25 Comments
Posted by patrickklepek
Staff
Edited by Vigorousjammer

Wait... pinball used to be ILLEGAL? o_O

Edited by Brashnir

@vigorousjammer said:

Wait... pinball used to be ILLEGAL? o_O

Haven't listened to the podcast, so I don't know if it is discussed within, (it probably is) but pinball started off primarily as gambling machines before the more familiar high-score chasing tables that we think of today.

edit - have listened and yes, it is indeed covered.

Posted by ryguy777

Great news!

I got really into pinball after watching the Pinball Arcade QL a few years ago. Now I have three machines at my house. Thanks Jeff!

Posted by PappaFost

Pinball is not a crime!!!!!

Edited by AMyggen

@brashnir said:

@vigorousjammer said:

Wait... pinball used to be ILLEGAL? o_O

Haven't listened to the podcast, so I don't know if it is discussed within, (it probably is) but pinball started off primarily as gambling machines before the more familiar high-score chasing tables that we think of today.

The history of pinball in the US is pretty fascinating all around, really.

Posted by Mr_Creeper

I can't wait to be an overnight pinball champion, too!

Posted by HammondofTexas

So pinball used to be a game of chance instead of skill? Crazy stuff!

Posted by Kiruvi

Can we get a Medieval Madness Quick Look?

Posted by TheVGamer

Patrick Klepek, bringing us hot scoops from the dangerous wasteland that is the internet!

Edited by raikoh05

does this mean pinball used to work like pachinko?

Posted by bobafettjm

Pinball news on Giant Bomb!

Posted by CornBREDX

I believe this is one of many hold over laws from the years surrounding prohibition. It's actually in several outlier areas. It's always been strange.

It's nice that Oakland is going modern, though. I guess.

Posted by SomeJerk

I think this is being celebrated by Sony Computer Entertainment America at the moment, because a trio of tables for The Pinball Arcade are currently FREE!

Edited by Branthog

Wait... pinball used to be ILLEGAL? o_O

Pinball has been illegal in a lot of jurisdictions since a long way back. Pinball tables weren't always the modern machines that relied on user input, skill, and a bit of chance. They were more link pachinko machines or plinko from the Price is Right; entirely luck and chance. You dropped a ball and the rest was up to gravity and chance. Gambling. This didn't help pinball's reputation later in the century, when it still held onto the tarnish of being something shady people gathered around.

Pinball was banned, for example, in New York for almost half a century. It actually required testimony from an industry insider before the court of New York in the late 1970s to motivate the change, when he testified that pinball had evolved to a game of skill rather than chance.

Here's one example of such early pinball machines, known as a "Bingo" style pinball. As you can see, the only involvement the player has is to pull and release the plunger. Once the ball is out, it's all luck.

Posted by bboymaestro

Well now my ideas for a bootleg pinball speak easy went to the shitter. Oh well, let there be bumpers!

Posted by Branthog

What's kind of weird is that they're making such a big deal about this law being repealed looong after the final pinball manufacturer shuttered its pinball works.

Posted by thebunnyhunter

Now that its legal has it lost all its appeal, are the shady back alley deals at 3am for pinball going away now? Also what a crazy thing to make against the law.

Edited by K4g4m1

That was super-cool coverage. Would love to see (hear?) more of these short telephone interviews about interesting news.

Posted by BangbackMountain

@branthog said:

What's kind of weird is that they're making such a big deal about this law being repealed looong after the final pinball manufacturer shuttered its pinball works.

Huh? Real pinball machines are definitely still being manufactured. Look up Stern Pinball and Jersey Jack Pinball..

Posted by Slaneesh

@brashnir said:

@vigorousjammer said:

Wait... pinball used to be ILLEGAL? o_O

Haven't listened to the podcast, so I don't know if it is discussed within, (it probably is) but pinball started off primarily as gambling machines before the more familiar high-score chasing tables that we think of today.

edit - have listened and yes, it is indeed covered.

Thank you for this clarification

Posted by ThePoark

Drink any time either the interviewer or interviewee says "y'know". (Warning: you will die.)

Edited by frostmute

@branthog: Pinball machines are still very much being manufactured...

- Stern: http://www.sternpinball.com

- Jersey Jack: http://www.jerseyjackpinball.com

- Retro Pinball: http://www.retropinball.net

- John Popadiuk: http://www.pinballinventor.org

- Skit-B: http://www.skitbpinball.com

- Quetzal Pinball: http://www.quetzalpinball.com

- Marsaplay: http://www.marsaplay.com

- Whizbang: http://whizbangpinball.blogspot.com/

- Tilt Warning Customs: http://www.tiltwarning.com

- Heighway Pinball: http://www.heighwaypinball.com/

- Multimorphic http://www.multimorphic.com/

- Dutch Pinball http://www.dutchpinball.com/

To name a few.

Posted by ptys

Variety hour music.