The Top Ten Video Pinball Games in the History of the Universe (Part 5 of 10): Metroid Prime Pinball

By: Krooze L-Roy

Click HERE for the Rest of the List

#6 – Metroid Prime Pinball

It’s inevitable. Every successful franchise does it eventually. From Rosanne winning the lottery to Steve Urkel creating a machine that made him cool, jumping the shark, like death and taxes, is a fact of life that we all must try to come to terms with.

Video games too suffer this fate; the major difference is that video games traditionally have no shame about making that jump. Solid Snake sees absolutely nothing wrong with fistfighting cuddly cartoon characters. Mario races go-carts against an infant version of HIMSELF without so much as batting an eye. Hell, Mega Man has based his entire career on jumping the shark; he’s practically humping the big fish.

But the Metroid series, which previously had been the only Nintendo franchise handled with seriousness and dignity, seemed untouchable. It would never, could never, jump the shark.

Welcome to Metroid Prime Pinball. Yep.

Snide comments aside, this game is the real deal. Not only does it contain high quality objective-based pinball action, it also makes great use of the Metroid name, however ill-advised it might be.

There are basically two full-featured tables, supplemented by a few boss tables. The boss tables are a bit more involved than in say, Kirby’s Pinball Land, and add challenge by the fact that your ball can actually die. No, I don’t mean that the bosses can try to knock your ball down the gutters, I mean that the ball (which is actually Samus in sphere mode) has it’s own health meter that must be tended to. This will be irksome for pinball purists, but other than the final boss, you really don’t need to be too concerned about getting killed.

The other minor gripe that these pinball puritans might have with the game is the battle segments, wherein Samus changes out of ball form for some shooting madness. These sections can be pretty intense and difficult, and they tend to be a tad too frequent. Luckily, if you get mauled by enemies during these bonus games, it has no effect on your overall health. You simply don’t get the points.


Now don’t get the wrong idea here. I’m well aware that all I’ve done is criticize and make fun of the game, but I simply wanted to give fair warning to those who prefer there pinball to be as pure as the fallen snow. This isn’t a game for them.

The truth is that the game is excellent, with the best physics yet seen in a handheld pin game. This is the perfect game for those who see pinball as pointless and repetitive (of course, those people probably aren’t going to be reading this list, but that’s beside the point). And despite the fact that the game is objective-based, hardcore fans of the silver ball will still find themselves trying to best their high score.

Best Table: Tallon Overworld

Also check out: Mario Pinball Land. Check it out from afar, that way you can keep a safe distance from it. It sucks.

Click HERE for the Rest of the List


~ by Krooze L-Roy on October 6, 2007.

2 Responses to “The Top Ten Video Pinball Games in the History of the Universe (Part 5 of 10): Metroid Prime Pinball”

  1. […] #6 – Metroid Prime Pinball […]

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