Laser Cue

Pinside rating

This game received 45 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 7.359 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #198 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game Design: 7.876

Artwork: 6.659

Sounds/Music: 6.668

Other Aspects: 7.519

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 20 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 20 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
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4 days ago
Non standard flipper layout, makes for some interesting shots, but feels clunky. Ugly non descriptive cabinet.
7 months ago
Its a fun game with some spinners and a number of drop targets.
1 year ago
This pin really has a lot going for it at the price point. It just falls into the "starter pin" category because there are a lot of better pins to be found (even in it's own era), and it doesn't have anything special to separate itself. Not bad for the price, though.
2 years ago
This is currently my favorite title in my lineup to play. The layout and required shots are well designed. I like everything about the art except the half naked guys. The lighting is not great. There is a large black space in the center and it gets quite a glare from the backglass. I kept #47 bulbs in the head and put leds on the playfield. I did a spotlight in the lane hole where it looks like there was going to be a gate, but it didn't get one. I've only had it for a couple of months, but it is quite fun to play. Love the bell!!
2 years ago
Get those blasted targets in order to hear the chime!
2 years ago
Picked up this game as a project a couple of weeks ago and now that I've been able to work on, and get a buncha games on it, I really enjoy it! I've always enjoyed Alien Poker, and when I saw this one for sale, had to pick it up. The rules are simple, collect the balls from 1-15. The 5 individually controlled drop targets will force you to make accurate shots. Shooting them out of order will set you back! Such a simple, but fantastic rule and will weed out the "flailers" quickly. I have the bar behind the right flipper but will remove it to make it more challenging on the right side. Flipper skills are a must on this game, as it was in AP and other games where "scissoring" was a threat. I also really liked the extra ball ball saver timer. It was a surprise rule that I thought would have been ingenious at the time, but still didn't take away from having to pick down the targets (with wild flailing). Overall, a truly underappreciated game that not enough people know about.

And all those comments about the artwork, well, it's gotten to the point in its life that it's awesomely bad. So get over it and put on a few games on this gem!
2 years ago
If I didn’t own Firepower, Cosmic Gunfight, and Barracora, this would be a must-have, other than the fact that it has TEAL in the BG — what gives???

Mofscore: B

Action/Per/Minute: very good, three flippers no stopngo
Asymmetry: very good, drop target bank is angled well
Dink Donk: good, it’s funny that the upper right orbit forces a dink donk on the exit
Drops: good, smart drops that must be dropped in order
Flippers: good, three
Hazards: good, very fair lower PF with the angled bank
Inlane Lane Change: good, you are trying to spell pool upstairs
Nudging: very good - you must nudge these outlines
Obfuscation: very good - none
Pops: good, they can score or the right one can hurt you out the right outlane
Shotmap Balance: very good, you are trying to complete 1-15
Shots (total): 10
Slap-Saves: very good - it’s a Williams
Spinners: good, one great-sounding spinner
Stop'n'Go: good, very few pauses for kickuots

Brick-Action: average, only has a few single standups in the lower if you miss a shot
Inlane Swoosh: average, has only 1 inlane anyway
Innovation: average, any time you have a set of smart drops you have something special, but nothing new on this one
Outlane Fun: average, the right outlane sucks, the left outlane is good

MB Fun: poor - single ball game
Metal Ramp: none
Orbits (Repeatable): none
Toy/Gimmick: none, but the smart drops are nice
Voice / V. choreography: none, 1982 had no voice

Hurry-ups: unknown
Lane Change: unknown
Skill Shot: unknown
Taunting: unknown (not likely with no voice)
Backhands: unknown
Ball-time: unknown — played an unshopped game

ART (PF/Cab/BG/Inserts): B (nice art, but the colors aren’t for me)
MUSIC / SOUND EFFECTS: A (it’s the Williams sound set)
PASSION/INNOVATION: B- — neat layout similar to alien poker, but no innovation that’s for sure

Mofscore: B
2 years ago
An understated masterpiece, IMO. It is not a drain monster. It has what I like: Fast, flipper friendly shots that are mine to lose. It is the kind of pin I like to meet in an arcade. Drop a coin and you get to play for awhile.

People talk about the bell. I like that bell. When I hit the right shot I am rewarded with that bell ringing. Nothing fancy. Just a ring to let know I am doing something right.

I hate under powered flippers. You know those flippers that are so weak that you start hitting the flipper button harder and making extra effort for yourself. Not this pin. Just stand there and effortlessly push the flipper button and those super 50 volt flipper coils kick in and the ball launches in a blur, ricochets off something up top and comes back to the flipper so fast that you hit it by feel.

This is my kind of pinball.

I bought this pin to fix up and sell. But I just got it running a couple of days ago and all I have been doing is playing Laser Cue. It has been a pleasant pinball surprise. I may keep it.
2 years ago
For not being a multi ball machine and stilll having the old system 7, it holds its own. I spent months walking by this machine at the arcade, before i was told to give it a try. I bought it a few weeks later lol. Look past the backglass art and you have a pretty decent pinball machine.
3 years ago
I first played Laser Cue at my first ever “pinball party” around 2001, and I remember thinking “Damn, this pin is fun.” 17 years went by and I never saw another one, until one popped up on Craigslist this Friday. I am SO glad I got past the beefcake artwork and lack of speech. This game absolutely rocks, no saucers to slow it down and some surprisingly great rules. Multiball would be out of place, because this game is all about aim. You can sometimes cradle the ball on the itty-bitty upper flipper, and use it to collect the 8-ball shot. Another cool thing: if you hit 6,7 or 8 when they aren’t lit, you can build up their values to 50k (100k for the 8 ball), and really cash in when it’s their turn to flash at you. The 1-5 shots are easy to aim at, but dangerous. Shoot the right targets with the left flipper, and left targets with one of the right flippers, or else you’ll make a “bank shot” straight to the outlanes. Genius layout.

I thought this was a Mark Ritchie game, and it may as well be. It’s similar to Sorcerer, but more open. The same artist is at work here, and she’s great. You may not like the goofy helmets or the the bared abs, but you can’t deny that her work is worthy of an early 80’s Heavy Metal magazine. The sounds borrow a lot from Joust, and they’re great to me, a lot less repetitive than Black Knight (which I also own). Hearing the bell for a split second on every made shot is satisfying. Get the 8 ball, then make that same shot again to collect the Extra Ball, and everyone within 20 feet will know you got it.

Listen, I’m a Bally guy. I never thought I’d say this, but Williams pins of the same era are just more fast paced. I feel the same way with Laser Cue that I did with Iron Man, it’s an adrenaline rush. It definitely has that “one more game” appeal. You feel like a rock star the first time you pass 1M. I think this pin will be the highlight of my home tournaments now.
5 years ago
The game may be a step backwards in Williams ascension to the top of the pinball heap, but I like the game anyhow. Williams games were capable of speech in this era, but Laser Cue cheaped out and didn't feature any...adding, much like Firepower II, a cabinet bell. So we've got a bell, reminiscent of 1960s electro-mechanical games, but a super-futuristic space theme mixed with a billiards layout. The game is reminiscent of Alien Poker, but the small things they've added to the layout and rules really does it for me. I like the game exponentially better than Alien Poker. I like the cross-playfield feel of nailing the left-hand side 6-ball with the right flipper which immediately sets up a left flipper shot to the 7-ball on the right-hand side. Having to hit the drops in order is a challenge. Being penalized by taking away a target if you hit them out of order is just ruthless (it's a dip switch setting)...and it'll make you a better player. Someone in my travels described the art and theme as “Homoerotic Space Pool”, which is spot on. I love the Pam Erickson art package—its a shame her work was limited to just a handful of production games as her style really gels with the medium of pinball.
6 years ago
I really like the layout. A very good shot variety including the upper flipper and the 3 bottom flippers. The center targets are very risky but needed to complete the racks. The sounds and art package are just Ok - it does have a cool bell sound for the extra ball. This game plays fast and is a great bang for the buck! If you think you have mastered it then remove the guard rail between the double flippers for an added challenge. A solid game that adds nice variety in a mid size collection.
6 years ago
Good game to start out with! If you like a fast machine, this is the game for you! Like everybody has said, the art work is different. All in all great game!
6 years ago
Very simple, but fun ruleset. Art is okay, but gameplay rules on this one. Better have a spinny spinner on this one cause when that lights for 1,000 a spin you want to work it. I am always a sucker for hitting targets in order.

Really like this one.
8 years ago
My first pinball machine that i ever purchased.
Very fast pin, very fun.
8 years ago
Laser Cue is Alien Poker's younger kid.

The Good:
The basic premise of hitting targets and making shots all over the PF is very much in effect with this table. You have to hit those drop targets in sequence or you get punished for your inaccuracy. The same things that made Alien Poker such a good game are all here. Bonus is KING on this deck (20x!). There are 16 shots to be made by the 3 flippers. Yes you can hit the upper 3 standups from the right hand side flippers (and the upper flipper too). This game is a player that requires ball control AND sniper skills! Williams hardware makes sure that the action on this deck is always moving at light speed!

The Bad:
The upper flipper seems like a bit of an afterthought. It's not really bad, it just seems out of place. Where is the multiball? Just like it's older brother Alien Poker, it really needs it!

The Takeaway:
Wax this game up, steepen the angle, open the outlanes and get ready for a fast and furious pinball game. This game was put together by Ed Tomaszewski and Pam Erickson (of Sorceror fame). These guys didn't make too many games, but I like what they did to with this one. Some dudes won't like the art package. But that's what happens when you give a woman an art package for a pinball game. She puts her sexual POV on it! Take that you homophobic pin-boneheads! A solid player that is not that well known to many players. Find it and play it. I think you'll like it. I am very happy to have one in the stable.

Now that this deck is running nicely, I have to say that I am thoroughly enjoying this deck. Classic Williams Stargate/Joust/Firepower sounds are nicely accentuated with a bell. That's right, this game has a ringer! The shots to the top, especially the right loop to the 8 ball standup are satisfying and to really light this table up, you need to hit every shot on this deck. The rules on this table are surprisingly well balanced. Even the silly bumbling of the ball into the shooter lane is righteous if you have hit your B-A-L-L targets to light the spinner for a nice gimme, but it does not upset the overall feel of the deck. The P-O-O-L rollovers at the top of the game become progressively more valuable once you get up to 10x-15x-20x at the end of the bonuus stack. That's at least 32 rollovers to reach 20x bonus, but what a rush to collect! Personally, I took the ball guide out from the right hand side of the flipper, so this game plays extra nasty and will scissor you faster than Captain Fantastic or even Sinbad! That's right Laser Cue is gonna cut ya'! Setting the rules to tougher settings means that missing a drop target out of sequence will set you back a bit on your progress to your next set of 15. And though you may think those outlanes are small, just like Sinbad, they will eat you up raw like sushi if you are not anticipating what your ball will do. When set up properly, a million+ game will make you do the happy pinball dance. Gameplay will take you on a long and winding road to the 3x15 "racks" x20 bonus multiplier. This is not the most complex game you have ever encountered, but you will enjoy every shot along the way.

This pinball table has that "alright... let's play one more game" quality in spades. Me likey!

Update v.2:
Shooting this game is always a treat. I removed the guard wire between the lower right hand flippers and it makes a huge difference in the skillful playability of this game. Shades of Harlem Globetrotters and Captain Fantastic... you bet! The steepness on this game makes a big difference as the ability to hit the upper orbit to the 8 ball is a killer shot. IF the game is not steep enough, this shot becomes rather easy and well... the gameplay (imho) suffers for it. The theme of this game is interesting to me as I have met some people who will not play this game because they feel it is "too gay".


So here is the real deal. The art pax on this game was done by Pam Erickson. A woman did this art pax and with this in mind she heterosexually described men as many male pinball artists would describe women. Get it? So to all the insecure men out there who won't play this game because it offends their sensibilities, thank you for showing me who you are. Such weakness...

Update v.3:
Get to the top. Spell out P-O-O-L and keep an eye on the B-A-L-L targets as they will complete a P-O-O-L letter as well as light the spinner. Get to 20x ASAP as it holds over through the game (is this operator adjustable?). Now you can focus on collecting the billiard balls to max out your racks in bonus. Rip the spinner and hit the standup lanes for points after that. Simple, but not easy. Big scores require lots of time and can be considered (chopping wood-like) but this game can be nastified to the point of that simple is very difficult. A great game with an alwesome layout that requires you to shoot everything on the design. A true player.

Update v.4:
This pinball game is one of the best of it's vintage. Getting all 3 x 15 ball racks is not easy (software settings can make it even harder as the standard settings give you the first rack after you collect the 8-ball). This game is constantly overlooked by other pinheads and that's a damn shame. Consider other system 7 games from williams:

Black Knight
Cosmic Gunfight
Time Fantasy
Jungle Lord

These are all damn fine games and define pinball for many players. Laser Cue is up there in terms of worthiness. The layout is superb. The rules are more subtle than just completing racks. Do you want to shoot for a dangerous target to advance the rack or do you want to go for one of the B-A-L-L targets to advance that ball? Do you want to complete the last letter in P-O-O-L to complete the last letter in B-A-L-L to advance to the next ball? For a game of this vintage, this game is incredibly well balanced. You got 20 seconds after plunging your extra ball. Gently plunge to the flipper as to not validate the PF and then start dropping those 1-5 / 9-13 targets without a care! drain the ball and back to 5x? shooting the top lanes is where you need to go as 20x is the only way to get the big points! The most valuable shot is the 8 ball. Build to 100k and collect at the 8-ball. The side lanes can get up to 50k as well, but are teritary values. 45k x 20 is 900k. Do you build bonus x? Do you build bonus? Multiple ways to reach that goal effectively is what this game is about. Set your right hand flippers to stage flip and more techniques become available to you to control the game. Be cool Bounce passes are your friends and outlanes are death. This game is a true player. And while not as desirable as other games listed above by many, that is a damn shame. Because this is a damn fine game and is passed over by many. I am very happy to have this game in my stable and it isn't going anywhere any time soon.
9 years ago
A surprisingly robust classic Pinball title where flow and aim are king. The ridiculous space/fantasy theme thrown on what would have otherwise been a Pool themed table represents everything so wrong and so right about the 80s. While the lack of multiball makes me feel like something is lacking, I can't... stop... playing.
9 years ago
This is a interesting game, the rules are what save it. I do enjoy having to get perfect on my aim, but this pin isnt anything crazy to shake a stick it.. its for sure a "gem in the rough" if you can pick it up at a good price (sub 400) then rock it. Its a simple entry pin that has enough value to casual gamer like myself. I always go back to it when I need something retro. The art on this game is a joke. I keep it mostly for the art, its wacky ugly.
11 years ago
This is a solid machine from the early 1980s; the sounds are pretty much like every other Williams machine from that era, but the design is a good one. It's heavily built around advancing the bonus (collecting the pool balls off the 5-target drop target bank and 3 spot targets) and the bonus multiplier (goes to 20x!)-- pretty much every feature of the game involves this, even the extra ball is lit after completing a rack of balls. The 5-target drop target bank is a specialized one, in that the 5 targets are individually controlled, and in addition, the game can also drop all the targets at once. Since there's no ball locks because there's no multiball, and with the control the game has over the drop target bank, there's no way players can interfere with other players' games at all, which is an uncommon feature.
12 years ago
Would be a much nicer to look at game if the artwork weren't mostly naked dudes. Sound is average Sys7 - good if you like that era, if you don't like that era you're going to dislike the sound. Overall a decent game that just gets lost amongst the more popular titles. IMO better than Alien Poker, the most similar game I can think of, despite Alien Poker's better theme/art.
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