Video Games vs. Pinball

The number one thing I hear about Pinball that drives me nuts is that it’s better because it’s real. Technically they are both real. One uses a ball and the other uses electrons. I think that maybe they mean it is more of a physical game.

How is it any more physical? Well in pinball you can bump the machine to manipulate the ball. It is accepted in the rules that you can nudge the machine but Pinball machines were designed so that you wouldn’t bump the machine. If you were not able to nudge the machine you most likely will lose your ball long before you are too exhausted to play. You do not have a way to defend against a ball from all possible direction. If it comes straight down the middle and you can’t nudge the machine you are screwed. Don’t get me wrong I nudge the machine myself but I still think it’s manipulating the game.

An arcade game almost on the other hand always has a way to defend against the enemy. Either the difficulty increases or you collapse and die from exhaustion. I can’t do anything to change the game from how it is programmed. Unlike Pinball there are very few things that you can’t defend against.

Pinball playfields are all very similar and if you can play one you can play most of the others. They all have their quirks but essentially it’s the same. Video games come in all kinds of different configurations. First person, third person, racing, shooting, puzzles and so on. To be good at a lot of video games takes a lot more work.

Pinball is a combination of luck and skill while arcade games are more skill than luck. I don’t dislike Pinball machines at all. I think they are awesome it’s just that when I hear people say they are better than video games I think they haven’t really thought it through. It’s obvious that video games are superior.

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