In many arcades, the classic real pinball machine is becoming more and more a rarefied sight. Few companies produce the machines anymore and few places have many of them for players to use.
The cost of upkeep on the hardware, developing titles and the long-term wear-n-tear have made them more collector’s items or conversation pieces in most game rooms; when they once used to line the walls.
But, for a nearly 100-year-old form of entertainment, the pinball machine is still around – it’s just going virtual.
Kick the Ball Around
If you’re an old school gamer that has missed the itch of kick flippers, bumpers and ringing bells, a pinball purist, or just someone looking for more than a ‘video game’ version of a pinball game, FarSight Studios knows you well. That’s why they made Pinball Arcade.
Their virtual pinball games are available on many platforms (Android, iOS, XBox, PS3, Vita, Mac and even the Kindle). Download a favorite or their entire selection.
These are not just any pinball games.
They are as true to life versions as you can get of REAL pinball classics from Gottlieb, Williams, Bally and Stern.
Legendary titles like Arabian Knights, Firepower, Funhouse and later generation hits like Star Trek: The Next Generation and Elvira and the Party Monsters are just part of their roster. In fact, I had flashbacks over one of the 80’s titles – Pin-Bot (see the version above).
You can purchase single classics for download to add your own virtual arcade or buy a complete season of designs all at once. And new tables are added all the time.
To up the ante, FarSight even offers you the chance to compete with everyone in the world. Are you truly a Pinball Wizard? High Scores are recorded across ALL platforms and updated daily on their website.
After creating some 20+ tables, you know these guys know what they’re doing and they are deadly serious about creating the best experience possible. They actually disassemble a working machine and recreate the parts digitally as well as simulate the movement and physics of the steel ball.
And I can say confidently that Pinball Arcade is a blast. I downloaded it to my iPhone and play-tested several tables in demo mode. They have set the bar very high.
War Against the Machines
And now the newest title FarSight has set their sights on is a 90’s pinball legend – Terminator 2: Judgment Day.
This awesome game was one of the earliest to incorporate digital LED animated graphics, as well as all the bells and whistles one expects from the film franchise – including the voice of Ah-nold himself.
The game was a huge hit after the movie came out and there is likely someone playing a round of Terminator 2 pinball somewhere in the world right now.
But, for FarSight to be able to create and add the title to their roster involves a hefty licensing fee. So, the company went to Kickstarter to help raise the $60,000 they needed to buy the rights to the game itself.
Their target goal does not include actual development of the new download, just the cost for the rights. Kickstarter support starts for as little as $1, but for only $10.00 you can own a copy of the T2 pinball game for your favorite platform and have your name in the credits.
This will be their 4th Kickstarter outing. All of the previous projects were fully funded and new tables, like Twilight Zone were added to the roster.
The Future is What We Make It
Like the end of T2, time moves on with no one knowing exactly how things will turn out. As of this article, FarSight has 9 more days to go on this project and they’ve reached $42,000 of their $60,000 goal.
If you loved the original, then you might get behind this meticulous recreation. Or, just check out FarSights other amazing arcade offerings.