Black Hole Photos

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Black Hole

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Black Hole is a pinball machine manufactured by D. Gottlieb & Co. in 1981. Design by Adolf Seitz Jr., John Buras. Art by Terry Doerzaph.
Primary manufacturer:
D. Gottlieb & Co.
OPDB Group ID:
Remake manufacturer:
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Game type:
Solid State
Display type:
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Flyers & Promo Media

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Black Hole Design Team

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Black Hole Rules

Quickie Version:

Not really. That’s part of why this game is so challenging.

Go-to Flipper:

Mild bias Right

Risk Index:


Full Rules:

The first game with both an underneath playfield and backwards flippers. Scoring well on Black Hole is a multi-step process. One of the first things you want to do involves some luck or bravery: opening the re-entry gate. Doing so on the main playfield requires completing the four standup targets at the lower right, then getting the ball to roll through the lane below them - - that’s the luck part. Opening this gate means that after you play on the lower playfield, the ball will be returned for play on the main playfield; if the gate’s not open, the ball will drain. You can also risk shooting the ball to the lower playfield without the gate open, but you then need to open the gate by completing either target bank there. Either completing the main playfield target bank, which also lights the main level captive ball hole, or shooting the ball to the lower level sets up phase two - - locking balls. The lower level capture lock, on the left side, is always active. Lock one ball there and the other on the main level above the upper left flipper. A ball locked in the lower playfield stays there at the end of a ball and can be stolen by other players. Balls in the upper lock are released to the outlane at the end of each player’s ball. Multiball is complicated: once two balls are locked, you plunge a third ball. If you shoot that down to the lower level, the lower locked ball is released and you start a two-ball multiball below. If your gate is open, it will stay open during multiball. When both lower balls drain from the lower level, the upper locked ball kicks out, and the two lower balls reenter the main level through the open gate for three-ball multiball. Try to send the balls back to the lower level for more bonus while the gate is open. Completing either upper drop target bank gives you a playfield multiplier on the lower playfield: one bank for 2X, both banks for 3X. Your ideal situation is to already have this ready, or be close, when you start multiball. Bonus is scored only on the lower playfield. Bonus multiplier is advanced by completing either the top three lanes or the “rollunder” on the lower playfield (player’s right, between the targets and the bumper, shot towards you). Strategy tip: when the ball exits the lower playfield with the gate open, immediately shoot it back down there from the right flipper; the gate will stay open until you hit a switch on the main playfield. Repeat as many times as possible. Ball control warnings: trying to cradle up can lead to draining on either side. On the left, balls can roll up the rail above the lower left flipper and dribble out through the gap in the corner. On the right, balls deflected towards the gate from the top double flipper can push through the gate, which then closes behind the ball, and the ball drains out the right. Use drop catches with either flipper or dead bounces off the left flipper but not the right flippers.

via Bob's Guide

How to Play Black Hole

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Black Hole Gameplay Video

Gameplay Discussion & History

Mods and Toppers

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