Flip Flop (Bally, 1976)

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Quickie version

 Flip all four flags by hitting either the standup targets below them or the small white rollovers at the top of the game above them.  Then hit either mushroom bumper on the outside of the stand ups to reset the flags.  Repeat.
 Go-To Flipper:  Balanced.

Full Detail

Flip Flop is all about “fun with flags” [apologies to Big Bang Theory fans]. Besides getting points for flipping them, your bonus is built up with them: one for each flip, four for resetting them, up to a maximum of 19,000. This has the strange result that your end of ball bonus can only take on values of 1-5K, 9-13K and 17-19K. Extra ball, if enabled, comes on once your bonus reaches 11k, special (probably worthless) at 19k.

Flip Flop has one of the oddest inlane / outlane configurations you’ll ever encounter. Yes, they’re reversed, but the outer ones are only return lane if you get a good bounce off of the rubber below them, back onto the little return lane ledges by the flippers. Too weak, bad angle, it can still drain. The inner outlanes are very rarely savable, but don’t count on it. And you can’t do a roll up and back to a cradle, the ball will just roll out.

The Skill Shot is to hit as many of the top white rollover disks as you can before the ball comes down either side. When it does, you should be able to flip at it with an upper flipper; try to hit a standup target below one of the flags you didn’t flip on the plunge. If you’re lucky or good, the rebound may head towards the opposite upper flipper, enabling g you to get off another such shot.

Ball control is a real challenge, both due to the gap behind the flippers and by how close the bumpers areal to them. Be ready to react fast!

If you do get the ball cradled on a lower flipper, e.g. via a dead bounce, try to shoot it up top between the upper flippers and the mushroom bumpers. You can also shoot directly at a flag standup target, but that’s the riskier way to attack them. Up top gives you a chance to flip more than one via the rollovers, plus you’ll still get another crack at them when the ball comes down to an upper flipper.

The saucers above the upper flippers, just worth points, kick the ball out low enough that you can flip at it as it exits. Any time you can nudge the ball into them, do so.

The lower inlane and outlanes value is 500 until you get your bonus to 11k. At that point, one pair of them, either the inner or outer pair, will be lit for 5000. Which pair is lit toggles with switch hits.

This page is one of many in the The Players Guide to Classic Pinball by written by Bob Matthews