Every arcade had its Pinball Wizard back in the day, but what is the real history of the silver ball? Pinball in its modern form was born during the Great Depression when Americans were looking for cheap entertainment. It was based on bagatelle, a French game whereby players maneuvered balls past metal pins into holes on the playfield. Early pinball machines were built without flippers and didn’t involve skill. Players launched balls onto the playfield and aimed for holes with various point values by bumping and tilting the machines. Because it was a game of chance, pinball was considered a form of gambling and was outlawed in the 1940s. Ironically, flippers were invented in 1947, yet the ban stayed in place until the mid-1970s. It’s hard to believe but pinball is still illegal in some cities… read more >
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