shoots fast and has an old school feel to it. Probably takes itself too seriously at times. My favorite in the Black Kight trilogy. I'm not into toppers, but this one might have the best.
5 months ago
The layout absolutely kills this game. So uninspired and boring...especially for the 3rd game in a series with a historic pinball theme. A great theme, music and good ruleset by Tim Sexton can't save this game for me unfortunately.
5 months ago
Couldn't hear anything at this sports bar venue.
5 months ago
I don't know why I like this game, but I've played it many times and always enjoy it. It isn't ground breaking--just a typical fan layout, the flail and shield are moderately fun to hit, hit the knight and get ready for a drain if you aren't careful. Magnasave is worthless in the middle of the lock down bar and the shots are all pretty repetitive--and you'd better place them well or get ready for an immediate drain. All that being said the game is always fun to play for some reason. The callouts are great and the animations are more entertaining than not. Light show is very cool. I guess the sum of the parts all add up to the greater whole--or something. SR did a nice job on this pin without really being very creative.
6 months ago
Game plays super fast. Other parts may grow on me. I loved the speed.
7 months ago
I was really excited to play this game, being that other classic Black Knight games are awesome. I feel that this version is lacking and just overall, sort of repetitive and boring. There is no real "wow" factor to the machine gameplay wise. It's okay to play here and there, but generally isn't my first pick of game.

The lighting, music and art package is awesome!
8 months ago
While the playfield might not be complex, the flow and speed of the shots with the excitement of the music and sounds makes it an enjoyable game. The one ding I have to give the pro is there's no feed to the left flipper. All ramp and VUK shots go to the right flipper
8 months ago
Some neat, unique toys and cool art, but I agree with many others that it does feel lacking. All pinball is fun, so of course it's fun, but nothing draws me to this over 100 other fast and fun games. Sometimes I think Stern pros are better and more focused when they remove elements that slow down the game, but this doesn't do it for me.
8 months ago
Finally got to play a Pro BKSOR on route and the game was brutal. I like it!! They had it set up to play fast and each rebound sent the ball back to the flippers like a rocket, really kept me on my toes and I broke a sweat lol. To me it definitely seems like a shooters game where every shot has to be precise. The music is outstanding and really got me into the game as a metal fan. Again, I like it, but wouldn't own it and as others have said , it really needs an upper field like the original.
8 months ago
Just average I'm going to play alot more games on this but mech
9 months ago
This is my first new pin and while I enjoy the game, probably one I’ll part with eventually. So I love how punishing the shot accuracy is in this game where you have to react instantly if you miss your shot. Really great for shot placement training and honing flipper skills. And I fully understand that’s by design. I also enjoy the gimmicks with the shield, flail and the bashable Knight though when you hit the knight, there’s no telling what direction it’s going to bounce to. The magna save being in the center instead of by the flippers was a bit of an adjustment but it’s not too challenging once you’re used to it. It makes you choose to abandon the shake save earlier than you normally would and commit to the magna save which is nice. Love the call outs though definitely not family friendly. Scoring is wonky, there are plenty of games where you get almost nothing unless you’re in a mode but this game feels like a standout of that model. I’d you don’t start a mode, doesn’t matter how long your ball is, you will get nothing. And when you’re in a mode, I mean, you’re getting 1-5 million a shot which just feels unproportional to the rest of the game. That shield shot is so tight that if you don’t hit it at full speed, the ball doesn’t round the corner and hit the target and it really disrupts the flow. I’ve also played the premium version of this and while it’s got the upper play field, it’s almost barren. I prefer the pro to the premium on this model. I like this game, but don’t love this game. It’s fun and it’s challenging.
9 months ago
Traded my Monster Bash CE remake for this pin. Very happy I did! Both are great games, but this fills the void missing when I let my Stern Iron Man go. Super fast gameplay, love it, funny and various call outs by the Black Knight, awesome, and killer music to keep you pumped up from start of game to the end, which may be pretty quick. Finally hit the mode that transforms the game to the original Williams Black Knight and was amazed and so happy since that was one of my favorite pins to play as a young teenager. Sound effects are spot on from the 1980s! Lighting is another amazing feature on this pin, looks just fabulous, especially the fire in the back of the playfield. My friend had only played an LE and when he played this, he said they were like two separate pins. The pro is fast and a rush, the Premium/LE is slowed down by the upper playfield. I was surprised my wife likes this pin too, she usually likes the slower pins, here favorite feature is all the smack talk by the Black Knight. The new code is great and I can't wait to see what else they come with, maybe just a few more sarcastic call outs please? Currently going to stay put in my collection.
9 months ago
This game ticks me off. In a great way! The game ends and I want more. Always feels like I could have done better. Love the voices, the taunting is supreme. The sound is great, it never gets boring.
9 months ago
QUALIFYING MY REVIEW: I own a Black Knight Pro and it is the third NIB machine that I have purchased. The other two games are Houdini and Dialed In. I have not yet upgraded my game to the 1.0 version that is available as of the time of this review. I simply want to play the game with the lesser code for as long as possible before I upgrade so I have something new to look forward to.

As of the date of this review in August, 2019, I have played 698 games on my machine.

I have played 66 games in the Pinside 100. Of these, I have a decent amount of time on perhaps 18 or 19 of these games. I own or have owned 6 games in the Pinside 100.


New in box issues: My game came with a few problems. The are as follows:

1) The left pop bumper did not work properly. This required a simple fix. I just had to bend the leaf switch so that it 'popped' properly. There had been no space between the contacts.
2) The 'Magna-Save' did not work. I had to mess with this for a little while and bend the switch before I could get it to work.
3) An ongoing problem is the ball getting stuck in the area behind the shield. I often have to wait for the game to do a ball search once or twice before it comes unstuck.

My set-up: To start out, I always set up my games with the most difficult settings. I do this so I don't see everything the game has to offer for a very long time and so nobody gets 100 trillion points on my game. I have limited the extra balls to one. All settings that can be changed are set at the hardest settings which are HARD or EXTRA HARD. There are no 'tilt warnings' and the tilt is set at it's most sensitive. The only thing that I have left in factory settings are the out-lanes of which I leave the posts "in" and at the "normal" position.

Some stats from my games:

I did not have the Magna-Save working for the first 500 games. The left bumper was not working for the same amount of games.

Games played : 698

Average score : 25,434,920
High score : 114,593,330
Mud Bog HS : 28,150,000
Deep Freeze HS : 33,130,000
Burning Sands HS: 64,200,000
Molten Fire HS : 49,730,000
Wicked Cavern HS: 30,500,000
Bonus HS : 7,773,000

-I have reached 100 million twice and gone over 75 million 21 times.
-17 of my games have lasted 8-10 minutes and 2 games have lasted 10-12 minutes.
-I have used the Left Flipper 35,110 times and the Right Flipper: 45,371
-The right bumper gets hit more than twice as often as the bottom bumper. My left bumper was not working properly for 500 of my games.
-I have gotten 152 free balls or have earned a free ball in 21% of my games.

The drains are as follows:

Left out-lane : 388
Right out-lane: 859 (No Magna Save for 500 of these games)
Center : 989

THE RULES: At first glance, it might not be obvious, but the main goal of the game is to get through the five main modes, followed by the Black Castle and Wizard Mode in order to defeat the Black Knight. What's immediately obvious, is that you have to beat the Black Knight, what isn't immediately obvious, is that you have to defeat the Black Knight's 'monster minions' before you get to the Black Castle to defeat the Black Knight. In addition, there is the usual multi-ball modes and a W-A-R mode that you get by lighting the top lanes. You get Mystery awards by lighting the four R-A-G-E lights and shooting the alleyway behind the shield.

THE SHOTS: There are essentially 7 shots in a 'fan' layout. The shots are all fair and all make-able. It is possible to back flip every shot and for most shots that is the easiest way to go. They all have similar openings with the exception of the 'shield'
shot. Said 'shield' shot is the only one that tends to frustrate me. There is a post on one side of it and that post gets in the way quite often.

Of the three 'knight' shots, the one that drains the ball the most by far is the center shot. Miss it (and even if you don't) and the ball will often careen off of one of the posts and down the drain or the side alleys. The 'flail' shot is the second most dangerous 'knight' shot and lastly the shield is the least dangerous. All three of these shots are capable of sending the ball SDTM even with a successful shot.

The easiest shot: The 'flail' shot is easily my favorite easy shot. You can easily make it from either flipper. The shot is exceptionally easy from the left flipper. Some might say the center shot is the easiest but I tend to miss it a bit more often because I am usually trying to hit it on the end rather than the middle (which will send the ball SDTM).

The toughest shot: For me, this is the right orbit. I have far more difficulty with this shot than any of the others. It is possible to back flip the shot but I don's successfully hit it that often. Also, on the way up, the ball tends to get stuck a lot in the alley that leads into it from the pop bumpers.

MULTI-BALL: I'm going to admit something that most players will find blasphemous. I actually don't like multi-ball. I especially don't like watching tournament players playing multi-ball. There is nothing in pinball more boring than watching a tournament player catch all the balls with the flippers and play one ball at a time. I deliberately have never attempted to learn this method. I'm not necessarily an action junkie but when it comes to multi-ball, I am.

As of the time of this review, I have played multi-ball just once and that was when I played my first couple of games with the standard settings. Since I changed all the settings to HARD & EXTRA-HARD, I have never reached multi-ball. I suppose I can get there if I really tried. I'd have to hit the shield about 15 times before I can get there and I never really focus on doing that. I'm more interested in completing the modes.

-The art package is very good. The playfield is lacking but what's there is nice.
-The lighting, especially the moving flame at the back of the playfield. I like how the general illumination mixes with with red lights. This adds a lot of 'atmosphere' to the game.
-The music. For me, this is a big part of the appeal of this game.
-The Black Knight toy. The sculpture is beautiful and this is one of the best 'toys' out there.
-The shot selection. It is easy to 'dial in' the shots once you have control of the ball but if you swing wildly you will end up hitting a post the vast majority of the time. This is the way it should be on all games.
-The speed and 'smoothness' of the shots.
-Magna Save is a great feature, but unfortunately it has a downside too, just look below.

-Stern's cost cutting measures. A lot of these have been gone over 'ad naseum' so no need to go over them here.
-Magna Save - Why couldn't they have just put the button next to the flipper? This is a rhetorical question. We all know the answer. I admit I am a lazy player. The concentration and effort levels for this is sometimes too much!
-Black Knight aside, what else is there as far as toys and gadgets? Couldn't they have at least put a few static skeleton's or other figures rather than those black knight standing plastics in the back?
-I know this is a minor quibble, but do the plastics really have to be cut into pieces? I suppose it's easier to take apart but cosmetically it's a downer.
-The kickback. See complaints about Stern's cost cutting measures. They should have just made this some sort of extra ball save rather than make it look like a kickback.
-The ball getting stuck in the alleyway behind the shield.

DOES THE GAME HAVE THAT 'JUST ONE MORE GAME" APPEAL? HOW IS IT"S LASTING POWER?: For me, the 'one more game' appeal is much stronger than the 'lastability' factor. Once I start playing, because of the fast and furious nature of the game, I tend to want to keep playing. I would say the game definitely has that 'one more game' feel to it.

The downside of this game, at least as of the time I played it, is that there isn't a lot of alternate goals that some other games have. There are 5 main modes followed by the Black Castle mode. The player is essentially playing the same game every time. Fortunately, Stern has included a lot of different high scores, including high scores for all the modes. This is something that I wish all manufacturers would do. I would like as many high score, combo scores, etc. as possible included in the code. It gives the player other things to do when the main mission grows stale.

I am not a tournament player and I am probably below average for an experienced player. Not being a tournament player, I will often look for other things to do in a game. I won't keep shooting for the same ramp over and over again because that is where the points are. Because this game is lacking in alternative 'goals', I kind of figure that this game won't have the 'lastability' of my other games.

SHOULD I PURCHASED A PRO OR PREMIUM? This decision is really a matter of preference. I played both the Premium (and LE) and the Pro before deciding on the Pro. Money was only a minor factor in my decision as I had the funds to purchase any version, including the LE. This game along with the recent 'The Munsters' are the first two games by Stern in which I would actually prefer the Pro. In the case of 'The Munsters', I just don't like smaller than regulation pinball's of the lower playfield. I chose the Pro simply because I did not think that the upper playfield added sufficient value. In fact, I actually preferred the Pro's gameplay to the Premium. It's a personal preference that I don't like upper (or lower) playfields with one flipper. I especially did not like the upper playfield in the Premium. I thought it was lacking in targets to shoot at. I also did not like how the ball easily drained. I know that this has now been remedied by Stern.

For some, the Premium is a 'must have' due to the fact that it has an upper playfield. This is a feature for which Black Knight is famous for. Obviously, if you own the previous versions of Black Knight then you will have to have the Premium. I never played Black Knight when I was younger (about 15 when it came out). Therefore, it doesn't have any sentimental value to me.

The Premium will likely cost you $1600-1700 more than the Pro.

Because of the upper playfield in the Premium, the two versions are essentially different games. A case could be made to own both if you are a Black Knight fanatic.

CONCLUSIONS/RECOMMENDATIONS: This is a game for pinball regulars and obviously, it is for Steve Ritchie fans.

I would not recommend this game for a pinball 'newbie'. I'd recommend plenty of other games for the new player. I don't necessarily think that this game is as difficult as some have said. I've found that ball times can be fairly long if you stay away from certain shots. Of course, you can say that for a lot of games. This game might be a bit daunting (and discouraging) for a newer player. Most first time buyers are looking for the toys and gadgets on the playfield that this game lacks.

I would recommend this game for anybody who is an experienced player or anyone who is looking for a fast, action-oriented game for their line-up. Black Knight makes a nice addition to pretty much any gamer's collection.

Black Knight Pro is a sound, if not obvious, purchase choice.
9 months ago
Played this on location for some hours, it was no fun. Maybe the premium is better but this one i didn’t like.
9 months ago
fast pin , repetitive , not really depth , average stern
9 months ago
Black Knight without an upper playfield? Sorry, no. I want this to be better than it is. It just isn't. It's not bad. It just isn't great. It should be great.
There are 63 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 3.

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