Tri Zone (Williams, 1979)

From Bob Matthews EM Encyclopedia 2018
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Quickie Version

 Hit any lit 10000 point stand-up target facing you; if none are, UTAD.
 Go-To Flipper:  Mild bias Left.

Full Detail

The primary feature of Tri Zone is the roving 10000 value for the stand-up targets. At all times, one of the Z-O-N-E letters will be blinking; it cycles from left to right, each blinking for five seconds or so before moving on. If the standup target there is still up, knocking it down when the light is flashing awards 10000. Unlit targets score 1000 when hit. Shooting these is the single fastest way to score on this game. Since the targets are all in the lowest part of the playfield, though, there’s drain risk when shooting any of them, so watch those rebounds! It’s possible to get more than one target on a shot if the rebound goes the right way for you; grazing shots are best for this. You can backhand some of the targets, too.

Each time you complete the Z-O-N-E letters, lit or not, other scoring is increased: the first set lights the left spinner; the second set changes the top saucer value from 5000 to 10000; the third set makes all four Zone letters worth 10000 each for the rest of the ball [the lights come on for all of them at once, steady rather than flashing]; the fourth set lights the outlanes for a special [irrelevant], but at that point, the 10K per target alone makes them your primary goal.

Your other source of decent points is bonus. Bonus base goes up to 19K and is advanced by the T-R-I lanes and both sets of A-B lanes, those on top and the two return lanes. Bonus multiplier goes up to 5X and is advanced by completing the A-B lanes in either location.

Making T-R-I scores 3K the first time, 5K the second and 10K the third. After that, it’s and EB or Special, likely worthless. [I don’t recall ever seeing a Tri Zone set so that these award points; I’d like to.]

The top saucer is worth 5K at all times, but you can’t shoot at it, only nudge the ball towards it, so it’s largely irrelevant.

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