Next up: Iron Maiden Ping-Pong. Review

Ben Silverman
Kiss Pinball Info

genre

  • N/A

players

  • 1 - 2

Publisher

  • Take 2 Interactive

Developer

  • N/A

Release Date

  • 01/01/1970
  • Out Now

Platform

  • PS

rating

Next up: Iron Maiden Ping-Pong.

You're probably thinking that the combination of KISS and Pinball

is a bad idea. But consider the facts for a minute - both enjoyed their greatest

success back in the '70s. Both...um...er...they...well...uh ...um...both enjoyed

their greatest success back in the '70's. Did I already say that? Crap.

Speaking of crap, KISS Pinball.

And now, a word about value. KISS Pinball is part of Take 2 Interactive's

"value" series of Playstation games. These titles are full-fledged games (theoretically)

that - because the company loves you, the consumer - is priced at the insanely

affordable $9.99. Just like Earl

Scheib! I'll paint that car for $29.95! Of course, what Earl doesn't tell

you is that he uses crayons instead of real paint. And what Take 2 doesn't tell

you is that they used the supposed star power of aged rockers KISS to pawn off

the lamest pinball game to grace a system since ever.

To its credit, KISS Pinball is waging an uphill (or should I say 'over

the hill') battle from the get-go. Console pinball games have rarely fared well,

due largely to the fact that pinball is a way better game when

played without using a television. Some PC games have excelled due to great

physics and graphics, but this is a very niche genre that doesn't often yield

good games. So in a sense, KISS Pinball is shooting par for the course.

KISS Pinball attempts to simulate 'real' pinball. There are a whopping two tables included on the game CD - "Last Stop: Oblivion" and "Netherworld." Both have ramps and flippers and flashing lights and you whack the ball around the table in much the same way you would do with a real pinball table. The big difference is that when you play real pinball, your brain doesn't explode due to crummy graphics and, more importantly, the fact that you aren't staring at KISS.

When I say bad graphics, I mean it. This game would feel comfortable on a Super Nintendo. The tables are grainy and cheap, featuring roughly drawn pictures of the band members' clown faces. There's no eye candy to speak of - no noticeably impressive flashing lights or whirling spinners or even halfway decent animations.

The framerate is fine, but this actually hinders gameplay because the ball is zipping around the table at simply too quick a clip to follow without losing your mind. Except, I should note, when you get a multi-ball, in which case the framerate creaks along slower than Gene Simmons' pacemaker.

The physics are laughable. The ball is really big considering the small size

of the tables, and it sort of bounces around just following its own plans. When

coupled with the quick speeds, you get a game that's hard to control and even

harder to want to control.

The

real nail in the coffin is the fact that you don't get any extra camera angles.

It's just this one fixed view that follows the ball as it flies around the table,

making it nearly impossible to figure out where to hit it. Instead, I advise

hitting a pillow so as not to bruise any knuckles.

The KISS portion of KISS Pinball is a gyp. Fans of the band will be

saddened when they discover that there aren't any classic KISS tunes in the

game. It's just this cheeseball generic looped metal hell. In case you're not

a fan and somehow wound up with this game, you can actually pull out the game

CD (once a table is loaded up), pop in a CD from a band you like, then play

the game while listening to the new tunes. I then predict you will shut off

the game, take out the music CD and put it in the stereo where it belongs.

Yep, a KISS game with no recognizable KISS music. However, you do get Gene

Simmons and Paul Stanely providing voice-overs, such as "enigma!" and "This

is my domain!" Yeah, well you can keep your domain, Gene, er, Demon, er, whatever.

There is nothing else in KISS Pinball to mention. At least they could

have had some FMV from KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park, like

when the band fought with some nasty robot werewolves. It would have

at least added some shlock value.

Ah, and once again we find the word "value." At 10 bucks, some of you might

think that this is a cheap enough diversion to warrant a dip into the wallet.

Instead, you could go see a great movie. Or you could probably find a copy of

the MUCH better Last Gladiators for the

Sega Saturn (provided you still have a Saturn). Or better yet, take the 10 bucks

and get it changed into quarters, then go to the local pool hall or bowling

alley and spend an hour playing REAL pinball. Heck, just take the money and

run!

I'd run with you, but sadly it's too late for me. I've already been poisoned,

though I've been sticking my finger in my mouth trying to hurl this filth back

up. Maybe I can get KISS to Lick

It Up!

REVOLUTION REPORT CARD

0
Rating
KISS PINBALL?
What the hell is this?
Not worth the 10 bucks
Neither rocks nor rolls all night