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1980 Williams BLACKOUT pinball machine

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Published on Feb 4, 2014

Sorry for the crappy camera angle on this one.

Today we have a 1980 Williams Blackout pinball machine for your viewing pleasure. The more I play pinball, the more I realize that 1980 was the year of the pinball machine. There are a ridiculous number of awesome games from that year. Anyway....

This game was designed by Claude Fernandez with artwork by Constantino and Jeanine Mitchell. I don't know if Constantino and Jeanine are/were related/married, but I suppose that's entirely possible.

Anyway, Blackout is a fun game from Williams with some cool early speech and groovy sci-fi early 80's artwork.

The draw of this game, as far as I'm concerned, are the spinners. I'm a big fan of spinners and having as many as humanly possible in one game is my idea of heaven. The orbit shot up the left side is a tough one to hit hard enough to get the ball all the way around, but it's really satisfying when it's made. And the way the ball travels through the lower right spinner and up to the top lanes makes me happy.

Following closely on the heels of Firepower, this game also has the lane change feature, but lacks multiball, which seems pretty weird. If Blackout had multiball capability, it would have been a real homerun, in my opinion. The shots are well laid out and the speech/sound/art make for a great game.

The premise of the game is basically to hit all of the 5 stationary targets on the left and the drops in the two drop target banks to light the red, yellow and green "conditions". Once all three are lit, slam the ball into the saucer for "BLACKOUT", which flickers the general illumination and plays some funky sound. Completing the upper right drop bank several times lights the spinners. Completing the stationary targets several times advances the orbit loop and lights the saucer for extra ball. Completing the centre drop bank several times lights the outlanes for specials.

All in all, this is a funky early solid state game that is a decent follow-up to Firepower. A good game for target shooting and for spinner spinning. I love how the background sound increases in pitch with the spinners. Genius, in my opinion.

Learn more about Blackout here:
http://ipdb.org/machine.cgi?id=317

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