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Squad Challenge - Video Pinball (Atari 2600)

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Video Pinball
Atari 2600
Controller: JOYSTICK / KEYBOARD / PLAYER'S CHOICE
Difficulty Level: Game 3, Difficulty A
Play on: Real Hardware / Dedicated Console / Emulation OK! ✔
Squad Challenge ends 11:59 pm PST January 14, 2021

 

 

Objective

Play for the highest possible score using the difficulty settings defined in the challenge. Post a photo or YouTube video of your score in this thread. Scores must be achieved between January 1st through January 14th, 2021. Screen captures are not allowed as they are more easily manipulated for falsified scores. Multiple submissions are permitted. The player with the highest score at the end of the competition is the victor!

 

Eligibility

Anyone can join in. All players are welcome!

 

Play Rules

Games may be played on real hardware, Flashback / Mini console, or emulation, using any controller or keyboard, following all rules and game settings defined in the challenge. Choosing between real hardware or emulation, and choosing which controller to play on is part of formulating your strategy. Enhancements, rewinds and hacked versions of this game are not allowed.

 

Difficulty Level

Game 3, Difficulty A. This is the most challenging configuration. These settings allow for nudging and applying body English on the ball, TILT, bumper values are reset with each new ball, and two extra drain holes are added at the bottom of the playfield.

 

Fair Play

Your integrity is everything. Players should play fairly, be honest, and have fun! Falsified scores will result in your immediate removal from the site. It goes without saying that we will not allow cheats, hacks, cartridge frying, enhancements, rewinds, deceitful photo manipulation, subterfuge, or any other unfair advantage. Everybody hates a cheater.

 

More

To review detailed rules on how to play, please visit the High Score Squad page here: 

 

 

Message

HAPPY NEW YEAR SQUAD! Welcome to our 95th Squad Challenge! We're ringing in the new year right, starting back at the beginning with an early game for the Atari 2600. What more can you say about Video Pinball? It's a fun pinball game that brought a lot of fun to early Atari Video Computer System players. Although it's more rudimentary than later games such as Midnight Magic on the 2600, and Pinball on the NES, Video Pinball is one of my favorite early VCS games and it has a lot of that early Atari charm. The bumpers, the sounds, the artwork, it's all there. It's a great game for a Squad Challenge. As @nosweargamer says, Video Pinball is very simple with square bumpers and a square ball and targets that look like they were poured out of a box of Chex cereal! This game is widely available as loose original cartridges on the 2600, the ROM is available, and you can go out today and buy this game on a Flashback console at almost any Walmart, Sam's Club, Costco or Target, so everybody should be able to join in. Do you love Pinball games? ROM and Instructions are provided below. Good luck to everybody participating! Where did you learn to fly?

 

NOTE: We have TONS of great exciting Squad Challenges coming for the 2021 season! Don't miss a thing!

 

 

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Video_Pinball.bin Video_Pinball.pdf

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Aw, yeah! Good ol' Vidpin.BIN (as I grew up playing it)! I suggested this one!

Love this game to death. I'm not sure what is considered a "good score" on this one, but I can keep the ball in play for quite a while in most cases.

According to my ever-so-handy High Score Notebook, my top score was 129,366 on difficulty 1 B/B. I don't think I've ever tried 3 A/A. I'll consult my manual to see what that setting does. I know that A on the switches adds those gaps.

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1 hour ago, Sabertooth said:

Seriously though, I always loved that one as a kid! Apparently the Pointer Sisters did the vocals. 

I never knew that! Great info @Sabertooth‼️

 

9 minutes ago, nosweargamer said:

FYI - The scores rolls over at a million and there is no on screen indicators that you rolled the score. So if you get close, you'll need video recording of some sorts  to document your high score. Good luck everyone!

Good looking out @nosweargamer, everybody take note. We're on the honor system.

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10,932

Man, this game is tough. It took me three or four tries to break 10k. I don't think I need to worry about rolling the score anytime soon 🤣 Just like in real life, I suck at pinball although I love them. Video Pinball feels a bit like I'm playing a pachinko machine just watching the ball bounce around on its own most of the time. I'm trying to learn when to use nudge the table.

Neat game! It's another 2600 game that I've never played before.

IMG_0063.thumb.JPG.3157a175b9b82beadf0f9f047151d1a4.JPG

Edited by socrates63

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145,846. 

@nosweargamer is right...rolling the score is going to be a problem on this one.  I'm going to fiddle with setting up a tripod with my camera (in video mode). 

This was my first try.  Read the manual -- pay attention to the scoring. 

PS - I'm playing on my "PlusCart" because I'm too lazy to go into the attic and find a loose copy.  And PlusCart has a "Recently Played ROMS" choice that makes it a lot easier than Harmony.

 

pinball 004.JPG

pinball 005.JPG

pinball 006.JPG

Edited by RickR

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12 hours ago, socrates63 said:

10,932

Man, this game is tough. It took me three or four tries to break 10k. I don't think I need to worry about rolling the score anytime soon 🤣 Just like in real life, I suck at pinball although I love them. Video Pinball feels a bit like I'm playing a pachinko machine just watching the ball bounce around on its own most of the time. I'm trying to learn when to use nudge the table.

Neat game! It's another 2600 game that I've never played before.

IMG_0063.thumb.JPG.3157a175b9b82beadf0f9f047151d1a4.JPG

Practice makes perfect! The key to this game is mastering the nudge to get extra balls and multipliers.

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14,029

IMG_2171.JPG.cb84aae50980267995e1eedb5d557034.JPG

14 hours ago, socrates63 said:

10,932

Man, this game is tough. It took me three or four tries to break 10k. I don't think I need to worry about rolling the score anytime soon 🤣 Just like in real life, I suck at pinball although I love them. Video Pinball feels a bit like I'm playing a pachinko machine just watching the ball bounce around on its own most of the time. I'm trying to learn when to use nudge the table.

Neat game! It's another 2600 game that I've never played before.

IMG_0063.thumb.JPG.3157a175b9b82beadf0f9f047151d1a4.JPG

There are many skills in physical pinball to develop, nudging skills is one of them, in many cases you're trying to transfer energy to the ball to manipulate it's trajectory. timing the "bump" on the machine with your hand when the ball is in contact with a post or a rail is key. you can "bump" the lockdown bar forward on either side or even downward (helps with ball rattle I think), you can even nudge the side of the cabinet halfway up the side to make the ball move out slightly towards the center of the table to miss the top of a sling-shot so you can catch it on the flipper. nudging works not just to keep your ball from danger of the outlanes, you can what I call "work the top lanes" to get the ball in the desired top lane if not controlled by the flipper.

It is best to learn these skills on a machine properly setup with a relatively tight (but fair) tilt-bob also best if the machine is on "free-play"

I never tried to play "Video Pinball" on difficulty "a". those open holes are death !!!! Reminds me of Bally's "Future Spa"                 We call that hole to the lower right "the spa hole"

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14 minutes ago, Justin said:

Man oh man this game is challenging. Even though it doesn't match up to Midnight Magic on the 2600 in terms of graphics, I enjoy it just as much. Here's my first score:

My High Score: 51,727

2021-01-03 15:38:27.973.JPG

I think I actually like it more. MM just seems a little... barren to me. Just my opinion, though.

04EAF7C8-ED87-4F3E-A325-7C5676428EE5.jpeg.8b43df76bbccfa536f38d7c8ea3a13ed.jpeg
 

23,433. Wow! I had no idea that those holes would make the game this much harder. Those little guys are from satan.

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4 hours ago, RickR said:

PS - I'm playing on my "PlusCart" because I'm too lazy to go into the attic and find a loose copy.  And PlusCart has a "Recently Played ROMS" choice that makes it a lot easier than Harmony.

Recently played? Oooh, that's a neat feature. I signed up to be notified when it's back in stock. Hopefully, it won't take too long.

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10 hours ago, Justin said:

@RickR @chas10e Do you guys have tips on how to get such high scores?

Yes.  It's all about the nudge.  For an early Atari release, this game has amazing physics on that nudge.  Master it and focus on those two bonus channels on the top of the board. 

I will set up a camera and video a play session before this is over, and you'll see...

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19 minutes ago, RickR said:

For an early Atari release, this game has amazing physics on that nudge.

Funny how a game from nearly a half-decade after the system launched is considered an “early release”. It really is a testament to how long the VCS lasted and how successful it was.

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