Pinball: Back to the Future

The Other Marty, and it's not Eric Stoltz this time.

"Roads? Where we're going we don't need...roads."

Back To The Future is an arcade pinball game designed by Ed Cebula and Joe Kaminkow. it was released in 1990 by Data East Pinball, and is based on the Back to the Future film trilogy.

The Back To The Future playfield is divided chronologically, with Hill Valley of 1885 on the left and the Hill Valley of 2015 on the right. While the player tries to raise his score by going between the past, the future, Biff's casino, and the clock tower, caught in the middle are the DeLorean, Doc Brown, and someone who should be but doesn't quite look like Marty...

Unfortunately, most pinball players consider BTTF to be fairly forgettable, a somewhat simple game that fails to do anything interesting with the premise. As with most pins by Data East, only the graphics and sound tied the game to the license, and its appeal is primarily with nostalgia-seeking movie fans.


This pinball machine demonstrates the following tropes:

  • Creator Cameo: Paul Faris and Brian Schmidt, who did the game's art and music, appear on the right side of the playfield.
  • Match Sequence: It starts with a weatherman reporting a severe thunderstorm headed for Hill Valley, then shows lightning flying across the alphanumeric display, finally striking a match number.
  • Not Quite Starring/The Other Darrin: Invoked, as Michael J. Fox did not allow his likeness to be used for the game.
    • Also, Fred Young was Doc Brown's voice.
    • Artist Paul Faris' son plays Marty on the playfield and the backglass.
    • It's unclear who voiced "Marty", but everyone agrees the voice doesn't even come close to sounding like Michael J. Fox.
  • Real Song Theme Tune: In addition to the BTTF theme, the pinball features ZZ Top's "Doubleback" and Huey Lewis and the News' "The Power of Love" and "Back in Time".
  • Revealing Cover-Up: To hide the fact that "Marty" isn't Michael J. Fox (see The Other Darrin, above), he is drawn on the backglass with his face covered by a pair of large dark sunglasses. This only served to draw more attention to his non-resemblance to Fox.
  • Skill Shot: Shoot the left ramp after launch for one of several random bonuses.
  • Spelling Bonus: The predominant scoring mechanism in the game — M-C-F-L-Y increases the casino spinner value, D-O-C increases the bonus multiplier, D-M-C lights the multiball lock, and D-E-L-O-R-E-A-N starts the Million round.
  • Timed Mission: The DeLorean Million round, which lasts 12 seconds and gives the player 1 million points for each ramp shot.
  • Title: The Adaptation
  • Vanity License Plate: Oddly enough, the DeLorean has FUSION plates instead of the movie's signature OUTATIME.

"Your future is whatever you make it! So make it a good one!"