Arcade1Up expands into the realm of digital pinball. This 3/4-scale version of the classic Attack from Mars plays just like the original, complete with haptic touch flippers and a tilt sensor. It has a 23.8″ LCD playfield, working scoreboard, and light-up backglass. It plays 10 other Bally/Williams classics by Zen Studios.
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Tyler Bower loves to make things from K’NEX construction toys. His masterpiece: a fully-functional, life-size pinball machine. It features ramps, automatic scoring, a digital scoreboard, and mechanical features like trap doors, chain lifts, and multiball. The whole thing shakes a bit, so it’s a good thing there’s no tilt sensor.
Do you or someone you know love pinball? The guys at gcpinball make these nifty keychains that look just like a real flipper from a pinball machine. Since they’re individually 3D printed they can be personalized with up to three initials, and come in a dozen color combinations.
We’ve seen how pinball machines are made. Now, thanks to Gavin of The Slow Mo Guys, we can see exactly how they work as they kick steel balls around. He spent some quality time with Jersey Jack’s tricked-out Willy Wonka pinball machine to observe how its electro-mechanical playfield components work.
Arcade1Up specializes in making compact versions of classic arcade machines. Now they’re getting into the digital pinball game, with a 3/4-scale Marvel pinball machine that runs Zen Studios games. It has a 24″ recessed display, a nudge and tilt sensor, haptic flipper feedback, a plunger, and a second screen scoreboard.
ETA Prime shows off an upcoming tabletop gaming system that plays digital pinball games like Zen Pinball and Pinball Arcade. It runs on Android, and has a 24″ full HD display that’s angled properly for gameplay. The machine will come in two versions with different levels of processing capability, and can also connect to a PC. Drops 3/2020.
Take a trip to 1980s Hawkins, Indiana and battle the Demogorgon with Stern Pinball’s Stranger Things machines. You’ll want to opt for the pricey Premium or Limited Edition, which have a projection video screen and “telekinesis” magnetic ball lock. We’re kind of bummed they didn’t do a lower-level playfield for The Upside Down.
VPCabs has been making truly impressive virtual pinball cabinets for a while now. These models let you play modern and classic games in a compact space. The Vertigo is a 76.5″ tall machine that stands like an arcade cabinet, while The Vortex is a 39″ tall tabletop model. Both can play classic arcade games too.
We’ve seen a number of tiny arcade machines, but what we really want someone to produce is a teensy digital pinball machine like this one from maker Matt “Circuitbeard” Brailsford. It uses a tiny Windows 10 computer called the LattePanda and runs Visual Pinball on its dual LCD screens. Build details here.
This amazing bit of kit was built by Yuriy Shishkov of the Fender Custom Shop for the 2018 NAMM show. The combo includes a light-up Telecaster electric guitar and an accompanying amplifier, both built using parts from an 1975 Bally Wizard pinball machine.
Jordan Coelho and Josselin Bey assembled a team of 14 Montréal artists to contribute to this collaborative animation, in which each person was asked to imagine a pinball machine using their aesthetic. The result is visual and auditory magic. Also, we really want a PaRappa the Rapper machine now.
Recently, The Washington Post released a fun animation that tracked the flying that Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk did in 2018. After seeing the bouncing back and forth across the globe, Jonathan Malmqvist decided to add appropriate pinball machine sound effects.
They may have lost the war to video games, but we still love the tactile feel and gameplay of pinball machines. In this clip from Vox, a pinball expert gives us insight into some of the tricks of the trade that make it much more of a game of skill than you might think.
33 Games creates teensy (non-functional) replicas of classic arcade cabinets and pinball machines. They’re extremely detailed, down to the mini joysticks and on-screen graphics. They’re built to 1/12th scale, and measure about 6″ tall. They even make a change machine.
The A.V. Club visited the factory of legendary pinball maker Stern Pinball. The video shows a few of the more than 3,500 parts that make up a pinball machine, before walking us through the assembly process. They’ve moved to a bigger factory since we visited.
Get Hands Dirty made a beautiful two-player pinball machine mainly by carving wood and acrylic parts using the X-Carve CNC machine. It doesn’t have electronic parts, but the execution is still top-notch. Complete design files and parts list available on Inventables.
Stern’s new machines feature imagery and sounds from the original trilogy. They have color-changing LEDS, and models of the Millennium Falcon and a TIE Fighter. Upgraded Limited and Premium models get two LCD screens, an exploding Death Star, and more.
This kit lets you build a crude pinball machine using just about anything as obstacles. It includes mechanical flippers, as well as copper contacts which can be used to register scoring when connected to an off-the-shelf microcontroller, using a free smartphone app.
VPCabs‘ amazing new home arcade machine uses a 32″ vertical display to play both virtual pinball and arcade games. A 15.6″ secondary display displays game marquees and doubles as a pinball scoreboard. Includes all current Pinball FX2 tables, and 60 arcade classics.
Our friends at Stern Pinball are pinball junkies a chance to win a brand new pinball machine. Just upload a picture of yourself and why you think you’re the ultimate pinball fan to social media with the hashtag #UltimateSternPinballFan to enter. (Ends 11/1/2016)
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