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Pinball / X-Men (Stern)

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The Ultimate Mutant Battle Begins!

Wolverine: "Back off, bub."

X-Men is an arcade pinball machine designed by John Borg and illustrated by Kevin O'Connor and Stephen Jensen. It was released in 2012 by Stern Pinball.

In this game, the player must assemble eight of Professor Xavier's X-Men, then lead them to triumph against their various enemies. Catch Nightcrawler as he teleports around the field, ricochet pinballs against Gambit's playing cards, then slide down Iceman's ramp and brawl with Wolverine. Start Magneto Multiball and get past his magnetic defenses to challenge the Brotherhood, then go up against the Hellfire Club, Sabretooth, the Shadow King, Omega Red, the Juggernaut, and the Sentinels. Chain your teammates together in powerful Combos, then test their mettle in the Danger Room and against Dark Phoenix in a point-scoring frenzy.

In addition to the basic "Pro" table, X-Men was also available in Wolverine Blue and Magneto Red Limited Editions. Along with custom backbox translite art and color-coordinated metalwork, these games included a magnetic spinning disc and a swing-out Ice Slide that sends balls across the playfield. Fan consensus is that while X-Men is a solid game and one of Stern's top titles, the amateurish voice work and incomplete software hold it back from greatness. There's also some dispute over whether the Limited Edition extras help or hinder the game, with some finding them to be clumsy additions that detract somewhat from the gameplay.


Not to be confused with the X-Men Digital Pinball Table from Zen Pinball.

The X-Men pinball table demonstrates the following tropes:

  • Absurdly Sharp Blade: Wolverine's claws are shown slicing through the playfield and gouging the sides of his Limited Edition backbox.
  • An Ice Person: Iceman, naturally.
  • Anime Hair/Hotblooded Sideburns: Sported by Wolverine, and especially noticeable in the artwork for his LE table.
  • Badass Cape/Cool Helmet: Magneto is never seen without his signature helmet and crimson cape.
  • Badass Longcoat: Worn by Gambit.
  • Bald of Awesome: Professor Xavier is shown in his signature hairless glory.
  • Battle Aura: Phoenix, of course.
  • Big Good: Professor Xavier, of course. The premise of the game is to assemble eight of his X-Men, then lead them to triumph against their various enemies.
  • Combos: Making combos of various X-Men sequences will give assorted bonus points, along with Idiosyncratic Combo Levels for the pair. Examples include "Savage Animals" (Beast and Wolverine), "Teacher's Pet" (Cyclops and Xavier), "Brain Freeze" (Xavier and Iceman), and "Lover's Triangle" (Storm, Phoenix, Cyclops, Wolverine).
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  • Death Dealer: Gambit, whose energized playing cards are featured on the pop bumpers.
  • Deflector Shields: Magneto uses his magnetic powers to capture and deflect pinballs before they can strike him.
  • Eye Beams: Cyclops uses these to attack.
  • Fiery Redhead: Done literally with Phoenix, thanks to her Phoenix Force aura.
  • Large Ham: Many of the characters, but Shadow King and Magneto are the biggest offenders.
    Shadow King: "Now witness the dawn of homo superior!"
  • Limited Special Collector's Ultimate Edition: As noted in the description, X-Men was available in Wolverine Blue and Magneto Red Limited Editions, featuring custom translite art, color-coordinated metalwork, a magnetic spinning disc and a swing-out Ice Slide. 250 tables of each version were made.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: X-Men has one of the largest casts in a Pinball game, with nearly fifty characters making appearances, many of them voiced.
  • Match Sequence: Colossus holds up the robot head of a Sentinel, then throws it towards the player. It explodes, leaving behind a few parts that spell the match number.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent / Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping / What the Hell Is That Accent?: Let's just say that the voice acting on this game is all over the board. It's especially noticeable on Storm (who sounds like she's 17) and Gambit and Rogue (whose voices sound like they were done by people who have only a vague idea about what a Cajun and Mississippi accent, respectively, are supposed to sound like).
  • Popularity Power: Wolverine, who not only has a dedicated "bash toy" on the playfield, but also a Limited Edition table.
  • P.O.V. Cam: During "Weapon X Multiball," the display shows Logan's view as he runs down the corridors of the Weapon X facility and fights the guards in his way.
  • Shock and Awe: Magneto is shown throwing bright red electrical bolts around his Limited Edition table.
  • Skill Shot: Soft plunge the ball to the upper right flipper, then shoot either the Rogue lane or the left ramp for an X-Men cameo (Psylocke and Angel, respectively).
  • Villainous Glutton: The Shadow King is shown as an obese bald man.
  • Wizard Mode: The game features two sub-Wizard Modes and a final Wizard Mode:
    • "Danger Room" is the sub-Wizard Mode available after completing all of the X-Men's modes. This is a four-ball multiball mode, where the goal is to hit every major shot twice, then shoot the Blackbird scoop and collect the Super Jackpot.
    • "Dark Phoenix" is the sub-Wizard Mode for completing all of the Villains' modes. Jean goes mad with power and lights up (nearly) every target on the table. With a single ball, hit every lit target twice for a progressively increasing Jackpot, then shoot the Blackbird scoop and collect the Super Jackpot.
    • There is also supposed to be a final Wizard Mode, but it is currently Dummied Out with a "Multiball Wizard Mode" placeholder text.
  • Wolverine Publicity: Deadpool was teased in the initial game menus, but did not appear until an early 2014 software update. If the player can make a certain number of Combos, Deadpool appears during various Villain Modes and increases the amount of damage the player inflicts.

Wolverine: "You're gonna have to do better than that against me!"

Alternative Title(s): X Men


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