Star Trek (pinball)
Retro Coin Op Synopsis
Although it had been off the air since 1969, Star Trek continued to be a big deal with fans of science-fiction television throughout the 1970’s. In fact, thanks to reruns, the show's popularity grew with every passing year. By the end of the 1970’s, Star Trek mania had built up to a fever pitch, and the show’s devoted fans clamored for new Star Trek-related stuff. They got their prayers answered in 1979 in two ways: with Star Trek: The Motion Picture at the movie theaters and with Bally’s Star Trek pinball game at the arcades.
Ironically, the Star Trek game was not made to capitalize on the release of the Star Trek movie. In fact, the design of the original game featured Kirk, Spock, Uhura and McCoy in their original costumes as well as the original Enterprise space ship. When Paramount Pictures requested that the game be redesigned to reflect the new movie, the art was retouched so the characters were wearing their up-to-date costumes from the film. The Enterprise was also retouched to resemble the film’s version of that ship, and Klingon ships were painted into the background.
The game itself boasted an exciting array of bumpers, targets and drop targets set against a background of space art that featured Klingon ships, space girls, and more than one rendering of the Enterprise. Star Trek also sported two lanes that offered nifty features for the pinballer: the 'Hyper Space Lane' allowed the player to score extra pinballs, while the 'Warp Speed Lane' allowed the player to shoot the ball back to the plunger so they could launch it again.
Released in the spring of 1979, Star Trek became an instant success in the arcades. It continues to be a favorite today with both pinball collectors and Star Trek fanatics. Even by modern pinball standards, Star Trek offers slick pinball action with a little outer-space fun on the side.