Video game versions of pinball games, for whatever reason, are hard to get right. A lot of times they just ‘feel’ wrong. Pinbot feels adequately like a real pinball machine, and for the most part feels like the real machine that it’s based on.

I’m not really sure what the story behind Pinbot is supposed to be. There’s this giant robot grafted to the middle of the table that has five buttons on his chest. You hit each of the buttons five times and the robot’s visor opens. You shoot the balls into his eyes to lock them in place. Once you get the balls into his eyes he can ’see you’ (the game actually speaks the words “Now I see you!”) While in multiball, you get the chance to advance to harder tables.

And this is where the game starts to depart from and semblance of reality. When you go to a harder table, the current table fades away and is replaced by a harder table (it’s a different color, it must be harder), and enemies begin to appear. Enemies that chew up your ball and spit the pieces down the drain. Enemies that shoot missiles at your flippers (one hit makes the flipper turn grey and slow, and a second hit will destroy it). Enemies that grab the ball and carry it away, off the table.

But that’s not all.

The game is set in space, and you make multiple ‘trips’ around the solar system, make enough trips and your balls change shape, from spheres to triangles to cubes. And each one moves slightly faster and bounces slightly weirder.

I’ve never actually managed to play the pinball game that this game is based on, but given the the physical limitations of the machine, I’m not sure that I want to.

One Response to “Pinbot”

  1. [...] kind of have a thing for pinball games, especially ones that I can find on the cheap. And, wouldn’t you know it, I found a [...]

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