Bingo Pinballs

antaltmikee mike shares on in 2006:


Very, very common, actually. Pinball machines were universally scorned in the late 1950s and early 1960s when they were used as one-for-one replacements for so-called "bingo" games, which were games in physically identical cabinets that had typically 25 holes in the playfield and the player would simply launch five balls into five holes and the machine would determine what, if anything, he won.

Local ordinances were passed that pinball games could not be priced at any more than 10 cents per game and that the machine had to be incapable of allowing the player to improve his odds of winning by expending another unit of credit for the same game. In other words, you couldn't set the machine up such that, if a person wagered twenty cents instead of ten cents, that he might get three free "games" as a reward for attaining a given score, because it was obvious that the player would only do that if he were using the game as a gambling instrument. And since gambling was inextricable linked to the sale of alcohol, many, if not most, states prohibited all forms of coin operated games in bars, but they gradually phased them in during the 1970s. The introduction of the sit down version of "pong" prompted a lot of jurisdictions to allow just that form of coin operated game into liquor serving establishments, and pinball machines, because of their stigma from the "bingo" game era, were often the last form of game finally allowed in, though some jurisdictions dragged their feet even more on allowing the use of coin operated pool tables, as the game of pool had similarly been stigmatized by the impression that society still held of "pool halls". Remember the originally "Hustler" movie? They really were like that. I spent an inordinate portion of my youth and early adulthood in such places.




















_ Unknown Bingo Pinball History _