Dedicated arcades have gone the way of the dinosaur and disco. It’s all about home video game systems with stunning graphics and storylines that make them feel like interactive movies. In the 21st Century, many might think there is no room for one of the earliest arcade games, pinball.
Fountain Square in Indianapolis recently hosted its fifth annual Pinball Classic. The event attracted dozens of competitors, including some from out of state. But this was not simply a group of pinball enthusiasts getting together to celebrate their mutual love for a classic arcade machine. This was a day long tournament with a $50 entry fee and cash prizes up to $800. Participants did not just bang the little silver balls around the machine. They came with various strategies, some learned by watching podcasts about pinball. Yes, such things exist. Your text to link…
Interest in pinball is undergoing a renaissance of sorts, and it’s not the first time. Coin operated pinball machines came into existence in the early 1930s. Following World War II, pinball machines could be found in numerous bars and soda shops across the country. There were exceptions, as major cities like New York and Los Angeles banned the machines, claiming they were akin to gambling. Many of those bans remained in effect until the 1970s. After a decline in pinball interest with the advent of video games, the machines are making a comeback in places like movie theaters.