FAQ’d by Shaq: Pinball

FAQ by Shaq #12. Expert Shaq MacNeil answers the most frequently asked questions about the game that’s ruined more young minds than television and syphilis combined: pinball.

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Shaq, what is pinball?

Great question.

Pinball is an arcade game, usually coin-operated, in which points are scored by a player manipulating one or more steel balls on a play field inside a glass-covered cabinet called a pinball machine. The primary objective is to score as many points as possible, which is accomplished by hitting various target on the playing field without letting the ball fall down the drain too many times.

Shaq, is pinball immoral?

Great question.

It was from the 1940s to 1970s. Pinball was banned in most major American cities during that period because it was considered a game of chance, not skill. Therefore, it was a form of gambling (which is highly immoral). Lawmakers also believed that pinball machines were a Mafia-run racket to shake down impressionable youth of their dimes, which at the time were about 10 cents in value.

Shaq, how do I get good at pinball?

Great question.

Practice is the obvious way to get good at pinball. As my pappy always said, “The more I practiced, the luckier I got.”¬†However, you might not have a machine at your disposal to practice on. If that’s the case, training your reflexes might serve as a good alternative.

If practice and off-machine workouts don’t help your high score improve, British rock band¬†The Who tell us that the best pinball player of all time was deaf, dumb and blind. So if you are willing to part with¬†sight and sound for pinball prowess, try getting into an accident wherein your head sustains severe trauma. Hitting your head hard enough will cause your eardrums to implode, your retinas to detach and you’ll be ready to conquer the pinball world!

Shaq, why are the deaf, dumb and blind so good at pinball?

Great question.

They aren’t actually good at pinball at all. Most people just don’t have the heart to tell them that the machine isn’t even plugged in and they are hitting the flippers for no reason.

Shaq, what are the best pinball machines to play on?

Great question.

Never trust a pinball machine that hasn’t licensed names and images from a major motion picture studio (e.g.¬†The Addams Family, Garfield: The Movie,¬†Tron: Legacy,¬†Pirates of the Caribbean). Licensed names and images denote quality merchandise for quality films.¬†

Shaq, why should I give a damn about pinball?

Great question. 

Because a high score on a pinball machine is your ticket to immortality. For years to come, pinballers will wonder who “ASS” was and how their unfortunate initials managed to rack up a high score in the trillions. Failing to carve your unfortunate initials into a machine’s high score will mean that no one thinks about you after you are dead, ever.¬†

So Shaq, what now?

Great question.

If you have a topic that you need FAQ’d by Shaq, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Send your topics for FAQing to @TheNicessist or @ShaqMucReal on Twitter.


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