My career on pinball simulation started with CD`s and floppys for the PC in Dos and win95... The oldest, Pinball Magic from 1989 on a 3,5 disc! Same goes for Crystal Caliburn (1993), Eight Ball Deluxe (1994) as well as Screamball (1993) on 5 discs running under DOS on a 80486 or compatible with 33Mhz or better!
Simulations from the www usually are unplayable with poor physics and very simple graphics and layouts. =>
Offline emulators usually have ways to configure and adjust speed and screensize and other.
The pinsim simulations of the 80`s + early 90`s for the consoles from Amiga, Atari and Commodore are rather poor in graphics, physics and layout, no fun playing
Pinball simulations from the early 90`s on are getting better and you may have fun playing by all means. Much more common unlike PC-sims is the use of animated moving targets and bonus/extra tables
Some have scrolling playfields (even sideways !). Well that get`s you back into the mid 90`s where the Pro Pinball series set the standard, in my opinion never been reached by any other pinsim on CD.
So I didn`t play the pinball simulations very often and certainly didn`t get all of their features. Some emulators can be used for several consoles, frontends like retroarch or launchbox help you organize you pinsims (and other console games).
Important using an emulator is the key configuration for the keyboard. It is necessary to change the button configuration of the game control otherwise you may have keys for the flippers that seem strange and are not usable on a keyboard (or use a real game controller plugged in).
My standard if possible is: Shiftleft=left flipper, Ctrlright=right flipper, plunger sometimes arrow down/z(y), select mode return/Ctrlright/Y. Other keys like y/x/a/s/z/space should be tested if/what they perform.
I didn`t care much about pinsims for consoles, they just didn`t look ed too promising (scrolling on tiny screens). As for the variety of consoles you would have had to commit yourself to one company and only got to know only their pinsims. And pinsims weren`t their main purpose, on the contrary!
Same goes for pinsims for smartphones these days but they have usually good physics, brilliant graphics and mostly no scrolling (but a screensize of about 5 to 6,5 inch. Too small for real fun with pinball! Controlling by touchscreen isn`t the same as by buttons/keys.
One woudn`t believe it, but not before 2019, when I felt like looking for new online pinsims, I got aware of online platforms that offered to play consoles pinball simulations by emulators for I guess every console (not all starting and often the ball speed is a problem).
Following you find some sites for playing pinsims online for all types of consoles others not listed and some sites are specific for one type of console or company. Lots of them offer the download of different emulators (Win, MAC, Linux) and game roms. Not all may work on win10 1909, made in times of XP or win7. Games may be different for USA/Europe/Japan.
Configuring the keys on a keyboard is usually necessary (sometimes left/right flipper keys are right-left reversed!). I didn`t check if all pinsims run!
Emulators itself seem legal but the download for necessary BIOS or roms will probably be illegal when protected by copyright. Same will go for the use of online sites that use the same software. So at least one should watch out for any case law specifically about video roms!
To see screenshots and reviews of console pinsims I use jalbum with the very flexible
for console pinsims
tiger skin for console pinsims
The earlier skin Fotoplayer was marvelous but was running only with flash playaer so I (had to) changed.
The reviews were done regarding the following aspects:
|# of balls:||I would say half pinsims start with (my favorite) 3, half with 5 balls.|
|physics:||You encounter everything from miserable to clearly fewer ones with close to natural ball movement and rebounce.|
|graphics:||Many are made for advertising, not always well done. Standard is 2D rarely 3D and several with scrolling even some with sideways scrolling.|
|table layout:||A boring pinsim has only few targets or bumpers to hit. Not very interesting may be the counting when repeated hit targets always count the same. One needs an increase of action! How many (moving) targets, spinners, holes, ramps or other features to play for? The more the better.|
|lost:||Some tables will kill your ball in seconds=6. As well as bad is a ball that just won´t get lost.
|game:||Do you have a chance with a good ball to hit the jackpot and other features of the table? Are there tasks to play for and/or timers used.|
|fun:||Is it fun playing the table. Even tables with a bad "lost" rating may be fun (with a rare good ball) playing.|