Pat Lawlor – Classic Famous Pinball Designer
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Ever wondered who designs pinball machines?
There are a group of people whose job it is to take on a new idea / theme and build this into a Pinball Machine. The latest Pinball Machine is an iron Maiden themed pinball machine. It looks great – but who designs these?
Pat Lawlor sits head and shoulders above many other designers and is responsible for some of the most famous and biggest selling pinball machines of all time.
He began his career in in 1987 for Williams. he worked as an engineer and alongside other designers to begin with – but was given his first solo build project with a Pinball machine called Earthshaker. This Pinball Machine was based on the earthquakes that can occur in the California – Navada border. It shook and had many novel features for its time.
Pat Lawlor followed this pinball with a series of pinballs based on natural phenomenon including Whirlwinds.
His greatest triumph and the design he is most famous for however, was the Addams Family Pinball Machine (This is one of the pinballs we hire). released in 1992. This is currently the biggest selling pinball of all time – with over 20,000 units sold.
The thing to remember with all of these designs is that they are all unique. Each has new features and ball play that ties into the theme of the game. Previously pinball designers designed pinballs that had little relevance to the theme or name of the game. The pinball playfield in reality could have been decalled up to look like anything. But Pat Lawlor built and continues to build pinball machines that evoke the sense of the theme of the game.
Pinball is just great fun. There is something intrinsically enjoyable about playing pinball. It captures people of all ages and people who contrary to their own expectation get drawn in despite their initial disinterest.
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