I missed one machine from the bicentennial - Liberty Bell is almost a carbon copy of Williams' own Grand Prix.
Earning a special requires advancing the starts four times, then dropping all four drop targets. Tough!
The spinners have rockets screened on them, to represent "the rockets' red glare".
I'm not big on after-factory modifications with few exceptions, but these are very interesting. Also, I saw LEDs used in a way behind a very faded backglass that appeared to work well!
Bingo Chime Units:
Chris Howard's "Golden Gates" - truly masterful!
Gottlieb invented a new mechanism for launching balls in 1950 - the turret shooter. This launcher allowed designers more space on the playfield to add targets, and gave players the ability to choose their entry angle onto the playfield.
A pretty nifty idea that was used by other manufacturers over the years.
Derby Day is a neat take on a flipper game with a horse race theme. The upper playfield contains a single gobble hole and four passive bumpers that can advance one of four horses, whose position is displayed via inserts in the center of the playfield. The bottom portion contains a single pop bumper, which can pop the ball back up to the flippers (in the center portion).
You main goal is to advance all four horses to the Win position, then roll over the center button to earn a replay. You can earn many multiple replays by lining up your horses in Show, Place or Win, then shooting into the gobble hole.
Galaxy and other Sega games used several interesting mechanisms:
Slings that work via pressure from the ball hitting a large piece of plastic instead of ganged switches, and pop bumpers that are a single piece of plastic rather than using a rod and ring assembly. On top of that, Galaxy has an under-playfield magnet that will move the ball from left to right, similar to the Mist ball on Bram Stoker's Dracula.
Freedom is a fun game from the bicentennial. Bally's take has some more interesting artwork and a fun ruleset.
This was one of the changeover games that was made in both EM and solid state versions.
The early production had 1776 and 1976 on the backglass, but operators asked that this be removed as it would make the machine 'dated'. Kind of funny for a game themed on the bicentennial.
Spirit of '76 came in three flavors:
The four player was Spirit of '76.
The two player version was Pioneer
and the add-a-ball version was New York.
Spirit of '76 is all about increasing your bonus, but the player can double the bonus on each ball, earn extra balls or replays by completing the A-E sequence, hitting all 8 drop targets and landing in the kickout hole.
Chicago Coin Rapid Transit Restoration:
Ryan Claytor's Latest Pinball Artwork:
Pinball at the Zoo:
Stern pinball shirt:
My interviewee tonight is Chris Dade, a man who has done quite a bit for the bingo hobby!
He has scanned, touched up, and reproduced many of the Bally bingo backglasses, as well as several of the bingo playfields.
He also started the Bally Bingos in Britain forums, located at http://ballybingo.fff.yuku.com/ - this is an excellent resource, with many clever people providing help and information. It also gives a neat window into the UK bingo scene for us folks in the US!
Take a moment and look over Chris' collection at http://www.ballybingo.co.uk/index1.html - click 'My Machines' to see his beauties.
He also has some great stories and other information on his website. He notes that whereas in the US, 20 replays would be a dollar, to earn a pound, you needed 80 replays! That's quite a jump!
Thank you to Chris for his patience and time answering my questions.
My 1947 Mystery started blowing fuses - it was time to pull it out from the wall and troubleshoot. Here's the story of how I corrected the issues and what went wrong.
Nags is a unique game from Williams with two interesting features -
It is one of a small handful of horse racing themed games that Williams made with a horse racing unit with six horses that can move independently along a track, until one finishes.
This game is also the only game from the 'big three' manufacturers that had a rotating platter of six pop bumpers. Each bumper hit would advance one horse toward the prize.
25 cents on 'Stinky' for me!