Pro Pinball: The Web
Congratulations To The Bods At Empire, who have officially produced the one millionth computer pinball game for the pc (counting 21st Century's 993.000 efforts as separate games, of course). As such they are the happy winners of a lifetime's supply of ready-to-eat chicken sweepings and a free packet of novelty dog condoms in the flavour and colour of their choice. Life just doesn't get any better than this.
v Please Sir, I want some more
Pro Pinball: The Web, to give it its formal title, is the first in what shows every sign of being a fairly lengthy series of pinball games. Hence the 'Pro Pinball' bit at the front. In future, the discerning computer game purchaser will be able to spot all the others in the series by this astute identification device.
Unlike most computer pinball games, it features just one table. Wait, don't turn the page. It only features one table because the designer wanted to give his utmost, to concentrate his entire feelings for the game in this one. perfect table. So that the table itself almost comes to represent all pinball tables. It is the pinball table we see in our hearts. It is the universal pinball table - it is pinball itself. We become as one with the table, the table becomes a part of us. Or maybe there's just more money in it this way.
Life with flippers
Pro Pinball: The Web is a seriously good pinball game. The designer is pinball bonkers, and it shows. Okay so there may just be the one table, but it plays the best game of pinball yet seen on a computer. It's based on wide-bodied Williams tables, which admittedly means sod all to me. but should mean something to his fellow flipper merchants (no, not Japanese fishermen). It's what's generally known as 'feature-packed'. with targets, grab magnets, drop targets, sinkholes, an auto plunger, loops, three flippers, two ramps and God alone knows what else. The table is viewed in its entirety, and can be viewed from six different viewpoints at many different resolutions, including a rather impressive 1024x768, with 32.000 colours. There's a realistic dot matrix display, sampled speech and loads of sub-games which are triggered by following instructions very carefully and performing all sorts of tricky little tasks. You even get little arcade games popping up at the top and there can be up to six balls in simultaneous multiplay - and it still moves like Salman Rushdie down Tehran High Street.
It has a set of music tracks to go with it which have been written specially for the game by Jake Burns (from Stiff Little Fingers, who should have retired straight after Suspect Device) and Bruce Foxton (the one from The Jam with the second worst haircut after the drummer). Some people might describe the music as 'kicking' (Features Ed Chris absolutely loved it). We like to call it smoochy. (But we're very rough in bed.)
So it's very realistic (for example, you can nudge the table from either side as well as the bottom), and a bit of a looker. I'd have preferred, say. three views each of two tables for my money, but that doesn't alter the fact that the one you do get is very good indeed.
Download Pro Pinball: The Web
Systems: Windows 9x, Windows 2000 Windows XP, Vista, Win 7, Win 8, Win 10.
Game features:Single game mode