White Water is a 1993 pinball machine by Williams Electronics, designed by Dennis Nordman with artwork by John Youssi. It's based around white-water rafting — navigating around boulders, exploring river caverns, and plunging over waterfalls. It has a variety of modes to compliment this, like distracting Bigfoot to sneak inside his cave, getting a gold rush, and surviving the Whirlpool Challenge. The ultimate goal is to visit hazards in order to advance your raft down the river and reach Wet Willie's River Ranch, which in turn lets you complete Wet Willie's mode.
White Water was formerly available for The Pinball Arcade until the license for the Williams and Bally tables expired on July 1, 2018. Another digital version was released for Pinball FX3 as part of Volume 4 of its Williams Collection.
A sequel, Yukon Yeti, was announced by deeproot Pinball in 2020. According to the slide presented◊, it is set during the Klondike Gold Rush of the 1890s. Nordman and Robert Mueller are set to design the machine.
This pinball demonstrates the following tropes:
- Action Pet: Wet Willie's dog, who accompanies his trips with an enthusiastic smile.
- Agony of the Feet: The Bigfoot Hotfoot, where you distract Bigfoot by lighting a match between his toes and sneak into his cave.
- Alliterative Name: Aside from the title itself, many of the in-game locations have alliterative names, such as Disaster Drop, Boomerang Bend, and Wet Willie's River Ranch.
- Alliterative Title
- Are We There Yet?: Said word-for-word when you're one step away from reaching Wet Willie's.
- Balance Buff: A fan-made balance patch, which is the standard for modern competitions, increases the starting amount for Man Overboard from 20 million to 25 million.
- Bigfoot, Sasquatch and Yeti: Bigfoot shows up on the playfield, sending any balls that come near into the whirlpool. You can distract him to get into his cave, though.
- Black Comedy: When you fail Man Overboard, Wet Willie will say "Dang, lost another one!"
- Blipvert: The animation for the Vacation Jackpot has bits and pieces of several other animations in the game.
- Creator Cameo:
- Easter Egg: When the Extra Ball is lit, Wet Willie will say "Get the extra ball!" However, there is a very small chance he will instead say "Get the extra ball... YA WIENER!"
- Everything's Better with Cows:
- Pressing the left button 3 times, the start button once, the right button 15 times, the start button once, the left button 23 times, and the start button once during Attract Mode reveals a cow.
- The fifth item in Bigfoot's Hotfoot is a cow.
- When the cow in Bigfoot's Cave has been collected, getting the Mystery Canyon as a Whirlpool Award will show a picture of the Spirit pulling a string on the legless cow. A loud "moo" is heard.
- The animation after shooting Disaster Drop has a cow show up as a Freeze-Frame Bonus.
- If a player collects the items from Bigfoot's Cave before completing the Boulder Garden, the next Boulder Garden award is "Secret of the Cow" (instead of "Secret of the River").
- Mind Screw: Get the ever-valuable Vacation Jackpot and the machine goes quiet, then sounds a fire alarm, rapidly shows frames and sound bites from other animations in the game, then tells you the amount of points you earned. Also, keep in mind that there is a mod for the game that turns the colors on the DMD display into what they would be like in real life. If you've somehow collected the VJ, it becomes even more of a Mind Screw - plus a light show to boot.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus:
- Shooting Disaster Drop nets an animation that has a cow show up very briefly.
- After collecting a flashlight at the lower left scoop, DOHO can be seen at the top left corner of the display.
- Golden Snitch: The 5x Playfield award can be this. Stack it with multiball, Bigfoot Hotfoot, Wet Willie's, or even a high-numbered Advance Raft for some big points quickly.
- Gotta Catch Them All: Getting the Gold Rush requires three items obtained from hitting the Lost Mines: the flashlight, map, and key.
- I Don't Like the Sound of That Place: Most of the area names, like Insanity Falls, Spine Chiller, and Disaster Drop.
- The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: The items you get from Bigfoot's cave."Hey, a flashlight!"
"Hey, a map!"
"Hey, a key!"
"Hey, a camera!"
"Hey, a... COW?!"
- Match Sequence: Bigfoot goes bowling, but with digits instead of bowling pins. He knocks down all but two digits, which form the match.
- Nature Spirit: The Spirit of the River, which awards a random value.
- Neon Sign Hideout: The entrance to the Lost Mine has a sign over it reading, "Lost Mine here".
- No Indoor Voice: Wet Willie himself.
- Obvious Rule Patch: On the earliest ROM revisions, 5x Playfield stacked geometrically with the Double or Triple jackpots in multiball (i.e. making them 10x and 15x). This was fixed pretty quickly to always award 5x the base jackpot value while running.
- Progressive Jackpot: Subverted with the Vacation Jackpot. For every game where it's not collected, the value of it increases by 10,000 points. The base value of it is 200 million points, though.
- Punny Name/Stealth Pun: Wet Willie.
- Say Your Prayers: Said word-for-word when reaching Class 6 River.
- Score Multiplier: 5x Playfield is the last Whirlpool award. It multiplies pretty much any scoring by 5x for 25 seconds. The only exceptions are the Vacation Jackpot and in multiball, it will not stack with Double or Triple jackpots; it will just award 5x the base Jackpot while it's running.
- Secret Underground Passage: There's a small and barely-visible Secret Passage near the top of the playfield. It's usually only accessible via a soft shot up the left orbit, and making it automatically advances the raft.Willie: "Hey, you found the Secret Passage!"
- Skill Shot: Gently plunge the ball so that it lands next to the upper-right flipper, and then shoot Insanity Falls for one million points. It also increases each time the player makes a skill shot.
- Title Drop: A very memorable one occurs at the start of Whitewater Multiball.
- Variable Mix: New parts get added to the main gameplay theme when you get closer to Wet Willie's River Ranch.
- Video Game Cruelty Potential: When "Man Overboard" activates, most experienced players choose not to save him and just watch him flailing away down the river until time runs out, upon which he presumably drowns. This is because they don't want to risk losing the ball for a relatively small reward, and there is no penalty for failing "Man Overboard."
- Wizard Mode:
- Though it doesn't fit the conventional form of a Wizard Mode, White Water has two stages comparable to a sub-Wizard Mode and a final Wizard Mode.
- Advancing the raft to Wet Willie's River Ranch starts "Wet Willie's," a quasi-sub-Wizard Mode. It begins with the player visiting all seven Hazards, whereupon he has 25 seconds to hit a single roving Hazard, which changes every few seconds. The game rewards 100 million for completing Wet Willie's; after the mode ends, the raft is reset to the start of the river.
- The hardest goal in the game is completing the Vacation Planner. This requires the player to raise the River Class to Class VI, start "Wet Willie's" at some point during the game, collect all six Whirlpool Awards from the Boulder Garden, and lock three balls in No Way Out. The pinball machine will go dead, pause, sound a fire alarm, display a Blipvert barrage of random animation frames, then rewards a free game and the Vacation Jackpot, which starts at 200 million points. Unlike a Wizard Mode, however, there's nothing to do — simply locking the balls is enough to collect the Vacation Jackpot.
- Go With The Flow!