Black Knight

Pinside rating

This game received 317 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 7.726 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #127 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game Design: 7.877

Artwork: 8.115

Sounds/Music: 6.796

Other Aspects: 7.823

Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) staff & moderators rate this game. 5 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

Found 172 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 172 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 7.

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17 days ago
I hadn't had a chance to play Black Knight until owning it. So much to like about this game, beyond its excellent gameplay, with its small touches like the bell and bonus ball at the end which puts a smile on my kids' faces (and mine).

Amazing effort by the design team on this one, and a very impressive step up, in only a years time, from another great game in Gorgar.
22 days ago
I love black knight. Lots of multi ball, Speaks, multi level playfield, and magna save. So fun
23 days ago
A classic that simply is one you have to return to from time to time.
38 days ago
Just got my 3rd one of these, this time Hardtopped. After seeing this game move through my game room 2 other times, what has made it easier to move on from was the left ramp and weak flippers. So this time i rebuilt the flippers and added some lower( higher? i always mess that up) gauge wire from the EOS to allow better current flow. Boy did that change this game 180 degrees. This game needs strong lower flippers, if not you find yourself being pissed off half the time that its not make the ramps. Rebuild the flippers, resolder the lugs 99% of the time the coils are all hacked up. Can clear the upper left ramp with both flippers. Music and sounds get a little repetitive and gives me flash backs of the first one i rebuilt that would lock up and play every sound at once and the pain that was. But soundtrack for 1980 still pretty good. after 5-6 years realizing im a drop target guy, and an easy multi ball type of person, and basic simple to follow rules. I don't want to visit a troll and make a ramp shot that needs to end in an out hole. Keep it simple!
61 days ago
This is the machine that got me into pinball back in 1980. It was a big deal back then with its 2 levels, 4 flippers, magna-save, voice, and especially the taunting. To today's standards people may find it boring but I still love the gameplay to this day. Yes it holds a special place with me (and in my collection) so there is some bias there but this is a classic that if you have a chance to play you definitely should.
4 months ago
One of the most iconic pinballs of all time. Another example of Steve Ritchies trend setting concepts and layouts.

First SS pinball with multi-levels.
First to introduce magna-save
First to provide a winners bonus ball.

A key for this one is set up. Being one of the first Sys7 machines, it predates more powerful flipper coils, particularly with the ramp shots, these need to be tuned and the circuit needs to be functioning well to achieve a positive playing experience.

Rules for the game are FANTASTIC. Typical Larry De Mar seems to think of everything. Progressing through drop target sequences, inlanes that light a corresponding ramp shot will reward players to shoot on the fly. Amazing left spinner shot and sounds. Depth of Multiball access, of particular note, is to adjust the default game to the moderate difficulty for Multiball. This forces a player to progress the U-turn multiplier to light the upper PF lock!..
5 months ago
Black Knight. Not the sequel, not the sequels sequel or the sequels sequel sequel. Just Black Knight.
Oh no! This one doesn’t sing the Black Knight song!
Thank goodness!
If your original idea spawns this many spin-offs, it has to be good, right?
There are negatives. Like accidentally hitting the lane save buttons instead of the flippers the first time I played it as a kid. That may have just been me.
I think that was the only real downfall, Bally had Xenon talking dirty to us and Black Knight sounded like an old Tom and Jerry cartoon when Tom gets blown up and says “Don’t you believe it!”
At least that’s how I heard it. It made me laugh back then but I’m sure that others would say the voice was good and spooky.
Is that it’s only fault? I’d be hard pressed to find another. From a modern point of view I’d say the wear on the Bonus ladder sword area is a sad situation, and most have fair to poor repairs in this area. I’ve seen some excellent touch ups to the art but most times someone slaps a reproduction art sticker over it and they never look quite right do they?
If there’s a Steve Ritchie game that screams “Perfect! You nailed it!” This is it. You can argue that he had better game designs, but Black Knight comes together like no other. They even reused the playfield for sequels, that’s got to be perfection… or laziness? (Jackbot anyone?)
Still, if you are going to look into buying one, and you have only played DMD machines, you are going to whine like a baby. There’s no hand holding easy gameplay like modern machines, no baby settings, and it was made to gobble quarters. I hear the term drain monster about a lot of old pinball machines. Here’s a hint people: learn how to play or get out of the hobby, you aren’t wanted or needed, nobody loves you, go home.
That felt good! Now I’m off to insult my mother.
Seriously though, I do understand how a game handing you your ass a few times and saying “Is this yours?” In a condescending manner can make you frustrated. That makes most of us aggressive. You will show it who the boss is. It’s not Springsteen, it’s your supple wrists you pinball wizard you!
Lastly, I’d like to point out that the ruleset learning curve on older games is a lot easier. You know what you did right away and want to do it again, like Black Knight’s multiball. As time went on pinball got more complicated rules and multi stage rewards for doing certain things. I appreciate those games a lot, but once in a while it’s nice to go back to something like this where two or three perfectly placed shots make the main feature happen, and you can do it multiple times in one game if you are really good.
I am (toots own horn, pats self on back) and love the fact that I can get three ball multiball numerous times on ball one.
You can too! That’s the beauty of it! The rewards may not be a wizard mode, but they are very satisfying!
“Why don’t I own one?” you may ask. Good question.
Every time one comes up for sale, I think about it too long, and then it sells to someone else. I have my want list and it falls below some “pretty bad games” in most peoples opinion. I have played Black Knight a lot in my life and still enjoy it immensely, but fear that I would grow tired of it if it was in my home.
I know I wouldn’t. Pinbot proved that theory wrong, so it must be the awful playfield reproduction stickers on every one I’ve looked at that was for sale.
That’s my excuse. I’m sticking to it!
Seriously, try one and buy one. If you like a challenge, it won’t disappoint you.
5 months ago
Liking this game more and more as I bring it back from the dead. Lighting is a bit of a challenge, ball can be hard to see at times. Definite dark spots on the table that you need to be aware of where the ball is and where it is likely to come 'flying out' like a curve ball from no where.
6 months ago
Love this game. The 2nd layer hung out over the lanes a little too far, so you always couldn't tell where your ball was coming back from. That got annoying. Having said that, the music and sounds were incredible. They did a wonderful job. It adds so much to the theme that it helps bridge the gap on that second level hanging down too far.
6 months ago
Fast and fun game with pretty good rules. One of the few pins that I like with a upper and lower play field, and under rated (IMHO).
6 months ago
My all-time favorite game. If I see it, I will play it. Multi-level, multi-ball, and magna-save? Yes please. This is the sweet spot of pinball machines for me: not too complicated, just complicated enough to keep me busy and thinking.
8 months ago
worth it
11 months ago
Legendary for the sounds! So exciting. Playfield is just a bit boring with limited shots and targets. Feels repetitive compared to modern games. But the voice of the black knight calling you is irresistible!!!
1 year ago
I remember playing this machine when it first came out - it was fun then and is still fun now. I am glad it my son's "favorite" machine, and enjoy having it in my collection. I have finally gotten better on anticipating when to use the Magna-Save
1 year ago
My gateway pin is BK. Magnasaves were a revelation in pinball and drew me to this game.

Absolute classic!
1 year ago
This is a super fun pin. So much so that I had to add it to my collection. It flows and it'll catch you off guard. The upper playfield is the place to be. Complete the drops and light the arrows. Get the multi ball and maybe an extra ball
Lower playfield gives you the multipliers and more drop targets, another shot at a multiball and if you cann swing it another extra ball.
The magna saves are unique and you have to learn when to use them , but don't remember too late or the Black Knight will laugh at you.
1 year ago
Black knight is a classic game that was unique in several ways at the time so I commend it for that. With the black knight speaking, the magna save feature, and the multi level playfield, it was pretty cool for the time. I however think the game is pretty bland and it doesn't really keep me coming back. Taking down the timed drop target banks gets boring quick and the sounds of them timing out get annoying very very fast. The multiball lock is cool, and building up a bonus is kinda fun, but overall it gets stale really quick for me.
1 year ago
This is the layout of my childhood, except I played it on a Commodore 64 as "David's Midnight Magic", one of the first ever video pinball games.

DMM is easier than Black Knight, but at least on Black Knight, the ball can be trapped and stopped. Playing DMM, the ball hops and juggles around like it's made out of mosquitoes.
1 year ago
A classic with great features and innovations. While the newer machines have passed it with more recent technology, it’s still a fun game and amazing considering it’s age.
1 year ago
Loved this game as a kid! A little easier to play as an adult, but still enjoy playing it.
2 years ago
What can I say? This one had SO many innovations... it simply raised the bar with pinball! When one uses the word "classic," in regards to pinball, The Black Knight should be on that list! I would love to have an original or one of the others in the Black Knight series! It's simpler than BK2K and much simpler than BK:SOR but it holds it's own even though it came from a simpler era! Don't pass on the opportunity to play one just because it's an original!
2 years ago
The best of the Black Knight trilogy!
2 years ago
Not as metal as BK2K so it doesn’t score as high.
2 years ago
Great game ... still my best pinball memory from the 80s when it came out. It was ahead of it's time.
2 years ago
this is one of the most fun games I have ever played .while its not new it has stood the test of time.the playfield could use more light,compared to new games its pretty basic but it was ahead of all other games at its introduction.if you have a chance to own one they are fairly priced and you get a lot of bang for your buck
There are 172 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 7.

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