Go-To Flipper

From Bob Matthews EM Encyclopedia 2018
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On many machines, there’s an imbalance on which flipper you’ll want to use most often. Either the more important shots face one flipper, more shots overall are made from one flipper, or the shots are easier or safer with one flipper than the other. For any such game, use the ball control skills below to get the ball to the desired flipper. If you could hit the ball with the less desirable flipper but could also tip or dead bounce the ball to the more useful flipper, don’t flip! Dead bounce, tip, or otherwise transfer the ball instead. You don’t have to swing at every pitch here; just keep the ball in play and work to tee it up for a precise shot to what’s most valuable at the time.

For each game in this guide, I have listed what I consider to be the “go-to” flipper. “Right,” “Left,” and “Balanced” are self-explanatory. For some games, I list it as “mild bias Right” [or Left]. This generally means that it’s not worth special effort to try to get the ball on one flipper vs. the other, nor to transfer a ball cradled on one flipper to the other one. Its meaning is more that when the ball is moving such that you can easily get it to either one, choose the mild bias flipper.

In other cases, which flipper should dominate changes during the course of game play, e.g. Right early on and Left after certain goals are achieved. These are noted as such, often specifying the goal(s) that trigger the switch.

Occasionally, you should try to transfer the ball to the “go-to” flipper even if you already have it safely cradled on the other flipper. Most of the time, I’ve indicated this in the text, but since I added this item well after building out the guide, many of the earlier entries might not explicitly say this. You’ll need to interpret my intent.


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