Scuba (Gottlieb, 1970)

From Bob Matthews EM Encyclopedia 2018
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Quickie Version

 UTAD, but in this case, the goal is less to hit bumpers and lanes than to nudge the game so that the ball hits all five standup targets below the top lanes.  That increases the value of all lanes.
 
 Go-To Flipper:  Balanced.


Full Detail

Scuba is an interesting case, but many feel it’s more of a luck-box than most EMs. In this case, rather than collecting a set of lanes to make targets worth more, you’re doing the reverse: collecting sets of targets to make the lanes worth more. Here, the five stand-up targets below the top lanes and largely hidden from the flippers by the three bumpers are the key. Completing all five of them scores 500 points and increases the value of three lanes from 50 to 300. Values hold from ball to ball, so finishing them as early in the game as possible is the key to victory. Hitting them is another matter. Only two are directly shootable from the flippers; the center, right and left targets are behind bumpers. They’re so important, though, that you must forego all else and try. You’re best bet is to try to hit the two open targets on their edges so that the ball bounces sideways; the ideal situation is to get the ball zigzagging at an angle between the three bumpers and the five targets to hit as many of them as possible. Just keep shooting the ball up between the bumpers.


Once you have several lanes lit … not much change. While you can try to shoot the ball up the right- and left-side 50 / 300 lanes from the flippers, I’ve found that’s not easy to do with the corners there, rather than a curved lane bottom. UTAD seems to work well, trying to get all of the lanes lit, then maybe getting the ball to up-and-down some of the top lanes off the bumpers.


If you see the ball heading for the top of the left lane on the right side [the one that drops below towards the flippers, try to nudge the ball off the post over to the outer lane that feeds the plunger. That’ll get you lane points plus plunge points. Similarly, on the left side, try to nudge for the outer lane rather than the inner one; the feed from the outer lane is usually cleaner to the left flipper than from the inner lane.



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