17 July, 2017

Timeshock is alive (sort of)

No, we are not talking about Barnstorm's Timeshock, which by now, I am convinced, is dead and buried. I am talking about the real pinball machine based on Timeshock which was being developed by a company called Silver Castle. I have written about the Silver Castle Timeshock here and here.

Having had no news for over a year I was thinking that this project had gone the way of the dodo like the ProPinball revival project  I was wrong. My friend Marco chimed in to let me know that the project is advancing. The team behind the project has started building the first prototype. Here's a view of the playfield.

I must say that I like a lot the graphics with their cartoonish look. You can catch a short fly-over of the table at YouTube.

If you wait till the end of the video the next video YouTube is proposing is the announcement of the ProPinball Kickstarter by Adrian Barritt. What a waste, my God!

08 July, 2017

FarSight is saving my bacon

Let’s face it: pinball simulations have never been particularly popular. They have always been confined to a niche gaming activity and the arrival of iPhones/iPads did not improve the situation in any appreciable way. Things got rather worse in fact, since the milieu was polluted by a slew of crappy games. Recently there is a notable downturn as the few remaining pinball developers have slowed-down their production. Only FarSight keeps cranking out new pinballs with clockwork regularity. For a pinball blogger like myself this is priceless.

So, this month’s new pinball is here. Wipe Out

is a ski-themed table. A rather easy table but unfortunately a not very interesting one. The slalom track is definitely an original feature (but on the other hand I was unable to figure out how to guide the ball in an efficient way, in particular in a multiball situation). A thing that i did like is the fact that the ball does not drain too easily. Choosing the proper colour for the ball is always a challenge in Pinball Arcade. This time I opted for the white ball, a choice appropriate for a snow-themed table.

01 June, 2017

Paragon is here

Season 7 of Pinball Arcade starts with a bang. The first table of the series is an oldie (I adore them) and a beauty. I wrote in my previous post that I was looking forward to this table. In fact I was captivated by its backglass and the artwork of Paul Faris. And now Paragon is here!

I did not have the time to test it thoroughly but I can assure you that this table is hard. Usually I manage to get to the lowest high score at my first try (barring accident). For Paragon it took me several tries. And I have the feeling that It will necessitate an effort akin to that for Eight Ball before I register a real progress.

There are so many things that I do like in this game. First the fact that it is an oldie and thus, while having a relatively simple layout, it manages to provide a challenging gameplay. I did really like the original touches like the isolated bumper guarding the outlane gap or the inline drop targets. Managing the four flippers effectively is a major challenge, all the more so since the two lower right ones have a draining gap between them.

As always with FarSight pinballs I had to find the most visible ball. The fact that the playfield is high in colours does not help either. After having tried the black and the white balls I finally opted for the blue one. It is probably the best compromise.

I any case, Paragon is a great pinball and you should absolutely give it a try.