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Target Alpha

Pinside rating

This game received 53 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 7.731 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #131 in the Pinside EM Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game design: 7.723

Artwork: 8.042

Sounds/Music: 2.972

Other Aspects: 7.604

Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) Pinside.com staff & moderators rate this game. 2 of us have rated this game.


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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 35 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 35 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 2.

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3 months ago
One of my favorite EMs. Surprised it isn't ranked higher. As far as theme goes, I like the one-player version El Dorado better. The game was definitely popular when it was made as they made three different versions of the game. If you like drop targets, then this is your game. The asymmetrical playfield is well thought out.
5 months ago
If you like shooting targets, then this is your game. Mostly open playing filed, but still challenging based on some target locations and the flipper(s) needed to make the shot. I haven't played this in over 40 years but still remember it well, and dropped a lot of quarters into it.
1 year ago
My first EM. I love the backglass and the gameplay on TA.
1 year ago
I love drop targets, but this wide open playfield doesn't keep me engaged for long. Eye candy that I'd rather admire than play.
1 year ago
Great EM! Classic drop target gallery, lots to shoot at. Deep shots require this machine to be high tapped and waxed well. Get a couple good games cookin’ and your are off to the races. See them all the time, typical yellow black glass flaking on all of them, but a great pickup if you can get it for $500 or less
2 years ago
This game has some of the best EM artwork. I love the theme, and colors. The backglass is fantastic.

I really really wanted to love this game. Alas, it suffers from too many drop targets and not enough other things to keep your interest on this 4 player version of a popular playfield.

I like it, just don’t love it.
2 years ago
Gorgars PIN
2 years ago
lots of drop targets hard to Knock them all down with 1 ball but that's the fun part,
2 years ago
A Gottlieb EM without that large top arch. It's unique, but they made 20k of these playfields with different artwork, but this version of the game has the best artwork in my opinion.
It's no easy task (for me) to knock all the targets down on a single ball. Yea, once you do knock them down there isn't much to do, but it's not easy to do so there is a lot of play there before you run out of targets.
Chimes are the standard chimes from the era. You can tell it's a gottlieb, but you can't tell one apart from another from this era.

Buy one!
2 years ago
The most iconic drop target game of all time. The game so good, Gottlieb re-skinned it 8x. Love the art package. Nice classic Sci-fi sillyness. Beautifully ingenious asymmetrical layout from the master of design Ed Krynski. This is a glorious example of what design genius in pinball looks like. If you like drop targets, you can't do much better.
3 years ago
Target Alpha is one of many rethemes of this layout but in a 4 player variant. What makes this game different from its other iterations is that the drop targets only reset between balls, plus there isn't an extra bonus dot that gets moved around in its 2 player iteration in El Dorado. Once you've gotten all the drops, there isn't much more to shoot at other than the rollover lanes.

With that said, hitting the drops is still just as fun. The chime box sounds fantastic and the layout is great for a game of this era. I do enjoy the space themed cartoonish characters with the pinks and yellows.
3 years ago
Great classic game, cool retro space theme, 15 drop targets, add a ball and sweet Gottlieb chimes what's not to like.
3 years ago
It won't hold your attention for long, but it's more fun than many EM machines, IMO. I like the theme, the throwback artwork, and the drop targets. El Dorado might edge it out for gameplay, but both are soid EMs.
3 years ago
As others have said, El Dorado in a spacesuit, but this was by far my favorite multi-player game of the 70's. Love all the drop targets, and it was great fun to compete on this machine. You always had lots to shoot for, and that made for lots of pinball music coming from the chimes.
3 years ago
It's a fun game with a decent layout.
3 years ago
One of those classic unique EM games, great layout with four flippers, drop targets galore and a steep difficulty curve. You will have a great game followed by three or four games that just crush your spirit. One of my favorite games to pick during league play to see the looks on players faces when they realize what they are in for.
4 years ago
We played an El Dorado machine one night for hours
Target Alpha appeared in my basement about 10 days later
4 years ago
Nice late Gottlieb EM pin. Very unique ball return to the playfield. Nice playfield design.
5 years ago
Same layout as El Dorado, but doesn't pack the same punch as the classic wedgehead. But THIS game is half the price. So its a trade off. The El Dorado layout proved so popular it re-appeared later in the decade as Solar City and Target Alpha. Gone are the roving bonus “spots” of El Dorado, replaced by the bonus count at end of ball for each drop downed. Not as exciting having the chase of the spot removed, but it sure is fun bashing fifteen targets on the playfield to grab a big bonus and a possible extra ball (adjustable setting permitting). This Target Alpha review will be the same as my Solar City review, as the game are the same, however, I prefer the artwork of the future-past Solar City more than the futuristic Target Alpha so the rating values will reflect that. Also, Solar City has less switches to mess with since its a two-player, and its the more rare version of the two, so its got that going for it. If you want a great looking game with legs in a smaller collection, but don't want to shell out El Dorado prices, Target Alpha/Solar City is a viable and more affordable substitute.
5 years ago
My first pin. I really like the theme, cool space theme, perhaps a bit too much pink colouring for my liking. I enjoy the 4 flippers and the game play can really pick up. A real challenge to get all the drop targets down, I have yet to accomplish this feat. Will keep forever I suspect.
6 years ago
The layout is iconic but the gameplay is a bit of a snooze since it lacks any real rules! I really thought I'd love this game since I love drop targets, but there needs to be rhyme and/or reason for what I'm doing.
You can get a bit of risk/reward going if you have it set to 3-ball, then have the lower drop back only worth 500 each instead of 2k. This bank is easier to finish, and thus light extra ball rollover, so seems strategic to make it worth slightly less than the upper bank.
But, the extra ball rollovers, even when lit, are a crapshoot. You can't really aim for them.
So you drop the banks... Then what? They do not reset mid-ball, so you're stuck taking wild shots off for the rollovers.

Amazing art, but quickly becomes tedious when you're just shooting for rollovers..
6 years ago
This is one of about eight classic EM's that the Seattle Pinball Musuem has chosen for its collection of EM's, and I've spent several fun afternoons enjoying a beer and playing this game over and over again trying to knock down those drop targets! In my opinion, it's a very solid Gottlieb EM, and easily one of the best-looking EM's it produced.
6 years ago
I had the opportunity to have several games on this machine at the Pinball Expo Sydney Nov 2014. This machine has good pedigree coming from the stable of El Dorado & Solar City. It is an exciting game with great dimension-drop targets, fixed targets, rollovers and great flipper consequence. Whilst a multi player the player still has the potential to maximise hits from a single ball. Playfield layout on this machine is second to none making it a real players machine.
6 years ago
Target Alpha, and other EM's with same play field design are enjoyable to play. Making shots, knocking down the drop down targets keeps you coming back for more & more. This game grows on you.
6 years ago
Great target game. Decent artwork although theme is a stretch....obviously, a classic layout. Tough, tough game. Those drops are just so tempting...
There are 35 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 2.

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