THE STRONG NATIONAL MUSEUM OF PLAY

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      THE STRONG NATIONAL MUSEUM OF PLAY

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      My trip took me to The Strong’s National Museum of Play located in Rochester NY.

      The Strong’s museum is dedicated to play of all kinds and has the world’s most comprehensive collection of toys, dolls, board games, video games, other electronic games, books, documents, and other historical materials related to play.

      Pinball Playfields is a permanent exhibit that arose because the museum had too many machines for their arcade to display.

      The Pinball Playfields exhibit
      The Pinball Playfields exhibit

      Admission to the museum is $15. The arcade and pinball exhibit’s playable machines use tokens, which are five for $1.00. All the machines are one token per game.

      I first found my way to the arcade which is on the second floor, there were two machines amongst the video games. Stern’s Iron Man and Gottlieb’s The Amazing Spider-Man.

      The pinball exhibit is on the first floor; it’s best to ask for directions for it’s not easy to find.

      Along with the pinball machines is an interesting display of sketches for William’s Indiana Jones game, designed by Mark Ritchie. It is one of many original sketches donated to the museum by Williams.

      The playfield drawing for Indiana Jones
      The playfield drawing for Indiana Jones

      Next to the drawings are three machine for display purposes; Whiffle, World’s Fair Jigsaw, and Humpty Dumpty.

      Illustrating pinball's evolution
      Illustrating pinball’s evolution

      Also of interest is George Gomez’s whitewood of The Lord of The Rings by Stern.

      Whitewood of The Lord of the Rings
      Whitewood of The Lord of the Rings

      My research shows the selection of machines they have for play rotates. On my visit they had:

      Fireball (Bally)

      The Incredible Hulk (Gottlieb)

      Flight 2000 (Stern)

      Funhouse (Williams)

      Haunted House (Gottlieb)

      The Addams Family (Bally)

      Monster Bash (Williams)

      Starship Troopers (Sega)

      Star Wars (Data East)

      The Wizard of Oz, Emerald City LE (Jersey Jack)

      Revenge From Mars (Bally)

      Game of Thrones, LE (Stern)

      The Avengers, Premium (Stern)

      Black Knight (Williams)

      Challenger (Gottlieb)

      Ghost Busters (Stern)

      Spider-Man (Stern)

      Hercules (Atari)

      Metallica, Premium (Stern)

      Star Trek, Pro (Stern)

      Super Mario Bros. Mushroom World (Gottlieb)

      Superman (Atari)

      Transformers, Pro (Stern)

      Video Pinball (Atari)

      Star Wars (Stern)

      Star Trek: The Next Generation (Williams)

      Pinballs in the play area
      Pinballs in the play area
      The Stern collection
      The Stern collection
      Challenger, Black Knight 2000 and Revenge from Mars
      Challenger, Black Knight 2000 and Revenge from Mars

      I found all the machines to be in excellent condition and played well despite the abuse they received from all the kids. I also found all the machines to have a low tilt level which allowed liberal use of English.

      Games available to play
      Games available to play
      Hercules pinball
      Hercules pinball

      My visit was on a week day, I found it not too crowded and was able to play all the games at my leisure.

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