Sunday, 14 December 2014

Newport Pinball Party

Kevlar Xmas pinball meet & mini competition
Saturday 13th December 2014
At Newport, South Wales

Kev messaged me via the Pinball Info online community within a few minutes of me being a member, he kindly invited me to his house to play his collection of 10 pinball machines. Of course I took him up on this offer and made my way to Newport for an afternoon of pinball.

During this first visit Kev kindly showed me inside a few of the pinball machines, with a quick tour of what all the parts are and briefly how they work. It's really helpful seeing it up close and personal as I can look at pictures online till my eyes turn square but there's nothing like getting to see the real thing. Something else you can't do with a machine in public!

Comparing driver boards of the Getaway (1992) and Spiderman (2007) -
These boards, usually behind the backglass are used to control features (switches, coils, LEDs, etc)
After this Kev mentioned a small get together he was having on the 13th and invited me along - again of course I accepted.


So (to get this bit of bad news out of the way) at least I had a bit of practice on his machines I hear you say... but no! I still managed to come last place...

See video above posted on Kev's YouTube of a tour before the party kicked off. His collection of machines is great! Revenge from Mars, Spiderman, The Simpsons Pinball Party, Ripleys, The Shadow, Getaway, Black Knight 2000, Black Rose, Medusa, Bride of Pinbot (on loan). You can see more about all the pinball machines I have played in this post.


Out of these excellent machines one of the games I enjoyed playing most was the 1981 Medusa. It seems strange as so many other great machines but there's just something about it in it's simplicity of game play and hypnotic sounds that drew me in. The gameplay, although simpler, is quite hard to keep the ball in play so I kept going back for more games. Check the gameplay video.

The Shadow - probably my second favorite of the machines

Great to see so many games in one place, although in his main living space, they can be shut out so don't intrude too much... unless you have them all switched on then it is basically turning the house into an arcade. 


Bride of Pinbot

The night itself was a fairly relaxed version of the pinball competition I was at. A lot less people and very little pressure on the actual competition... this was all about getting folk together and playing for fun.

The Simpsons Pinball Party

Pinball 2000! Revenge from Mars - note the reflection of a computer screen on the glass - this is used to 'project' images onto the playfield during gameplay.

One thing I now note from what people have said is that generally if you are interested in owning pinball machines - you can't just own one - it becomes an addiction and you want to buy more. The way the pinball owners say this is that there is no choice but to buy more but I suspect that what the case is is that you want to have different types of games, as no one game is perfect or some may not sit on their own, only as a collection. I have only seen a few machines on their own and it has to be said it doesn't look very appealing to play, when there is a large line of pinball machine it so inviting and exciting, you just want to jump on and play.



What's this all about?
This post is from my journal on MA Multi-Disciplinary Printmaking.
I am currently proposing a project based around arcade games, specifically Pinball (see list of posts about Pinball).