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Review: Pinballistik

Posted by on November 1st, 2011 | 0 Comments | Tags:

Pinballistik is spelled with a K. It is a pinball game that costs $3.99. For that it comes loaded with one table, the Wild-West themed “Circle the Wagons. For another $2.99 a piece, you can buy two DLC tables currently available, the spacely “Sector X”, and the Richy-Rich like “Made of Money.” Like other pinball games, you use L1 and R1 to control the paddles, X to fire a new ball, and the d-pad to apply some much needed Tilt. As I do with most pinball games, the second I discovered the tilt controls I instantly used the tilt too much and the board locked up penalizing me. At the top of the screen is a digitized scoreboard that shows a bunch of on screen mono-colored animations just like real pinball machines. They pulled this effect off nicely.

Ball movement feels pretty realistic except that it sometimes catches on fire or electricity. Made of Money was my favorite table, with a secret underground garage micro table hidden under the main board. It sticks well to its theme and has some sound effects that remind me of a Vegas Casino. Circle the Wagons was my second favorite table, with a neat poker minigame accessible in the top right corner of the table. Sector X is your generic space table that I didn’t care for very much. Each table also has its main table graphics that come off like a realistic pinball table. They also have some added effects, like water coming out of a water tower on the western table, and UFOs that float around the space table. I didn’t care for these as the styles clash and you end up blending a realistic table experience with a cartoony one. I liked the game the most when it stuck closer to realism rather than weird added on effects.

Pinballistik has an interesting take on multiplayer. Instead of the same old score chasing, Pinballistik clone’s and connects two tables together for you and a buddy to go head to head. What results is a chaotic 2-player pinball that I’ve never seen before. Dubbed “Battle Mode” you can play to a certain time limit or a certain score. What makes things interesting is that since the tables are connected, your ball will wander into your opponents table and vice versa. The troll in me immediately let my opponents ball fall through the flippers, and surprisingly I was docked 5% of my total score. This means at some points you’re worried about both your ball and especially your opponents so as to avoid penalty. On the Made of Money table, the boards are different on both sides, so in order to keep things fair, you will periodically switch sides. With so much action going down on-screen, it isn’t easy to catch the minor visual cue alerting you to an upcoming change.

There aren’t a whole lot of people on the leaderboards yet, but they offer a robust listing of scores with different filters. If you have the itch for some classic pinball action, this one is a no-brainer.  It’s faithful to the arcade experience and costs about as much as it does for a couple plays at your local pub.

A copy of this game was provided by the publisher for review purposes. For more info on our review policy click here. This review is for the PlayStation 3 version of the game.

  • Switching Sides in Battle Mode is Disorienting
  • Animation Styles Clash