Review: Pinball FX3 – Star Wars: The Last Jedi Pinball


 
 

A long long time ago in the offices of Zen Studios, began a mission to bring the Star Wars licence to the world of digital pinball. Having produced tables based on all the Star Wars movies as well as tables from the animation side of things, we are now getting not one but two tables based on the latest movie The Last Jedi. This bring the table count to a total of sixteen tables, plenty for any Star Wars fan. In this pack one table is built around the movie and it’s various key moments, and the other is based on Ray’s training with Luke on Arch-To Island. Both tables offer different types of gameplay as well as some great table design.

 
 

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The first table I tested my pinball skills on was Star Wars: The Last Jedi, with the movie still fresh in my mind I was looking forward to see how they represented the film in digital pinball form. I will go all out and say that this table sits on my top spot out of all the Star Wars movie tables in the collection. What makes this table stand out from the rest is at the back of the table you have a second level made up of two mini-playfields with a total of five flippers to control. The right mini-playfield represents the island of Arch-To. The left is more representable of the ship of the First Order. On the table itself you have Ray centred in the middle of the table. You have a storm trooper on the top left as well as BB-8 just left of Ray. The tables artwork is also amazing to look at with a very eye pleasing colour palette. They have managed to include visual references from pretty much all of the films locations. As always the team has also made great use of the sound bytes and sound effects.

When it comes to the tables various modes you can activate Zen Studios has went in a slightly different direction from what we are used to. You see instead of aiming towards a wizard mode they have kept in line with the film where you have to increase the number of the resistance. You will see a percentage on the dot matrix display and the higher the percentage the better you will score. You can increase this by playing the different modes on the table. Starting the main missions is similar to that of the other Star Wars tables. You aim for the small ramp in the centre of the table and after the required amount you can then select from six different scenes. The first scene starts from where you have to help the resistance escape from the rebels tie-fighters. Another movie scene they have included is the escape scene using a Fathier, not only that but they have also included a Fathier race mode with the race shown in the centre of the table. If you were a fan of arcades in the good old yesteryear you will get the horse racing machine feel, the ones that you gambled on. One of my other favourite moments is the BB-8 mode where you both takes control of a First Order’s Walker and go Storm Trooping hunting. While there is no Wizard Mode as such this table has four multi-ball modes and they are fun to activate.

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The second table in this pack is based on the part of the movie where Ray is at Arch-To Island where she eventually gets Luke Skywalker to train her in the way of the Jedi. This table plays completely different from The Last Jedi table in presenting a much more open playfield. The art design is tremendous and a great representation of Arch-To Island. The table and scenery has been designed in such a way that I don’t think they missed out anything. As with the island itself the colour scheme is very much your green, greys and blues. However I love the way that the table looks just like part of the island. There is some great lighting techniques used during some of the modes. Always on the table is Ray, Luke, Chewie, R2-D2, Porgs and Caretakers. If there was an award for cuteness of a table then this would be it, I just absolutely love that they have made sure the Porgs are always on the table. You can also see the Falcon to the left side of the table in the scenery which will also make an appearance during gameplay.

The Arch-To Island table is an easy table to play but just like the Jedi training, its tricky to master. The main modes on the table consist of the three main characters, Ray, Luke and Chewie. What’s different about this table is that you don’t have to activate the characters main modes as they are always active. You have a sink hole to the left where you can change characters. Each Character has an intro which upon completion it moves on to their two special modes. Completing these gives you a mini-wizard mode. Complete all character modes to get the main Arch-To Island wizard mode. The characters two special modes are not timed modes so can be completed simultaneously. Some of the modes you will come across is Luke fishing, Chewie catching Porgs and Ray learning to use the Lightsabre. Ray’s mini-wizard mode is quite fun, as she closes her eyes to meditate. This results in the table going darker until you only see the balls and the flippers.
 
The Good Things 

  • This completes the Star Wars Saga as far as the films go, bring on the next movie.
  • Some outstanding table design and artwork.
  • Two tables with two different types of gameplay.

 
And The Bad
 

  • No actual Wizard Mode on The Last Jedi Table.
  • The Arch-To Island table could maybe have been a little bit harder for pinball veterans.

 
My Verdict… 

    A mission that started a long, long time ago for Zen Studios to bring Star Wars in to the world of digital pinball, brings us up to date. Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Arch-To Island brings the second movie in the current trilogy to the world of pinball. The Last Jedi table gives great representation of the movie with some great table design and table modes. Then you take to the Island of Arch-To to master the ways of the Jedi with Luke himself. Both tables offer a great pinball experience as well as a pretty outstanding Star Wars experience. There are now sixteen tables for fans to fight the darkside with balls of steel, and out of all those tables I feel The Last Jedi table takes the top spot in design. I just love the two mini-playfields and the Fathier race mode. I think it is safe to say that Zen Studios have created a nice little galaxy of Star Wars tables that perfectly represent the license in true digital pinball form.

 

I think it is safe to say that Zen Studios have created the perfect galaxy of Star Wars tables.

 

About no1phil

no1phil
PR Manager & Editor for XLC Gaming Network. I have been gaming since the ZX Spectrum days growing up through many generations of consoles. A bit of a jack of all trades when it comes to gaming genres. When I'm not either being shot at, dancing, scoring for the other team or racing I am trying to become a guitar God with Rocksmith 2014.