New prairie dog contributor Michael Dawson — who you might know from Regina’s own Library Voices — is down in Seattle for Bumbershoot. I have my doubts that he’s actually there; I’ve been combing Line Out’s coverage of the festival and haven’t seen him in a single picture. But anyhow, on Facebook, he asked for Emerald City recommendations and I immediately thought of the Seattle Pinball Museum, one of my favourite places on Earth.

Which made me think of Regina’s pinball treasure trove over at Wonderland. Last time I was there, I didn’t get the chance to give their backroom of pinball machines their full due. I think any Wonderland trip really has to be two hours long, or else you’re only scratching the surface.

I turned to the Internet Pinball Database to help me out here. Last time I was at Wonderland, I saw nine machines, all from the 1990s except Jokerz, a Williams machine from 1988 with an IPDB Average Fun Rating of 7.5.

A lot of the machines hold around that Fun Rating at Wonderland, like SlugFest and NBA Fastbreak and Tee’d Off. (The dog of the group being 1999’s Harley-Davidson, a game I missed last time and that ranks in with a 6.4 Fun Rating.)

They’ve also got their fair share of tie-in games, like Jurassic Park and Congo, the latter being one of the weirder examples for what merits a pinball machine.

The two best games for my money are The Bally Game Show and Terminator 2: Judgement Day. Game Show’s humour isn’t spot on, but I prefer my pinball art a little more cartoony and the game play is good. Terminator is about as good as your movie pinball machines get, with the shiny Terminator head and everything.