Black Knight

Pinside rating

This game received 270 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 7.569 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #137 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game design: 7.715

Artwork: 7.954

Sounds/Music: 6.502

Other Aspects: 7.694

Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) staff & moderators rate this game. 3 of us have 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".
The other version is: Black Knight Limited Edition

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 133 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 133 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 6.

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30 days ago
So this is a game that is either fun to play or just completely garbage. Because, only a handful of black knights I have ever played in the wild have proper flipper strength. With proper flipper strength the game is actually pretty fun. It has one better upper playfield layouts in the history of pinball, and in my opinion might be the best upper playfield game ever made. I might rank Hardbody over this game only cos I LOVE the theme of Hardbody so much more.
On the topic of theme. There are no toys in this game, as for the toys and gimmicks... I think there are no toys, but two gimmicks. The first gimmick is the magna save, and that is awesome. One of the coolest features in all of pinball. Really nice way you have to unlock them, but can be frustrating to a newbie if you don't know the rules. The 2nd gimmick is the extra ball time you can win in this game. not really necessary and just confusing and doesn't do much.
For the rules. The game is not deep, but it has a lot of cool simple rules. The first being you need to complete the drops within a certain amount of time after the first hit activation or they reset and you get basically nothing(small points). But, if you do complete a drop then you get one magna save activation. You complete the bank... That is something as well, but honestly I forget... And if you complete the upper drops thats a type of special or reward you can get, and the same for the lower... Doesn't really matter... That I forgot. The important thing in this game in the rules is the multiball. You don't need to light the locks, but if the ball drains before you activate MB, then you have to relock the balls in the next ball. They don't drain, but they'll kick out until you lock them again.
I really like how the playfield scoring multiplier in mb works. Basically its x times the number of balls you have in play. So you drain to 2... You get 2 x. MB is fast, but can really be lucrative if you hit the right shots.
Game also has some hurry ups. Might be one of the first games to have hurry ups. Right inlane I believe lights the spinner for the left ramp. Left inlane lights the center ramp shot. These points can be big and add up. Especially the spinner rip.
Game is pretty hard and brutal. Even with a strategy. But, I believe is pretty fun to play. Not the most fun I've ever had, and I might get bored with it after 15-45 minutes. But, I know each time I see one, I wouldn't mind a few games on one. Always worth the challenge.
And as for having in a home collection... One day I might want one in my home. Right now I don't have the space for one. But, I do like the speech in the game, and the callouts. There are not a lot, but it works and its fun. The other sounds are okay. The artwork to me is good, but not great. The cab looks nice, the playfield nice, and has a cool but not amazing backglass. If you love medieval knights and who doesn't its a cool theme. No toys as I said before. But, this game doesn't need toys. Its a good shooter, with a classic and unique layout, with good rules. Game will kick your butt more often than you will kick its... But, that's part of the charm. I mean the game's titled Black Knight, and no one defeats the black knight.
36 days ago
What an absolute classic of classics. This early 80's gem has it all. Multiball, speech, two playfields, drop targets, two magna saves... and an approachable ruleset. Easy to understand, hard to master. Very innovative, very addictive. And a great looker, too. The backglass is one of Williams' best.

In short: modern pinball would not be the same without the existence of games like Black Knight.

Black Knight does need stronger flippers than it came from the factory with. I recommend adding 'modern' style WPC flipper mechanics.
49 days ago
This was my "Holy Grail" machine up until I bought it. I so much enjoy this machine and have had numerous hours of enjoyment. This brings back so many childhood memories and I am lost in it every-time I play. This is a classic game and represents the best of the SS games from the late 70's and early 80's.
3 months ago
Theres a reason its legendary status and into the 3rd game of the series.Black knight is a symbol of excellence that blew people away in 1980 and it holds up amazingly to this day.Probably the greatest theme in pinball,im a steve richie fan for life
5 months ago
Fun game that allows players to make mistakes without being punished too severely.
6 months ago
Recently acquired this and I'm loving it. Makes me feel like I'm 13 again. Tons of shots and great layout. I'm biased because this is a game from my youth that blew us all away when it first came out.
9 months ago
You might think that giving this game a 10 is stupid. I purchased 4 of these for my route. They all made over $150.00 plus a week with one making over $250.00 a week in 1980’s dollars. Find me a pin that earns that today and it sold for $2200.00 new. It had features operators had never seen, magma save, upper and lower playfield,great speech for its time plus mutiball a relatively new feature in pins . The black night could also command 50 cents per play that no other pinball at that time could command. It would rate much lower because of today’s technology but for its time it was the best pin out there battling against the Pac-Man and Galagas and still doing that well. There was a reason they sold 10,000 + of them. I can still remember in in crating them and how beautiful it looked. I wish I had kept one for HUO but operators didn’t think like that as what was in the cash box,that made us a living, although I did keep a routed version which I still own today. My rating is based on what pins were out there in 1980 not what has been produced over the following 35 plus years.
10 months ago
One of my favorite pins of all time and it still holds up.
10 months ago
For the era, I think they did a pretty good job on this game. It’s really tough to stack it up against much newer machines.
11 months ago
Fun to play with groups.
1 year ago
Black Knight WAS the game when it came out. Fun to own for a few years.
1 year ago
A masterpiece. Con Delcos, Perth
1 year ago
An absolute classic that really suffers simply due to the rise of DMD's and the deeper ruleset games that are out there. If you have the space then for sure pick one up, I would have it if I had a big enough room for it and it came up at the right price, a toruney staple.
1 year ago
This game just left my collection, but it was a cost move, not a likeability move. There is a ton to like about this game, just time for something different for me.
1 year ago
I love this game. Every time I come across one, I need to play it.

The Bad:
-- Hard to see! Every game has a reflection of the back glass that gets in my way. I hate it. I also hate how dim it is. Could use more GI.

The Good:
-- Super fun drop targets that actually have a dual purpose (timed for points & magna-save)
-- x-scoring is a fun shot and increases the bonus.
-- Multiball is incredibly fun to start and play for a 1980s machine.
-- Shots are both fun and challenging. It never gets boring.

I think it's one of the best machines of its time. I could, and have, played it for hours a day.
1 year ago
Have this game in my line-up and I must say it gets more play from non-pin people than any other game. The laugh when you drain is classic!
1 year ago
A real classic. Magna save is an awesome feature. Great game. Call outs get a little annoying and so do the sounds when you hit a drop target.
1 year ago
Ground breaking for it's time with the addition of the upper play field. Fun theme and ok for a few plays for me, I just don't like it enough to want to play it a lot. The sounds on this game are really obnoxious to me, especially the drop target timers... there's so many banks of them it's constantly making that noise.... I do love BK2K though. I'm in the minority in loving that one more than the original.
2 years ago
great theme, everyone has their prerogative when it comes to sounds, i dislike them and feel it doesnt match well. slow gameplay, nice levels, nice magnasave, fun and simple. probably the best early 80s layout.
2 years ago
One of the best ever!
2 years ago
My first machine I purchased for my home and the one which led to my love of pinball. Still one of the best multilevel machines ever made. Way ahead of it’s time and deserves to be considered the best of its time.
2 years ago
For a game from 1980, I think Black Knight was ahead of it's time. The speech and trademark Williams sounds are excellent. The multiball features, two level playfields and magna-save make this game very unique. It's very interactive with the Black Knight taunting you and fun to play.
2 years ago
I will say this: it's a better game than its follow-up. More colorful, smoother and is more fun. The issue with the game is that it has two playfields and I've learned that when you have this feature, you either live or die by the second playfield. It's difficult to get the ball back up there once it's downstairs. And when you get it to the upper field (which takes up a good half of the playfield), the shot angles are a bit difficult to make. Other than that, there isn't much variety here. Beautiful playfield, though. That sword in the center is epic and I love the sound of the Black Knight taunting me as well as the sound of his horse galloping. Very clever. It's just too bad that there isn't much to this game.
2 years ago
THIS IS THE ONE AND ONLY GAME i bout new it was a fun game but it was down more than up I UNDERSTAND thy have fixed a lot of the bugs in that system !
2 years ago
I loved this game. Cool limited speech for the time, and the theme was awesome. Simple game but really fun to play.
There are 133 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 6.

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