Pinball machines are a lot of fun to play, but they can be expensive and take up a lot of room. With space at a premium, many enthusiasts are looking for smaller, more cost-effective alternatives such as table-top pinball machines. You might be asking what the best tabletop pinball machines are.
The 14 best tabletop pinball machines are:
- Brio Tabletop Pinball Game
- Marvel Avengers Tabletop Pinball Game
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens Tabletop Pinball Game
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Totally Turtles Tabletop Pinball
- Schylling Home Run Pinball Toy
- Tomy Astro Shooter Pinball Machine
- FPFF Mini Space Pinball Machine
- Tobar Space Pinball
- Buffalo Games Classic Pinball Game
- LEXiBOOK Table Electronic Pinball Game
- Trisquirrel Tabletop Pinball machine
- URBN-TOYS Space Flipper Machine – Galactic Edition
- Spiderman Tabletop Pinball Game
- Trisquirrel Electronic – Portable Pinball Machine
Tabletop pinball machines are smaller, cheaper, and as addictive as the real thing. Finding one that works well and feels like a real pinball machine makes all the difference. Great sounds and a challenging playfield that is fun to play, that keeps players returning for one more game.
What Are Tabletop Pinball Machines?
Tabletop pinball machines are essentially scaled-down versions of full-size pinball machines. They have fewer features, and due to their size and the materials used to make them, are a great deal cheaper than the pinball machines found in arcades worldwide.
Tabletop pinball machines are usually aimed at a younger target audience due to their simpler style of play and smaller build. Children find it easier to use a tabletop machine than a full-scale pinball cabinet, which are wider and taller. They are also substantially cheaper than full-size machines, you can pick one up for $20 – $200, whereas a full pinball cabinet can cost thousands of dollars.
There is also space to consider, a pinball cabinet is an investment in space too, whereas a tabletop machine can be played on a table, and then put away until the next use. This is a huge bonus when space needs to be a consideration, but also, the smaller sizes allow children to take their machines on trips with them.
Many tabletop pinball machines are battery-operated, rather than mains powered like a cabinet is. This is less energy-consuming and more cost-effective for players who only wish to use their machine sporadically.
How To Choose A Tabletop Pinball Machine
There are many factors to consider when choosing a tabletop pinball machine, such as the cost, size, genre or theme, and features available. Tabletop pinball machines are much cheaper than full-sized cabinets, but can still range in price, so you must consider how much you are willing to spend.
In regards to size, there are varying sizes available, although most are of a similar build to enable players to use them on a tabletop. Younger players will find thesesmaller playfields beneficial as they are much easier to play on than a large pinball machine.
If you enjoy a particular movie franchise or genre, then this can also be taken into consideration. Pinball manufacturers are adept at finding successful brands to tie in with their machines, and the Star Wars, Marvel, Minions, Spiderman, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles games are all perfect examples of this.
It is often true that you get what you pay for, but despite the average tabletop pinball machine being fairly low cost, many can be found that are of excellent build quality. The Brio Tabletop Pinball Game, for example, is made almost entirely of wood, feels sturdy to play, and is very well designed, qualities that many players look for in a new machine.
The Brio’s lack of sounds and lighting may be off-putting to some hardened pinball fans, but others find the quieter gameplay thatfocuses on point scoring a much more rewarding reason to play. Similarly, many pinball fans love the noise, the lights, and the frenetic bustle that pinball offers over many other games available.
The 14 Best Tabletop Pinball Machines On The Market
1. Brio Tabletop Pinball Game
One of the very few tabletop pinball games that use environmentally friendly materials is the superb Brio Table Top Pinball Game, a wooden pinball machine that sits perfectly on a table, and offers players a multitude of targets to aim for. The overriding first impression of the Brio pinball machine is just how sturdily build it is as it’s made almost entirely from wood.
Another key feature is its lack of electronic inner workings, the game has ramps, hidden tunnels, scoring targets, as well as scaling target scores, ranging from 10, 20, 50, and 100 points for the most difficult shots. The noise of the ball rolling on the wooden playfield is very similar to a real pinball machine, which just adds to the nostalgia factor.
The Brio Tabletop Pinball Game is ready to use right out of the box, no batteries are needed. The lack of flashing lights and noises is oddly comforting and very appealing and the game feels like a real pinball machine. The simple, yet clean playfield artwork is perfectly in tune with the machine.
If you’re looking for a well-built, elegant tabletop pinball machine, there are very few better on the market than the Brio, and at 34 cm wide, and 52.5 cm long, this wooden masterpiece should be a part of every pinball fans collection.
2. Marvel Avengers Tabletop Pinball Game
Pinball machine manufacturers have long known the appeal of bringing movie franchises to their pinball machines, and the Marvel Avengers Tabletop Pinball is no exception. Based on the Avengers universe, this colorful and engaging pinball game has Avengers on both the playfield and backglass.
An LCD keeps track of players’ scores, and with five targets to aim for, is the perfect starter pinball game for young players. Batteries do not come included, but you should invest in some as the sound effects are solid and make the game feel more engaging. Although you can play it without sounds, which should cheer nearby adults.
The Marvel Avengers Pinball game has a recommended age group of 36 months up to 50 years, which is probably accurate, as anyone can enjoy this solidly built and fun pinball game. If you are a fan of the hugely successful Avengers franchise, the appeal is clear to see.
3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens Tabletop Pinball Game
Playable with or without batteries, this classic Star Wars tabletop pinball machine is the perfect size for those looking to rediscover their love for pinball, without taking up an entire room. While batteries are needed for the sounds and lighting to work, it is well worth using them, as they really bring the game to life.
Fans of Star Wars, or pinball, will get a kick out of playing this tabletop game. With an LCD scorecard, the urge for just one more game as you try to beat the high score is overwhelming. Star Wars: The Force Awakens Tabletop Pinball is inexpensive, fun to play, appeals to all age groups, and is a great gift for any Star Wars fan.
The Star Wars: Force Awakens pinball game has images of Star Wars characters on the playfield and backglass, and there are laser blaster sounds that are emitted when the bumpers are struck.
4. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Totally Turtles Tabletop Pinball
A compact and bright pinball game set in the Teenage Ninja Turtles universe, this pinball machine is perfect for use where space is at a premium. The game has an LED scoring system on the backglass, as well as lighting and sound effects to keep children entertained for hours.
Due to its size, the Totally Turtles pinball game has only 2 flippers but does come with 5 central bumper targets and enough gameplay to keep players trying to beat the high score. The unit feels heavy enough that it holds position well, and the backglass flips down when not in use to protect the unit from damage.
Another nice touch is the integrated counter at the base of the pinball machine, every time a ball drops into the drain, you can move the counter up until 3 turns have been taken. This nice feature allows everyone to take the correct number of turns and avoids a high score being achieved after ball 7.
5. Schylling Home Run Pinball Toy
A different take on pinball, the Schylling Home Run Pinball Toy is less about racking up a high score by using flippers to keep a ball in play, and more about getting one of the 6 balls into cups on the playfield. Each cup, as well as the points available at the base of the board, are tallied up to see who has the highest score.
This fun, educational twist on classic pinball may not be a revolution in game design, but it does offer many great benefits. For a start, it’s quiet, which is great for parents who just want a little peace. It also forces children into adding up the score themselves, which is great for a little home-schooling while having fun.
Combined with the fact that the game is baseball-themed, this simple yet entertaining pinball toy is great for either playing at home or taking on road trips. It easily fits into a rucksack, isn’t too bulky, and has no external parts to lose.
A remake of a 70s classic, Home Run Pinball will bring back memories for those of a generation before Playstations and home computers, when games were based onhand-eye coordination, education, and family values.And while it doesn’t get much more American than Baseball, this vintage-looking pinball gamealso comes available in a Space Race theme, as well as a Curious George theme.
6. Tomy Astro Shooter Pinball Machine
A tabletop pinball masterclass by toymakers Tomy, the Astro Shooter Pinball Machine is a well-designed, engaging, and feature-packed addition to any pinball collection. Unlike many tabletop pinball games, the Astro Shooter is mains powered rather than battery-operated. Given the number of features on the playfield, this is a huge bonus.
Batteries would soon run out of juice maintaining the quality of sounds, music, and the vivid lighting on the playfield, including central lighting that goes haywire when a bonus is hit. This is a well-built and well-thought-out pinball machine.
The bumpers feel responsive, as do the flippers, and the playfield has a ramp where the ball disappears and then reappears at another point on the playfield, a much more elaborate setup than many other tabletop pinball machines.
Tomy has built the Astro Shooter to be as realistic as possible, given its size, and has done a great job in trying to recreate the feel and enjoyment of a real pinball machine in a much smaller case. While the addition of the AC adapter is noticeable, this game is feature-filled and well worth the cost.
7. FPFF Mini Space Pinball Machine
Built from environmentally friendly ABS materials, this special edition Mini Space Pinball machine is a 4-flipper space blaster of a pinball game that offers quality tabletop pinball that looks and feels great to play.
At 42 cm long and almost 25 cm wide, the Mini Space Pinball machine is longer than many of its contemporaries, which is great for making games last that little bit longer as players have the ball in play for longer, which helps the high scores too.
The machine is a bit of a battery guzzler, and requires 6x AA batteries, but offers a reasonably long battery life. The lights and sounds that the game emits are engaging, so investing in batteries is worth it. Mini Space Pinball is aimed at ages 8 and above, and given its excellent gameplay, all ages should appreciate playing this entertaining game.
8. Tobar Space Pinball
The Tobar Space pinball machine is the only pinball game on our list that has multi-ball. This space-themed 80s remake is a retro classic that has 6 bumpers and 8 arcade sound effects to make it stand out as a very worthwhile purchase.
A classic scoreboard utilizes rotating drums to keep track of each point scored, and the 6 bumpers are bright, feel responsive when struck, and are spaced far enough apart that keeping the ball at the business end of the playfield feels achievable.
While there is little to differentiate the Tobar Space Pinball machine from many other tabletop pinball machines, the Tobar machine stands out for its clutter-free playfield.The responsiveness of the flippers makes the player feel in control, and the build quality is excellent.
9. Buffalo Games Classic Pinball Game
If 3 balls aren’t enough to get the high score, Buffalo Games Classic Pinball Game may be the answer to your prayers, as this wooden variation on classic pinball has 10 balls to use every game to reach the highest scores possible.
Classic Pinball has multiple scoring methods, including getting balls into scoring zones, jumping ramps, and hitting targets. The artwork is very bowling alley-like, which looks great on the wooden playfield, and offers a very unique take on tabletop pinball.
Customer reviews for the Classic Pinball Game are excellent as there is a real joy to be found in non-electronic games. The feeling of playing a game that is devoid of sounds and lights, with no screens or monitors in sight, is very rewarding to play.
The machine is aimed at players aged 8+, which is fair, as there is no glass over the playfield, and with younger players, there is no way to stop them from removing the balls and potentially choking. Older players should love this toned-down version of pinball, however, it is worth shopping around, as prices can vary.
10. LEXiBOOK Table Electronic Pinball Game
A superb-looking tabletop pinball machine that has a 1950s-themed playfield and backglass. The LEXiBOOK Table Electronic Pinball game is a 4-flipper, 5-bumper machine that offers hours of entertainment at a great price.
As well as the great lighting effects and sounds you would expect from a pinball game, the LEXiBOOK has two sets of stands so you can choose the perfect angle to play from. The scoreboard is digital and sits on an attractive backglass that again gives a 50s fast-food joint vibe that really adds to the overall look and feel of this great game.
Should you wish to play without music or sound effects, there is a button to enable the game to be played without it, as well as a reset button for the high score. A 2-year warranty comes with the LEXiBOOK, which is great value too, should your machine break.
11. Trisquirrel tabletop Pinball machine
A super-bright playfield and an excellent arcade soundtrack make the Trisquirrel Table Electronic Pinball game a great addition to any pinball fans collection. The electronic scoreboard is bright and tracks your points well. Each point scored brings yet another sound effect, which heightens the players’ need to keep scoring.
The machine tracks how many times the ball falls into the drain, making this a realistic 3-ball pinball game. The flippers also have an impressive vibration that kicks in every time the ball hits one, which gives this game an authentic pinball quality to it.
Just like the best pinball games, this oneis as addictive as they come, which means the Trispuirrel Tabletop Pinball Machine can be enjoyed by all age groups. The unit itself is well built and feels robust enough for the usual frenetic tapping that flippers often receive.
12. URBN-TOYS Space Flipper Machine – Galactic Edition
The URBN-TOYS Space Flipper pinball game differs slightly from our other selections in that it is also able to be a freestanding unit, much like an original pinball machine. The game comes with 4 legs that can be attached, or removed to place the playfield onto a tabletop, which offers real value as it can entertain children as they grow too.
In this space-themed pinball game, there are 2 large speakers inside the backglass that go off as well as the lighting when points are scored. The game itself is referred to as a 2-in-1 game, but this refers to it either being used as a freestanding game or on a tabletop, which could be misleading.
13. Spiderman Tabletop Pinball Game
Spiderman is another great franchise that pinball has made use of over the years, and this web-fuelled beauty is no exception. With an assortment of spiderman sound effects, an electronic scoreboard below the playfield, and a cool-looking playfield, Spiderman pinball will be a hit with fans of the webbed wonder.
Very similar to the Marvel Avengers Pinball game, the Spiderman Tabletop Pinball Game is almost identical in playstyle and features. Fans of the genre will enjoy playing the game, and at last count, around 5 tabletop pinball machines are using the same build that sport a different franchise, ranging from Spiderman, Avengers, Minions, and others.
This solid pinball game is a worthy addition to this list, if only due to the excellent artwork, and the obvious fan attachment that Spiderman brings with it. The 5 bumpers respond well when struck, although they can be occasionally hit and miss, as merely brushing past the target with the ball sometimes causes no additional score to be added. Overall, it’s a great game.
14. Trisquirrel Electronic – Portable Pinball Machine
The Trisquirrel Electronic Pinball Game is truly the most portable pinball game on our list. It’s a fully self-contained pinball game that is perfect for long travels or for taking on vacation. With an electronic scoreboard to keep track of high scores, this portable pinball machine uses 3 AA batteries and has 5 targets on a space-themed playfield.
The playfield itself is quite small, but the design and build quality are excellent. Given that the Trisquirrel is built as a travel game, it is hardly a fault that can be picked at. The flippers are responsive, and the scoreboard is set on the backglass, and is very large, giving players a sense thatshort, rapid games are the aim, with as high a score as possible the target.
Pinball will always be loved by fans, but buying and having space for a pinball cabinet is impossible for many people. Tabletop pinball machines can solve this problem. While they often lack features of full-sized machines, they can still bring hours of joy to all ages, at a fraction of the cost.