"The Black Knight will slay you!"
Black Knight: "I will slay you, my enemy."Black Knight
is a 1980 Pinball
game designed by Steve Ritchie
, with software by Larry DeMar
and artwork by Tony Ramunni, and released by Williams Electronics
. The table itself represents the Black Knight, an evil foe in combat against the heroic player, and the table taunts and mocks the player at every turn.
This game is known for being the first solid-state pinball with a two-level playfield, and also introduced the "Magna-Save", where a player-controlled magnet could be used to prevent drains. It became a blockbuster for Williams, with over 13,000 tables sold.
The game was copied
for Brøderbund Software
's video pinball game David's Midnight Magic
It is one of the tables in Pinball Hall of Fame: The Williams Collection
, and is available as part of FarSight Studios' The Pinball Arcade
The original Black Knight features the following tropes:
"Get ready for battle! Beat the Black Knight!" (chorus)Black Knight 2000
, a sequel to Black Knight
, was designed by Steve Ritchie
, with software by Ed Boon
and artwork by Doug Watson, and released in 1989. In the distant future, the Black Knight returns again; the player must storm the Knight's castle and battle him in a techno-feudal landscape, while the Choir of Angels provide moral support for the player.
It was the first pinball game to offer a Wizard Mode
, and featured a truly memorable soundtrack with Chicago singers Stephanie Rogers and Glo Van Vlack.
A digital version is available for The Pinball Arcade
Black Knight 2000 demonstrates the following tropes:
- Antagonist Title
- Anti-Frustration Features: "Last Chance", which will start if there are two balls locked and the final remaining ball leaves play through either outline. This will allow the player to try and achieve multiball or the King's Ransom as normal, but Last Chance will only be lit once per ball.
- Autobots, Rock Out!: Composed by Brian Schmidt and Dan Forden, and renown to the point of being Awesome Music. Listen to it here.
- Big "YES!": The choir sings "YEAH!" when you get an extra ball, or when you win a Match Sequence.
- Black Knight
- 1,500,000 is the highest possible score awarded for a Hurry-Up shot.
- The bonus multiplier tops out at 5x.
- Once a player makes 99 loops and/or 99 U-turns, no more will counted toward the end-of-ball bonus.
- The highest possible base bonus is 594,000, making the highest possible bonus worth 2,970,000 after being multiplied.
- Cherubic Choir: Without the children, but otherwise fits.
- Combos: The "Ramp-Loop Combo", a variant of Steve Ritchie's signature combo shot.
- Cool Sword: Is he wielding a flaming double-bladed sword?
- Creator Cameo: Steve Ritchie provides the voice of the Knight.
- Duel to the Death: "STAND UP AND FIGHT!"
- Evil Laugh/Have a Nice Death: The knight laughs at you if you engage the Magna-Save but fails to save the ball.
- Evil Sounds Deep: Guess who.
- Feudal Future: Type 1.
- Hellish Horse
- Kirby Dots
- Match Sequence: Two lightning bolts strike each other, and the digits roll, and stops at the matching digit. The Choir of Angels sing "YEAH!" if any of the digits match.
- Progressive Jackpot: As with many games during this era. Also, "R-A-N-S-O-M" (see below) is carried over from game to game.
- Songs in the Key of Panic: The music intensifies if the player is down to one active ball and the multiball jackpot hasn't been collected yet.
- Spelling Bonus:
- W-I-N increases the bonus multiplier and lights "Advance Ransom" at the drawbridge.
- W-A-R either starts Hurry-Upnote during main play, or awards one million points during either Double Knights Challenge or the King's Ransom.
- Hitting the K-N-I-G-H-T drop targets advances B-L-A-C-K, and relights the kickback and Magna-Save.
- B-L-A-C-K lights the Skyway Ramp for 1 million points.
- R-A-N-S-O-M starts The King's Ransom, and is carried over from game-to-game.
- Spiritual Successor: Black Knight 2000 is Black Knight meets Ritchie's 1979 classic game, Flash, in the following ways:
- They use lightning motifs.
- Black Knight 2000's layout is almost similar to Flash's.
- Programmer Ed Boon released pictures of one of the whitewoods for this game, which showed that "B-L-A-C-K" was "F-L-A-S-H" at one point.
- Prior to making High Speed, Steve Ritchie hinted at making a sequel to Flash, tentatively called Super Flash.
- Storming the Castle: Batter down the door and storm the Drawbridge to the Black Knight's castle.
- Trope 2000
- Wheel of Decisions: The Lightning Wheel, which gives out a random award, and is a prominent part of the playfield.
- Wizard Mode: The Trope Maker, Black Knight 2000 featured "The King's Ransom", where all targets are activated and all balls are in play for 20-30 seconds (depending on the machine's settings).
EVERYTHING IS LIT!
- Yellow Lightning, Blue Lightning
Black Knight: Will you challenge the Black Knight again?