During CES, Arcade1Up announced it had entered into a partnership with Zen Studios to create pinball machines. Unfortunately, it didn’t have any hardware to show off at the event, so we didn’t know if an Arcade1Up Pinball machine would look good. Now the company brought a digital pinball machine to the Toy Fair last week, and so far it looks fantastic.
Andy Robertson from Forbes was lucky enough to speak with Arcade1Up at last week’s Toy Fair and take the company’s pinball machine for a test drive. Thanks to that time spent, we learned a lot about Arcade1Up’s plans. First, we now have some approximate pricing; the company says these machines should run in the $500 to $600 range. We also learned that Arcade1Up intends to include multiple games with each pinball machine.
That’s possible because this isn’t a classic pinball machine with physical bumpers, shooters, and balls. Instead, where the playfield usually would be, you’ll find a monitor buried under glass. That lets Arcade1Up load digital recreations of classic pinball games, courtesy of Zen Studio. Burying the display under glass also improves the traditional feel of the machine, and to help that along, Arcade1Up is adding haptic feedback. You’ll feel every hit as the ball careens around the playfield.
The only missing component is a plunger to launch the ball; you’ll hit a button instead. Still, Arcade1Up pinball looks promising, and the company says it’s already planning to release Star Wars and Williams Bally machines. And unlike typical Arcade1Up arcades, which feature two or three games, the pinball recreations will include ten or more games.
We don’t know yet when you can bring an Arcade1Up pinball machine home, unfortunately, but now more than ever, the answer is “not soon enough.”