Kickstarter to open a new location in Richmond VA

Right now in Richmond pinball is only for folks with private collections. Some of them have been very kind and generous and opened up theirs houses so that Richmond can have some league play. That is where our group met and that is the reason we are doing this project. We want to make pinball available to the public and this is the plan we came up with. My personal long term dream is to own a large public pinball arcade. The kind you are talking about. If you want to come to Richmond and open a location with 20 pinball machines, I will sign up to help.


Even though Richmond is 300 miles from me I know the folks personally who are putting this together and am proud to be able to support them with little bit that I can. If you have a few extra dollars to help support them, I know they will make us proud and expose more people to the game we love…


I think cheap pinball would be cool too but I don’t think that’s on the operators. Looking at u manufacturers…


I think what would be great is if each community did what was appropriate for its populace in terms of increasing the visbility and popularity of the game. What works in SF doesn’t necessarily work in Portland doesn’t necessarily work in LA doesn’t necessarily work in Chicago doesn’t necessarily work in Richmond. Every community is unique in its own ways and has a group of players/collectors/operators with their own special needs. Seattle can draw 30-50 people to tournaments that run until 2am. SF can support essentially four leagues in one urban area. Portland has a rich group of incredibly involved operators with a huge variety of locations. Stockholm almost required collectors initiatives like this one, mainly because housing is so much smaller and more expensive.

Personally I think cheap pinball is ridiculous and we should all be paying a buck a game, but I also acknowledge that won’t work in every area. Nothing will work in every area, and every community has their own set of motivations and restrictions. I’m all for giving everyone a chance to get their idea going and see where it ends up and if it works in their community. The ball is wild in more ways than one.


Best of luck with the kickstarter. Really. I won’t donate and I’ll likely never visit your location, but I certainly don’t wish you folks any ill will. Pinball has been a part of my life for more than 40 years now and I do my best to keep it pointed in the right direction. That’s where I’m coming from. I hope that by starting the conversation that I at least got some people to think about the things discussed in this thread. Pinball has changed more in the last 10 years than any other time in the history of the hobby. We all should care aboiut the direction it’s headed.

None of this is personal. Because I don’t know any you guys, it made it easier for me to post the things I did in this thread. I hope we can meet at a show some day and talk face to face. I’m guessing we’d all get along just fine.


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Ha, doesn’t look like we are getting any of that this year. So much sadness.

Hi, I wish I understood where you were coming from. Our entire goal is to share pinball outside of the fantastic private collections that exist in Richmond and make it more accessible to everyone, from competitive circuit players to college kids who accidentally start four player games because they’ve never touched a pinball machine to folks that played when they were younger at pinball parlours to tiny little kids that just need a stool and an imagination. We want to be inclusive, host machines of all eras, and watch people fall in love with pinball the way we all did. Each one of us fell in love with pinball for a different reason in a different circumstance. I hope you will consider visiting when we open. We would certainly welcome you and your family.


Since you mentioned tiny kids… There are a couple of places in the UK that follow this ‘pay for unlimited play’ / membership model. The games get hammered by young kids.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to see them enthusiastic about playing something that is clearly new to them… But their instinctive technique is to mash flippers as fast as possible for as long as possible. Plus they start games (often multiplayer) without finishing and so on.

One of the UK locations is considering moving the pins into an adults only area because of the amount of wear this causes!

I don’t like kids around when I play but, no way a little kid mashing flippers causes as much damage as an adult slamming and sliding a machine around.


I literally said the same thing to some friends of mine last night.

I have just moved to a new house and I set up GOT in the garage really quick so the kids could play. Two 3 year olds going to town on it split flipper for 30 mins. My buddies were so worried they were going to break the game. I was like, if a giant man baby can slam the lockdown, kick the legs and throw the game across the room, I’m sure the kids won’t hurt it too bad.



I have 4 kids and they don’t mash flippers but I had to train them. I think we can gently teach kids how play correctly. They won’t get it at first but if we don’t train the next generation who will?


Yep, I’d have thought similarly, but just speaking from experience. For venues where the clientele are 80% newbies, damage from slide saves is minimal compared to busted flippers and plungers.

And yes, the idea of educating the kids is a noble one. But as an adult, would you really approach a bunch of pre-teen kids without being concerned about what their parents are thinking of some older man chatting to their kids? Again, from experience (and as a parent myself), it’s not that simple :wink:

Just teach your kids at home proper pinball etiquette, and they pass it on to their friends. Works for me.

Lol as a woman of child bearing age, I wish people weren’t so apt to leave unattended children around me.


@Wizcat ,

From my experience with another location that has a similar model, kids just smashing buttons isn’t tolerated. You are paying for a membership and must adhere to rules which include not abusing the equipment or you will be warned and could have your membership revoked. Think of it similar to a gym membership, if a child is is left unattended messing with a treadmill the parent will be warned and could have membership revoked and be ejected from the location.

That is a benefit of this location and why there is no concerns of the games being moved to an “adult only” area.

A pinball machine is a toy (commercial grade) and a treadmill is a piece of excercise equipment that could potentially hurt a young child. Huge difference.


What do you think would happen if some kids in a Best Buy were smashing their fists on the computers and taking electronics apart? Their parents would be asked to prevent the children from doing that and if t persisted, they’d be asked to leave. That said, we’re not marketing a Chuck E Cheese and I doubt we will be overrun with children who smash the flippers for more than a few minutes. If kids mistreat the machines in a way that would harm them, it will be dealt with. Filing this in hypothetical nonissue right now. :slight_smile:


Your right, children can’t get injured by a commercial grade toy nor by the people operating the toy. HUGE DIFFERENCE! Thank you for correcting me!!

Happy to approach a bunch of kids that are abusing the machines in my location and I’m sure the “older men” that are involved in this project with me will as well. Kids don’t scare me, and there is nothing wrong with or controversial about telling people of any age to treat your property with respect, regardless of your gender, age, or anything else.


Wait… wha??? Kids pushing flipper buttons repeatedly is abuse to a pinball machine?? It’s “not tolerated?” Seriously!?? Give me a break.

If you have the situation to help teach kids how to flip/play better, please please PLEASE approach it from an encouraging attitude on teaching/showing them how to have more fun when they play… and not from a scolding/you’re-abusing-my-pin, what-you’re-doing-isn’t-tolerated attitude.