The Game: It’s a game of video pinball where you can even bump the table to influence the ball’s path. You can even launch the ball into a second level to score big bonus points. Just don’t let it slide out of the reach of your flippers… (Mattel Electronics, 1981)
Memories: As a rule, I don’t do the video pinball thing. You can look throughout Phosphor Dot Fossils and you’ll find very few big thumbs-up for video pinball. But so help me, Pinball on Intellivision is rather fun. It takes into account some of the physics (though far from all) involved in a pinball table, even the external factors such as the good old-fashioned, time-honored bump-the-machne maneuver.
The graphics are also on a finer level than what you’d be able to generate with the Atari 2600 or the Odyssey2, so the “table” in its various levels is more detailed, with more features, bumpers and other items on the landscape – it’s more like a real pinball machine. The changing lights and other finer visual details also help the thing feel a little more like, well, a decent simulation of real pinball.
As always with video pinball, you’re dealing with some blinkered simulations of the physics, but I’ll admit that I had more fun with this game than I do with most of that genre, so this Pinball actually comes with a recommendation.