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How did Bally come up with the name for the first pinball game it produced: Ballyhoo?

Bally’s first pinball game took its name and design from a popular humor magazine called Ballyhoo. Ray Maloney saw the magazine at a vendor’s stall on the streets of Chicago. Ballyhoo magazine was published from 1931-39. See below the resemblance between the magazine design and the pinball game.


Pinball without a Flipper?

In certain states like Wisconsin, back in the 1940’s and 50’s, it was considered gambling to plunge a ball as it changed the game from one of skill to one of chance. Consequentially, balls had to be rolled by hand on top of the playfield glass and then drop onto the playfield via an opening at the very top of the game. A specially designed glass overhand at the top prevented players from reaching into the game and launching their balls unfairly.

Which pinball game was inspired by Playboy?

To capitalize on the rapidly growing Hefner phenomenon, Playboy, Dave Gottlieb came up with his version of it called, Party Girls. After several meaningful conversations with his staff, he realized that name might conjure up something a bit earthier than he intended. When the game was finally released it went by the name, Slick Chick, and featured two bunny-eared, scantily clad femme fatales in the foreground.


Flipper Facts

Did you know that the first pinball machines used bats instead of flippers?



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