Games Where Playing Last is a Big Advantage

In which games is knowing what score you are chasing a big advantage? Some ones that come to mind are ACDC with multiplied song jackpots, Metallica with Crank It Up, Mustang with GEARS multiball,and Creature From the Black Lagoon with the multiball playfield multiplier.

What are some others?

BSD for how many multiballs you need to stack would be same concept.

I honestly would not play BSD any different no matter what my target score.

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Police Force


Jack * Bot
Fish Tales

I’ll echo ac/dc song jp. No reason to cash it out unless you know you’re going to approach or pass the other score.

Games that offer wagering, like Negative Reinforcement in Ghostbusters or roulette in Who?Dunnit.

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Games with stealable multiballs, such that there is no risk in going for multiball as the last player, where all other players risked leaving others an advantage (Radical). Note - this is different from games with physical locks where there can be an advantage to locking the balls rather than being awarded locks without the benefit of locking the balls (Indiana Jones or Doctor Who).

every game. Pinball is always about risk/reward. Knowing how far you need to go, with how much runway is in front of you allows you decide if you take the risky shot, or need to push further before taking the safe route, etc.

Knowing how far you need to go… with the tools at hand… is really what drives things. Some games you can cover ground quicker, others you gotta grind through. How ‘much’ a game lets you catch up is really relative to the gap you need to cover :slight_smile:

Maybe the question should be… what games do you not feel safe on if you aren’t the last player :smiley:

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There are definitely games where it is not necessarily an advantage to play last. At least one of them was already mentioned in this thread. Indiana Jones you could be dealing with a nasty lock kickout if the player before you locked balls. There are also games where the jackpot carries over player to player and resets when collected. I certainly wouldn’t feel like I had an advantage if I was playing Swords of Fury last and the player ahead of me collected a 4 million jackpot and my jackpot was only 500,000.

The answer to the question “What games do you not feel safe on if you aren’t the last player?” is every game. :smiley:

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Maybe POTO where ball three offers you a total score doubler if you consecutively hit the ramp twice? It’d be nice to know if your opponent hit that going into your last ball. I guess that’s the case for every match though. Doesn’t R&B have a score doubler in the Mystery award too?

Jokerz has the same ball-3 doubler. R&B has a doubler but it’s an unlikely choice and you will probably take it anytime it appears.

R&B is bad for tournaments with its silly doublers. If you score is under I believe 50 mil? A mystery choice COULD be double your score. If your over 50 mil it will never be an option. In super mystery select it can also come up but again it’s only if your under 150 mil I believe this time. My rememberance of the point caps for these might be off. These are Not fair honestly. If a game is going to have a double score mystery award it should be possible for all players regardless of how good/bad they are playing.

I feel many of the other awards are roughly in line, score-wise, with what the Double Score mystery award will give you, so it’s not a game-breaker. It certainly makes R&B undesirable to use. If this game had come out a year later it would have the types of tournament-mode controls that are now common.

True. It’s not the end of the world. This year at pinburgh I had R&B and knew these rules. I was player 4. Player 3 had choice of double score or start multiball (ball 3 so multiball was a gimmie lit on right ramp). He chose multiball. Not sure he hit a jackpot or not. I went up. Plunged and had the same option. Chose double and walked off with the win. Talked to player 3 after and he just thought it was a double playfield for 10 seconds or something as it truly does just say double score. Not double your score or double scoring. We had one at the sanctum for a long time but tried to avoid it best as possible for bigger events. It’s a fun game though! So many great games suffer from slight imbalances like this. Never fully avoidable.


Reminds me of a tee’d off game I had where I was really far behind and the other player activated skins game. They misread the question and activated skins game, failed and zeroed out their score. Hard to make things clear on a dmd.

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Should have shot the Dog Leg

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I don’t see it in tournaments often, but there’s one spot that has it on location and is trying to start a monthly, plus they do super league there. Only have ever played it in tournament setting for Seattle Pinball League at someone’s home. I was really new to pinball at the time so I went with the score doubler for sure.

Any game where there are multiple scoring strategies will give you an advantage depending on how many pts you need.

An example, I was playing last on Metallica against a top 50 ranked player. The machine was brutal, virtually every shot to sparky resulted in a drain, likewise with the piston target. It was clear that whoever got a MB would end up winning. By the time it came to my 3rd ball and he hadn’t achieved MB, I was only a short way behind, it was safer for me to simply shoot the ramps to get the combo points rather than having to go for MB and putting my ball at risk. A big advantage going last due to the failure of the other player to put up a massive score.

Conversely, playing a game of Iron Man, going into the last ball of a 4 player final I was player 1 and stacked War Machine and Monger MBs, it effectively forced the players following to attempt the same.

Sometimes it’s more advantageous to play first, sometimes last :grinning: