Triple Playfields Mean Triple Fun!Haunted House
is a Physical Pinball Table
released by Gottlieb
in 1982. Designed by John Osborne and illustrated by Terry Doerzaph, it is considered to be one of Pinball
's iconic tables, the first game to take place across three interconnected playfields.
As the title suggests, this game takes place above, below, inside, and around a Haunted House
, with the player thoroughly exploring it for points while avoiding the various traps and spirits. While lightning flashes on the backglass, start on the main floor, then take the ramp or the up-kicker into the Attic with its occupied coffin. Alternately, use the Secret Passage or the Trap Door
to enter the Cellar, where the reversed playfield is filled with rats, a shackled skeleton, and grabbing ghouls. Return to the main table, knock down the cobwebs for double scoring, then tap the five targets for an Extra Ball or a Special.Haunted House
is highly praised by pinball enthusiasts, who laud its fast action, unorthodox layout, and frightfully attractive art; many consider it Gottlieb's best table ever, with some even calling it the best pinball from any manufacturer. If there are any complaints, it's in the lack of speech or multiball, which were omitted to reduce costs. The game can also be a maintenance nightmare, as its numerous components and complex design means there are more things that could go wrong.
Digital versions of Haunted House
are available for Microsoft Pinball Arcade
and The Pinball Arcade
Haunted House demonstrates the following tropes:
- Alliterative Title
- Always Night
- Big Fancy House: Big enough to have three levels, at least.
- Bookcase Passage: The Secret Passage, which looks like a regular pinball target, but folds over to allow the ball to drop into the Cellar.
- Building of Adventure
- Buried Alive: While it isn't buried, the Coffin in the Attic has a person (or a ghost?) sleeping inside, stretching awake.
- Cobweb Of Disuse: Just about every corner of the house is covered with cobwebs. There's even one over the window looking into the Cellar playfield.
- Creepy Crows/Ominous Owl: There's one of each hanging outside the haunted house.
- Defanged Horrors: There are no truly frightening aspects to the game, and the horrors are downplayed to a family-friendly level.
- Ghostly Gape: Many of the ghosts — and even some of the objects in the house — have jagged black eyes and mouths.
- Monochrome Apparition: The ghosts are all various shades of spectral blue.
- Nothing but Skulls: Aside from a few fully intact skeletons, the only remains seen are various assortments of skulls.
- Off with His Head!:
- On the backglass, one of the windows of the house shows a ghost holding his head under his left arm.
- A dapper-looking ghost in the Attic has his head under his right arm.
- Real Song Theme Tune: Segments of Toccata and Fugue in D Minor are played throughout the game.
- Spiritual Successor: To Black Hole, though Haunted House traded away multiball for an upper-level playfield.
- Stripped to the Bone: The Cellar has the skeletal remains of someone shackled to a gate.
- Swarm of Rats: There are large black rats all over the place, naturally.
- Trap Door: There's one beneath the ramp that can send pinballs into the Cellar.