Have you ever wanted to build your own pinball table? Pinball Builder from 21st Century Entertainment makes it easy. You start with one of the basic designs which provides a simple table layout, including ramps, side guards and flippers. Then place bumpers, lights, kickers and other pinball pieces anywhere on your table to complete your masterpiece. Pinball Builder includes thousands of colorful graphics and hundreds of sounds, and lets you import your own graphics for complete customization. Once you're finished, you can play your creation, and trade table designs with anyone who owns Pinball Builder.
Pinball Builder is a fun tool for pinball enthusiasts who want to try their hand at designing their own tables. Creating a simple pinball table is easy; the basic table layouts and the drop-in components allow you to put together a simple table minutes after installing the game. Designing a good table can take much longer. My first design attempts were plagued by spots where the ball got stuck because I'd left too little space.
The component selection interface is fairly easy to understand, but could use some improvement. You select the general type of object you want (e.g. lamps, decals, kickers, etc.), then select a set number and part number. You can only see one object at a time while scrolling through the parts inventory and, with several sets in each general part type, finding the part you want can be difficult. It would have been much nicer to be able to select from a page displaying all the parts in the selected set. Once you have placed an object on the table you can modify its properties, including its sound effect, scoring, bonus, color and orientation. In addition to allowing you to create your own, Pinball Builder comes with eight ready-to-play tables. They are well designed, fun, and provide good examples of what the game can do.
The graphics in Pinball Builder are good, and the various tables and parts are well drawn. There are several different schemes you can select from and all the parts in each scheme blend together well. The game also allows you to import new graphics from either BMP or PCX files, so the only limitation is your own imagination.
The sound effects in Pinball Builder are realistic and give the game an arcade ambience. The music is also well done, but is paused each time the game resets for another ball. The pauses quickly become very annoying -- I shut off the music after playing only a few games.
Pinball Builder is a great idea, hearkening back to Stuart Smith's Pinball Construction Set on the Apple II and Commodore 64. Building your own tables is fun and the game has a lot of potential.
From the creators of the Pinball Dreams/Fantasies series comes a pinball construction kit for Windows. Choose from 8 table layouts, each with 4 different flipper/outlane configurations. Choose the base for your table, add all the bumpers/lights you want, and play the table. You can change all the scores and the letter combinations as you please. You can also play one of the eight tables that are ready to play without editing.
The tables are also playable in DOS, featuring the traditional scrolling mode. Included are eight sample tables which the layouts are based on.
This package was included in Encore's "Pinball Madness 2" collection in 1999.
People who downloaded Pinball Builder: A Construction Kit for Windows have also downloaded:
Pinball Illusions, Pinball 3D-VCR (a.k.a. Total Pinball 3D), Pinball Fantasies, Pinball Dreams 2, Pinball Dreams, 3-D Ultra Pinball, Pinball 4000 (a.k.a. Expert Pinball 4000), Pro Pinball: Timeshock!
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