Shoot drop targets in left-to-right order to unblock the left ramp. Lock a ball. Shoot HYPE in order to start multiball. Hit HYPE during multiball.
High to Very High
Plunge just hard enough to be able to shoot the upper drop target 3-bank with the upper right flipper.
Vector was one of the first games “designed by committee.” The idea proved to not work well at the time and was abandoned immediately thereafter for many years. The complicated rules for Vector and presence of some “dead spots” on the playfield were two drawbacks. Working in its favor are the multiple ball save options and the skill-favoring strategy of hitting things in a specific order. Multiball is where the points are; starting it is a three-part process. First, you have to knock down the “defender” drop targets on the left. At the beginning, only the three back targets are standing. If you hit these in order, from left to right, the ramp behind them lights up for you to shoot a ball up top to lock it. if you hit the three targets down, but NOT in that order, then the three drop targets in front of them come UP to block your way. You now need to hit these down, in any order, to clear the way to the ramp. If you sneak the ball through a gap in the targets before finishing them, the ball will kick back out into the playfield at the top, not lock. You must finish the drop targets to activate the lock. There are two other ways to make progress with the defender targets. If you hit the three drop targets in the upper playfield in left-to-right order, that drops the next needed left side defender target out of the way of the left ramp. Finishing the top 3-bank in any order also increases your regular bonus multiplier. The other aid is that scoring a return lane also drops the next defender target, as well as advancing your regular bonus. Like Grand Lizard, Vector lets you lock up to three balls but you can start multiball sooner. As soon as you have a ball locked, completing the green HYPE standup targets in the center of the playfield in left-to-right order will start a two-ball multiball. You can instead continue with the left ramp progress and lock a second ball, in which case completing HYPE in order will start a 3-ball multiball. If you have two balls locked, finishing HYPE but out of order will start a two-ball multiball. The third case is if you lock a third ball, multiball starts immediately as with Grand Lizard. Bonus is huge here, often amounting to more than half your score. There’s both a “HYPE” bonus and a “regular” bonus. Shooting the HYPE targets raises the hype bonus by 3,000 per hit, and appears to go up to 999,000. Hype bonus is carried over from ball to ball. Regular bonus is raised by hitting drop targets, lit lanes and the star rollovers at 1,000 per shot and goes up to 75,000 (see insert lights: 1+2+3+4+5+6+7+8+9+10+20). Regular bonus resets each ball. Bonus multiplier is raised by completing the X-Y-Z drop targets with the upper right flipper to a maximum multiplier of 5X. The regular bonus is modest most of the time, rarely more than 2x40K, while the Hype bonus is where big scores come from. The winning strategy is to start multiball and then whack the heck out of the HYPE targets. Playing multiball gives you a chance for double or triple your Hype bonus if you complete HYPE again during multiball. Even if you don’t do that, you’ll probably get enough hits on everything during multiball to build a winning score. Balls shot up the left ramp can fall short of the lock and drop in front of the upper flipper. There’s a speedometer in the left ramp to measure how fast your flip is. The faster your flip, the more bonus it adds. I haven’t been able to catch the details on this. The game has ball return kickout saucers below and slightly offset from each outlane. Getting the ball in either of them scores your regular bonus without the multiplier. Because the saucers are set back, the ball needs to bounce off one of the outlane bottom mini-posts to go into them. Nudging is often required to save your ball this way.