Corvette is a Physical Pinball Table released by Williams Electronics (under the Bally label) in 1994. Illustrated by Dan Hughes, this is the first pinball game from veteran arcade game developer George Gomez.
The game was released to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Chevrolet Corvette. The player's objective is to collect nine classic Corvettes, from the 1953 Blue Flame Six and 1963 Grand Sport to the 1982 Collector Edition L-83 and the 1993 ZR-1 40th Anniversary LT-5. Cars are collected by driving down Route 66, winning Drag Races, and defeating six sexy models on thirteen international tracks in the Challenges. Along the way, fire up the Turbo Boost for extra racing speed, collect the Spark Plug rewards, make a Pit In before your tire blows, then shake the table by revving up the LT-5 engine for a Super Jackpot before locking balls for multiball. Collect all nine cars, then assemble the jigsaw puzzle to get the 1997 Corvette Test Car prototype.
Corvette is considered an impressive debut game from George Gomez, and is highly rated among both pinball enthusiasts and car buffs. The action is fast but somewhat forgiving, with satisfying shots and a modest ruleset that entertains beginners while challenging experts. On the downside, the playfield can feel cluttered with all the toys and ramps, and the generic rock music gets repetitive quickly.
In September 1994, Bally sponsored the grand opening of the National Corvette Museum in Kentucky, and provided several games for attendees to play. Exactly 5,001 tables were made, with many finding their way into the homes of Corvette enthusiasts.
The Corvette pinball demonstrates the following tropes:
- Author Appeal: George Gomez is a Real Life Corvette enthusiast.
- The Big Race: The Challenges and the Drag Race.
- Biker Babe: The Challenges feature six models, each of whom drives their own Corvettes against the player.
- Button Mashing: Rev Mode is played before starting Multiball. Mash the flipper buttons to shake the engine back and forth and keep the ball out of the lock hole as long as possible for some points.
- Combos: The game features numerous two- and three-shot Track Combos. Combo values are cumulative, to provide more incentive for making them.
- Cool Car: Goes without saying, honestly.
- Early Installment Weirdness: This is the first and only game of George Gomez's to have a third flipper.
- Everybody Owns A Corvette
- Gotta Catch Them All/Plot Coupon: The player must collect nine classic Corvettes for a chance to get the 1997 Test Car prototype.
- Gratuitous Foreign Language: Several of the models Challenge the player in their native language, such as French and Italian. Fortunately, subtitles are provided.Model: "Attrapez-moi, si vous le pouvez."
- Hood Ornament Hottie: There are two women on the playfield draped over various cars.
- Licensed Pinball Table
- Match Sequence: A mechanic is examining the engine of a Corvette, and uses a magnifying glass to read the serial numbers. The final magnified digits form the match number.Mechanic: "Hey, wait a minute — these numbers don't match!"
- Nitro Boost: Hitting the three targets on the left side of the playfield enables the Turbo Boost, which temporarily increases all playfield scores and makes the player's car go faster in the Challenge.
- Pen Name: Inverted; Corvette is credited to Jorge Alfredo Gomez Y Marth on the game, the only pinball from George Gomez to use his full birth name.
- Product Placement
- Skill Shot: Shoot the ball through the flashing L-T-1 lanes for a regular Skill Shot award. Alternately, press L-L-R-L-L before plunging and the ball will go to the upper left flipper; shoot the side ramp or loop for a Super Skill Shot.
- Spelling Bonus: Spelling R-A-U-C-O-U-S awards 5 million per letter, and an additional 8 million for completing it.
- Spiritual Successor: To an old video game Vette!.
- V8 Engine Noises: Averted, as the game actually uses engine sounds from a real Corvette (reportedly a 1963 Grand Sport).
- Vanity License Plate: On the playfield, the blonde's red Corvette sports "CATCH ME" plates, while a yellow LT-1 Stingray has "FLIPOUT". It is rumored that "CATCH ME" is from designer George Gomez's Real Life Corvette plates, while "FLIPOUT" is a Shout-Out to fellow 'vette owner Pat Lawlor.
- Video Mode: "Race Today", which is a video drag race game. Rapidly tap the left flipper to accelerate, and the right to shift up a gear. Winning it starts a two-ball multiball mode with every ramp worth 15 million.