Themes/art/sound and integration of themes

How much do you care about the theme, and the integration of the theme in a game? Sound, art, music etc.

To me it’s very important since I play pinball for fun, mostly, and I love the whole “art” package that a pinball machine actually is.

Cirqus Voltaire is actually one of my favourite games because of the theme, music etc. I guess it, more or less, sucks when it comes to the rules. Possibly the playfield as well. The random-ish kickouts, all over the place, are …nasty… But it’s still fun to play!

These days I don’t play games that I don’t like (and the theme is a big part in liking a game for me), in general. Back in the days… :cold_face: I used to play, more or less, every game. Even if I didn’t like it. To learn the rules etc.

Some of my favourite games, theme/art/sound wise, are:
Twilight Zone, Cirqus Voltaire, The Shadow, Dr. Who, Deadpool (seems like there’s an infinite number of songs in this machine), Bram Stoker’s Dracula and Attack from Mars. What’s yours?

PS. I’ve been waiting for the Kraftwerk pinball machine (We Are the Robots Multiball? Autobahn Orbits? Ruckzuck-Frenzy? Electric Café Wizard Mode?) for a long, long while now. I hope it will be out in 2020, or 2021! DS.


Even if I’m unfamiliar with the source material, theme integration’s important to me because I believe a good pinball machine must immerse the player in a different world.

With any theme, licensed or not, you should not only have the most iconic elements (either in artwork, audio, animations, playfield toys, ect.) but tie the theme into a storyline where the player is involved. Thus, the game feels more than just “shoot the flashing shots”.

I have many favorite examples. Some I can think off the top of my head:

  • The Simpsons Pinball Party: So many references to the show crammed into it, solid speech and artwork.
  • The Lord of the Rings: Deep ruleset makes it feel like a “journey”. Speech, art, and display effects spirit you away to the Middle Earth. Love the Gimli callouts because of their thunderous energy.
  • World Poker Tour: The rules tie into poker very well, making you do things that a poker player would do…examples include switching between aggressive and conservative play (the Change Gears mode), and looking at your opponents’ actions/facial expressions to see if it indicates what cards they have (Spot the Tell).

Yes, I agree. There’s a lot more to pinball than collecting points. These days I don’t like playing games that doesn’t …immerse… me in a different world and have a theme intergration I like/care about.

It’s probably one of the reasons why I don’t like classic games, in general. They are, more or less, just about shooting some flashing shots. If they’re even flashing, that is.

:100::100: - it’s wonderful! Deep ruleset, to say the least. One of the few (the only?) wizard modes that seems to be out of reach. One of these days… @keefer Why did you make it so difficult, plz? :crying_cat_face:
btw. The listed games are all games that you made the software for, right?

:100:I’m not a big fan of the movies/books really, but I like the way the theme is intergrated here and how the volume goes up sometimes (the only other games that has this “feature” that I can think of is Dr. Who and Bram Stoker’s Dracula - exquisite sound design in both of them!). The “journey” to Valinor Multiball is a masterpiece in pinball rules.

I never got into this game. But I played it a bit. It was actually at our office when I was working for a poker network, when it was new.