Roll and Write style games are dominating the market at the moment. In these games players roll dice and mark off something on a sheet. Sometimes they are doing it to build a kingdom, or a town, or a fleet of fishing boats, but it rarely ever feels that thematic, you’re checking off a box that matches a rolled die. But in Super Skill Pinball you actually feel like you are playing pinball as the ball moves up and down the table, bounces around the bumpers and knocks down targets.
To play each player takes the same board, this represents their pinball table. Each round two dice are rolled and the players choose which value to use. To use a die, cross off a box in the zone where your ball is, then your ball drops to the next zone. This gravity effect is what allows the game to simulate pinball, your ball is always dropping towards the flippers, unless you are in an area, such as the bumpers, which would allow you to defy gravity.
Once the ball reaches the flippers you can fire it back up the table, but each flipper can reach different areas, just like on a real pinball table. Eventually players will have crossed off all the boxes in their flipper zone, at which point they will be unable to keep their ball in play and they start a new round. Each player gets three balls and whoever has the highest score at the end of three rounds wins.
The game is full of thematic touches, like the brain burning multiball or the ability to nudge the table, although if you nudge too hard you could tilt and cause yourself to lose your ball. Each of the four tables that comes in the box offers a different experience, with the same, simple, roll two dice and cross off a box mechanism.
I’ve had a ton of fun with this one with friends and family but it also plays great solo too as you simply try and top your own high score.
This roll & write feels like it shouldn’t really work, like the decision space is too small and the game play too repetitive but I love it and I can’t wait to play it some more.
On the fifth day of Christmas, Santa gave to me, five pinball halves!