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Pedretti Gaming FunHouse Remake Prototypes Are at NW Show; Stern Iron Maiden In Stock; The Strange History of Capcom Pinball

Updated: Jun 8

It's funny, the website that I use for my real job has random inspirational quotes that that the programmer slipped in there that pop up at the bottom of pages. Normally I just ignore them, but the one that popped up this morning seemed oddly appropriate given recent events.


"There is only one way to avoid criticism: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing. –Aristotle"


Happy Friday everyone! We've almost made it to the end of the week. I have a couple of news items for everyone.


Let's kick things off with the Northwest Pinball and Arcade Show, which I wrote about here yesterday. This morning the show announced on its Facebook page that Pedretti Gaming's brand new FunHouse Remake pinball machines will be on the floor for the public to play. Kudos to the distributor Pinball Traders for bringing them. That's a cool booth. Where'd they get that giant monkey?!


The organizers of the event, which takes place this weekend at the Greater Tacoma Convention Center in Tacoma, Washington, also shared a bunch of cool games being set up on the floor for the event late yesterday. As you probably know by now, I love pictures of anything pinball and arcade, so I'm going to share a bunch of those pics at the bottom of this article.




 

Anyone who has been longing for a Stern Pinball Iron Maiden is in luck, Stern is scheduled to run another batch of them in the near future and according to the awesome distributor Cointaker, they're available in box right now and ready to ship.


Stern has been running a couple of older titles at its factory, such as Iron Maiden and Black Knight lately. I'm still keeping an eye out for another run of Aerosmith with Insider Connected installed after I saw those boxes of decals for it on the factory floor lol.


In today's "Factory Friday" Stern showed more John Wick Premiums on the line.



 

You know that "X Years Ago Today" feature on Facebook? I've been using it on the Knapp Arcade Facebook page lately. That page started way before this website did. I've been able to dig up some interesting stuff that I barely remember even writing lol. Here's a post that I wrote on the fascinating history of Capcom Pinball six years ago today.


Porn and Punching Bags...The Collapse of Capcom Pinball


"...That got me thinking about Capcom. There was a lot of potential there, I like some of the games that they came out with, or almost came out with. The list of games that Capcom peroduced includes (from best to worse, IMHO):


- Pinball Magic (1995, 1,200 produced): PM actually came out before Theatre of Magic. The game is still loved by many to this day.


- Big Bang Bar (1996, 14 produced): Only 14 BBB were produced before Capcom pulled the plug on it. The game was remade by Gene Cunningham years later, which itself is a fascinating story that can be read about here:


- Kingpin (1996): Designed by Mark Ritchie of Indiana Jones and Fish Tales fame, KP was basically never produced. A company called Circus Maximus is currently in the process of attempting to make the game and bring it out.


- Airborne (1996, 1,350 produced): I've always thought that Airborne looked like a really cool game, but I have not had the pleasure of playing one yet.


- Breakshot (1996, 1,000 produced): Another in a long line of pool-themed pinball machines.


- Flipper Football (1996, 750 produced): One of the main reasons for Capcom pinball's demise. Designed by Brian Hansen and the famed pinball artist Python Anghelo.


- Zingy Bingy (1997, 1 prototype produced): Yes, you read that name right. Again designed by Brian Hansen and Python Anghelo.


So why did Capcom pinball fail? In short, the designers and management at Capcom decided not to create the typical 10 to 15 machine prototype run with Flipper Football, instead jumping right into production. As a result, the company ran into numerous, costly design problems that needed to be corrected on the fly. When all was said and done, Capcom was forced to throw out literally millions of dollars of flawed parts for the game. As an added bonus, despite warnings from operators about the feature Capcom decided to place a life-sized soccer ball on the backbox of Flipper Pinball, which bar patrons decided made for a great punching bag.


Flipper Football was a complete disaster, but the straw that may have broken Capcom pinball's back may actually have been another game which Python Anghelo named "Zingy Bingy," a term that he coined while at Williams which essentially meant to go out drinking. OK, so a drinking-themed pin probably wouldn't be so bad, right? Well, that's not what Zingy Bingy was. It actually was basically a porn-themed game, featuring a naked man and women on the playfield. The flippers were modeled after male parts, and the bumpers and outholes were modeled after female parts. Why Anghelo thought this game would sell is anyone's guess, but unsurprisingly Capcom's Japanese parent company was horrified by the idea and not thrilled by the fact that thousands of dollars was spent on building prototype machines without approval.

Shortly after Flipper Football and Zingy Bingy, Capcom pulled the plug on its pinball division, with games like Big Bang Bar and Kingpin just sitting there waiting to be produced. Who knows what would have happened if the pinball division had decided to produce those two instead of the two failures, a downturn that even took down the pinball behemoth Williams was right around the corner, but maybe the division would have survived if it had played its cards differently.


This is what happened at Capcom according to research that I did on the web. Not all of the details may be correct. I'd love to hear others' thoughts on Capcom games and or information on the company itself. It may have produced some games that I missed and I'm sure that there's lots of interesting stories / history that I am not aware of or facts that the Internet got wrong."


Crazy story, right? See below for pictures of all of the Capcom pins.


Pictures of other games being set up at the Northwest Show:

Look at all of those John Wicks!

Holy Rush Cabinets!:


























The Capcom Pinball Machines:








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2 Kommentare


John C
John C
6 days ago

I love stories like these.. have you written about Capcoms Toyland? There seems to be a few concepts that never made it into production, Pit & Pendulum (not a pinball) is another one. Some info and pictures on the facebook-page "Pinball Inc". Maybe it's possible to get more info from the people involved, named on one of the pictures?

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Jason
Jason
2 days ago
Antwort an

I've never heard of Toyland. Thanks for the tip, I'll look it up.

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