Play in the First Accessible and Inclusive Pinball Tournament at Pinball Expo

Play in the First Accessible and Inclusive Pinball Tournament at Pinball Expo
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Play in the First Accessible and Inclusive Pinball Tournament at Pinball Expo
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Play in the First Accessible and Inclusive Pinball Tournament at Pinball Expo
Published on
October 12, 2023
Updated on
October 12, 2023
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Pinball is for everyone, and this year there's no better way to demonstrate that ethos than by playing in the first accessible and inclusive pinball tournament at the Project Pinball booth at the 2023 Pinball Expo.

We've tracked the emergence of Inclusive Gamewerks this year as they bring their inclusive controller for pinball machines to the marketplace. The controller enables people with disabilities to play pinball by connecting a hand-held controller device to the machine, which replicates the game's controls.

The company is even working on different versions of the controller to help bring pinball to more people, like a chin driven joystick, sip and puff option and wireless connectivity.

Pinball Expo attendees can join the tournament at the Project Pinball booth. The tournament is a Limited Best Game format, where qualifying begins on Friday, October 20th at 11am. All players must use the Inclusive Gamewerks controller when playing.

We'll certainly stop by for an entry or two, and you should too! Full details on the tournament are below.

Learn more about Inclusive Gamewerks by reading their interview or checking them out on Facebook.

The Freedom to Play Pinball Tournament - Pinball Expo 2023

Facebook Event

October 20-21 at the Project Pinball Charity Booth during the 39th Annual Pinball Expo in Schaumburg, IL.

Official Tournament Design created by Brad Albright of Albright Illustration & Design.

Project Pinball and Inclusive GameWerks are excited to present the most accessible and inclusive way to play pinball!

Freedom to Play Pinball is more than a first of its kind tournament, it’s the groundbreaking event to bring pinball players together and ensure pinball is accessible for everyone!

In this event, all players will be required to use the Inclusive Controller to play the games in the bank. No Nudging or contact to control the ball will be allowed on machines.

There is NO entry fee to play, but donations to support the IFPA sanctioning fee of $1 per player are encouraged


Registration opens: 10am Friday
-Qualifying begins: Friday from 11am to 11pm, continuing Saturday from 10am to 4pm.
**Scorekeeper Volunteer Qualifying 11pm-Midnight – Friday

-Tiebreakers: 4pm to 4:30

-Finals check-in: 4:30pm with the first round beginning at 5pm

Tournament Qualifying Format:
-Limited Best Game – 10 Entries
-There will be 5 games available for tournament play, only your top 4 scores will count for your qualification score. You must play all 5 games.
-Qualifying scoring will be INDISC style 100-97-95-94…
-Neverdrains software will be used for the event.
-In the event of a tie for the final qualifying spot, or possibly a bye position, there will be a 1 game playoff on a randomly chosen machine.
-If there is a seeding tie for any other position, a 1 ball playoff will be played on a randomly chosen machine.
-Tiebreakers will be played immediately after qualifying ends.

Finals Format:

-No less than the top 10% of all qualified entrants will move on to a Group Elimination Match Play Bracket Final.
-We will begin with the top 8, but may move to top 12 with 4 byes, or top 16 depending on participation.
-All Finals games will be played as 1 player games.
-Each group will play 3 games per round.
-We will use PAPA scoring. (4,2,1,0)
-The top seed in each group will be given selection of Game AND Position in the first game.
-The lowest finishers in game 1 will be given a choice of either the next game OR position.
-A group may not play the same game more than 1 time in each round.
-A player may not choose the same game again until all options have been exhausted.
-You must select an open game, not selected by another group.
-In the event of a tie for advancement, the highest seed in the tiebreaker game will have a choice of Game OR Position. You will not be allowed to play the 3 games already selected in your round. Ties for the top 4 will be handled the same way.

*All players are required to use the Inclusive Controller for all ball control including launching the ball into play and flipper control.
*No Nudging will be allowed.
*IFPA rules regarding stuck balls and malfunctions will be used.
*All extra balls will be off, if you are awarded an extra ball, please plunge it with no flips.
*All rulings from Tournament Directors are final.

This is an IFPA Sanctioned event