Pinball Dreams gamers get a trio of fields that are far simpler than previous pinball simulations, like Devil Crush and Revenge of the 'Gator. Unfortunately, more sometimes means less.
Take the Plunge
You can choose from three playing fields: Ignition, Steel Wheel, and Graveyard. Each has different layouts, targets, bonuses, and goals to shoot for, but the basics are all the same: two flippers at the bottom, and progressive point scoring.
Control of the ball is simple, using a standard two-button, directional-pad combo for the flippers and plunger. Sometimes you'll feel that the ball weighs a ton or the flippers are "soft," because you can't zing the ball through chutes and passages.
Snazzy graphics highlight the ball's travels around the fields. The sound effects are light, as is the musical accompaniment, but they complement the action just fine.
Will You Hip Over This?
Unfortunately, Pinball Dreams tilts when it comes to the entertainment factor. There just isn't enough replay value or challenge to keep you excited and wanting to play again. By trying to give Pinball Dreams more with the three playing fields, the game actually ends up with less. It would have been better if Game-tek had created one blockbuster pinball field instead of three marginal ones. The elements are all there, but the chemistry just doesn't hit the jackpot.
- Watch the score display. It will tell you what targets you should hit or what bonuses are available.
- To score big points, you must have the courage to hit the ball at the very tip of the flipper. It's scary, but that's the only way to repeatedly get the ball up to the top section of the playing field.
- Each table has a spot that can be used to score lots of bonus points, like the channel on the left of Graveyard.
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- Manufacturer: Game Tek
- Machine: Game Gear
Pinball never really worked well on portable systems and Pinball Dreams is no exception. The boards are huge, but the game is a little slow. Plus, what exactly is that bat/snake thing on the one pinball board? I'm clueless!