"Holopin" Pinball 2000
The Holopin was the original inspiration for William's renowned Pinball 2000
series. Pinball 2000 was an unusual product as it used an actual computer monitor
to display graphics while the user was playing a game. These graphics would
be triggered by the position of the ball on the pinball table. In a 1999 interview
in Pinball Player , George Gomez, co-creator, described the origins of the machine:
"We're in this garage and we're talking about Williams and we're
talking about pinball and we're cutting wood and we're putting that thing
together. We're doing monitor weight lifting. There's an old 80s monitor in
there left over from when I used to try to develop 80s video games. That's
the reason there's an Amiga hooked to it. In the 80s, there was a period in
my life, in which I was trying to pinch game ideas. I had images loaded on
it from that time. I was trying to fire it up today but the Amiga was as cantankerous
today as it was when we were working on it in the garage.
We brought this thing into this conference room and everybody from engineering
was there and everybody's got something to say about it. This is the shift
in gears that sends us in this direction. John was a little upset. He's six
months into a game and he's got a playfield, he's got video, he's got things
happening. And eventually John comes around and one of the very first things
that happens, once we get going on this project, is that John's team actually
brings up the very first true interactive video image on a playfield that
reacts to a pinball. "
Volume 19, Issue 7
In this article, Gomez describes the haphazard design of the original machine.
The mockup, created by George Gomez and Pat Lawlor consisted of an undefined
Amiga and 'No Good Gofers' whitewood. Fortunately, the machine attracted a great
deal of attention at Williams, resulting in several spin-off designs, including
the Star Wars Episode 1 pinball machine. A simulation of these boards can also
be found in the Visual MAME emulation.
Pinball 2000 official site
Last Update: 14/8/2002