As pinball games go, Devil's Dare is a straightforward design of the era — hit the drop target banks to enable the Capture Cave and the Capture Pit, then lock two balls for three-ball multiball play. If you score well during multiball, you'll be rewarded with "Multi-mode", an extra multiball round after multiball ends.
Devil's Dare is notable among pinball historians for being Gottlieb's first game not illustrated by Gordon Morison, Gottlieb's exclusive game artist for a decade. Morrison's Comic Book-style pin-up girls meshed well with Gottlieb's family-friendly image, and Doug Watson's imposing devil artwork (originally accomplied by naked green bat-winged succubi) caused management to balk. While Watson worked on other projects, artist Dave Moore created a minor variation to showcase a four-color glass-printing process. The attention Moore received for the art prompted Gottlieb to reconsider, and they greenlit the project with the modified backglass.
Approximately 3,800 tables were produced, and the majority of them were shipped to Europe without speech support. As such, it's considered something of a rarity in the United States.
The Devil's Dare pinball demonstrates the following tropes:
- Alliterative Title
- Big Red Devil/Satanic Archetype: The Devil, who's large, red, evil-looking, and commands a legion of minor demons.
- Demihuman: The Devil's assorted demons, who have green skin, large dragon wings, pointed tails, and three-toed talon feet (on the males).
- Dummied Out: Although the game was designed with speech, most machines replaced the original sound/speech board with a sound-only board, leaving the game without any speech or music, and playing slot-machine-style chimes instead.
- Evil Eyebrows: The Devil has a pair of evil brow ridges.
- Femme Fatalons: The Devil has wickedly curved fingernails.
- Fire and Brimstone Hell: The entire playfield is awash in flames.
- Good Wings, Evil Wings: The green-skinned demons all sport large dragon wings.
- Green Skinned Demon Babe: Featured on the original backglass art, but omitted from the final game.
- Hellish Pupils: The Devil has green pupils with reptilian slits.
- Horny Devils: Doug Watson's original backglass art included naked green bat-winged succubi lounging on the score displays.
- Horned Humanoid: The Devil himself and his attending army of green-skinned followers all have small horns on their heads.
- Humanoid Female Animal: A mild case; the male green demons have visibly wrinkled wings, bald heads, and three-toed talon feet, while the female demons (on the original backglass art) resemble green-skinned demonic babes with smooth wings.
- The Legions of Hell: The various green demons.
- Machine Monotone
- No Plot? No Problem!
- Nonhumans Lack Attributes: The green demons lack any sort of genitalia or nipples despite being completely naked.
- Take My Hand: The Devil has this pose on the backglass.
- Slasher Smile/Villainous Cheekbones