Retro Fun in the Circle City: Ten Top Pinball Locations in Indianapolis

Retro Fun in the Circle City: Ten Top Pinball Locations in Indianapolis
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Retro Fun in the Circle City: Ten Top Pinball Locations in Indianapolis
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Retro Fun in the Circle City: Ten Top Pinball Locations in Indianapolis
Published on
March 13, 2023
Updated on
March 13, 2023
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Indianapolis, Indiana is a city of fast cars, comfortable bars and a heavy dose of basketball craze. Well known for its Midwestern charm, the capital city has plenty of architectural gems like Monument Circle, the Indianapolis Artsgarden, and the iconic Depew Memorial Fountain in University Park. 

There are charming neighborhoods worth exploring like the Old Northside – full of Queen Anne and Italianate wonders – and the funky Fountain Square neighborhood only a mile and a half from downtown.

The Circle City doesn’t lack for quirky culture either. You’ll find both the world’s largest children’s museum and a Kurt Vonnegut museum here. Do not miss eating at Rooster’s Kitchen and Bluebeard. 

Indy’s current thriving pinball scene was born of hard work and perseverance by some local pinball enthusiasts. During the recession that began in 2008, pinball shops closed and huge arcade auctions were held in the city. 

After that dark age of pinball, a few local pinheads bought a literal bank vault and started storing and repairing machines. Over the years, these diehards began routing pins around town, cheering each other on as friends and competitors. Eventually, the Pin-Vault got outed by local media for running this secret speakeasy of pinball. Pins had popped up all over town in bars, breweries, shipping containers and laundromats. 

Today, the jig is up. These efforts by local pinball wizards drove up enough demand for the game to attract a couple of Ohio-based franchises – Pins Mechanical and 16-Bit Bar+Arcade. Pins Mechanical now offers more pins than any other single location in Indy. Locals worry that the franchise could attract business away from local mom and pop shops and deter from all the hard work put into nurturing Indy’s vibrant pinball scene. 

Still, Pins Mechanical is a fine place for casual players to engage with pinball for the first time. If Pins inspires enthusiasm and curiosity among new players, they will find a thriving local pinball community full of unique spots to flip out in Indianapolis. 

Here's our list of the best places to play pinball in Indianapolis!

Tappers Arcade Bar

tappers arcade bar Indianapolis pinball

What’s better than an arcade with beer? How about FREE arcade games and beer! Tappers Arcade Bar in Indianapolis, IN has it all. Arcade classics like Frogger, Galaga, Space Invaders, Burger Time, PacMan, and Mortal Kombat, a few consoles like Nintendo 64, a Game Cube, a Super NES and a Nintendo Switch, plus all of the best pinball games manufactured in the last decade. Must be 21+ and yes, the games are really free. Get your inner kid a boozy slushie and flip out at the hottest spot for pinball in Indianapolis.

Tappers Address

501 Virginia Ave Suite 102

Indianapolis, IN 46203

Pins on location: 25


pin-vault Indianapolis pinball

A gaggle of pinheads kept their private collection in a literal vault secret for many years. Now open to the public twice a month, The Pin-Vault is located on the 2nd floor of the Murphy Building in the heart of the Fountain Square neighborhood of Indianapolis, IN. On the first Friday of the month, The Pin-Vault is 21+ and the building hosts artists and vendors, live performances and your choice of restaurants. On the third Saturday of each month, The Pin-Vault is open for all ages. It’s always just $5 to drain as many balls as you want. Ask about leagues and tournaments.

Pin-Vault Address

1043 Virginia Ave.

Indianapolis, IN 46203

Pins on location: 20

Escape Pod

Escape Pod Indianapolis pinball

Escape Pod is a repurposed shipping container filled to the brim with pinball cabinets and it is fully self-service. The PinVault created this space to cater to the entrepreneurs working at The AMP, an incubator space, artisan marketplace and food hall at the heart of the 16 Tech Innovation District. But it is open to the public anytime the market is open, so help yourself to games like Dr. Dude, The Simpsons Pinball Party, Indianapolis 500, and Pinbot.

Escape Pod Address

1220 Waterway Blvd

Indianapolis, IN 46202

Pins on location: 9


Imbibe Indianapolis pinball

Imbibe in Indianapolis, IN is a dive bar with an upstairs gameroom that includes pool tables, darts, shuffleboard, air hockey, foosball and ping pong. Did we mention the pinball? Newer Sterns like Black Knight Sword of Rage, Deadpool and Iron Maiden, and a couple gems from Bally and Williams, too.  Imbibe is 21+ and serves Gatsby themed cocktails and surprisingly good pizza.

Imbibe Address

1105 Shelby St

Indianapolis, IN 46203

Pins on location: 8


loom Indianapolis pinball

Do a load of laundry, relax at a neighborhood bar, and flip a few pins all in one place at Loom in Indianapolis, IN. Loom is Black Circle Brewing’s production space and it is meant for getting work done on the desks and copy machines, or as a place to hang out after a long day over some vintage games, great beer, and a food truck out front. It’s even pet friendly, so you and Rex can both make yourselves at home. Ready to flip Cactus Canyon, The Mandalorian, Godzilla and Rush? They're all here.

Loom Address

1901 East 46th St

Indianapolis, IN 46205

Pins on location: 10

Fountain Square Brewing

fountain square brewing Indianapolis pinball

Fountain Square Brewing in Indianapolis, IN is an industrial-themed taproom with a great Workingman’s Pilsner, darts, and a unique collection of well-maintained pinball cabinets like Jurassic Park (Data East), Iron Man, and Mata Hari. Comfortable and off the beaten path, Fountain Square also hosts open mic comedy nights, karaoke and pinball tournaments. Patrons must be 21+.

Fountain Square Brewing Address

1301 Barth Ave

Indianapolis, IN 46203

Pins on location: 7

Boss Battle Games

boss battle games Indianapolis pinball

There’s an old school arcade in Indy's mall! Boss Battle Games at Castleton Square Mall in Indianapolis, IN offers video arcade cabinets, pinball, console gaming and tabletop gaming in an arcade made to feel like a gaming convention. Pay one price at this retro arcade to play all day on Mortal Kombat, Gauntlet, and Tron, but you may have to drop a few quarters to play Godzilla or Deadpool pinball. Boss is all about the games, so no food or drinks available here.

Boss Battle Address

6020 East 82nd St

Indianapolis, IN 46250

Pins on location: 8

Black Circle Brewing

black circle brewing Indianapolis pinball

Black Circle Brewing in Indianapolis, IN is brewing high quality beers in small batches, serving up Cuban food and maintaining a small set of pinball games like Star Wars, Street Fighter II, and The Simpsons. Black Circle is a live performance venue that caters to a heavy metal crowd. Children and dogs are equally welcome. Spill your beer on yourself? Head west on 46th to their laundromat, Loom, to wash a load, grab another beer and find even more pinball games.

Black Circle Brewing Address

501 Virginia Ave Suite 102

Indianapolis, IN 46203

Pins on location: 5

16-Bit Bar + Arcade

16-bit bar and arcade Indianapolis pinball

16-Bit Bar + Arcade in Indianapolis, IN is a barcade for adult kids who want to have a few drinks and play for free on old arcade classics like Donkey Kong and Asteroid, or drop quarters into a few great pinball games like Deadpool, Tron Legacy, Star Wars, Spider-Man and Guardians of the Galaxy. Head up the stairs to play skee ball or plop down on a couch to play Sega. Feel free to bring food or Fido since 16-Bit is dog friendly. Everyone on two legs must be 21+.

16-Bit Bar + Arcade Address

110 E New York St

Indianapolis, IN 46204

Pins on location: 5

Pins Mechanical Company (Indianapolis)

Indianapolis pinball pins mechanical company arcade

Pins Mechanical Co in Indianapolis, IN is a social destination featuring duckpin bowling, foosball, ping pong, bocce ball, and all of the most popular pinball machines just waiting for your quarters. Several bars spread across two floors with craft beer and cocktails and a great rooftop patio. Have you ever played garage ball? Here’s your chance. Pins is pet friendly and kid friendly before 8 p.m. Bring your own food!

Pins Mechanical Company Address

856 Carrollton Ave

Indianapolis, IN 46202

Pins on location: 37

Indianapolis pinball players - did we miss anything? Drop us a line and let us know