Unboxing a Ghostbusters Pro Pinball Machine

arcadehero August 24, 2017 2
Unboxing a Ghostbusters Pro Pinball Machine

While this may not be ‘news’ and the product in question has been on the market for over a year now, it should serve to break through the little news lull we’ve seen lately. For our most recent “unboxing” (of The Walking Dead arcade game), click here.

I’ve had pinball as a small part of my arcade since I first opened in 2008 but I’ve never had a large selection to choose from. For a long time it was just two (Indiana Jones and Shrek), until I grabbed a Star Trek Premium and had three for a short time. I sold the Shrek due to some problems it was having so went back to two and it has been that way until recently. I have been eyeing the releases of Jersey Jack and Heighway but things haven’t worked out in grabbing one of those so far.

Last year I did pick up an old Atari Space Riders (1978) for $250 but it has taken a little more than that to repair it. I just placed that into my arcade a couple of weeks ago while an operator I have worked with before was looking to expand his line-up of pinball machines. I’ve been open to the possibility of a pinball expansion and things have started falling in line to do so. We discussed several possibilities but he ultimately decided to buy Ghostbusters (Pro) and Star Wars (Premium). The latter game hasn’t shipped yet but Ghostbusters arrived the other day so I captured this video to show the sped-up process:

Said process isn’t too difficult; you do want at least two people for it though. This is the first time I have worked with a Pro model after Stern made some changes to the designs as a part of saving on costs. The metal bars under the playfield for resting it have been replaced with bolts that have rubber tips on the ends; the lock bar uses the old school arcade latches and the backbox is attached via two bolts in the back. This game also uses Stern’s new SPIKE hardware system and is the last Stern game to use the monochromatic dot-matrix style screens.

I removed the footage of trying to get the bolt on the right into the machine; the threading was done incorrectly for that one so we’ll have a technician come and force it in. That was the only issue we came across with the setup.

I was unable to spend a lot of time with this game at trade shows and I usually go for the Premiums if they are around. But I am impressed with what I have played of the Pro so far. It is a game that shows the differences that software can make with the right ideas. The game shows movie trivia during the attract mode – something that should be standard with all of these licenses; there are at least two video modes I’ve seen (not sure why video modes have been so uncommon in modern times); it uses color-changing LED targets (not exactly new now but I remember saying that we need such a thing a few years ago) and the sound package is perfect.

As a disclaimer, I was a huge Ghostbusters fan as a kid; my mom “accidentally” erased over the VHS copy we had of it as she got sick of me watching it all the time. Oh VHS.  As such, many of those lines have been burned into my brain, which nostalgia does make me biased for classic Ghostbusters. That said, I’ll be keeping an eye on the earnings to see if it makes business sense to keep but we’ll give it plenty of time to ‘find its legs’.

And of course, as mentioned, we are going to be getting a Star Wars Premium machine as soon as that ships out so stay tuned for that. At least that should be more current as far as unboxings go. 😉



  1. Da Flex August 25, 2017 at 2:24 am - Reply

    Perfect choice! Stern does retro themes right.

  2. PC Engine Fan X! August 25, 2017 at 7:20 am - Reply

    There were 9 of the Stern 2017 Star Wars Pro pinball machines set on Free Play at the 2017 California Extreme show. It was a blast to play it.

    In fact, such a Stern 2017 Star Wars pinball machine was given away as the grand prize during Sunday afternoon’s drawing. I got to play the very last game on it before it was unplugged and the winner took it away to be sent home.

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