Category: pinball

Bally’s Star Trek pinball machine from 1978. 

The story of Bally’s is an interesting one. Nerds might know them best as a pinball machine manufacturer, but they were the largest producers of slot machines and gambling amusements, and even owned casinos. One of the most extraordinary parts of their empire were the Bally’s Total Fitness Centers, which was one of the earliest and largest chains of gymnasiums. To summarize: Bally’s was a pinball machine company that started producing slot machines and gambling, and used that money to get the largest chain of gyms until the 2000s. 



Beautiful 1978 pinball machine, “Lost World.” 

The largest pinball machine in the world: Atari’s Hercules (1979). 



One of the most beautiful pinball machines ever made: Paragon (1979).

Great game but not for beginners, as you need to relearn to shoot with two right paddles. Notice on the side of the field there’s a walled off bit called “the monster’s lair.”

One of my favorite pinball machines: Bally’s “Attack from Mars!” (1995)

It had nothing to do with Independence Day or Tim Burton’s Mars Attacks! which came out around the same time. Sometimes ideas are just…in the air, and express themselves in different ways.

Creature from the Black Lagoon 3-D Pinball, which had a 3-D playfield. 

Weirdly, it was less about the gill man and more about fifties nostalgia in general.