Hot Wheels

Pinside rating

This game received 150 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 7.968 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #81 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game Design: 7.773

Artwork: 8.106

Sounds/Music: 7.657

Other Aspects: 8.102

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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Found 79 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 79 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 4.

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4 months ago
Very surprised by this game! Great value and fun fun fun!
5 months ago
A huge disappointment after Oktoberfest, which is a fun game. Shots are tight and not really satisfying to hit--if you can hit them. It was just not that fun to play and was almost always open at the last pinball show I was at--so it wasn't just me. Play this before you buy...
5 months ago
With a few simple tips from the programmer and some extra time on it at MGC I realized I was way too hard on this game. It's probably not gona be anybodys grail but for a good time call Hot Wheels!
6 months ago
I am a hot wheels fan and collector, also a member of the exclusive Red line Hot wheels club.

I will approach this review from two perspectives.
The Hot Wheels collector, and a pinball enthusiast.

As a collector I feel they missed the mark.
Pinball machines are super expensive, adults with money are buying these fun boxes. They should have designed the hot wheels theme around the red line design for the hot wheels enthusiast.
Black and red would have been really nice.
The opportunity to offer super exclusive cars for the inside of the machine would have been really cool perk for the hot wheels collector.
As a consumer we are already spending a pretty penny to buy this, having exclusive treasure hunt cars or exclusive cars from the red line releases would have been amazing.
Also having some of those exclusive cars drag racing each other as the art for the cab would be icing on the cake.
Including speedometer, tachometer and turbo gages as back ground art behind the cars drag racing would be a nice touch.
As for the videos for the code I’m ok with American pinballs choice on this part.
Inside the cab going with a more upscaled look to match the red line theme by replacing the orange ramps that look like hot wheels track with orange anodized steel ramps would make it pop.
Really this is just the collector in me whining when I first approached the machine. (Collector review over)

As a pinball enthusiast this game is HOT!!
Fun, bright, oh look a hot wheel pinball machine! No way….cool!

The light show is on another level it’s mesmerizing.
Really one of the best for modern pinball machines and that’s saying a lot these days.
The game plays pretty nice, it’s a lot of fun but I feel like I’m playing a kids toy vs a high dollar pinball machine.
Also contradicting my first part of the review I feel the cars are just too small in scale. They should have gone with a larger scale and also more iconic cars from the hot wheels line.
Also since they chose the more kid oriented theme why not pull in some of the cool toys hot wheels has already designed for the play field? Chomping sharks or the Dino car crusher! Go big or go home! The opportunity to add some really cool toys to this machine could have taken this pinball machine to another level others could not achieve and it would have made since with the lore of hot wheels.
Gotta go fast…really fast they could have also aimed at trying to be the fastest playing pinball machine of all time. This would have been the theme to do it with.
And lastly real fire aggressively blowing out of the top of the pinball machine as a topper when your in multiball mode could have made this legendary.

Review over….starting to red line and the engine is getting too hot.
6 months ago
Everytime I play this I like it more and can expand on what and how I play.
I really dig the hot wheels theme, the game is based upon a YouTube hotwheels series, which I'm not a big fan of. But I do like the game play, lighting, and rules
7 months ago
Hot wheels is so far (until I get more time on Valhalla) the best American Pinball machine. While not perfect, and definitely not a top 10 game, it’s still a lot of fun to play.

Layout is incredibly unique, with interesting back hand-able loops.

Art is incredibly colorful and well defined, with some great animations.

Sound quality is excellent.

Code, while simple, is incredibly fun to play through.

Game feels excellently well made, using high quality materials.


The right ramp is not a shot I am a huge fan of due to being far too challenging and unsatisfying.

Sounds themselves are fine enough, just nothing amazing

Theme isn’t my cup of tea, though they did a great job with it.

Overall, just a great fun game from an up-and-comer. I hope American Pinball continues to succeed.
7 months ago
Beautiful light show. Lots of eye candy, but not enough fun shots.
Great theme, but I feel like a little more could have been done with it
8 months ago
Fast game; I wasn't super thrilled with some of the shots but it was entertaining enough. Rules seem simple enough.
8 months ago
Just feels like going in circles, round and round, just not for me, but to each there own
9 months ago
Not a great theme but implemented really well. The game is super fun and makes you want to play it again and again. It's a hit so far with everyone I know who's played it.
9 months ago
I just bought this game from a friend because the price was fair and the market today is so crazy. He had owned the game since brand new in box, one of the first 500 machines. He had enjoyed it, but his family wanted another theme, which will cost twice as much.

So I took a chance and I bought this machine having only a few plays beforehand. This would give me a chance to play another title besides all of my Stern games which I really enjoy. I am a baby boomer with lots of kids and grandkids and the Hot Wheels theme is definitely familiar.

I consider myself an above average shooter and have played almost all of the top 300 games. So after several weeks of ownership and multiple games, I feel I can make a good assessment.

This game is definitely underrated and absolutely the best deal around. My game came with a Shaker motor, art blades, relatively polished code, and a very fun playfield layout. Artwork is great and the theme is well executed.

Initially the shots seem too tough and difficult to get the feel and flow. However, once dialed in, the fun begins and the rules exploration is fabulous. All the shots can be made rather consistently after practice and the flow is spot on. The animations are definitely different, but cool and well executed.

Art work? Great! It's the Hot Wheels theme through and through. Ok, not the detail of some other pins, but next to my line up of newer Sterns, fits right in

Sounds- stock speakers are good and the stereo sound effects are great, unless you hate garage and car noise.

Game play? Fabulous! My game sits next to a GZLE and I am playing both almost exclusively.

HW is not the #1 game, but it certainly is a top 30 title, and more interesting/fun than almost any 90s game. People crap on the theme and whatever else, but go try one out for yourself.

Like all great deals, this will not last long.

10 months ago
Oh my gosh, American titles play so well -- up until you hit the one thing that drives you crazy. So far on every American title this basically seems to come down to a need to tune the machine well so the machine's particular quirk is managed.

I have only gotten to play Hot Wheels twice for extended sessions, so haven't really gotten into the rules set very deeply, so take all this with that giant caveat. The reason I found this incredibly appealing is the playfield design.

Now let's be frank here and posit that the racing theme has been done to death over the years. There have been some good concepts and tricks thrown in, but cars going fast isn't exactly new ground. And I was a little lost on the modern Hot Wheels theme -- oldschool turbo charging and so forth I understand, but the plot of the animated show is lost on me. so I felt quite lost in figuring out what things were supposed to connect with what. This is always the blessing/curse of a licensed theme -- in order to feel how well the rules set matches the theme, you have to not only know the license pretty well, you have to like it. So I missed a lot of this part of the features of the game.

Even so, playing Hot Wheels for me recalled the absolute best of the classic Popadiuk off-set ovals design, a concept that really needs reviving in the Stern era of fan-designs (with a few prominent exceptions). The overlapping ovals, with the underrated slight rise ramps, also had the feel of the few good Gottlieb "Street Level" designs, notably Hoops. The shots aren't gimmes -- having some hard shots is one of the things I like about American titles -- but the instant flow this game has is unique among the American titles thus far with the possible exception of a couple of sequences of shots in Houdini. I really like the curved target banks that are becoming an American signature (the only other semi-recent example I can think of is WoZ) and there are lots of touches here that hearken back to some late 70s/early 80s designs, like the open post double right inlane with the cute little ball return down the side. It also has a bit of the feel of Heighway's Full Throttle (which I liked and, yes, had a racing theme with some interesting ovals, so I mean that in a good way.)

As others have noted, the use of toys in the design iss a little disappointing; the car spinning is a somewhat lesser version of Mario Andretti's spinning car and as an old school Hot Wheel guy I really wanted to see a turbo charger (I know Getaway used this, but they stole the idea from Hot Wheels!) The design is not toy-driven, though, so take that for what it's worth to you.

I also think the light show is particularly good here. Hot Wheels is all about bright primary and secondary colors, and while I don't have them memorized, the sequence of colors to a naive player appeared very obvious. Sound is excellent, but I grew up on terrible sound and I think pretty much all modern machines have excellent sound. I do believe American might consider investing in some more interesting music. Sound design is one thing, but having some really good original music really makes a game. (I have no idea whether this is license music from the cartoon, because i've never seen it and have no plans to.)

I'm still pondering whether American's tiny video screen is a good thing or not. I sort of like the offset location on Hot Wheels, though; for some reason I found it easier to read while playing, which I had to do to pick up the callouts.

So I foreshadowed my big disappointment with Hot Wheels, that was present in the first one I played and was glaringly more present with the one I played this past weekend (and I played it a lot, relatively) -- the tendency of balls his cleanly into an oval shot to then drain straight down the middle. I can't possibly believe this was intentional in design or play testing, so my conclusion is the leveling or pitch was slightly off on this game, or something, because *every* game I played on this, I'd have at least one ball where I was really into a nice flow of shots, getting the sequence I needed to move into a mode or multiball -- only to have a perfectly clean shot just woosh down the middle off the return. It wasn't consistent, in that making particular shots didn't *always* drain SDTM, but it wasn't because the shot or flow was flawed, and the aggravating thing is that there was no obvious way to adjust one's play.

So I'd like to try this on a home machine at some point and really give it a workout with somebody who has made the tuning adjustments and who might be willing to let me experiment a little.

Honestly, if the theme were a little more appealing to me, I'd even consider trying to pick one up, if I could resolve that particular SDTM issue, just because as ever American's just got some fantastic playfield design ideas working here that are better than most of what Stern produces. Spooky sort of does this, too, but the implementation is very erratic (and I also can't really get into their themes, although Ultraman may turn my head -- I digress).

The bottom line though was despite my frustration I did not get bored with this, and I'm left wanting to play more.
10 months ago
This game is missing something. I'm not sure what, but my first 10 plays felt less than stelar. This seemed generic, but not unplayable. A new player will like the sounds and graphics, and not be upset by too hard of a ruleset.
10 months ago
I bought Hot Wheels before I ever played a game on it and I have no regrets at all.
It was an instant hit with everyone from 4 to 80 years old including my wife (Rare)
I think this is a very underrated game and will be a classic due to the theme, Being family friendly and easy to understand.
10 months ago
Played at Expo 2021. It was surprisingly good and better than a lot of other games.
10 months ago
Very fun fast paced game!
11 months ago
Hot Wheels is the most underrated game on the market. It got a bad rap before it was released and then wasn't available to play on location due to COVID-19. Not enough people have played it to really show how good it is.
11 months ago
Played the game at Expo '21. It was the only new-ish release without a line. I was not inspired to ever play it again.
Update: I played HW again at MGC '22 and stand by my initial impressing. This pin is not for me.
11 months ago
After about 20 plays on a friends machine I'm just not sure this game is meant for me. There isn't anything specifically wrong with it, I just wasn't wanting to continue playing.
12 months ago
Such a fun title, and one of my most favorite childhood toys.
1 year ago
Simple, fast, fun, fan layout. No over-complicated rule sets here. Everything you need to know is on the playfield or apron. Family-friendly, but actually funny, callouts. Music and sound effects are AWESOME! Bright and colorful artwork is true to the theme. Biggest downsides are that it’s a little dark (owing to the 100% RGB lights including GI), and it can be a little clunky.
1 year ago
This game is suuuuuper underrated. Though it's just a standard fan layout, the speed of the ramps and orbits combine with the staggered RPM standups and kickback to make for a beautiful combo of flow and chaos. Light shows are tremendous and the breadth of code makes it approachable for new players while giving plenty for more skilled shooters to hunt down. I don't see the knock that this is a kiddie theme - it's nostalgia at its finest mixed with a modern tv show's storyline. It works.

Add in the variety of multiballs and bumping soundtrack and this game deserves far more love.
1 year ago
Hugely underrated! This game is a blast for all levels of players...easily one of the best releases of that big group/year and just feels a lot more solidly built than a lot of the new Sterns, JJPs too. This is a great example of how video should be incorporated into game play to enhance overall play rather than distract and confuse like so many new games do.
1 year ago
Fun to shoot. Videos are pretty lame and long. Rpm for multi ball is cool and then the game shuts down and you go into reline mania. Cool aspect. The orange ramp is reeeeally smooth like a hot wheels going around a track #nostalgia.

Fun shooter. Learn the rules , make the shots to win the race,, build track, battle enemies. Quite a bit going.
1 year ago
An absolute blast to play. Multi-balls are fun (Redline Mania especially), Love the lighting, sound, and artwork. Machine is built like a tank (American knows what they are doing, that's for sure). Cool features like the center post, right outlane opening to the shooter lane, and two hands needed skill shot adds some interesting game play. Hot Wheels theme is cool for me, game play is outstanding. More fun than my JP Premium.
There are 79 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 4.

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