Whirlwind (Williams, 1990)


Pinside rating

This game received 512 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 8.120 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #39 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game design: 8.295

Artwork: 7.92

Sounds/Music: 7.4

Other Aspects: 8.408

Rating comments

There are 267 rating comments for this game.

Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) Pinside.com staff & moderators rate this game. 8 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 267 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 267 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 11.

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33 days ago
IMHO WW is an underrated game. The logic of play is flawless and easily explained to a novice. The code isn’t overly deep so you won’t get lost in multiple modes - straightforward pinball. Move around the compass. I’m not sure the tollway bridge really works with the overall theme but I don’t have a better idea. I’m sure storm chasers have to pay tolls. The quick multiball is a plus for me as well as the cellars. I love the fact that it has six pop bumpers covering high and low pressures. The only con to the game is that the skill shot isn’t very good. Very low risk reward to me. When I play, I normally send the ball around to the top right flipper and try to send it up the ramp. Overall, a great themed game with a lot of appeal.
74 days ago
way over rated game!
79 days ago
This us a surprisingly fun gane with an odd theme. Wind?
I like the layout of the playfield and the gimmicks. It certainly has lastability.
I'm not sure if I would ever own it, but if the right deal came along, I would have to consider it.
3 months ago
Great game, fast and frantic
3 months ago
Really fun to play. Another Lawlor classic HIT. WW is fast and flows nicely. Three shots to master: scoops, ramp/lock and side “3 toll” ramp. Outside of these, there’s plenty to shoot for here and the rule set is perhaps the best Sys-11 ever.

Theme is good, but the call outs just annoy me. Repetitive and dumb. Music also is less than good. Not one of Granners better efforts.

On the play field, I was expecting the large compass to actually have some meaning, or to give direction to the game. But it doesn’t do much other than to act as illuminated art work. It’s nothing more than a big chandelier in the middle of the PF. Disappointing for a late Sys-11 title.

Backbox art is fine, but not excellent. Cabinet is beautifully done and the topper w/fan is a neat idea. Whirlwind is a very pretty game overall. It seems to stand in the gap between the early SS era and all the new mode driven titles.

Despite its shortcomings, WW plays so well and has such a great rule set it does deserve a high overall rating. I can see why it’s considered to be a keeper by a great many owners.
5 months ago
One of my favorit system11 games. Very fun.
6 months ago
Whirlwind is my favorite System 11 game is probably my favorite non DMD game. It is Pat Lawlor's precursor to Adam's Family as it has a familiar layout, design, and kickouts. The Million point shot is difficult and very rewarding. The music and art are amazing although the lighting is a little dark. LEDs really bring this game to life. The music and art work package in these system 11 games are unique because they didn't come from a movie or TV show. They were created from the mind of a specialist. This era of pinball has some of the best creative games in pinball IMO. The fan was a pinball first and the spinning disc always ensures each and every game is unique and different. I highly recommend this game to everyone.
7 months ago
Always a fun game to play!
9 months ago
Early Pat Lawlor game. enough said. This is widely considered one of the classic , most beloved games of all time. And for a reason. Anyone who says different is just ridiculous. The game was made in 1989 for God's SAke! It came out in 1990 which is nearly 30 years ago. Amazing game, great layout.. and this along with Dr. Dude IMO is one of the best looking games with LED bulbs. If matched correctly the game pops.
9 months ago
amazing game by pat lawor! the gameplay are unbeliveble!
9 months ago
Classic! Whirlwind is one of the defining games of that era, it was fun, innovative and had one of the best layouts available at its time. I really loved it back then, and I still do. The idea was cool, the theme charming and they made great use of the toys (spinning discs) and the fan on top - well, not exactly a toy, but a nice feature which makes it a good game for hot summer days :).

The shots are well thought of, the flow is nice and everything just feels very balanced. Pat Lawlor already knew how to design very good games back then. The music is catchy and there are some nice details in the sound effects, just launch the ball slightly so that it drops back to the plunger and listen what happens...

Very good game I would definitely recommend to anyone!
10 months ago
this is a decent game in my opinion.i can't say it's one of my favorites but it is fun.also kinda unforgiving. the music also gets a bit annoying.
10 months ago
I love my WW and it will never leave my collection. The fan is awesome when the storm is coming. The speech and music are great, I never get bored with it. Really fun game to play, everyone seems to like to play this when they come over. Really bright playfield, especially with LED's. Pat really did a great job with this game!
10 months ago
I was surprised at how little I liked this game when I owned it in my small collection. Once the fan gimmick got old after a few games, there was nothing else that really stood out to me. I'm finding that Lawlor games maybe just don't do it for me like they do for others. I know this was a great game for its time but in my opinion it doesn't hold up well to today's games.
A couple other sys11 titles I've liked better are BK2K, & Mousin Around is probably my fav. I don't think WW is really a bad game but I'm sure it shines more in a larger collection.
11 months ago
Very unique theme and art. Great layout. Probably one of the best sys 11s. I believe it is rated just a little high though.
11 months ago
A true classic. Love the sound and music. Flow is great, feel the power of the wind.
11 months ago
Whirlwind has always been one of my favorite machines. The spinning disc in the center and fan topper has always intrigued me and the Million Plus shot, in my opinion, has a really satisfying jackpot sound and animation. The music and sounds are awesome, like most WMS games of this era, and the scoring is pretty balanced. I don't know, it's just something about this game that I absolutely love. Maybe I'm a bit partial to it since it was one of the first machines I played.
11 months ago
Good pin from the era. Fan topper is one of the most creative aspects of this game.Fun pin able to be enjoyed over and over. Not overly flashy just solid fun.
1 year ago
One of the best System 11 games and ushers in a new era of pinball as the one of the final alphanumeric display games but starts to feel more like the machines that would come after it. Beautiful artwork, really cool (literally) fan topper, and great sound package. A really fun game to play with lots of neat shots and of course the three spinning discs that really change up the game. They are the ultimate wildcard to make or break your game.
1 year ago
A nice -you get the flue if you play to long
1 year ago
Great rules for a system 11. Has a wizard mode. Excellent shots. Making the 3 shot combo is an achievement. Played a lot in the wild so hard to find a decent “survivor”. One of the best bang for the buck pins in my opinion. Similar rules to Earthshaker but having both is a treat.
1 year ago
Cool game, but not a keeper for me.
1 year ago
All around great game! Can't seem to get tired of it.
1 year ago
Classic game by pat lawlor. Good rules for the time and a very satisfying side ramp shot. The spinning discs on the playfield are pretty cool and the huge fan topper is super unique. Overall a pretty fun time.
1 year ago
great game. classic system 11
There are 267 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 11.

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