Maverick The Movie is an arcade pinball game based on the 1994 Western comedy film starring Mel Gibson. Designed by Tim Seckel with artwork by Morgan Weistling, this was the last game from Data East's pinball division before it was sold to Sega.
In this game, the player is a Professional Gambler riding aboard the Lauren Belle, trying to get into the All Rivers Poker Championship. After the deal, knock down the flashing drop target bank to beat the table's hand and build up your poker chips. Draw carefully to avoid needless discards, raise your bet if you're feeling lucky, or fold your hand if you're getting cold feet. Between rounds of poker, play some blackjack, collect Coop's Cash, or take a walk around the Belle, but look out for Angel's Revenge, the runaway Stagecoach, and the Bank Heist. If you can collect enough chips for the entry fee, enter the Championship, then try to keep your cool and take the Championship Pot.
Maverick tends to leave players divided. Fans praise its emphasis on careful shooting and aim, noting that the ability to raise, discard, and fold makes it feel closer to Real Life Poker than most pinball card games, making for a fully-featured table garnished with rich music and beautiful graphics on the oversized display. On the other hand, critics complain about the slow pace, the dull brown colors, and Mel Gibson dominating the lackluster backglass.
This pinball game demonstrates the following tropes:
- Bank Robbery: This is one of the game modes available between poker rounds.
- Cool Boat: The Lauren Belle, complete with working paddlewheel.
- Cosmetic Award: The backs of the playing cards display the initials of the player with the highest score.
- Flawless Victory: If you complete the current hand's drop target bank without discarding (hitting any other drop targets), that is considered a "Perfect," and the score for that hand is tripled.
- Hollywood Natives: Chief Joseph appears on the backbox, complete with full feathered headdress.
- The Magic Poker Equation: Ultimately averted; although the only hands the player can assemble are fixed (two of a kind, three of a kind, four of a kind, a Full House, a Straight, and a Royal Flush), too many discards (hitting the wrong targets) will cause the player to lose the current round.
- Match Sequence: The dealer cuts the deck, revealing the match number on the bottom of the top half.
- Secondary Adaptation: The game is based on the film Maverick, a comedic adaptation of the TV series Maverick.
- Skill Shot: The plunger can shoot the ball to one of five places. Shooting the ball into the lit hole of the first three gives the current reward for that hole. Going for the fourth hole feeds the ball to the upper right flipper, where the player can take a shot at the captive ball. Or plunge the ball all the way around to the left inlane to score whatever is lit on the Crystal City ramp.
- Title: The Adaptation: Played with; the full name of the game is Maverick The Movie, even though it's a pinball adaptation of the film.
- Video Mode: "Blackjack," which is available from the vertical up-kicker. Use the flipper buttons to hit or stand, and beat the dealer to receive 1 million points times the points in your hand.Maverick: "How about some blackjack?"
- Wizard Mode: The "Poker Championship," a four-ball multiball mode with a 30-second ball saver. Knock down all of the drop targets, then shoot the vertical up-kicker to collect the Championship Pot. Scores are multiplied by the number of balls in play, and the captive ball adds 100 million to the pot. It's possible to repeatedly collect the pot; it does not reset when collected, and can become very large as a result.