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Pinball / The Shadow

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No one can resist the power of... The Shadow
The Shadow: "You're finished, Khan!"

The Shadow is an arcade pinball game designed by Brian Eddy with art by Doug Watson, and was released in 1994 by Williams Electronics under the "Bally" label. Based on the 1994 film of the same name, it features custom voice clips from stars Penelope Ann-Miller (Margo Lane), John Lone (Shiwan Khan), and Tim Curry (Farley Claymore). Alec Baldwin was unable to provide lines, so you’ll have to settle with Williams alumni Tim Kitzrow to voice The Shadow himself.

As with the movie, Lamont Cranston is a Secret Identity façade for The Shadow, a vigilante with psychic powers. Battling crime in 1930s New York City, The Shadow must stop the evil Shiwan Khan, who's out to detonate an atomic bomb and destroy the city as part of his plan to conquer the world. As The Shadow, the player must Punish the Guilty, defuse the Beryllium Sphere, Discover Hotel Monolith, and perform other tasks from the movie to stop Khan's forces. Use your mental powers to control the playfield Diverters, then seek Vengeance on Khan and engage him in the Final Battle.

The Shadow's notable features include the two-way ramps with a player-controlled diverter, the Battlefield, a Breakout-style mini-playfield, and a magnetic ball lock, which freezes the ball and pulls it into the Sanctum lock. Unfortunately, the public's lackluster reception to the film doomed this game to obscurity; many players who managed to look past the license and the middling backbox art have called it an overlooked classic, with challenging gameplay, spectacular sounds, and beautiful playfield art.

This pinball demonstrates the following tropes:

  • Art Deco: The playfield style is predominantly Art Deco, as befitting the setting.
  • Big Bad: Shiwan Khan.
  • Big "NO!": Khan shouts this upon defeating him either on the Battlefield or after the Final Battle.
  • Blipvert: This occurs after winning the Final Battle.
  • Breaking Out: The Battlefield mini-playfield, a non-digital version of Breakout. When activated, the pinball bounces around the field, and the player must move a paddle left and right with the flipper buttons to make it hit various targets.
  • Character Title
  • Combos:
    Farley: Wow! (Three/four/five/six/seven)-way combo!
  • Empathic Weapon: The Phurba diverters, which the player controls with an alternate set of buttons to redirect pinballs.
  • Evil Laugh: The Shadow lets out one during Vengeance mode, and at the start of Shadow Multiball.
  • Match Sequence: A flashlight shines on a brick wall, with a match number in the center. As it sweeps left and right, the number changes, and The Shadow appears and laughs if a match occurs.
  • Medium Awareness: Quite a bit of it, thanks to the large amount of custom dialog.
  • Nobody Calls Me "Chicken"!: Sometimes, if the player fails the Match Sequence, the game will taunt:
    Farley: "Coward, chicken, sissy... Come on, play again!"
  • Not Quite Starring: Tim Kitzrow, who voices Lamont Cranston/The Shadow instead of Alec Baldwin.
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner: The Shadow says the page quote after you complete the Final Battle before Khan is defeated.
  • Say My Name: Between The Shadow/Lamont and Margo:
    "Shadow?" "Margo!"
    "Margo!" "Lamont?"
  • Secondary Adaptation: The game is based on the 1994 film adaptation of the radio show The Shadow.
  • Skill Shot: After plunging the ball, shoot the left ramp for an award; the diverters determine the award. The left side awards points, and the right side gives out a random award (Bonus multiplier, light Khan Multiball, Vengeance, etc.)
    The Shadow: "Excellent shot!"
  • Smart Bomb: Pull the trigger to destroy all of the Phurbas on the screen.
  • Spelling Bonus: Spelling M-O-N-G-O-L starts Mongol Hurry Up, while K-H-A-N increases the bonus multiplier and lights the side saucer for Khan Multiball.
  • Take That, Audience!:
    • After tilting:
    Khan: "You still think you can control the game with brute force?"
    • Also, Farley says "Flippers! Use the flippers!" if you drain the ball from the Battlefield without hitting a single target.
  • Thing-O-Meter: The "Hit-O-Meter" during "Farley Claymore".
  • Video Mode: "Duel of Wills": help The Shadow dodge the Phurbas that are being thrown at him.
  • Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: During Mongol Hurry-Up, you have to shoot either loop to collect the bonus score on the screen. If you pull the trigger, you receive three million points.
  • Wizard Mode: Final Battle, a five-ball multiball which is available after the player completes all of the scenes, defeats Khan at least once, and finishes both Shadow Multiball and Khan Multiball. The Battle itself is similar to "Eternal Life Multiball" in Indiana Jones — all of the targets are worth 10 million points, and hitting all of them (including the Battlefield) awards one billion points.
    The Shadow: "Congratulations. Prepare yourself, this is the Final Battle!"

The Shadow: "Finally, you've learned to control the pinball!"