44 Best Affordable Used Pinball Machines to Buy in 2023 ($5k or Less)

44 Best Affordable Used Pinball Machines to Buy in 2023 ($5k or Less)
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44 Best Affordable Used Pinball Machines to Buy in 2023 ($5k or Less)
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44 Best Affordable Used Pinball Machines to Buy in 2023 ($5k or Less)
Published on
January 16, 2023
Updated on
January 16, 2023
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At Kineticist, one of our missions is to lower the barrier of entry into the glorious hobby of pinball. Often one of the largest hurdles to going off the pinball deep end is the general cost of the hobby. Particularly in recent years, pinball machines have gotten increasingly more expensive.


But that shouldn't deter you too much. If you dig deep enough, it's still possible to find the right pinball machine for your collection at a fair price point. Sure, you won't be getting the deal that you may have received a few years ago, but since the games tend to hold their value, you likely won't lose much money on the deal (at least in the long run).


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So, if you're looking to buy an affordable used pinball machine here's a good starting point for your search.


We've broken our list into various price point categories so that you can find a good used market full sized machine no matter what your budget may be.

  • Under $5,000
  • Under $4,000
  • Under $3,000
  • Under $2,000
  • Under $1,000

We've provided average sales data (pulled from PinballPrices.com) for 2022 where available, or provided our best guess at an estimated value if 2022 sales data looked sparse.

6 Best Used Pinball Machines Under $5,000

You can buy some really stellar used pinball machines in the $4,000-$5,000 price range. Here, you'll pretty much have your choice of older solid state machines and some lower tier 90s classics from Bally and Williams. If you're able to increase your budget by $1,000-$2,000 you'll start to see more modern titles from Stern Pinball and other currently active pinball manufacturers around that price point.

World Cup Soccer (Bally, 1994)

best used affordable pinball machine world cup soccer
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: John Popadiuk, Larry DeMar
  • Artwork: Kevin O'Connor
  • Software: Larry DeMar, Matt Coriale
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $5,314

Yes, technically if you go by the average sales price recorded in 2022, World Cup Soccer falls outside our sub-$5,000 price level. However, as someone who purchased a World Cup Soccer in 2022, it's very possible to get a decent copy for under $5,000 still. If you look at market data, 2022 was skewed higher by sales of higher end restored copies, which if you're looking for budget pinball machines, probably isn't what you're in the market for.


World Cup Soccer (or Doggy Soccer, as some of us like to call it) is an underrated Bally classic from the 1990s by famed designer John Popadiuk (Theater of Magic, Cirqus Voltaire). It's super approachable for people new to pinball, has a lot of satisfying shots, excellent callouts, and some fun playfield mechs (new players will love shooting for goals). The rules aren't incredibly deep, but that isn't why you have a game like this in your collection anyway!

Johnny Mnenomic (Williams, 1995)

best budget pinball machine johnny mnemonic
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: George Gomez
  • Artwork: John Youssi
  • Software: Tom Uban
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $4,208

If you want a great shooting game with oodles of flow and kinetically satisfying shots, Johnny Mnemonic is your machine. Like World Cup Soccer, it's fairly approachable for new pinball players and is so fun to shoot. The power glove mech is a delight, too. If you're really good at pinball, Johnny Mnenomic could be a game you tire of quickly (shot accuracy gets you quite far in this game). But, it's a super fun B-tier 90s Bally/Williams game.

Tales from the Crypt (Data East, 1993)

tales from the crypt best budget pinball machine
  • Manufacturer: Data East USA, Inc.
  • Game Design: John Borg
  • Artwork: Kurt Andersen, Markus Rothkranz
  • Software: John Carpenter, Kristina Donofrio, Neil Falconer
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $4,666

Tales from the Crypt doesn't come up often in secondary markets, but when it does you should be able to get a decent copy for under $5,000. Tales from the Crypt doesn't get talked about a lot in pinball circles, but it's regarded as one of the better Data East games. Plus it's got some high nostalgia factor value for those who came of age in the 80s or 90s. It's also one of John Borg's early games, so if you're a fan of his Stern Pinball output (Rush, Tron, Metallica) then you should check out this game if you get a chance.

Medusa (Bally, 1981)

top affordable used pinball machine medusa
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Wally Welch
  • Artwork: Kevin O'Connor
  • Software: Rehman Merchant
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $4,275

Medusa is a classic but sometimes overlooked early solid state game from Bally. Fits in with two other Bally classics from this era, Fathom and Centaur (all released in 1981), and Medusa is arguably just as fun as those two but can be had for thousands of dollars less.

Terminator 2: Judgement Day (Williams, 1991)

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  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Steve Ritchie
  • Artwork: Doug Watson
  • Software: Dwight Sullivan
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $4,724

Terminator 2 is a fast playing early 1990s Williams classic with high theme appeal. From at least a visual standpoint, if not a gameplay one as well, this is one of the classic pinball machines of the 1990s. Callouts and theme integration is very well done, and given the theme, it'll always have a strong resale market.

Who Dunnit (Bally, 1995)

best affordable pinball machine who dunnit
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Barry Oursler, Dwight Sullivan
  • Artwork: Linda Deal, Paul Barker
  • Software: Dwight Sullivan
  • Estimated Value: $4,500

Who Dunnit is a 1995 pinball machine designed by Barry Oursler and Dwight Sullivan and manufactured by Bally Manufacturing Co. The game is themed around a noir-style murder mystery, where players take on the role of a detective collecting clues, questioning suspects, and trying to figure out who committed the crime. The game features a unique and highly original approach, immersing players in a world of mystery and intrigue. Along the way, players may also experience car chases and engage in light gambling, adding to the overall excitement of the game. While the gameplay may not be as strong as some other pinball machines from this era, the theming and originality of Who Dunnit makes it a must-play for pinball enthusiasts. The artwork was done by Linda Deal and Paul Barker.

9 Best Used Pinball Machines Under $4,000

There's a ton of pinball fun to be had in the sub $4,000 range, where you can easily pick up classics from just about any era of the game. We're particularly drawn to games like Jack*Bot, Baywatch, and Royal Rumble, which have high levels of replay value and unique art packages or themes.

Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle and Friends (Data East, 1993)

best used pinball machines adventures of rocky and bullwinkle and friends
  • Manufacturer: Data East USA, Inc.
  • Game Design: Tim Seckel
  • Artwork: Kevin O'Connor
  • Software: John Carpenter Kristina Donofrio
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $3,077

Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle and Friends gets overlooked a lot because of its theme, but if you give it a shot it can be a really fun, rewarding play. There are some interesting multiballs and  a surprising number of modes for an early 90s game. Ramps are fun to shoot, and WABAC is one of the more thrilling wizard modes for the time.

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Jack*Bot (Williams, 1995)

top affordable pinball machines jackbot
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Barry Oursler, Larry DeMar
  • Artwork: Doug Watson, Greg Freres, John Youssi, Paul Bark
  • Software: Louis Koziarz
  • Estimated Value: $3,900

Jack*Bot is a 1995 pinball machine designed by Barry Oursler and Larry DeMar and manufactured by Williams Electronic Games, Inc. It is the last in the line of Pin-Bot machines and features a casino/gambling theme. The gameplay mainly focuses on getting multiball by opening up the visor at the top of the playfield and hitting the eject hole for various awards. The game also includes a mini-wizard mode called Casino Run, where players complete mini-casino games such as Keno, Dice, Slots, and Poker for points and the chance to qualify for a timed mode with unlimited ball save. Jack*Bot is considered as a game with high replay value and a good balance of risk and reward.

Skateball (Bally, 1980)

top cheap used pinball machines bally skateball
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Claude Fernandez
  • Artwork: Greg Freres Kevin O'Connor Margaret Hudson
  • Software: Rehman Merchant
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $3,500

We'd buy Skateball for the backglass alone (who doesn't love an 80s skater dude with an epic stache), but that probably puts us in the minority of pinball weirdos who buy machines for the art package alone. Stakeball isn't quite on the same level as other early Bally solid state games, but it's damn close. Unique shot geometry that can be a lot of fun to shoot. Don't see this game too often on the market either, so if you can find one for under $4,000 you should jump on it.

Eight Ball Deluxe (Bally, 1981)

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  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: George Christian
  • Artwork: Margaret Hudson
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $3,500

Step up to the table and take on the challenge of Eight Ball Deluxe, the all-time Bally classic pinball machine from 1981. With over 8,000 machines sold, it is one of the most popular pinball machines of the 80s, and you can still find it in arcades and home collections today. Despite its simple pool-themed gameplay, it can be hard to master and rewards accurate shooting and completing shots in a certain order for maximum point values. But don't be discouraged, the gameplay is never dull, even with repeated plays. The game features some exceptionally satisfying shots like the left orbit, eight ball shot, and any of the in-line drops that give you bonus x. It's a classic example of 80s pinball machines that stands the test of time.

Baywatch (Sega, 1995)

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  • Manufacturer: Sega Pinball, Inc.
  • Game Design: Joe Balcer, Joe Kaminkow
  • Artwork: Jeff Busch, Markus Rothkranz
  • Software: John Carpenter, Lonnie D. Ropp, Neil Falconer, Orin Day
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $3,794

Baywatch, the 1995 pinball machine manufactured by Sega Pinball Inc, is a nostalgic throwback to the iconic TV show that defined 90s pop culture. Designed by Joe Balcer and Joe Kaminkow, this game brings the world of Baywatch to the pinball realm. The sound of the iconic theme song playing as you step up to the machine is a peak 90s cable TV experience. The game's unique shot layout, designed by Joe Balcer and Joe Kaminkow, offers a ton of flow and high scoring opportunities.

Demolition Man (Williams, 1994)

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  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Dennis Nordman
  • Artwork: Doug Watson, Linda Deal
  • Software: Bill Grupp, Ted Estes
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $3,718

Demolition Man, the 1994 pinball machine manufactured by Williams Electronic Games Inc, is an underrated wide-body pinball game that is sometimes criticized for its theme and gameplay, which is considered fairly ramp-heavy and otherwise one-note. Even if that were the case (and we don't think it is) Demolition Man is so much fun to shoot. If you get into the right groove, you can chain combos all day long between the game's many multiball modes. The claw mech is neat, and the trigger handles can be an interesting way to experience the game.

Royal Rumble WWF (Data East, 1994)

royal rumble wwf best budget pinball machines
  • Manufacturer: Data East USA, Inc.
  • Game Design: Joe Kaminkow, Tim Seckel
  • Artwork: Markus Rothkranz, Paul Faris
  • Software: Lyman F. Sheats Jr., Neil Falconer, Orin Day
  • Estimated Value: $3,900

Royal Rumble WWF is a 1994 pinball machine manufactured by Data East USA, Inc. The game is designed by Joe Kaminkow and Tim Seckel and features artwork by Markus Rothkranz, Paul Faris and software by Lyman F. Sheats Jr., Neil Falconer, Orin Day. The game is based on the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) theme, and it ranks near the top of Data East's game output. The gameplay focuses on collecting wrestlers, completing modes, and working your way to multiballs and the wizard mode. The game is a wide-body pin, and some players feel that it would have been better off as a regular-sized pinball machine as the sides of the playfield, particularly the lower third, are a little empty. Despite this, the game can be a pretty big nostalgia trip for those who grew up in the 90s, even as a non-wrestling fan, you'll probably recognize a lot of the wrestlers, their callouts, and some of the artwork. The game offers enough diversity in the gameplay to keep a home owner interested for long stretches of time. Plus, it's a Lyman Sheats coded game that you can get for under $5,000. Ws all around.

Frontier (Bally, 1980)

frontier bally pinball machine affordable
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: George Christian
  • Artwork: Greg Freres, Kevin O'Connor, Margaret Hudson
  • Estimated Value: $3,700

Frontier is a 1980 pinball machine manufactured by Bally Manufacturing Co. and designed by George Christian. It is an extremely classic and typical example of an early 1980s Bally solid-state pin. The game features inline drops, sweeping orbits, three pops at the top of the playfield, and lots of dangerous target shots.

High Speed (Williams, 1986)

best affordable used pinball machines high speed
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Steve Ritchie
  • Artwork: Mark Sprenger, Python Anghelo
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $3,039

High Speed is a 1986 pinball machine manufactured by Williams Electronic Games, Inc. and designed by Steve Ritchie. It is considered as one of the best 80s pinball machines. Although it would eventually be dwarfed in just about every respect by its successor, 1992's The Getaway: High Speed II, the first High Speed still remains quite a notable entry for 80s pinball machines. Its simple, approachable rules and satisfying shooting is enhanced by one of the best pinball soundtracks of the time. The game plays fast, as most Steve Ritchie games do, and features a lot of top-notch sound and callout work alongside the music.

9 Best Used Pinball Machines Under $3,000

In the sub-$3,000 category you'll find a lot of classic solid state games that pinball fans find pretty desirable for most home collections. Games like Xenon, Black Knight and Harlem Globetrotters can be found at this tier, which all represent games that have withstood the test of time in the pinball hobby.

Joker Poker (SS Edition) (Gottlieb, 1978)

best affordable used pinball machines joker poker
  • Manufacturer: D. Gottlieb & Co.
  • Game Design: Ed Krynski
  • Artwork: Gordon Morison
  • Estimated Value: $2,500

Joker Poker SS is a simple game that rewards accurate shooting and control, making it a great option for players looking to improve their aiming and control skills. The solid state version of Joker Poker is more widely available than its electromechanical counterpart, as only 820 copies of the EM version were produced, mostly for international export.

Xenon (Bally, 1980)

top affordable cheap used pinball machines xenon bally
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Greg Kmiec
  • Artwork: Paul Faris
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $2,732

Xenon, the 1980 pinball machine manufactured by Bally Manufacturing Co. and designed by Greg Kmiec, is an iconic game that stands out for its art package and voice callouts. It was the first "talking" game produced by Bally, and one of the first with voice acting generally. As you play, you'll find the tube shot is really fun to hit repeatedly, and the game has an achievable multiball and a great spinner shot that's important for scoring.

Paragon (Bally, 1975)

best cheap pinball machines paragon
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Greg Kmiec
  • Artwork: Paul Faris
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $2,944

Can be a brutal drain monster to play for a lot of people, and is subsequently known for its often short ball times. But there's so much to do on this table and a lot of ways to attack it. Plus it's one of those games that forces you to learn tap passing if you really want to master it. Extremely satisfying to get to a bonus carryover if you hit the 20k, 30k or 40k thresholds. Could be one of the best wide body games ever made, and the artwork by Paul Faris is immersive and top notch, particularly if you're a fantasy or D&D nerd.

Time Machine (Data East, 1988)

best affordable pinball machines time machine data east
  • Manufacturer: Data East USA, Inc.
  • Game Design: Ed Cebula, Joe Kaminkow
  • Artwork: Kevin O'Connor, Margaret Hudson
  • Software: Jerry Koraganis, Lonnie D. Ropp
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $2,425

Time Machine is one of those underrated and rare Data East gems with a lot of lasting charm due to its theme integration and playfield gimmicks (the old school 1950s chimes are particularly memorable). Time Machine is also known for having an extremely fun multiball mode for this era of game.

Black Knight (Williams, 1980)

affordable cheap used pinball machine black knight
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Steve Ritchie
  • Artwork: Tony Ramunni
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $2,918

Black Knight is a 1980 pinball machine manufactured by Williams Electronic Games, Inc. and designed by Steve Ritchie. It is a historically notable game for being the first to introduce the Magna-Save feature into pinball games, where a player can press a secondary button on the cabinet to activate a magnet that can help save a ball from an outlane drain. This game would also kickstart its own pinball franchise, being followed by Black Knight 2000 in 1989 and Black Knight Sword of Rage in 2019. The game plays fast with a really fun multiball feature, has a 2nd level playfield, and some of the best callouts (voiced by the designer, Steve Ritchie) of the era.

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Big Game (Stern Electronics, 1980)

best affordable pinball machine stern big game
  • Manufacturer: Stern Electronics, Inc.
  • Game Design: Harry Williams
  • Artwork: Doug Watson, Gerry Simkus
  • Estimated Value: $2,500

Big Game is a 1980 pinball machine manufactured by Stern Electronics, Inc. and designed by Harry Williams. It is considered a classic Stern Electronics game that's really just a lot of fun to play with some decent artwork for its time. The game plays faster than a widebody should, and its unique bingo card scoring system makes it stand out from others in a collection. The game features lots of fun drop target and spinner shots to hit, providing some challenging and engaging gameplay. Harry Williams, the designer of Big Game, is known as the "Father of Pinball" for founding Williams Manufacturing Co. in 1944.

Breakshot (Capcom, 1996)

best cheap pinball machine breakshot
  • Manufacturer: Capcom Coin-Op, Inc.
  • Game Design: Greg Kmiec
  • Artwork: Hugh van Zanten, Paul Mazur, Stan Fukuoka
  • Software: Bill Pfutzenreuter
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $2,417

Breakshot is a 1996 pinball machine manufactured by Capcom, designed by Greg Kmiec. The game is a severely underrated and under-produced game, with only about 1,000 copies ever made of this pool-themed pin. The game has a layout inspired by classic EM era tables with no ramps and digital sounds that mimic EM games from that era.


Breakshot also features a unique center playfield toy with three saucers behind a metal pop-up insert which functions like a newton ball when raised. The game is lots of fun to play in competitions as there's some good risk/reward decision-making involved, plus lock stealing which always adds an interesting dynamic.

Alien Star (Gottlieb, 1984)

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  • Manufacturer: D. Gottlieb & Co.
  • Game Design: John Trudeau
  • Artwork: Larry Day
  • Estimated Value: $2,600

Alien Star, the 1984 pinball game manufactured by D. Gottlieb & Co. and designed by John Trudeau, is in the running for one of the best spinner-focused games of all time. The game features an extremely simple rule set and a pretty bare layout compared to other games in this period, but it just works. The game's design and gameplay is focused on the spinner, and if you catch it just right when it's been built up to 50k per spin, it's a thrilling experience. Alien Star is a very addictive game, and can be difficult to master if you're going for max points each time.

Harlem Globetrotters (Bally, 1979)

best affordable pinball machines harlem globetrotters
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Greg Kmiec
  • Artwork: Greg Freres
  • Estimated Value: $2,100

The theme is probably a miss for anyone born after 1990 or so, but putting that aside for a second, this machine is a whole lot of fun to play. The playfield is pretty packed for this era, with three spinner shots, inline drops, double flippers and a saucer at the top of the table. Almost every shot on the table feels just a tad dangerous, which makes it even more rewarding when you have that perfect game.

13 Best Used Pinball Machines Under $2,000

You can find some really good value picks in the under $2,000 bucket. Here you'll find mostly early solid state games from the 1970s and 1980s, with a few of the more desirable EM titles thrown in for good measure.

Firepower (Williams, 1980)

best used pinball machines firepower
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Steve Ritchie
  • Artwork: Constantino Mitchell, Jeanine Mitchell
  • Software: Eugene Jarvis
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $1,746

Firepower is an early Steve Ritchie solid state classic from the 1980s. It's got super fast gameplay, tons of flow, and is notable for being the first solid state pin to have a multiball value. Playfield can be a little sparse by moder standards but it's hard to go wrong with a Steve Ritchie game for used pinball machines under 2000.

Stars (Stern Electronics, 1978)

best affordable  used pinball machine stern stars
  • Manufacturer: Stern Electronics
  • Game Design: Steve Kirk
  • Artwork: Jorge Obregon
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $2,194

Stern's Stars table from 1978 is one of the ultimate examples of that "one more game" dynamic that can be so enticing about the game of pinball. Games of Stars are typically fast, unpredictable, and require making tough controlled shots on the fly. In our opinion at least, Stars represents one of the best pinball machines you can buy if you're shopping in the value category.

Bad Girls (Gottlieb, 1988)

best affordable pinball machines bad girls
  • Manufacturer: D. Gottlieb & Co.
  • Game Design: Jon Norris
  • Artwork: Constantino Mitchell, Jeanine Mitchell
  • Software: Bob Wilson
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $1,900

Bad Girls, released by D. Gottlieb & Co in 1988, stands out for its unique and over-the-top art package. Designed by Jon Norris and featuring artwork by Constantino Mitchell and Jeanine Mitchell, the game is a pool-themed pinball machine that is fun to play but lacks depth in terms of gameplay. However, what makes Bad Girls stand out is its wild and colorful art package that is reminiscent of the 1980s art aesthetic. The backglass alone is worth checking out, it's a true gem of 80s pinball design.

Gorgar (Williams, 1979)

cheap used pinball machine gorgar
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Barry Oursler
  • Artwork: Constantino Mitchell, Jeanine Mitchell
  • Software: Paul Dussault
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $1,700

Designed by Barry Oursler and featuring artwork by Constantino Mitchell and Jeanine Mitchell, Gorgar was a huge success at its release, selling over 14,000 units. The game is set in a dungeon-like environment, complete with a variety of targets, including spinners, drop banks, stand-up targets and a magnet. Gorgar is also known for being the first talking pinball machine, with a voice synthesizer that would say phrases like "Gorgar speaks!" making it an iconic pinball machine in the history of pinball. Today, Gorgar is considered a great value game and is highly sought after by collectors for its art package, sound design, and place in pinball history.

Meteor (Stern Electronics, 1979)

best affordable pinball machine stern meteor
  • Manufacturer: Stern Electronics
  • Game Design: Steve Kirk
  • Artwork: Jorge Obregon, Leslie Kaip
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $1,759

Meteor is the perfect pinball machine if you're looking for something affordable from the Stern Electronics era. Gameplay is fast, challenging and fun. The game comes up a lot in tournament play, so owning one at home can be a great way to practice without pumping quarters at the arcade.

Devil's Dare (Gottlieb, 1982)

best cheap pinball machines devil's dare
  • Manufacturer: D. Gottlieb & Co.
  • Game Design: Tom Szafransky
  • Artwork: David Moore, Doug Watson
  • Estimated Value: $1,700

With its unique and striking artwork by David Moore and Doug Watson, the theme of the game is perfectly integrated into the playfield. As a widebody machine, Devil's Dare is a rarity as it usually doesn't suffer from the maladies of other widebody machines like slow or clunky gameplay. Designed by Tom Szafransky, the rules of the game are simple and easy to understand, making it an approachable option for players of all skill levels. The gameplay includes creative and satisfying shots involving spinners, drop target banks, and kick-out holes, which adds an extra layer of excitement to the game.

Mata Hari (Bally, 1978)

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  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Jim Patla
  • Artwork: Dave Christensen
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $1,401

Simple game with a symmetrical layout, two drop target banks, a loop shot and a top playfield saucer shot. When you hit your shots in the right order and start maxing out bonus collects and specials it gets super rewarding to play. You'll get a lot of replay value from this title, particularly at a sub-$1,500 price point.

Laser Cue (Williams, 1984)

laser cue best cheap affordable used pinball machine
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Edward Tomaszewski
  • Artwork: Pam Erickson
  • Software: George G. Jiang
  • Estimated Value: $1,750

Laser Cue can be a ton of fun for an early solid state game with somewhat linear gameplay. It'll reward precise and controlled gameplay, so can be a great machine to buy to practice that part of your gameplay skills. The game is a weird mix of a poker theme with a space theme. Conceptually it doesn't really make sense but it works when you play it, which truly is all that matters!

Silverball Mania (Bally, 1980)

best affordable pinball machine silverball mania
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Jim Patla
  • Artwork: Kevin O'Connor
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $1,275

Silverball Mania, the 1980 pin manufactured by Bally Manufacturing Co. and designed by Jim Patla, has an impressive art package for this period. The game features some really unique and notable playfield features, such as a mid-playfield horseshoe shot that lights a center drain kickback that helps keep your ball in play. Despite having a simple ruleset, the game relies on accurate shooting, control, and ability to maximize those horseshoe shots for drain protection. Silverball Mania is a steal of a cheap pinball machine at sub $1,500.

Future Spa (Bally, 1979)

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  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: George Christian
  • Artwork: Dave Christensen, Paul Faris
  • Estimated Value: $1,700

What can we say about Future Spa that hasn't already been said? At sub $2,000 it's a steal for an early solid-state Bally widebody. The artwork and theme is bonkers crazy and the gameplay is fun, but weird. If you pick up a copy of Future Spa, it'll certainly become a conversation piece for anyone who drops by to play the game.

Hardbody (Bally, 1987)

best cheap affordable used pinball machine hardbody
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Ward Pemberton
  • Artwork: Greg Freres
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $1,800

Hardbody, the 1987 game produce by Bally Manufacturing Co. and designed by Ward Pemberton, is a unique and somewhat rare pin that makes the list for its extreme 1980s cheese artwork package. Although the artwork may be considered cheesy, the gameplay can be pretty fun. The game features an upper playfield and two player-controlled "flex lanes" that the player must trigger at the right time in order to close inlane ramps and prevent a quick drain. The gameplay is super fast, requiring quick reflexes and timing.


If you can find one in your area for under 2000, jump on it!

Old Chicago (Bally, 1976)

best affordable pinball machine old chicago
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Greg Kmiec
  • Artwork: Dave Christensen, John Youssi
  • Estimated Value: $1,300

Old Chicago is a highly unique EM machine from Bally for it's lower third playfield design with two pop bumpers in the corners directly above two inlane drains. Can make the game feel way more dangerous and out of control then it actually is. Very satisfying spinner shot. Plays fast and can be really challenging to master. Great value at under $1,500.

Grand Prix (Williams, 1976)

best affordable pinball machine grand prix
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Steve Kordek
  • Artwork: Christian Marche
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $1,500

Grand Prix is a classic pinball machine from 1976, designed by Steve Kordek and featuring artwork by Christian Marche. With its racing theme, the game offers a simple yet engaging gameplay experience. Players can activate extra balls and replay lights with drop targets, and increase their bonus with spinners. The kick-out saucers allow players to collect and rebuild their bonus, making the game both easy to understand and highly enjoyable. One of the standout features of Grand Prix is its spinner shots, which are considered to be some of the most satisfying in all of pinball.

7 Best Used Pinball Machines Under $1,000

At the $1,000 and under price point, you're pretty much exclusively looking at EM style machines, and most of them will be in less than pristine condition. But don't overlook this price point if you're looking for cheap pinball machines. EM games offer some of the best value in pinball. They're often extremely fun to play and built like tanks. You'll need to learn a thing or two about fixing EM pinball machines if you choose to buy one, but there are tons of great resources online if you're not already a practiced pinball technician.

Spanish Eyes (Williams, 1972)

best cheap pinball machines spanish eyes
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Norm Clark
  • Artwork: John Craig
  • Estimated Value: $850

Spanish Eyes is a 1972 Williams pinball machine designed by Norm Clark and featuring artwork by John Craig. This single-player EM game is known for its colorful and eye-catching artwork and its unique center pop bumper located between the flippers. The game also introduced the use of 24-volt DC power for the first time, giving the flippers and pops a noticeable boost in power and adding speed and energy to the gameplay. While it may seem like a luck-based game at first glance, there are plenty of tactics and strategy involved that make it a fun and challenging experience.

Aztec (Williams, 1976)

best affordable pinball machines aztec williams
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Steve Kordek
  • Artwork: Christian Marche
  • Estimated Value: $900

Aztec is a classic real pinball machine from 1976, designed by Steve Kordek and featuring artwork by Christian Marche. The game is similar to other Williams EM games from this period, like Grand Prix, and features a satisfying spinner shot on the left side of the playfield. Additionally, it has DC-powered pop bumpers for an extra boost in gameplay. Aztec is a truly great game for those who enjoy EM scoring sounds, particularly spinner rips.

Hokus Pokus (Bally, 1975)

hokus pokus best affordable pinball machine used
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Greg Kmiec
  • Artwork: Christian Marche
  • Estimated Value: $950

Hokus Pokus is a spinner lover's dream game. It has not one, not two, but three spinner shots on the playfield. Rules are straightforward - hit A B C D targets, rip spinners, repeat.

World Series (Gottlieb, 1972)

best affordable pinball machines world series
  • Manufacturer: D. Gotlieb & Co.
  • Game Design: Ed Krynski
  • Artwork: Gordon Morison
  • Estimated Value: $900

World Series is the only single-player wedgehead to make our list of the best used pinball machines under $1,000. It's sort of a hybrid between a traditional pinball machine and an old-school baseball themed pitch n' bat. You don't see these come up too often in the used marketplace, but when they do, it can represent a heck of a value, particularly if you have space constraints in your game room.

OXO (Williams, 1973)

top affordable pinball machine oxo
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Norm Clark
  • Artwork: Christian Marche
  • Average Sale Price (2022): $794

Based on the classic game of tic-tac-toe, the primary goal of the game is to make three Xs or Os on any line in the center playfield grid for an extra ball and bonus points. The game's symmetrical layout and simple rules may be deceiving, as it can be challenging to achieve. Designed by Norm Clark and with quirky and colorful artwork by Christian Marche, OXO is a great addition to any collection, especially for those who appreciate unique and challenging games from the 1970s.

Bow and Arrow (Bally, 1975)

best budget pinball machine bow and arrow
  • Manufacturer: Bally Manufacturing Co.
  • Game Design: Greg Kmiec
  • Artwork: Christian Marche
  • Estimated Value: $850

Bow and Arrow is similar to some of the other EMs on this list in that it's got a simple ruleset but some extremely satisfying, fun-to-hit shots that can be tricky to master. This is a game that can come up more often then you'd think in competitive play, so at the price point it can be worth a look if you can find one in good condition near you.

Argosy (Williams, 1977)

best cheap pinball machine argosy
  • Manufacturer: Williams Electronic Games, Inc.
  • Game Design: Chris Otis
  • Artwork: Christian Marche
  • Estimated Value: $800

Argosy, a pinball machine from 1977, is a unique and interesting addition to any pinball collection. Designed by Chris Otis and with artwork by Christian Marche, this machine is known for its novel playfield layout that introduces interesting shot geometry and risk-reward decisions. The upper lane rollover shot is especially important for high scores, and mastering this machine can be a bit challenging, which makes it a good candidate for a home machine.

Best Used Pinball Machines Under $500

These don't exist. Sorry. If you find something for $500 or less, chances are it'll be a massive restoration project, or it's a low quality home machine. Don't bother unless you know what you're doing!