Designer: Mike Kubin
Art: Bob Timm
Added to my collection: September 13, 2019
Current Condition : Working 100%
I honestly don't know a lot about the solid-state pins from Stern in the 80s. Most of the games I played back in the day were Bally and Williams pins (with an occasional Gottleib thrown in (Black Hole and Haunted House were pretty popular back then). Until around 2015, I had never even heard of Seawitch. I played it a couple of times, and added it to the lineup on my virtual pinball machine, but I never really thought about buying one. Apparently, it's a pretty popular game. Just not one I never encountered back in my arcade days.
The layout is pretty cool. The signature shot is an upper loop that goes through a spinner. It's a fun shot to make...but the alignment of the upper flippers to the loop is so tight that it's a really hard shot to make. It can be a pretty satisfying game to play, but the inability to hit the loop with regularity makes it a little frustrating and kind of wrecks the flow.
In 2018, Stern resurrected the Seawitch playfield layout for their new Beatles pinball machine. They made some minor tweaks to improve the flow (and modernize it a bit). I think that this has probably been the reason that Seawitch has seen an uptick in popularity recently. (It's way cheaper than The Beatles.)
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Was I in the market for another pinball machine? No. Did I need another one? Nope. But here we are.
My friend Mike, who I got into the coin-op hobby by selling him my Centipede machine years ago, recently got a job in Atlanta. He didn't want to move his games, so he was selling them off. He asked if I wanted Seawitch and he made me an offer I couldn't refuse. So, now I own a Seawitch.
It's in great shape overall. The cabinet is solid, and the playfield has very little wear. The backglass is flaking, and has one smal spot where the art has peeled completely, but it's still pretty decent. I cleaned it up and put new rubber on it, and it plays like a champ--although the ball tends to whack the glass a lot, and it sometimes bounces over the flippers. Don't know if that's something that's common on this game or not.
The one thing that needs replacing is is the Player 3 score display--it's a bit fluttery. But that's cheap and easy.
I'm having fun with the game for now. But it might be one that gets moved at some point to make way for a pin that I want more.
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Solid-state pins are easier to work on than EMs (at least for me). So far, nothing has gone wrong with this one (knock wood), and I have the manual. So I should be good to go for now.
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