DUTCH PINBALL OPEN EXPO 2019

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      DUTCH PINBALL OPEN EXPO 2019

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      After several years occupying the De Vene Voorst in Drunen, for 2019 the annual Dutch Pinball Open Expo (DPO Expo) moved to a new location in the north-east of the country. The venue was IJsselhallen, a large exhibition and conference complex in the city of Zwolle.

      IJsselhallen Zwolle
      IJsselhallen Zwolle

      The original intention of the Dutch Pinball Association (Nederlandse Flipper Vereniging) was to move the DPO around the country so that most areas would have it hosted somewhere close to them every few years. However, apart from the anniversary show in Eindhoven in 2017, the DPO (or latterly the DPO Expo) has stayed in Drunen since the show was held there in 2013.

      The IJsselhallen complex is far larger than the DPO Expo could fill, so the show only occupied the western end of the building, taking over two halls and the entrance lobby.

      The rest of the IJsselhallen Zwolle building
      The rest of the IJsselhallen Zwolle building

      There was plenty of parking on-site, although there was a €6 charge per in/out session. Limited catering facilities were available inside, but there was a Jumbo supermarket a short walk away, while the city centre and a variety of restaurants, shops and bars was around 15 minutes away on foot.

      Inside the IJsselhallen entrance hall were two screens giving information about the show schedule in Dutch and English, and a guide to the venue’s layout.

      Information screens in the lobby
      Information screens in the lobby

      There were two game halls packed full of machines and vendors. The nearest one to the entrance was called the Suyderseezaal so let’s start our tour of the show in there.

      The Suycerseezaal
      The Suycerseezaal

      We got to the venue late on Friday afternoon (due to flight delays) while games and stands were still being set up.

      Setting up machines in the first hall
      Setting up machines in the first hall
      There was a lot of work done setting everything up in time for the opening on Saturday morning
      There was a lot of work done setting everything up in time for the opening on Saturday morning

      Meanwhile more hard work was taking place in the second hall – Hanzezaal.

      The Hanzezaal
      The Hanzezaal
      Machines waiting to be set up
      Machines waiting to be set up
      Lots of pinballs in this second hall
      Lots of pinballs in this second hall

      Those who volunteered to help set up games were rewarded with dinner in the venue’s canteen on Friday evening.

      A hot dinner for the workers
      A hot dinner for the workers
      Enjoying their well-earned dinner
      Enjoying their well-earned dinner

      It wasn’t too long before the machines were all on their legs and the show really began to take shape.

      The first hall
      The first hall
      The second hall
      The second hall
      Some of the DPO tournament machines in the second hall
      Some of the DPO tournament machines in the second hall
      More DPO tournament machines
      More DPO tournament machines
      Some of the Classic Tournament machines
      Some of the Classic Tournament machines

      The entry desks were positioned in the lobby to the left of the information screens. Pre-purchased entry packages could be collected at one table while on-the-day entry was purchased at the other. These were still being set up on Friday evening too.

      The two entry desks
      The two entry desks

      To the right of the entry desk were three additional areas. One was for game repairs where non-working pinballs could be taken to be worked on in peace away from the show floor. Outside that room was a desk staffed by medical staff in case of any human emergencies, while next to that was the seminar area where talks would be given on Saturday.

      The seminars area
      The seminars area

      We left for the night, returning early on Saturday morning before the doors opened to the public at 10am. There was still a little work to do before visitors could enter, but the large team of volunteers was working hard to make it all ready in time.

      The final few machines arrived on Saturday morning
      The final few machines arrived on Saturday morning
      A little glass-cleaning and the show is ready to open
      A little glass-cleaning and the show is ready to open

      The cost to enter the DPO Expo was €15 ($16.55/£12.88) per day, although advance packs could be purchased giving entry for both days, a special T-shirt and a poster for €50.

      Guests received a different-coloured wristband each day
      Guests received a different-coloured wristband each day

      Additional entry fees applied if you wanted to participate in the various tournaments. They were €20 for the DPO, €10 for the Ladies Tournament, and €3 per entry for the Classic Tournament (with multiple entries allowed). The Kids Tournament was free to enter, while Sunday’s Swiss Tournament for those not involved in the DPO play-offs cost €5 to enter.

      Some of the first visitors are welcomed by NFV members
      Some of the first visitors are welcomed by NFV members

      Once past the entry desk, visitors could buy posters, reprinted flyers or back copies of the Dutch Pinball Association (NFV) members’ magazine, Spinner.

      Spinner magazine, flyers, posters and more
      Spinner magazine, flyers, posters and more

      Additional posters were displayed on a line in the corridor beyond.

      Game flyer posters were displayed and available to buy
      Game flyer posters were displayed and available to buy for €5
      Some of the flyer posters
      Some of the flyer posters, with a discount if you bought five

      Also in the corridor was the stand for Jonathan Joosten’s Pinball Magazine.

      The Pinball Magazine stand in the corridor
      The Pinball Magazine stand in the corridor

      He was selling copies of the current and previous issues along with the book Pinball and photographic posters. He was also giving away free flyers for recent titles from Stern Pinball, American Pinball and Chicago Gaming, and brought along his Total Nuclear Annihilation machine for visitors to play.

      Some of the Pinball Magazine posters available to buy
      Some of the Pinball Magazine posters available to buy

      As soon as the show opened, the newest titles were predictably the most popular, with lines quickly forming to play them. The Elvira’s House of Horrors Limited Edition was right next to the entrance to the first hall and – with it being the first chance for many to play the game – it soon became the most popular game in the room.

      Some of the newest titles
      Some of the newest titles
      Elvira's House of Horrors was especially popular
      Elvira’s House of Horrors was especially popular
      Not all the machines were the latest release though, as there were plenty of classics
      Not all the machines were the latest release though, as there were plenty of classics

      There were several vendors in the first hall. Christophe Lienard of Pinball Pleasure had his stand selling new Jersey Jack machines as well as custom glass covers, T-shirts, cabinet artwork and other accessories.

      Christophe Lienard of Pinball Pleasure
      Christophe Lienard of Pinball Pleasure
      Glass covers to keep the dust of your JJP game
      Glass covers to keep the dust of your JJP game

      In the left-corner of the room were four video pinballs. Building your own video pinball would be discussed at length in three of the four seminars held in the lobby later on Saturday.

      Two full-size video pinballs
      Two full-size video pinballs
      Two mini video pinballs with DPO Expo branding
      Two mini video pinballs with DPO Expo branding

      The vendor with the largest stand was Pinball Universe who also brought along a large number of machines for free play or to be used in the tournaments. They also had two of the new Atari Pong sit-down arcade games.

      Atari Pong games on the Pinball Universe stand
      Atari Pong games on the Pinball Universe stand

      Pinball Universe had a big selection of parts on their stand from their parts division PU-parts which included many reductions and special show prices. If we’d had more luggage space on our flight home we would have happily bought a lot more of these than we did.

      Some of the parts packs from PU-parts
      Some of the parts packs from PU-parts
      Along with pinball basics such as balls and posts, PU-parts had lots of game mods
      Along with pinball basics such as balls and posts, PU-parts had lots of game mods
      A stack of game manuals you could buy at the Pinball Universe stand
      A stack of game manuals you could buy at the Pinball Universe stand
      Some of the machines brought by Pinball Universe
      Some of the machines brought by Pinball Universe

      Two more vendors occupied the back corner of the hall. Karin Kolbe’s The Pinwitch had a varied selection of pinball parts, while Chrome Pinball offered a plating service for metal pinball parts.

      Karin's The Pinwitch stand
      Karin’s The Pinwitch stand
      Chrome Pinball had some sample pieces on display at their stand
      Chrome Pinball had some sample pieces on display at their stand

      Opposite those two stands was Nicolas Manaud who was running his PinSound stand. As well as selling PinSound boards, speaker kits and shaker motors, Nicolas had six machines with the PinSound system installed so visitors could experience the sonic improvements for themselves.

      Nicolas Manaud at his PinSound stand
      Nicolas Manaud at his PinSound stand
      Three of the six PinSound-equipped machines at the DPO Expo
      Three of the six PinSound-equipped machines at the DPO Expo

      The final vendor in the first hall was Eric Boes who had a range of posters, flyers, manuals and assorted paperwork for sale on his stand.

      Eric Boes' stand in the first hall
      Eric Boes’ stand in the first hall

      Here are the 96 machines in the first game hall, the Suyderseezaal, with an asterisk indicating the game was not playable for one reason or another.

      SUYDERSEEZAAL
      AC/DC
      Addams Family, The
      Addams Family, The
      Alien
      Alien Poker
      Attack from Mars
      Back to the Future
      Batman (Data East)
      Batman 66
      Batman: The Dark Knight
      Baywatch
      Big Guns
      Black Knight
      Black Knight 2000
      Black Knight: Sword of Rage
      Black Rose
      Cactus Jack
      Capt. Fantastic & the Brown Dirt Cowboy
      Class of 1812
      Corvette
      Dolly Parton
      Elvira & the Party Monsters
      Elvira’s House of Horrors
      Fire!
      Fireball
      Fireball II
      Flash
      Getaway, The: High Speed 2
      Gladiators
      Gorgar
      Guardians of the Galaxy
      Haunted House
      Hobbit, The
      Hobbit, The
      Hot Shots
      Houdini
      Indiana Jones (Williams)
      Indiana Jones (Williams)
      Iron Man
      Johnny Mnemonic
      Judge Dredd*
      Junkyard
      Jurassic Park (Data East)
      Jurassic Park (Stern)
      Jurassic Park (Stern)
      Kiss (Bally)
      Laser War
      Lord of the Rings, The
      Lord of the Rings, The
      Matrix, The
      Medieval Madness
      Medusa
      Munsters, The
      Mustang
      NBA Fastbreak
      No Fear
      Oktoberfest
      Oktoberfest
      Paragon
      Party Animal
      Pirates of the Caribbean (Stern)
      Pirates of the Caribbean (Stern)
      Pirates of the Caribbean (Stern)
      Police Force
      Power Play, Bobby Orr*
      Radical!
      Ready, Aim, Fire!
      Revenge from Mars
      Rollercoaster Tycoon
      Rollergames
      Scared Stiff
      Shaq Attaq
      Silver Slugger
      Sopranos, The
      Space Shuttle
      Spider-Man
      Spider-Man
      Spring Break
      Star Trek (Bally)
      Stargate
      Tales from the Crypt
      Tales of the Arabian Nights
      Target Alpha
      Terminator 2
      Terminator 3
      Theatre of Magic
      Theatre of Magic
      Time Machine
      Title Fight
      Torpedo Alley
      Total Nuclear Annihilation
      Twilight Zone
      Twilight Zone
      Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory
      Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory
      World Poker Tour
      The long row of machines along the front wall of the first hall
      The long row of machines along the front wall of the first hall
      Several machines featured toppers - both official and unofficial
      Several machines featured toppers – both official and unofficial
      An Alien LE was here too
      An Alien LE was here too
      A mix of machines from the newest Willy Wonka to Bally's Star Trek and Medusa
      A mix of machines from the newest Willy Wonka to Bally’s Star Trek and Medusa

      Between the two halls was the bar where coffee, tea, soft drinks, beer, wine and various snack dishes could be purchased.

      The bar area
      The bar area

      Prices were not excessive, although the choice was quite limited. There were other drinks in the under-counter fridges but the bar staff were not permitted to sell them.

      Moving along to the second hall and there were 49 free play machines available, along with the 63 tournament machines. The free play machines were:

      HANZEZAAL
      Apollo
      Back to the Future
      Bally Hoo
      Black Knight 2000
      Bone Busters
      Buck Rogers
      Car Hop
      Charlie’s Angels
      Checkpoint
      Comet
      Cue Ball Wizard
      Dispy Doodle
      Dolly Parton
      Doodle Bug
      Dr. Dude
      Dracula, Bram Stoker’s
      Earthshaker!
      Elektra
      Ghostbusters
      Grand Lizard
      High Speed
      Hot Shots
      Indiana Jones (Williams)
      Judge Dredd
      Jungle Lord
      Jurassic Park (Data East)
      Jurassic Park: Lost World
      Operation Thunder
      Party Zone, The
      Pinbot
      Police Force
      Pool Sharks
      Robocop
      Rocky & Bullwinkle & Friends
      Secret Service
      Shadow, The
      Shaq Attaq
      Star Trek (Data East)
      Star Wars (Data East)
      Stargate
      Surf N’ Safari
      Tales from the Crypt
      Taxi
      Taxi
      Terminator 2
      Time Fantasy
      Time Machine
      Tommy, The Who’s
      Waterworld
      World Cup Soccer
      Players enjoying the free-play machines
      Players enjoying the free-play machines
      More free-play games
      More free-play games
      More free-play games
      More free-play games
      The Black Knight find a new challenger
      The Black Knight finds a new challenger
      There are always new details to spot
      There are always new details to spot
      The machines were busy all weekend but you could usually find one to play easily enough
      The machines were busy all weekend but you could usually find one to play easily enough

      There were also two vendors in the Hanzezaal.

      LED4PIN had a stand next to the entrance where they were selling replacement LEDs as well as flipper and playfield rubbers.

      The LED4PIN stand in the second hall
      The LED4PIN stand in the second hall
      Flipper and playfield rubber replacements
      Flipper and playfield rubber replacements

      Next to LED4PIN was Mirco Steffen with his Mirco Playfields stand selling numerous game-specific pinball parts and artwork, along with a very impressive display of new playfields.

      The Mirco Plaayfields stand
      The Mirco Playfields stand
      The new Willy Wonka Limited Edition playfield alongside the ill-fated Cosmic Carnival playfield from Suncoast Pinball
      The new Willy Wonka Limited Edition playfield alongside the Cosmic Carnival playfield from the ill-fated Suncoast Pinball
      The glitter layer under the clearcoat on the Willy Wonka Limited Edition's playfield
      The glitter layer under the clearcoat on the Willy Wonka Limited Edition’s playfield
      Artwork for Willy Wonka which was rejected before the panels were cut
      Artwork for Willy Wonka’s back panel which was changed before the panels could be cut
      Checking a playfield before purchasing it
      Checking a new Scared Stiff playfield

      You can take a look around the whole DPO Expo for yourself in our exclusive Sixteen Minute Tour video, exploring the two game halls, all the vendor stands, the tournament area and even a sneek peek inside the game repair room.

      Our Sixteen Minute Tour of the Dutch Pinball Open Expo 2019

      Don’t forget, you can watch this and any of our other 300 videos on the Pinball News YouTube channel.

      The Hanzezaal contained all the tournament pinballs, from the Dutch Pinball Open and the Classic Tournament to the Women’s, the Kids’ and Sunday’s Swiss-style tournaments.

      Trophies for the tournaments
      Trophies for the tournaments

      The DPO used twenty-four pinballs, with a spare World Cup Soccer in case of a machine failure which couldn’t be fixed quickly. These were arranged along the right-hand wall of the hall.

      Qualifying on these began on Saturday morning and continued until near the close on Saturday evening. Players could choose any eight machines on which to put up qualifying scores. The scores were ranked and ranking points awarded, with 100 points for the top score.

      The qualifying round of the Dutch Pinball Open
      The qualifying round of the Dutch Pinball Open

      Players also had a joker which they could use to try to improve their ranking on one of the eight machines they already played, or put up a score on a ninth if they preferred, with the best eight games counting towards qualification.

      Victor Stulemeijer and Koen Martens headed up the DPO team
      Victor Stulemeijer and Koen Martens headed up the DPO team

      Each machine had a column on a peg board with a machine card at the top. When a player wanted to play a machine they put their badge in the next free position under the machine name. When a player was next to play a game they took the machine card along with their badge to an official who scanned both to register their game.

      Players put their player badge on the peg board against the machine they wished to play
      Players put their player badge on the peg board against the machine they wished to play
      When their badge rose to the top they were next to play the machine
      When their badge rose to the top they were next to play the machine

      When the game was over and the score recorded, the player returned to machine card to the peg board so the next player in line could take it.

      The machines used were:

      DUTCH PINBALL OPEN
      Fish Tales
      Getaway, The: High Speed 2
      Indianapolis 500
      Doctor Who
      Whirlwind
      Creature from the Black Lagoon
      Avatar
      Spider-Man
      Dirty Harry
      Congo
      Dracula, Bram Stoker’s
      Demolition Man
      F-14 Tomcat
      Terminator 2
      Metallica
      Comet
      Space Station
      Iron Man
      Jurassic Park (Stern)
      Jackbot
      Black Knight: Sword of Rage
      Star Wars (Stern)
      The Munsters
      Iron Maiden: Legacy of the Beast
      World Cup Soccer (standby)

      Scores were recorded on tablets using a pair of QR codes – one on the player’s badge and one on the machine’s apron – to ensure scores were recorded against the correct player and machine.

      One of the QR codes on the DPO machines
      One of the QR codes on the DPO machines
      Standings could be checked online
      Standings could be checked online

      Qualification continued until thirty minutes before the show closed on Saturday evening at 11pm, with the top 56 players out of the 157 entrants making it into Sunday’s play-off rounds.

      The qualification rankings were as follows (* indicates a joker was used):

      PosNameScorePlayed
      1Korben Van Wonterghem7008
      2Taco Wouters6509 *
      3Franck Bul Bona6479 *
      4Thomas van Clapdorp6209 *
      5Roy Wils6089 *
      6Paul Jongma5908
      7Michel van den Elzen5778
      8Bart Volman5689 *
      9Andreas Hedstrom5649 *
      10Albert Nomden5629 *
      11Rob Overdijk5289 *
      12Kirk Sadler5149 *
      13Stefan Wittenberg5069 *
      14François A de Wrangel5029 *
      15Jilles Eijking5019 *
      16Sylvain Grevin4859 *
      17Wilbert der Kinderen4849 *
      18Klaas Oenema4829 *
      19Ivan Geentjens4809 *
      20Jim Lindsay4728
      21de cock dominique4699 *
      22Edwin Nijs4688
      23Julian Legind4649 *
      24Maximilian Bösel4639 *
      25Sebastian Poetschke4608
      26Dennis Slagboom4599 *
      27Frank van Woesik4579 *
      28John van der Wulp4519 *
      29Martijn van Amsterdam4499 *
      30Jan Hop4439 *
      31Norman Heikamp4399 *
      32Paul Englert4389 *
      33Sylvain CARRE4379 *
      34Bas Vis4369 *
      35Helen de Haan-Verbeek4279 *
      36Norbert Broman4269 *
      37Bas van Doorn4249 *
      38Dirk Klaver4219 *
      39Martijn van Aken4199 *
      40Marcel Diks4189 *
      41Bob Reijs4159 *
      42Vincent Slaat4129 *
      43Lars Mr Mattsson4129 *
      44Patrick Van Hout4099 *
      45Jürgen Schmitz4089 *
      46Ralph Beckers4079 *
      47Michel van Elk4039 *
      48Mart Oenema3979 *
      49Joachim Reniers3979 *
      50Peter Zeeman3958
      51renders olivier3949 *
      52Lefman Kan3949 *
      53Ronald Oenema3949 *
      54Lutz Hammer3899 *
      55Jan Houtteman3899 *
      56Steven De Maer3869 *
      57Louis Leurs3829 *
      58Eric Houtteman3809 *
      59victor-francois ZOB machart3729 *
      60Daniel Kruzinski3719 *
      61Frank Linden3669 *
      62Mark van der Gugten3649 *
      63Marc Steinmeier3629 *
      64Kevin Roelants3609 *
      65Robin Koning3559 *
      66Peter Muis3559 *
      67Jeroen Boiten3549 *
      68Barry Hoeben3489 *
      69Florian Thomas3449 *
      70Stefan Hänsch3389 *
      71Joris Van Neijenhof3359 *
      72Mads Stentoft3329 *
      73Dirk Elzholz3319 *
      74Jesse Walker3319 *
      75Joris de Wilde3309 *
      76Fabian Kretschmer3299 *
      77Nate Shivers3299 *
      78David CARLIER3299 *
      79Coen Dunnink3229 *
      80Pascal Van Wonterghem3199 *
      81Thomas Doepelheuer3199 *
      82Arthur de Jong3189 *
      83Theo De Reuver3189 *
      84Jeremy Dorling3169 *
      85Michael Trozzo3139 *
      86Joel WOZNIAK3089 *
      87Hans Bijsterveld3089 *
      88freddy Van den Bosch3069 *
      89Guido Christiansen3059 *
      90Dirk De Groote3029 *
      91Evelyne desot3009 *
      92Gabi Schmeichel2999 *
      93Mario KER Kertels2929 *
      94Rakesh Kanhai2909 *
      95Bjorn Brand2899 *
      96Pelle Wållberg2889 *
      97Koen Simoens2829 *
      98Didier Dujardin2769 *
      99Denise Clemens2729 *
      100Pieter van Leijen2719 *
      101Christian Hammer2719 *
      102Olivier Eggermont2717
      103Nils de Kleine2699 *
      104Stefan PL2659 *
      105Gerard Paapen2659 *
      106Bernd Gottwald2639 *
      107Sebastian Zehe2619 *
      108E4 _ _2618 *
      109Tom Peeters2609 *
      110Nico Baak2589 *
      111Jan-Christian Kiwus2549 *
      112Dave van den Akker2539 *
      113Peter van Kan2489 *
      114Daniela Thomas2479 *
      115Rahiel Karamali2459 *
      116Jaap Valent2409 *
      117Stefan Granberg2369 *
      118Thomas Arentsen2369 *
      119Carsten Wieske2359 *
      120Carlo Vijn2319 *
      121jim jansen2319 *
      122Jan PL2309 *
      123Drolf Hollestelle2289 *
      124Jan Krijnen2169 *
      125Kevin Sultana2159 *
      126Jessica De Mercurio2129 *
      127Marcel van den Boogert2089 *
      128Marcel van der Zouwen2009 *
      129Tiny De bie1859 *
      130Willem van der Meij1859 *
      131Rolf Geissberger1747
      132Antoine van der Klaauw1729 *
      133Fabrice Paquet1709 *
      134Daan Kloosterboer1679 *
      135Pelle Gerritsen1639 *
      136Joran van Kan1639 *
      137Pat Struwer1627 *
      138Olivier Lebeau1608 *
      139Ritchie Cicilia1598 *
      140Mark Heneka1579 *
      141Patrick Kamp1549 *
      142Ralf Behr1539 *
      143Fabio Villanueva1489 *
      144Lilly Hänsch1319 *
      145Maik Wiltfang1249 *
      146Annette Klooster1159 *
      147E50 _ _1159 *
      148Christian Hagemann989 *
      149Stephen van Elk989 *
      150Edo PL919 *
      151Tom Vandenpanhuyzen909 *
      152Vanessa Neufeld899 *
      153Maarten Berkers759 *
      154Tony Jansen659 *
      155Norbert PL609 *
      156Richard Van der Zee549 *
      157Katharina Hagemann399 *

      A similar number of machines were used for the Ladies Tournament which was held on Saturday and for Sunday’s Swiss-style tournament, both of which utilised two rows of machines adjacent to the DPO area.

      The Ladies Tournament took place on Saturday
      The Ladies Tournament took place on Saturday
      Players could sign up at the tournament desk
      Players could sign up at the tournament desk

      The Ladies Tournament split the nineteen entrants into two groups of nine and ten. The players in each group then played a single game against everyone else in their group (eight or nine games).

      The Ladies Tournament qualifying matches
      The Ladies Tournament qualifying matches

      The four players with the most wins in each group progressed into three head-to-head rounds to reduce the field from eight to four, and then a final two. These were the machines they played:

      LADIES/SWISS TOURNAMENTS
      Star Trek: The Next Generation
      Whitewater
      Pinball Magic
      Roadshow
      Spider-Man Vault Edition
      Creature from the Black Lagoon
      Frankenstein, Mary Shelley’s
      Flintstones, The
      High Speed
      Vegas
      Monopoly
      Jackbot
      Hoops
      Rescue 911
      Star Trek (Data East)
      Surf ‘N Safari
      Junkyard
      Scared Stiff
      Lethal Weapon
      Earthshaker!
      Batman Forever
      Time Machine
      Attack from Mars
      Twister
      Monster Bash
      Secret Service

      Sadly, when the final rounds were taking place we were busy at the opposite end of the building hosting a seminar, but we’ll bring you the results of the Ladies Tournament as soon as we have them.

      The back of the hall was home for the Classics Tournament which took place on Saturday and the Kids Tournaments held on Sunday, although the machines were changed to newer models for the Kids Tournaments.

      Qualifying in the Classic Tournament
      Qualifying in the Classic Tournament

      Here are the Classics Tournament machines:

      CLASSICS TOURNAMENT
      Eight Ball Champ
      Viking
      Nine Ball
      Fathom
      Mata Hari
      Flash Gordon
      Xenon
      Eight Ball
      Nitro Groundshaker
      Dolly Parton
      Centaur
      Harlem Globetrotters

      The Classic Tournament used an unlimited buy-in qualification method, with each €3 entry consisting of one game on any three Classic machines. The scores on each machine were ranked and the total ranking points for the three games made up the score for that entry.

      Qualification ran through Saturday until 7pm when the play-offs began, with the top sixteen players qualifying.

      Those sixteen were:

      1Dirk Elzholz
      2Albert Nomden
      3Bart Volman
      4John van der Wulp
      5Ralf Beckers
      6Taco Wouters
      7Frank Linden
      8Roy Wils
      9Arthur de Jong
      10Mark van der Gugten
      11Stefan Hänsch
      12Paul Jongma
      13Paul Englert
      14Helen de Haan-Verbeek
      15Florian Thomas
      16Franck Bona

      These sixteen then paired up to play best-of-three single-elimination rounds until a final two remained.

      Classic Tournament play-offs
      Classic Tournament play-offs
      The Classic Tournament semi-finals
      The Classic Tournament semi-finals between (L-R) Bart Volman, Mark van der Gugten, Paul Englert and Dirk Elzholz

      The final was a best-of-five match between top qualifier Dirk Elzholz and third-placed qualifier Bart Volman. The first machine to be played was Harlem Globetrotters and Dirk had a good first ball, scoring 175K to Bart’s 17K.

      Bart chases Dirk's good first ball score
      Bart chases Dirk’s good first ball score

      That was actually enough to win the game, as Bart only got up to 128K with his three balls.

      So, play moved on to Centaur and it was a similar story as Dirk scored 977K on his first ball to Bart’s 32K.

      Dirk has another good first ball to establish a strong lead
      Dirk has another good first ball to establish a strong lead

      Bart pulled it back somewhat with his second ball total of 519K, while Dirk only added a little to make 1.065M.

      Dirk had a quick third ball to end on 1.085K giving Bart an opportunity if he could get another ball like his second.

      Bart needs a good final ball to save game two
      Bart needs a good final ball to save game two

      Sadly though it wasn’t to be, and he ended on 732K making it 2-0 to Dirk in the best-of-five final.

      Flash Gordon was next with Bart starting.

      Bart begins game three
      Bart begins game three

      It was a quick first ball though, racking-up just 45K. Dirk did better, establishing that familiar first ball lead with his 331K score.

      Dirk on Flash Gordon
      Dirk on Flash Gordon

      Bart’s next two balls were similar to his first, ending his game with 108K, giving Dirk a 3-0 victory in the final.

      In the play-off for third place, Paul Englert beat Mark van der Gugten 2-1 in the best-of-three match.

      Third place in the DPO Classic Tournament, Paul Englert
      Third place in the DPO Classic Tournament, Paul Englert
      Second place, Bart Volman
      Second place, Bart Volman
      Winner of the Classic Tournament, Dirk Elzholz
      Winner of the Classic Tournament, Dirk Elzholz
      The top three in the Classic Tournament
      The top three in the Classic Tournament

      Before we wrap up Saturday’s action though, we should mention that there were four talks taking place in the seminars area at the far end of the entrance lobby.

      One of the talks
      One of the digital pinball talks

      The main theme of the first three talks was digital pinball, with Erik and Mark Klootwijk demonstrating the Digital Midi Pinball Machine, Gert Jan de Haan showing how Zen Pinball allows you to play against an opponent over the internet, and Richard Weijts recounting how he built his own V-Pinball game.

      Richard Weijts talking about internet digital pinball resources
      Richard Weijts talking about internet digital pinball resources

      The final session was presented by podcast co-hosts Pinball Magazine’s Jonathan Joosten and Pinball News’s Martin Ayub who held another edition of their popular So You Think You Know Pinball? prize quiz.

      The format was the familiar question followed by two possible answers. Those who chose the first answer stood on one side of the room and the others on the opposite side. When the correct answer was revealed, those who got it right continued while those with the wrong answer sat down to await the next round.

      The questions continued until only a few players remained, at which point they all won prizes from the prize table. Prizes were generously donated by Jersey Jack Pinball, American Pinball, SS Billiards, Stern Pinball, Gameroom Magazine, ColorDMD, Chicago Street Pinball, Pinball Magazine and Pinball News. Because we were busy hosting the seminar there are sadly no pictures of this quiz available.

      With the Classic Tournament decided we called it a day and prepared for Sunday’s busy schedule of tournament.

      The DPO Expo opened to the public at 9am on Sunday and although there was a steady stream of visitors through the entrance, the halls took some time to fill up, with games available to play most of the day.

      Sunday morning in the second hall
      Sunday morning in the second hall
      It took a little while but the first hall got busy by lunchtime
      It took a little while but the first hall got busy by lunchtime
      The newest titles were always popular though
      The newest titles were always popular though
      Elvira had a steady stream of admirers
      Elvira had a steady stream of admirers

      In the tournaments area, three events were taking place.

      The fifty-four players who qualified for the DPO play-offs gathered to find out the format and who they would be playing.

      DPO qualifiers await the start of the play-offs
      DPO qualifiers await the start of the play-offs

      The play-offs consisted of a seven-strike system, where players were split into groups of four and played a single game on a nominated machine. The winner of the game received zero strikes, second place got one strike, third place two strikes, and last place got three strikes.

      Checking the groupings for the first round of play-offs in the DPO
      Checking the groupings for the first round of play-offs in the DPO
      Players await the start of the play-off games
      Players await the start of the play-off games

      The players and machines were then mixed up again, and another round played with the same format. The machines and groupings were shown on a monitor or could be checked online.

      Once everyone was ready, the games could begin
      Once everyone was ready, the games could begin
      The DPO play-offs are underway
      The DPO play-offs are underway

      This continued until a player had seven strikes or more against them, at which point they were eliminated from the tournament. When there were just twelve players remaining that phase of the play-offs ended and a new format was used.

      While the DPO play-offs were starting, registrations were taking place for the Swiss Tournament.

      Players who wanted to play in the Swiss Tournament signed up and paid their €5 entry fee
      Players who wanted to play in the Swiss Tournament signed up and paid their €5 entry fee

      All players played a single random pairing game after which the winner had one point and the loser zero. The players were then ranked by points and were paired to play another game against someone on the same score.

      This kept going through several rounds, with those who kept winning and moving to the top of the rankings playing against similarly successful opponents, while those who lost many games played others in a similar situation.

      Play in the Swiss Tournament
      Play in the Swiss Tournament

      Play in the Swiss Tournament continued until 1:30pm when the eight highest-ranked players played in best-of-three head-to-head pairs to reduce the number to four and then a final two who contested the final.

      Because the Swiss Tournament ran alongside the DPO play-offs, those still in the DPO couldn’t take part in the Swiss Tournament.

      We’ll bring you the final results of the Swiss Tournament shortly, just as soon as we have them.

      The third tournament event was the Kids Tournament which was split into two divisions – Under 12s and 12-15s. In each division the contestants played games against each other to determine who would make it to the quarter- and semi-finals, and then into the finals.

      Trophies for the Kids Tournament
      Trophies for the Kids Tournament

      In the Under 12s division there were three finalists – Lisa Breijer, Pascal Schellen and Lars Vreuls. They contested the final with a single game on World Cup Soccer.

      Lisa started the final on World Cup Soccer
      Lisa started the final on World Cup Soccer
      Pascal was player two
      Pascal was player two

      Lisa scored a creditable 190M with her three balls, but was narrowly overtaken by Pascal who racked-up 195M.

      Lars plays the last ball of the final
      Lars plays the last ball of the final

      Lars then played. His ball drained with his score almost tied with Pascal’s, but his bonus of 20M made all the difference as he ended in first place on 205M.

      The final scores in the Under-12s division
      The final scores in the Under-12s division

      Trophies were then awarded to all three finalists.

      Third place, Lisa Breijer
      Third place, Lisa Breijer
      Second place, Pascal Schellen
      Second place, Pascal Schellen
      Winner of the Under-12s division, Lars Vreuls
      Winner of the Under-12s division, Lars Vreuls

      The final of the 12-15s then took place. This involved four players – Simon Piloo, Daan Rosvelds, Niek van der Vorden and Kim vann Geest. They played a single game on a Stern Star Wars.

      Kim played first in the 12-15s final
      Kim played first in the 12-15s final

      As in the previous final, the scores were all very close, with Kim finishing on 56.7M and Daan in the player two position ending with 84.1M.

      Daan plays next as player two
      Daan plays next as player two

      Niek pushes the bar higher still with a nice 95M total after his three balls, leaving Simon with the challenge beating that to win the final.

      He didn’t quite make it, but his consolation was just edging ahead of Daan’s score of 84.1M with his 84.2M total to take second place.

      The end-of-game scores in the 12-15s division
      The end-of-game scores in the 12-15s division

      So, Niek was first, Simon second, Daan third and Kim fourth.

      Third place, Daan Rosvelds
      Third place, Daan Rosvelds
      Second place, Simon Piloo
      Second place, Simon Piloo
      The winner of the 12-15s division, Niek van der Vorden
      The winner of the 12-15s division, Niek van der Vorden
      The top three in the 12-15s division
      The top three in the 12-15s division

      Returning to the main DPO tournament, the last twelve players were split into three groups of four. Each group then played three pre-determined machines with nine points for the winner, five points for second place, two points for third and no points for coming fourth. After the three games, the top two from each group went into the semi-finals.

      The final twelve play for a place in the semi-finals
      The final twelve play for a place in the semi-finals

      Paul Jongma, Andreas Headström, Marcel Diks, Bart Volman, Roy Wils and Martijn van Amsterdam were the six who contested the semi-finals which were again three games on pre-selected machines. The first player to win two games went through to the final.

      The semi-finals
      The semi-finals

      Andreas beat Paul, Bart beat Marcel and Roy beat Martijn to give us our three finalsts for the DPO 2019.

      The final was also played on three pre-selected games, but with 4-2-1 scoring. These were chosen as Fish Tales, F-14 Tomcat and Iron Maiden, and those machines were brought into the centre of the DPO area so that the remaining machines could be played by show visitors.

      As with many other matches throughout the weekend, South Side Pinball were streaming and commentating on the final games on their Twitch channel using their camera rig which was moved from machine to machine as the final progressed.

      The camera rig used to stream the tournament games
      The camera rig used to stream the tournament games

      F-14 was the first game to be played with Andreas starting first.

      None of the three had a good first ball, but Roy really got going on his second ball to take his score up to 3.4M, compared to 57K for Andreas and 130K for Bart.

      Andreas was player one on F-14 Tomcat
      Andreas was player one on F-14 Tomcat
      Roy had a decent first ball
      Roy had a decent second ball

      It was always going to be a challenge for either of the other two to match Roy’s score and in reality neither got close.

      Bart tries on his last ball to catch Roy's score
      Bart tries on his last ball to catch Roy’s score

      Bart took second place with 630K to Andreas’s 159K, giving Roy 4 points, Bart 2 points and Andreas 1 point.

      Game two was Fish Tales where Bart played first.

      Bart begins game two - Fish Tales
      Bart begins game two – Fish Tales

      It was a familiar story, with Roy establishing a solid ball one lead with his 52M versus 1M each for Bart and Andreas.

      Andreas was player three on Fish Tales
      Andreas was player three on Fish Tales

      The situation didn’t improve after ball two where Roy got a couple of super jackpots to build his score up to 390M. Bart had an even worse second ball for a 1.6M total while Andreas did only slightly better with his 4.2M total.

      Bart finally got a decent ball with his third, but his game-end total of 58M was still way short of Roy who actually had a bad third ball and only added one million to his total to end on 391M.

      Bart gets multiball, but it isn't enough
      Bart gets multiball, but it isn’t enough

      Andreas also had a bad third ball and came third with his 4.9M score.

      So, Roy was in first place with eight points and couldn’t be caught with just one game left to play. Bart had four points and Andreas had two points. The last game of the final would only decide who got second and third.

      Roy, having already won the final, starts on Iron Maiden
      Roy, having already won the final, starts on Iron Maiden

      Despite not needing to win, Roy still played a great game with a three-ball total of 278M. Going into their third balls Andreas and Bart had 6M and 20M respectively.

      Neither Andreas nor Bart could catch Roy's score
      Neither Andreas nor Bart could catch Roy’s score

      Neither of them could catch Roy, so Bart took second place in the game and overall, while Andreas was third.

      Third place, Andreas Hedström
      Third place, Andreas Hedström
      Second place, Bart Volman
      Second place, Bart Volman
      Winner of the Dutch Pinball Open 2019, Roy Wils
      Winner of the Dutch Pinball Open 2019, Roy Wils
      Roy, Bart and Andreas with DPO organiser Victor Stulemeijer
      Roy, Bart and Andreas with DPO organiser Victor Stulemeijer

      The end of the DPO also marked the end of the DPO Expo, right on time at 6pm. All the machines were depowered and the packing-up began.

      Time to pack the machines away and start clearing the hall
      Time to pack the machines away and start clearing the hall
      Show's over, folks!
      Show’s over, folks!

      We quickly grabbed our belongings and headed for the station to get the train to Amsterdam and a flight back home.

      This was almost like a ‘back-to-basics’ DPO Expo with the concentration very much on the two game halls and the tournaments. There were no special guests and only limited seminars. However, that meant extra effort could be put into the 209 machines, getting valuable support from the vendors, and running the numerous tournaments.

      The move to a new venue will always cause a certain amount of disruption, but the detailed planning by the team of volunteers in the year prior meant everything fitted nicely into the space available, the machines were kept running very efficiently, and the tournaments all appeared to run smoothly and to schedule.

      The plan is to move the DPO Expo to somewhere in the west of the country next year, with work underway now to locate a suitable venue. We’ll put the details in the Pinball News Diary just as soon as we have them, and we plan to be there once again to bring you all the news and action from the DPO Expo 2020.

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