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Banzai Run, May 20, 1988

Produced in: May 20, 1988 / 4

Features: Flippers (3 horizontal, 3 vertical), Pop bumpers (3), Ramp (1), Kick-out hole (1), Spinning targets (2), Left outlane kickback, Captive balls (1 horizontal, 2 vertical), Up-post (between bottom flippers on the vertical playfield), Ball kicker next to the left slingshot, 2-ball Multiball. A magnet on a moving vertical track lifts the ball in play to the vertical playfield in the backbox. When this ball drains between the bottom flippers of the vertical playfield, it returns to play in the lower horizontal playfield.

Theme: Sports – Motorcycles/Motocross

Additional Features:

Type: Solid State Electronic (SS) 

MPU: Williams System 11B, Model Number: 566

#Produced: 1,751 units   (confirmed) in May 20, 1988

Manufacturer: Williams Electronics Games, Incorporated, a subsidiary of WMS Ind., Incorporated (1985-1999) [Trade Name: Williams]

Design by: Pat Lawlor, Larry DeMar Art by: Mark Sprenger Music By: Brian Schmidt Sound By: Brian Schmidt Software by: Larry DeMar, Ed Boon Animation by:

Marketing Slogans: “Once again, Williams takes you where no one else has ever gone before!” “The pinball machine with one continuous playfield on two different planes!” “We’re changing the way the world looks at pinball.”
Notes: An earlier example of a game with a vertical scoring playfield in the backbox is Genco’s 1951 ‘Double Action’. This game was inspired by a 1987 independently made prototype called Wreck’n Ball. In our Files section are many pictures of a prototype version of Banzai Run and a chart comparing its differences to the production version. Although this game features a two-ball multiball only, three balls should be placed in the trough. This is the first pinball machine to have the Lane Change switches implemented as low-voltage switches located at the flipper buttons, not at the flipper End-Of-Stroke. This allowed Banzai Run to play sounds when the flipper buttons are pressed in attract mode where flippers are not activated. Larry DeMar provided these comments: I can confirm that Banzai Run had 3 balls although it only ever needed 2. The software was capable of adjusting to a missing ball and not putting the game out of service. I suspect it is correct that this was the first time this was done. Later WMS games would adjust down to any number of balls (at least 1) available, but this was where it started. I’m not sure about whether it was the first to use low voltage switches for the flipper buttons, but it was the first that I programmed to make an attract mode sound when the button was pressed so it is likely that this is true. Production Run Records for Banzai Run: Production Start Date: May-20-1988 Production End Date: Dec-20-1988 Production Run Quantity: 1751 First ship date: May-20-1988 Last ship date: May-31-1989

43 Available Images

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