Pinside rating

This game received 568 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 8.133 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #53 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game Design: 8.322

Artwork: 7.92

Sounds/Music: 7.399

Other Aspects: 8.42

Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) Pinside.com staff & moderators rate this game. 9 of us have rated this game.


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Found 303 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 303 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 5 of 13.

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5 years ago
Love that fan...
5 years ago
This is a unique and fun table with several aspects that make it stand out: spinning discs to throw your ball every which way, and and awesome fan on top which sucks you in to the storm theme. The artwork is fun, lighting is nice and bright, and there are plenty of varying shots to make it interesting over and over again.
5 years ago
This machine is just one of the greats in my opinion. The flow of the game is amazing, and I personally just love the sound effects and music. It's like an 80's video game in its music, and it just never gets old to me. I like how ruthless the outlanes can be because it really makes it one of those "live by the sword, die by the sword" games to play. You could outscore the best of them if the other player just gets unlucky sometimes.
I marked it down in "game rules" because if you do eventually get deep into the game, you start to run out of multiballs and you also just don't have much to work towards anymore. The skyway tolls are "free" after 99 of them, so it's just a flat 200k points.
I also find that there needs to be some more lighting in the playfield, so I've added a few lamps to mine.
Overall, this will always be one of my favorites. I will NEVER part with this machine.
5 years ago
This game never gets old. Lawlor is the man
5 years ago
Whirlwind is a classic! I think that the only thing I found got annoying was so much scoring emphasis on the upper flipper hitting the ramp shot.
5 years ago
Great system 11 pinball. One of the top 5.
Love the theme and fan blowing.
I wish I bought one years ago.
5 years ago
Fun, good layout.
5 years ago
I think I just like simpler machines. I expected it to grow on me over time, but it never really did. I can see why it is highly rated, but for me it isn't quite my thing. Plays fast, but the rules set I never fully followed.
5 years ago
The only non DMD in my collection but one of the most played by myself and my friends. The spinning disks are a great feature which really integrate the theme. The multi ball isn't a gimme every game and the jackpot shot is a seriously tough one. Nail a few jackpots in a game, get the mega door award and you'll come away with one of the best feelings in pinball.
5 years ago
did not like the spining disk wen it first came out and always played f.h or a.f gave it a shot and was amazed by the fun and great play this machine had...six pop bumpers!! for sure top 3 alphanumeriec pins. classic pin u cant go wrong with..been tryin to find a good one over the last ten-fiffthten yrs and always miss out or it not nice enough,i hope to free up space and get one someday....keeper !!!!
5 years ago
On my want list great to play love the spinning disk ball can go anywhere. An oldie but goodie
5 years ago
This game is pretty good for a non dmd. I really like this game now because I got to play one in great condition.
5 years ago
Kind of new to me, maybe Ill rate it higher later, Might need to read more about rules and such.
5 years ago
My buddy picked up the nicest one I ever seen and played. Wow, what a difference playing a Whirlwind that is dialed in! This game is a lot of fun!
5 years ago
This is a really fun pin and it's easily my favorite non-DMD. It has a simple ruleset that's easy to learn and hard to master. The playfield is laid out perfectly and it offers tons of interesting and fun shots. I love the multi-ball mode on this machine with all the randomness caused by the spinning discs and the tough upper flipper shot for the jackpot.

The artwork, music, and call outs are all top notch. The simulated tornado on the playfield and the fan blowing on top of the cabinet make this a machine that absolutely nails the theme. Overall, this is a top tier System 11 machine and one of the most fun games out there.
5 years ago
I finally got one of these after many years wanting and playing where I found one until my fingers were numb. A very fun machine that is demonstrative of Pat Lawlor's early gadgets and themes that are found in a lot of his other machines. The theme is timeless and play flow can be very fast when the flippers are strong. The main thing here is to make sure you get plastic protectors as the ball can go flying around into some otherwise unprotected and vulnerable plastic pieces that are increasingly difficult to get in one piece. It can get bogged down with flippers that aren't well maintained. Overall a sweet machine to have in your collection!
6 years ago
Gameplay and Design: If it weren't for so many rules and layout similarities to Earthshaker, one could easily mistake this game as a product of Steve Richie. Gameplay is fast, fluid, and at times, brutally difficult. The challenge is always fair, and the spinning disks on the playfield can either work in your favor, or against you. The use of the "stargate" ramp is a brilliant way of changing the layout of the game with minimal effort. The shots on the playfield are varied and balanced, and seldom get boring.

Artwork, Sounds, and Music: The theming is excellent, and ties well into the playfield design. It's a cohesive experience that makes sense, and I feel a lot of pinball machines lack in this regard. Sounds are clear, and music is catchy. The cabinet artwork is a bit uninspired, but I'm willing to overlook that as the rest of the artwork is exceedingly well done.

Overall: This is a game you shouldn't miss. When properly set up, it is a surefire blast to play. Few games fully utilize the theme, artwork, and playfield layout as well as Whirlwind does. It's big, somewhat goofy, and has plenty of things to do for longtime lastability.
6 years ago
A classic game that keeps me coming back for more. I'll update this rating when I find another one.
6 years ago
a really really good SYS 11 tricky shots ,the fan on the top the spinning discs everything matches the theme perfectly when you're outside u just want to return to your home!! and play it
6 years ago
It's a good fun game to play! The only problem is the left flipper was loose, so it affected my game play! This game was out in the wild so some problems are to be expected! Overall I would be happy to have it in my game room.
6 years ago
This game is enjoyable to play. Somewhat on the simple side. Although it's not my favorite Pat Lawlor title it is still a classic. The effects with the wind and the lightning are pretty cool and really draw you into the game! As far as gameplay I find myself getting a little bit bored with this. The Multiball shot is pretty easy. Its cool how the extra ball target is timed and you got to repeatedly hit it to keep advancing it.
6 years ago
Grew up on this pin and love it. The game flows well and I love the call outs. Unique theme that really works. This game has lastability and it looks like the ratings show that. You can plan shots and multi ball takes some work and you can work with it as opposed to just flipping away because you don't have time. Must have for a game room.
6 years ago
Whirlwind is a game that everyone seems to enjoy, both newbies and seasoned players. The spinning discs and fan topper are unforgettable and really add to the action. The layout is similar to other Pat Lawlor games which are always fun. Other than maybe Funhouse it's tough for me to think of a deeper non-DMD title. Couple this with the relatively affordable price (due to high production I assume) and you have some good SS bang for your buck. I'm probably in the minority but I actually prefer Earthshaker to Whirlwind and I can't put my finger on why. I've owned them both and they are both great, but I seem to miss ES more than WW.

Bottom line is that this is another classic from Lawlor that everyone is immediately drawn to. It's a bit bittersweet for me as this was the ultimate in SS games for me until I owned one. Now I think of it as the game that made me finally realize I am (apparently) a DMD guy.
6 years ago
Whirlwind served to remind me of the fun I had playing the original EM Fireball. I am a sucker for gimmick and ball flow randomization, so the spinners in the surface of the playfield help whirlwind earn a higher rating than he rest of the game deserves.

The ramps were challenging to shoot, and I like the way the ball was returned on shoot the ramps. The lighting was iffy on the machines I've played on.

Decent overall game, fun or frustrating - you never know until you plunge. I'd recommend playing this game and I'd put it low on my wishlist for ownership.
6 years ago
This is a game that could really benefit from a ball-save. The initial plunge just has so many ways to immediately drain. The fan topper is probably the best topper idea ever, and the spinning discs add a challenging but not impossible element to the game.
There are 303 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 5 of 13.

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