Monaco (Segasa, 1977)

From Bob Matthews EM Encyclopedia 2018
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Quickie Version

 UTAD left side through the spinner to fill up your bonus; UTAD right side to the saucer to collect bonus.  Rinse and repeat.  Ignore the two lower saucers. 
 Go-To Flipper: Alternate - Right to build bonus, left to collect it.

Full Detail

Here’s a case where settings matter. This first requires telling you more about the machine set-up. Monaco has a swinging target right in the center that sets up double bonus in an odd way. On the standard Monaco setup, you need to hit the swinging target when it’s in each of the two “1” or “3” positions [right side and left side, one indicator light for each of the two positions, center positions don’t come into play here] to activate double bonus. Since the rebound off of the swinging target may drain [or you may miss it and have the rebound drain], it’s too risky a shot to be worthwhile much of the time. However, I was at a recent tournament where just one hit to the target in the “1” or “3” zone awarded double bonus. Now, it’s a good idea to shoot for it, especially once your bonus is up over 50,000.

When you shoot the bonus collect, your bonus is scored - - without the doubling - - and your bonus is reset to 10K. If you have the double bonus activated, your playing strategy changes. Shooting the upper right saucer still awards your bonus, but without the doubling you can actually lose points by shooting it and draining before you can “refill” your bonus. For example, if you have 100K bonus built up with the doubler lit and collect your bonus at the saucer (resetting your bonus to 10K), but then quickly drain, you now earn 120K total vs. the 200K you would have earned when the ball drained if you hadn’t shot the collect saucer. If it’s ball 5 and you were behind by 150K at the time, you just changed a win into a loss. So while you can shoot to collect now, whether or not you should depends on the game situation. If you’re 300K or more behind, it’s probably worth the risk to collect and hope to refill your bonus [the doubler stays lit for the remainder of the ball once activated, but it does not carry over to the next ball] since you need to go big to win. Your other option in this case is to avoid collecting and milk the spinner and top lanes, i.e. UT-left-side-only-AD to work your way up. Since the top lanes are worth either 5K or 10K, plus you’ll get spinner points and some bumper points each time you successfully execute it, you can still get a couple hundred thousand this way; it’s now a matter of surviving how the ball exits from the upper bumper area more times than in the case of build-and-collect.

Note that this is like Mars Trek and Cherry Bell, among other games, where you have a collect-or-not-when-bonus-is-multiplied decision to make.

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