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Review: on ??/??/????

  • Game: Pinbot
  • Design: Barry Ousler
  • Art: Python
  • Sound: Chris Granner

        Reviewer  Rudy  9Ball  Drac  Buzz  Doc  Jimbo  Total
  Art: Backglass  7.5   8.5    8.5   8     8    -      8
  Art: Playfield  8.5   8      8     9     8    -      8.25
           Sound  8     9      9     9.5   8    -      8.75
Playfield Design  7.5   8.5    8.5   7     8.5  -      8
           Rules  8     8.5    9     7     8.5  -      8.25
       Longevity  8     8.5    9     7.5   8    -      8.25
           Total                                       8.25


Ball locks hidden below an innovative mechanical moving visor. Great skill shot on the corkscrew ramp. Another skill shot is available on the strobing visor targets. You can play this game for high scores through multiball as well as trying to reach the Sun for a special award.

The game may seem a little simple compared to recent games, but it was a blast to play and was very high tech in its day. Game was so great it inspired a sequel (Bride of Pinbot) as well as a rehash (Jackbot).



Cool pin with a lot of interesting features including the motorized 5 target bank which drops as the visor opens revealing the two ball lock saucers. Hit the flashing light bar target on your first shot to open the visor, otherwise you have to complete the grid with a lot of dangerous shots to all the grid targets. Plunger skill shot advances to a cool million points and rewards you with a killer light & sound show when at 10X . Collecting the Solar Value or max bonus gives a great light and sound show as well & a ton of potential points (Solar Value is over 5 mil ). Game has well balanced scoring once the Solar Value is collected. Not exactly a pin with "great" flow but it does make good use of playfield space and there's plenty of open space in the middle. Lite bar on backbox adds some good lamp effects. Locations love that test report knocker on power up!

Ball lock saucers in visor often reject a cleanly locked ball. Not really a minus but the planet award sequence up to the "Sun" special quite blatently taken from Stern Galaxy. Observation: Super mega drain (TM) outlanes can be quite brutal especially when the game has new rubber rings installed. The planet advance target can have suicidal drain tendencies when hit. A less dangerous way to advance planets is to hit the 3 bank drop targets. Cabinet art is pretty darn ugly even by 1986 standards.


Awesome skillshot, great lock shots for multiball, and terrific sound bytes

Saucer kickouts occasionally go between either flipper and the center post, but overall a very good effort from Williams.


Great skillshot and lightshow. Sounds were the bomb in the mid-80's. Barry Ousler's follow-up to Space Shuttle did not disappoint!

SDTM drains from the saucers are quite common. Game is WAY to easy to turn over. Once solar value is collected it becomes rather worthless. Kickout saucer area often looks belt sanded.


The original of the trilogy, and still enjoyable to this date. Great lighting effects and furious multi-ball play. Good enought to copy for Jackbot, enough said.

Positives 1) Player controlled skill shot off of the plunger, I always liked this.
2) Simple but functional rules (should I go for planets or just play multi-ball and get jackpots?)
3) Great lighting effects, especially the big flasher in the pop bumper area.
4) Still enjoyable to play to this date.

Ugly outlanes, but at least they are balanced by the center post. Hard to find one in good shape, and locks can be troublesome with poor maintenance.