Not long after finishing up on my X-Files machine, I was contacted by a guy who needed some help with an EM machine he owns. After reading the various posts I made on Space Orbit (Gottlieb) and Mariner (Bally), he was hopeful I might be able to assist with fixing his Playball machine. EM’s are really interesting to work on (plus a challenge), so was happy to offer my help. No promises were made, but I’d do what I could. Playball is a baseball themed pin released by Gottlieb in 1971. It has two sets of score reels, one to track the score and the other to track the home run count. It lacks a plunger to launch the ball, instead the ball is launched from between the flippers using the right flipper button to trigger a slingshot style arm. This actually gives the playfield area a little more space and room for features. Another really cool feature is the game has a ball save – if you fail to hit a 10 or 100 point target, the ball can be played again. I didn’t realise this kind of feature was present in EM’s – neat! I like the playfield on this game and I think it would be a fun title to play. That’s enough incentive to get cracking on it and get it working again so I can get a few games on it before it goes back to the owner.
First item on my to do list for this update is to address a small issue with the the add a ball lamps. More specifically, the order in which the light up. There are 5 lamps in total. Each time you are awarded a free ball (achieved by hitting a lit WOW target), a new planet will light up to show how many extra balls you have been awarded. Right now, the order in which they light up is incorrect. They light up in the order 3, 4, 2, 5, 1.