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Pinball / Stargate

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Transport Yourself to Another Dimension

"Shoot the Pyramid!"

Stargate is a Licensed Pinball Table released in 1995 by Gottlieb (under the Premier label). It was designed by Ray Tanzer and Jon Norris, with artwork by David Moore and Constantino and Jeanine Mitchell.

Based on the 1994 sci-fi action movie starring James Spader and Kurt Russell, this pinball has players recreate the events of the film. Activate the Transporter, trade Quartz for various awards, then make it through the Sandstorm and attack Ra's Temple. Collect the White Pyramids, lead the miners in a rebellion, use the Sarcophagus to raise the dead, then slip under the floating Guardian statues. Levitate the Pyramid and attack the flying Glidercraft, collect the seven Segments to activate the Stargate, then activate the Eye of Ra and prove yourself the master of Abydan.

Among players, Stargate is widely considered Premier's best table and the swan song of Gottlieb's pinball legacy, with many viewing it on par with the best games from any manufacturer. The ruleset is deep and varied, the playfield toys are innovative and clever, and the artwork and design are top-notch. The kickback targets and steep ramps ensure lots of fast action, but a poorly-maintained game with weak flippers will make it more difficult to play. Although the game was originally a modest success with approximately 3,600 units sold, its subsequent vindication keeps demand high among collectors.

The Stargate pinball demonstrates the following tropes:

  • Adaptation Name Change:
    • Sha'uri, daughter of the chieftain Kasuf, is now "Sari".
    • The "Chevrons" from the movie become "Segments" here.
    • The naquadah are now called "Quartz".
  • Ancient Astronauts: Ra, of course.
  • Combos: The game has a five-shot combo (left ramp, right ramp, left lane, "Trade Quartz" lane, and then the Pyramid). Furthermore, the player who makes the most combos is recognized by the game.
  • Cool Gate: The Stargate, shown on the backbox with a mirrored "infinity" effect.
  • Cool Ship: The Glidecraft, which comes out of the Pyramid and flies around the playfield.
  • Futuristic Pyramid: The Pyramid of Ra, which rises up to release the Glidercraft inside.
  • Gravity Master: Hitting the Horus Guardian statues blocking your path causes them to float upward out of the way.
  • Skill Shot: Soft plunge the ball so it goes down the left outlane and into the Sarcophagus.
  • Spelling Bonus: Spell S-T-A-R-G-A-T-E to collect the Stargate Segment.
  • Storming the Castle: "Ra's Temple".
  • Teleporters and Transporters: The Transporter.
  • Welcome to Corneria: The instructional shoutouts can become repetitive, though holding down both flipper buttons before launching a new ball will reduce their frequency.
  • Wizard Mode: The game offers two of them.
    • "Stargate Multiball" is available after completing the seven Segments and reassembling the Stargate. The seven major shots are worth 20 million points each, and making all of them awards the Super Jackpot.
    • The "Eye of Ra" is enabled after completing all six game modes. This is a three-stage four-ball multiball — hit the Glidercraft several times, shoot under both levitating Guardians, then shoot the Pyramid three times.