Robin surprised me by inviting some people over for my birthday this year. I was ready to have a quiet birthday with my family when more guests kept showing up. Was fun to play some pinball! Represented by the guests were several parts of my life, from working in a video game store 25 years ago, my DJ years, and a new bunch of pinball friends.
Robin created a custom cake featuring a photo of my Tron machine!
I hosted a “Fun Night” for the Toronto Pinball League. Regular league night was cancelled because of the big Pinburgh competition, so I had 12 people over. It was a test of the basement to see how many would comfortably fit. The 12 fit really good, I could probably push that to 16 (4 groups of 4 playing on 4 machines) in the future.
Regular ToPL nights have been attracting 25-35 people, way more than I could handle, so this Fun Night worked really well.
Well, I’m definitely maxed out at 5 pins in my current basement. After some fast and furious acquisitions, I’m hoping I can be content and actually play them for a while. I’ve spent time on all of them, but some of the newer ones, like Simpsons, I’ve barely scratched the surface on.
I realized that the 5 pins are all by 5 different great designers, so it is a nice cross-selection:
Tron – John Borg
Theatre of Magic – John Popadiuk (Jpop)
Avengers – George Gomez
The Simpsons Pinball Party – Joe Balcer / Keith Johnson
AC/DC – Steve Ritchie / Lyman Sheats
Notable omissions would be: Dennis Nordman and Pat Lawlor…. hopefully I can add one of their machines in the future.
Picked up my AC/DC Premium today. This hobby is quite the sickness, my 3rd new-in-box in 6 months. I decided on AC/DC because 1) it is a proven Top 10 pin and 2) I want to focus on newer machines, modern features like advanced lighting and rules. With AC/DC and my current lineup that kind of makes me “complete” at the moment until later this year when some new titles get released, like Star Trek.
I had to remove the head to get it down my stairs. My house is old and the basement was never made for fun stuff like pins!
Then I shuffled my pin order around to make space. I ran out of energy so I’ll finish reassembling ac/dc tomorrow.
A few months ago I finally came out to my first Toronto Pinball League (ToPL). I had resisted up until then because the distances to the various host’s homes seemed like a big drive. For a “Toronto” league, sometimes they are more than an hour outside the city, and none are currently IN Toronto at the moment.
I haven’t missed a Monday since. It’s been a lot of fun. To come out and spend a few hours with a bunch of other pinheads is a good time. Not to mention, the collections of some of the hosts’ homes are incredible, and I’d probably never get to see them otherwise.
It is a competitive league, so each night groups of 4 players are put together, and play on 4 machines. Scores are tracked and points assigned to your placement. This is done over a 15 week season. There is a end-of-season playoffs, but I’ve yet to be part of that.
The social aspect of pinball has been an unexpected plus. I’ve met lots of good peeps.
And just like that another pin was added. The Simpsons’ Pinball Party from Stern.
I’ve been interested in this title pretty much since I first got back into pinball. I had be looking for the last several months. One finally came available. It is a HUO in mint condition. A previous owner added LEDs to it, which I quite like.
TSPP is considered a Top 10 game, with one of the deepest rule sets in pinball.
After we made more room in the basement for 4 pins, I realized that 2 I have pre-ordered (Predator and Ben Heck’s Zombie Adventureland) I will probably not see in 2013. So I decided to get something else!
Thinking about it, I decided to get the new Avengers from Stern. There was 1 Hulk limited edition left so I pulled the trigger on it. Light shows are really important to me, and the latest modern pins with LEDs deliver that, so it made the decision to go newer than older easier.
Me taking possession of it at Playdium/Starburst. My second New-In-Box in 5 months!
Video of Hulk added to the lineup, the arcade is taking shape.
My second pin arrived. Theatre of Magic, considered one of the top 10 pins of all time. Designed by John Papaduik in 1995. Produced by Bally. The game features incredible art and flowing design. It also features several magic “tricks” using magnets to pull the ball around. The main toy is a magic trunk that you shoot for.
My first pin is in the house (barely). An Amazing Tron Legacy pinball from Stern. Modded out with el wire, led backbox, light cycles, arcade mod, led flipper buttons, lighted recognizer mod…. it is beautiful!
A private pinball arcade located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.