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Category:Science & Technology, Video Games
Tags:arcade, pennsylvania, electromechanical games, whorehouse, TNT Amusements
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Comment count is 35
Scrimmjob - 2015-02-24
Ha, I know a guy who has one of these( I think it's the same one). It's pretty fun for a few minutes, could have been interesting if this sort of game caught on and evolved over the years the way pinball did.
infinite zest - 2015-02-24
I'd love to see another devoted repair shop around here like TNT. There was a good one (Ricochet) but they went up to Seattle and for the most part the places that work on pins specialize in the bar-side touch games and video lottery, so if a bar's machine gets fucked up they do all the maintenance on site when the doors are open for business. It's not bad if you're a day drinker, because they leave about 5 credits in there, but inevitably there's a new issue that springs up in the next couple of weeks on the same machine. They have the proper tools and knowledge but the atmosphere's not right. Like, you could live next door to an auto mechanic but you probably wouldn't want him or her to fix it in your parking lot.. I dunno.

Scrimmjob - 2015-02-24
You could pore over a pinball all day, and it will still likely start having problems in a few weeks. From my experience the only machines that matter are video gambling, everything else is just an excuse to get your video gambling machines in the door. Unless you have a location with high volume, and an extremely high turn over rate, a new pinball will take years to pay for itself, not even counting the labor that it will inevitably need to keep it running.

infinite zest - 2015-02-24
The two actually go hand in hand here: I see most people score well at video lottery and cash out, buy a drink and put a couple of bucks in one of the pinball machines. Plus, like Pennsylvania there are tournaments held here that attract players from all over the world, but there's nothing like papa.org, and the "leagues" are just gangs who like to get drunk and play pinball and abuse the fuck out of the machines. The machines are played for the rest of the night until closing time, so if people are playing competitively and consistently that should come out to about 0 into each machine in one night, about 25% of the average cost of the average pin (Medieval Madnesses Jersey Jacks and new Sterns being an obvious exception).

fedex - 2015-02-24
I used to be into all that too. Then I discovered Virtual Pinball (open-source pinball sims with full-scale tables and 2nd screen support) and now I'm finally getting around to building a smaller scale version of one of these


fedex - 2015-02-24
oops wrong link


infinite zest - 2015-02-24
But yeah, you're right. For all of those machines (I'd say there's probably 10 if you count all the machines at the bars that hold tournaments) there's the unloved machines at Chuck-E-Cheeses and movie theatres that make up the rest. Hell, I was excited as fuck to hear about a rare Sega Baywatch pin, so I went there and it was completely unplayable. I think they just got it because the bar had sort of a Hawaiian theme going on and it sits in the corner, DMD Sonic just wagging his little glove as if to say "why doesn't anybody love me anymore" as I try to drink my drink as quickly as possible and get the fuck out of that meat market.

infinite zest - 2015-02-24
Whoops our comments must've overlapped. Virtual Pinball isn't bad. I have the Farside Pinball Arcade on my iphone, and it's incredibly accurate (it's free, but you only get to score so high and then you can buy the table if you want) but what I like about pinball is that no two machines are the same, except maybe new ones right off the factory line, when played by robots. Even then, there's little things like nudging (or deathsaving, which I don't condone) that I don't see being properly emulated. It doesn't work in Farside anyway. That being said, I ended up with way too many pins in my home and I've been getting rid of them steadily, because they literally took up my whole kitchen at one point. A nice cabinet like that would be perfect.

Scrimmjob - 2015-02-24
Baywatch pinball is pretty shit even in good working order. You live in a large urban area, so you could be right, but I'll be dipped in shit if any of those games make 0 in a night. If that is in fact true, imagine how much those gambling machines must make in a night, also in such a dense area maybe 0 doesn't amount to much, considering how much rent and all that kind of shit probably is. In comparison, my best pin location would make that in a 3 week collection, on a very good month.

infinite zest - 2015-02-25
It's a total guesstimate and a bit of an overestimate. Tournaments start at 6PM and end at 10 usually at the bars stay open until 2-ish when they turn off the machines and most people stay, so that's a buck a minute for 8 hours. That seems high, because even someone playing for the first time usually lasts longer than a minute, but the places usually open at 7AM at the earliest and 2PM at the latest so I'm taking those into accunt as well.

infinite zest - 2015-02-25
Haha "account." Totally sneaking that into work e-mails. Good to hear that Baywatch was never really that great. Right flipper was stuck and you basically had to let the ball fall hard into it to get it back down just so you could get it stuck again and start the whole process over. I like making fun handicaps like that for myself when I have a personal machine, but not if I'm paying 50 cents. Also, I don't daydrink (or participate in tournaments) but I know many people by initials and not by name, and know they were in there taking down my high score sometime in the day, which, not to toot my own horn, probably wasn't done with just one credit. It took me 5. The struggle continues..

Old_Zircon - 2015-02-25
We don't have video gamboing in RI but there's still a healthy pinball culture around town. Lots of bars have at least one or two, there's a good coffee shop near my place that has a bunch of different clasic 70s and 80s machines that they rotate out every few months (I forget whether they rent them or whether it's a candy machine style arrangement where the guy who owns them pays a fee or percentage, or if he's just friends with the owner), and at least one friend of a friend is in the pinball business. There was even a weird, grey market arcad machine dealer working out of a garage across to ours n for a long time, but they r an out of stock, became a general iunk dealerr/permanent flea market for a few years and then closed up shop.

But then we also still have a big roller rink with pizza nights where you can get your photo taken new with Darth Vader.

Old_Zircon - 2015-02-25
I hope that makes sense, autocorrect is fucked on this tablet.

Scrimmjob - 2015-02-25
Ah, games cost a dollar? That could explain things. if we charge more than 0.50 nobody will play, too many tight fisted Germans around here. Seriously though, from what you guys are saying I live in the wrong part of the country. If they ever change the rules on the video gambling here, which could happen any time, sounds like I'll have to move to one of the coasts, because there is no way they could afford to pay me. Or idk, brush the dust off my electronics degree and get a real job.

infinite zest - 2015-02-25
They're still .50, except for the new Sterns which are .75 and The Wizard of Oz, which is a dollar. The old EMs are still just .25. I was referring to people who would be playing at least a 2-player game, which is a buck. For me anyway, if the machine has a bill deposit I'll just put a buck in anyway, since most people don't have change machines and I don't want to be a bother. But the place I normally go to charges a buck fifty for the beer I like to drink so I've got a game right there..

If I had my druthers (and money, thanks liberal arts degree) I'd start up a place like TNT, but I had a falling out with the main pinball gang in a real bad way. :)

Old_Zircon - 2015-02-25
I'm pretty sure a lot of pinball machines in Boston are pushing these days but I'm not actually a pinball guy so I don't really know.

I AM, however, a fan of old gadgetry and regional accents.

FABIO - 2015-02-25
Every place I go to now is 75 cents to a buck fucking fifty. There are some places with cool collections but they're the tournament spots and those places charge through the roof with said buck fucking fifty.

I'd say arcades dying only had half to do with consoles catching up. The other half is purely the fault of the fucking owners who never studied a price consumption curve in their life. Raise the price from 50 cents to a dollar and make twice as much money!!!! Uh, no. Your machines are always empty. Nobody is going to play the Terminator Salvation or Aliens gun games for more than a credit when they see it's a buck a minute.

It's a shame because I'll never get to see someone "beating" my favorite games: Mars Attacks and Medieval Madness.

Sidenote: just played through Metal Slug 3 for the first time on Steam with a buddy. By far the most bullshit game of the series. Stats said we went through 120 continues to beat the game.

yogarfield - 2015-02-24
infinite zest - 2015-02-24
apparently, a lot. :)

yogarfield - 2015-02-25
Holy shit!

infinite zest - 2015-02-24
ARg. I was flinching at 7:00 or so. I shocked the fuck out of myself messing around with one of the relays when one of my EMs was still on. Then again I'm amateur enthusiast compared to this guy. Holy shit, a Haunted House! I've only seen one ever and the lower playfield's always fucked up every time I go to play.
infinite zest - 2015-02-24
Although Big Bang isn't the rarest machine, I don't think. Didn't they only make like 10 Krulls and stop production?

kamlem - 2015-02-24
I want to spend my small change at a Pennsylvania whorehouse.
Lef - 2015-02-24
whorehouse would be a great tag.

fedex - 2015-02-24
you mean it isn't?

Old_Zircon - 2015-02-26
It is now.

spikestoyiu - 2015-02-25
I love TNT. It's only a couple hundred bucks to rent the place out for a few hours on a weekend. I just wish they would allow alcohol.
spikestoyiu - 2015-02-25
I live like ten minutes away from this place, in case anyone wants to come and fight me.

infinite zest - 2015-02-25
Yeah really. The guy seems like he'd be totally open to alcohol. I mean, you can probably still pocket a flask, but it's not the same. There's a place in Portland called Ground Kontrol which, years and years ago, was pretty much a showroom. All they really had to do was get a liquor license and make a few adjustments (it's still all-ages but after 5PM becomes 21+) and serve nothing but PBR to start bringing in people and make so much that they had to buy a larger space. Now it's full-service and bands like The Minibosses play there, as well as other chiptune artists, etc. It's quite literally a nightclub for the rest of us on Saturday nights.

spikestoyiu - 2015-02-25
When you rent out the place -- or at least the times I've rented out the place -- your chaperon is like an older woman. Almost like a grandmotherly-type. So even if it were possible to sneak some alcohol in, I'd probably just feel bad. I wish they would just allow some beers or something. I can kind of understand why they don't as it also acts as their showroom and they're trying to sell the games (though most of them have been there for a while and likely aren't going anywhere).

infinite zest - 2015-02-25
That's a bummer. They have a good list of pins. But 2K for a Future Spa? I got mine for 0, and I've put maybe into it. Most of my pins were rescue ones from places I lived, and people treated them like shit once they were in their homes, left and they were up for grabs as long as you could get it out of there. They're kinda like owning a pool table. It might be fun but you're not gonna throw a party every night and eventually they just become beer coasters because the party's not always at your house the way it is at more of a local watering hole. That's why I sold mine away to bars when I had to move into a smaller place and couldn't keep all six: I gave one of mine to a friend's band and had to take off the legs and such to fit it in their truck and broke my back carrying it up and down flights of stairs, and I was over there the other night and the legs are still off. I don't think anybody's ever even turned it on. :(

Old_Zircon - 2015-02-26
The guy seems like he'd be totally open to alcohol, but not to dealing with the aftermath.

IZ you would have liked Good Time Emporium in Somerville before it closed. Games from DDR (new-ish at the time I was going there) all the way back to mechanical shooting gallery stuff, plus at least 4 indoor bars spread around the building so you never had to walk far. And a half dozen duckpin lanes.

The last time I went it was empty and the group I was with weren't very fun but with the right people it was great.


spikestoyiu - 2015-02-25
Future Spa looks pretty boss. They didn't have that in the showroom when I was there a few months ago.

I grew up in a house with the Space Invaders pinball machine. The coolest part about it was watching Spaceballs a few years later and seeing it in Lone Starr's ship.
spikestoyiu - 2015-02-25
That was meant as a reply to above!!!!! Shit!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

infinite zest - 2015-02-25
Yeah, future spa's one of my favorites. It's very floaty and a good one to have around the house if you like to practice. Mine had a broken tilt censor though, for extra fun, or guarantee of not getting your security deposit back

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