Stewart's Guide to
The Who's Tommy
Version 1, March 2, 1994
by Dave Stewart
Disclaimer: If my rules are wrong, tough luck; you can't sue me! Any additional
information, comments, or corrections are welcome, and should be sent to me.
This is a text version printed from a nicely formatted rules sheet, also
available in the archive as tommy.ps.Z; I tried to make the formatting on this
look good too, but I didn't spend all that much time on it, so please excuse if
this doesn't look perfectly pretty with fancy ASCII graphics!
This rule compilation and tips sheet is, to the extent possible (in light of
the subject matter being the property of Data East), public domain.
1. Abbreviations and Acronyms
Here is a list of abbreviations and acronyms used in this rules sheet. Most
are standard rec.games.pinball A&A's.
- DE.........Data East
- STTNG......Start Trek: Next Generation
- EB.........Extra Ball
- TAF........The Addams Family
- JP.........Jurassic Park
- TFTC.......Tales from the Crypt
- K..........Thousand points
- TZ.........Twilight Zone
- M..........Million points
- UJ.........Union Jack
- SDTM.......Straight down the middle
- VUK........Vertical Up Kicker
2. General Description
The Who's Tommy (or just Tommy for short) is a Data East machine, officially
released early February 1994 at PAPA-4. IMHO it is one of the best DE games,
and with TFTC moving to 2nd place as best DE machine. Tommy is based on the
Broadway show of the same name. One of the things that makes it great is that
it is one of the few pinball machines with a pinball theme! Because of it's
theme, I've included a synopsis of the story (see Section 3).
The pin is of standard DE (24") width. It has three flippers: the two normal
ones, and a left side flipper similar in position to the side flipper in
Funhouse. It has the standard triangular slingshots above each flipper, one inlane
and one outlane on each side, and a dot-matrix display.
As with TFTC, this game is part of a new generation of DE machines, with a very
well thought-out rule set and a good score balance (except perhaps the double
super jackpot, but that is not easy to get at all.) It is a mode-based game,
and modes can run concurrently as in JP, TAF, and TZ.
3. Tommy: The Story
The theme of this game is very well integrated; each mode, called a Union Jack
(abbreviated UJ) feature represents one of the scenes in the play. The music
played during the UJ also corresponds to that scene, and things like the Extra
Ball are worked in really well. For those that haven't seen the Broadway play,
or are not quite familiar with the story, here is a brief synopsis. Note that
not all the scenes are represented in the game, but most have been. The names
in parentheses represent the songs for the scene.
Overture: 1940: Against the backdrop of World War II appears a montage of the
Walkers' meeting, courtship, marriage, Captain Walker's departure for the front
and capture, and his internment in a POW camp. (Overture)
Scene 1: 22 Heathfield Gardens, 1940: Back in London, two officers arrive at 22
Heathfield Gardens to bring Mrs. Walker tragic news (Captain Walker).
Scene 2: Hospital, 1941: A nurse gently hands Mrs. Walker her newborn son (It's
a Boy). The scene blends into the 1942-1945 years in the prison camp, ending
with (We've Won).
Scene 3: Heathfield Gardens 1945: Captain Walker is freed and heads home,
arriving as Mrs. Walker is celebrating her 21st birthday with her lover and
four-year old son (Twenty-One). Returning unexpectedly from the war, Captain
Walker appears at the door late at night to find Mrs. Walker and her lover in
an embrace. The lover attacks Captain Walker, and the four-year-old Tommy is
woken up by the commotion. Mrs. Walker tries to turn him away from the violent
scene, but he faces a mirror in which he witnesses the lover slapping his
mother and threatening to attack his father with a chair. The father shoots the
lover in the head. The Walkers embrace, helplessly, then realize that Tommy
has seen it all in the mirror. They proceed to tell Tommy "you didn't hear it,
you didn't see it, you won't say nothing to no one ..." (What about the Boy.)
Tommy just stares at the mirror. The police separate the Walkers for
questioning while the older Tommy, the Narrator, appears on top of the wardrobe
as if by magic (Amazing Journey).
Scene 4: The Courtroom, 1945: Captain Walker is found not guilty, but the
family celebration dies out as they realize Tommy is now deaf, dumb, and
Scene 5: Hospital, 1945. A battery of doctors and nurses examine Tommy
Scene 6: Church and the home of the relatives, Cousin Kevin and his parents,
1950: The Walkers take ten-year-old Tommy to church and family dinners
(Christmas) where he responds to Uncle Ernie's playing the French Horn and the
older Tommy's unseen presence (See Me Feel Me).
Scene 7: 22 Heathfield Gardens, 1950: Back home, the Walkers worry about
whether to leave Tommy with the drunken Uncle Ernie (Do You Think It's
Alright), while once alone with Tommy, Ernie molests him (Fiddle About).
Scene 8: 22 Heathfield Gardens: Tommy's next baby-sitter, Cousin Kevin, taunts
him mercilessly (Cousin Kevin). Bored with Tommy, Cousin Kevin jokingly stands
him in front of the Youth Center's pinball machine. Tommy begins to play and
the machine comes to life. The youths begin to gather around him. He plays
hypnotically, beating the machine, and begins to rack up an incredible score.
Lights flash, bells ring, buzzers sound. The youths start cheering Tommy on as
the Narrator magically appears above him (Sensation).
Scene 9: Psychiatric Clinic: Encouraged, the Walkers try yet another doctor, a
psychiatrist, who tests Tommy without success (Sparks, reprise).
Scene 10: 22 Heathfield Gardens: A desperate Mr. Walker steps outside his door
for a smoke when he is accosted by a couple of rather unsavory characters, the
Hawker and Harmonica Players, who promise a miraculous cure for Tommy (Eyesight
to the Blind).
Scene 11: The Isle of Dogs: They take Tommy and his father to the Isle of Dogs
to find a drug-addicted prostitute called The Gypsy (Acid Queen), then Mr.
Walker ends by snatching the boy back in horror.
Scene 12: Amusement Arcade, 1958: The act ends in 1958 as a group of teenagers
await 17-year-old Tommy's appearance at the amusement arcade (Pinball Wizard):
First Local Lad
Ever since I was a young boy,
I've played the silver ball,
From Soho down to Brighton,
I must have played them all.
But I ain't seen nothing like him
In any amusement hall.
That dead, dumb, and blind kid
Sure plays a mean pinball!
Second Local Lad
He stands like a statue,
Becomes part of the machine.
Feeling all the bumpers,
Always playing clean.
He plays by intuition,
The digit counters fall,
That deaf, dumb and blind kid ...
... Sure plays a mean pinball!
Cousin Kevin and the Two Lads
He's a pinball wizard.
There has to be a twist.
A pinball wizard,
S'got such a supple wrist.
How do you think he does it?
I don't know
What makes him so good?
He ain't got no distractions;
Can't hear those buzzers and bells.
Don't see no lights a-flashing
He plays by sense of smell
Always gets a replay,
`N' never tilts at all,
That deaf, dumb, and blind kid ...
... Sure plays a mean pinball!!
I thought I was
The Bally table king ...
... but I just handed
My pinball crown to him.
How do you think he does it?
I don't know.
What makes him so good?
Even at my favorite table,
He can beat my best.
The kids all lead him in
And he just does the rest.
He's got crazy flipper fingers;
Never seen him fall.
That deaf, dumb, and blind kid ...
... Sure plays a mean pinball!
Underture, 1960: Tommy is playing at a pinball machine, surrounded by the
youths. Tommy, at 20, is a neighborhood celebrity and the adored official
mascot of this particular local gang. His playing builds to a fever pitch; a
buzzer sounds as he beats the machine. The lads scream in victory, and carry
Tommy over their heads down the street, with Cousin Kevin leading the way
Scene 13: The Sunlight Laundrette: The local lads carry the inert Tommy into
the laundrette, where Mrs. Walker watches their loutish but lively behavior
with sadness. They deposit Tommy on a chair and depart (It's a Boy, reprise).
Mr. Walker, still in search of a cure, convinces Mrs. Walker to try once more
(There's a Doctor).
Scene 14: A Research Laboratory: They take Tommy to specialists for elaborate
tests, to no avail (Go to the Mirror/Listening to You).
Scene 15: The Street/22 Heathfield Gardens: On the street, a group of local
louts surround Tommy and carry him home (Tommy, Can You Hear Me?). The image
of Tommy as a ten-year-old magically appears in the mirror, and screams Tommy,
Tommy, Tommy Tommy, Tommy. Tommy crosses to the mirror and stares.
Scene 16: 22 Heathfield Gardens: Oblivious to young Tommy in the mirror, the
Walkers sit at the table. Mrs. Walker shuffles a deck of cards. The Walkers are
considering having Tommy institutionalized (I Believe My Own Eyes). Tommy
continues to stare into the mirror. Mrs. Walker tries to pull Tommy away from
the mirror but each time one of the younger Tommys appears in the mirror, Tommy
tries to move toward it. Mrs. Walker picks up a chair and threatens to smash
the mirror with it, "Do you hear or fear or Do I smash the mirror?" In the
mirror, the image of the four-year-old Tommy on the night of the killing long
ago. Mrs. Walker furiously swings back the chair ... Darkness ... and the
sound of breaking glass. The mirror has been completely smashed (Smash The
Mirror). Tommy looks around and sees everything in the room. He stands in the
spot where the lover was killed. He looks at his mother and reaches out to
touch her. She embraces him, but he does not return it. She rushes off to get
Mr. Walker. With the mirror in pieces, Tommy leaves home. (I'm Free).
Scene 17: The Streets of London; 1961-1963: Tommy's cure hits the news (Miracle
Read all about it!
The pinball wizard in a miracle cure!
Read all about it!
Tommy is Lionized by the public and the press (I'm Free/Pinball Wizard,
Scene 18: The Stadium: Tommy's Holiday Camp: Tommy begins appearing in
stadiums, where Uncle Ernie tries to capitalize on his stardom.
Scene 19: Sally's House/The Stadium: Teenage Sally Simpson manages to get on
stage and touch Tommy but, when he pushes her aside, she falls and is pummeled
by the guards (Sally Simpson).
Scene 20: 22 Heathfield Gardens: Aghast, Tommy realizes how caught up in the
celebrity machine he has become. He tends to her and invites everyone back to
his house (Welcome). Once there, Sally asks Tommy how she can be more like him
(Sally Simpson's Question) Tommy insists there is no reason to be like him; who
she is, is enough. Disenchanted with their hero for failing to provide instant
salvation, the crowd turns on him and leaves (We're Not Going to Take It),
until Sally is the only fan left. Tommy turns to her, but she walks out after
the others. As Tommy crosses back to the mirror, the family fears he may have a
Finale: The image in the mirror is now the ten-year-old Tommy. The two Tommys
reach for each other tenderly (See Me, Feel Me, reprise). Tommy seems to be
reverting to his old state, but instead he turns to his family and embraces
them in acceptance and reunion with his younger selves (Listening to You,
4. Playfield Layout
In this section, the layout is described with the terminology I'll use for the
rest of the rules sheet. Going from left to right:
- Left inlane
- Pretty standard. Lights the right spinner for double-value.
Also, if there is no UJ feature currently running and the UJ is not lit,
then it will light it for about 2 seconds unless you have already been
through Pinball Wizard UJ.
- Left outlane
- No kickback! And there is rubber on the post separating the
inlane and outlane. Finally DE is learning! Collect Special here when lit
(via completing GENIUS).
- Three plastic targets, with triangular lights pointing to
them. Hitting a target lights the light. Lighting all 3 increases the left
spinner value by 25K a spin, and scores 5M, 10M, 15M, then 20M for
all subsequent completions. It resets back to 5M between balls. The
unlit left scoop spots a left side target. These targets are also used in
some UJ features.
- Left scoop
- When the union-jack is lit, it starts the flashing UJ. UJ's can be
started from this scoop only until Pinball Wizard has been reached.
Tommy Multiball can also be started here (see Section 6). This scoop is
also used in the acid queen UJ.
- Upper left flipper
- This sideways-facing flipper is designed for two
primary shots: the Tommy mirror/hole, and the right ramp. You can also
hit the `more time' target or some of the silver ball targets from this
- Left spinner/orbit
- Each spin scores the current spinner value, which
begins as 25K a spin, and increases each time the left bank targets are
completed, to a maximum value of 1M. The value is doubled (thus max 2M per
spin) if the ball just went through the right inlane. At the top of the
lane is a switch, which is the `orbit' switch. This switch relights the UJ.
Normally the ball loops around the orbit feeding the right flipper quite
fast, but not too fast (i.e. Mach speed, not warp speed :-)), so it is
possible to make these loops, which are worth 1M, 2M, 3M, 4M. After the 4th
loop, all loops are worth 5M for the rest of the game. Note that to score
these loop values does not have to be continuous loops. There is also an
orbit diverter, which is active at various times in the game to send the
ball into the pop bumpers, instead of orbiting all around.
- Left ramp
- This ramp is quite easy to hit from the right flipper. It is used to
count down the captain walker mode, to collect the single jackpot(s)
during Tommy Multiball, and during the Sally Simpson UJ feature and
Captain Walker (non-UJ) mode. On a shallow table or with very strong
flippers, the left ramp can be backhanded from the left flipper.
- Silver ball targets
- these are 3 white targets with the picture of a pinball
on the playfield. Two of them are on either side of the left ramp, while
one of them is just above the right ramp. Hitting each one twice lights the
silver ball for 20M. Initially the lights for these targets are off. After
one hit, they are flashing. After two hits they are solid. These targets
are also used during the Silver Ball and Cousin Kevin UJs.
- Genius lane
- This lane is similar to the one in Funhouse, and is the easiest
way to feed the upper left flipper. Each hit (while not in Multiball)
awards the next letter in the following words: OK, WOW, GOOD,
SUPER, and GENIUS. Collecting each word awards the point value of
5M, 10M, 15M, 20M, and 25M respectively, and 25M for each
subsequent spelling of GENIUS. The first completion of GENIUS lights
special at the outlanes. Many modes prevent the completion of a word, but
allow you to spot all but the last letter in the word. There is also an EB
to be awarded for completing one of these, instead of the points. This is
an annoying self-adjusting feature (almost as bad as whether or not you
get the EB in Holodeck on STTNG) which self-adjusts between every
game. I've seen the EB awarded for completing WOW (easiest I've
seen), and for completing SUPER (hardest I've seen). Normally it
should give it to you for completing GOOD. This lane is also where
you collect the EB after collecting the Lite EB UJ and for the Mystery,
which is lit by right ramp shots, and is used in the Acid Queen UJ.
- Silver ball
- This ball scores 20M when flashing. When not flashing, it
spots one hit on one of the silver ball targets. It is also used in the
Silver Ball UJ, and is part of a combo which results in the Sigma Bonus
(See Section 7). Hitting this target also advances the next UJ to be
awarded to be the next one that has not yet been collected.
- Pop bumpers
- The standard triangular combination. The pop bumpers
rotate the ready UJ (as in TAF and TZ), and are used in the There's a
Doctor UJ. Pop bumpers start off at 100K per hit, and increase by 100K
for every 10 hits to a maximum of 1M per pop. This resets on each ball.
The Super Pops mystery award sets the value immediately to its
maximum of 1M. There is a pin that pops up at the back of the bumpers,
which can cause balls going through the orbit to be redirected into the
- A very wide hole at the top-right of the playfield, which is for
the skill shot. The ball often lands in here during normal play
(especially during multiball) in which case the value of the next skill shot is
increased by 5M.
- Tommy mirror
- This is a mirror which is similar to the tombstone in
TFTC. Unfortunately the mirror doesn't register half the hits to it, so it
can get frustrating. Each hit spots a letter in T-O-M-M-Y. Completing
TOMMY lowers the mirror, and exposes the Tommy Hole. The mirror
is also used in a couple of the UJs.
- Tommy hole
- this is a hole behind the mirror, and it is well designed in that
balls sent to it do not bounce out! Generally this is only exposed when
Tommy multiball is lit; shoot it to start multiball. During Tommy
multiball it is also a mini-jackpot which must be collected five times to light
the super jackpots. Any ball in this hole is fed to the right flipper.
- Right ramp
- this ramp can only be hit by the upper left flipper. It is about
as easy/difficult to hit as the side ramp in TAF. Rumor has it that this
ramp can be hit from the left flipper with a real weird bounce (let's see
Lyman call that one!) During normal play, it counts down to the
Mystery feature, which becomes lit at the GENIUS lane. To light the
Mystery feature, you need 2 ramp shots the first time, 3 the second time, etc.
During Tommy multiball, the double jackpot(s) is collected on this
ramp. The ramp is also used in the Sally Simpson UJ and Captain
Walker (not UJ) modes.
- More-time target
- This is a single plastic target below the right ramp,
which when hit resets the timer in most timed modes. Resetting the
time can only be done once per mode. If multiple modes are running
concurrently, it resets the timer for the most recent mode. If you start a
no-more-time mode right after a more-time mode, the more time target
does nothing for either mode.
- Right scoop
- This scoop awards the flashing UJ when lit. Hard shots into
this scoop occasionally bounce out, but nowhere near as bad as on IJ.
The shot can also be hit from a right-flipper backhand. Shots into this
hole are fed to the right flipper via a VUK. This is also the eject for
balls into the Tommy hole or parachute. The scoop is also used in the
Acid Queen UJ.
- Right spinner/orbit
- As with the left orbit, the spinners score 25K per spin
initially, and go up by 25K for each completion of the right bank of
targets. There is a switch at the top of the orbit which relights the UJ. Just
beyond the left of the entrance of this orbit there is a hole. This is a
secret passage to the right scoop, and awards the next UJ if it is lit. I
don't know if this secret passage awards a UJ if not lit. The ball only
lands here by luck.
- Captive Ball
- The captive ball advances the end-of-ball bonus multiplier
by 1x for each hit, to a maximum of 7x, and spots a right-bank target.
After 7x, you get 10M a shot. It is also used during the Holiday Camp
UJ. This shot is not that hard to make, but it is dangerous, in that the
ball often deflects towards the right outlane or SDTM. Depending on
how it bounces on your machine, you might want to avoid it, as there is
no feature that forces you to make this shot.
- Just like the left-bank-targets described above, except
that they increase the value of the right spinner instead, and targets are
spotted with the captive ball.
- Right inlane
- Pretty standard. Lights the left spinner for double-value.
Also, if there is no UJ feature currently running and the UJ is not lit,
then it will light the scoops for about 2 seconds unless Pinball Wizard
UJ has been reached in the game.
- Right outlane
- There is rubber on the post separating the inlane and
outlane. Collect Special here when lit (via completing GENIUS).
- This is both a manual and automatic plunger, as on Checkpoint.
See Section 8 for more details.
- You can't see them, and when you can see them, you can't see
the flippers! The blinders are a fan which come out and cover the
flippers, up to about two inches above the flippers. The idea with the
blinders is that you are playing blind, just like Tommy. The blinders are used
during the Tommy Scoring and Pinball Wizard UJ features, as well as
after collecting a super jackpot. You can also start a game such that the
blinders are active for the entire game by holding the EB-buy-in button
when you press the Start button.
As with many of the modern games, there are many modes, which are called
Union-Jack (UJ) features. The UJ is bright blue and red on the playfield, so
you can't miss it! The game always starts with Christmas UJ flashing; the
flashing UJ changes with the pop bumpers and the silver ball.
To collect the flashing UJ, shoot either the left or right scoop when lit.
After collecting a UJ, you must shoot one of the orbits to relight it. You can
normally relight the UJ during another mode; the only exceptions are if you
have a multiball mode going, in which case starting other modes is disabled,
and you can't relight the UJ either. If there is no UJ running, and the scoops
are not lit, then either inlane will light the scoops for about 2 seconds. The
UJ is automatically lit at the beginning of each ball.
At the completion of each UJ, you are told how many points you got for the
UJ, but the points are awarded when you get them, not when this final tally
Following are the 12 UJs. Collecting all 12 starts the Pinball Wizard UJ.
They are listed in the order that they rotate when the pop bumpers or silver
ball are hit.
- This is a 20-second round, during which all playfield switches
score 300K. Hitting any 3-bank target increases this value by 100K.
The roving flashing target on the 3-banks adds 5M to the Christmas
total. The orbit diverter is active during this round, and the more-time
target resets the timer.
- Cousin Kevin
- This is a 20-second round, during which the three ramp
targets are flashing. The first time each ramp target is hit, it becomes lit
and an additional ball is launched into play (thus you can get a
maximum of 4 balls in play). When the timer has expired, play continues
until fewer than two balls remain in play. The ramp targets are worth
5M throughout this round. No other rounds can be started during
Cousin Kevin. The more-time target resets the timer. If multiball is lit,
then it becomes unlit until this feature ends.
- Holiday Camp
- This is a round during which the captive ball is initially
worth 1M, counting up to 20M. The value may be collected repeatedly.
The round expires after the value reaches 20M. The captive ball is a
dangerous shot, so you may want to skip this mode.
- Lite Extra Ball
- This feature lights an Extra Ball at the Genius Lane. If
extra balls are disabled, then EB is still lit, but collecting it scores
- Silver Ball
- This is a 20-second round, during which the Silver ball is
initially worth 10M, and the ramp targets score 5M. Collecting the Silver
ball value increments all of these values by 5M. Values may be
collected repeatedly. The more-time target resets the timer. It is possible to
score over 100M in this round by pounding on the Silver Ball, and
hitting the more-time target with only 1 or 2 seconds to get another 15 to
20 seconds with the higher silver ball value.
- Captain Walker
- This is a videolamo mode, during which the flipper
buttons steer your bomber on-screen. The left button moves up, the right
button moves down. Hit anything (bombs, planes, and buildings) Firing
is automatic. The maximum value of this mode is 17M. I usually
average 10M on it if I try, and 13M if I just leave the plane on the bottom,
take a sip of my drink, and come back when the mode is over. Rumor
has it that this mode is intentionally lame so that the programmers send
a message to the designers that they don't want video modes anymore
... but as I said, it is only a rumor ...
- Smash The Mirror
- This is a two-ball Multiball, during which the raised
Mirror is lit for Jackpots of 5M, 10M, 15M, 20M, and 25M, after which
the Mirror lowers and the Tommy hole is lit for 50M, after which the
sequence repeats. This round ends whenever at least one ball drains. If
multiball is lit, then it becomes unlit until this feature ends.
- Fiddle About
- This is a 20-second round, during which the 3-bank targets
(all six) are lit for an initial value of 5M. Hitting any target increases
its subsequent value by 1M, to a maximum of 10M per target.
- Acid Queen
- This is a round during which the right scoop, left scoop, and
Genius lane are lit for an initial value of 25M, counting down to 10M.
Collecting any one of these shots adds 10M to the running value for the
remaining two shots. Collecting another shot adds 10M to the remaining
value. The round ends after the shots have counted down to 10M.
There is about a 3 second delay once the counter has reached 10M. The
more-time target does not apply.
- There's A Doctor
- This is a 20-second round where you start with 5M; the
pop bumpers and sling shots are lit for 1M per hit. After 20 hits, 25M
bonus is awarded (for a total of 50M in the round) and the round ends.
Also, as long as you are in the pop-bumpers the timer does not expire,
as each hit with less than 2 seconds resets the timer to 2 seconds. The
orbit diverter is active during this round. The more-time target resets
- Tommy Scoring
- This is a 3-ball Multiball, during which the blinder is
active and all playfield switches score 500K. The round ends when fewer
than two balls remain in play. No other rounds can be started during
Tommy Scoring. The orbit diverter is active during this round. Don't worry
about losing all 3 balls suddenly. If you lose the 3rd ball as well, the
ball saver kicks in and you get that ball back. If multiball is lit, then
it becomes unlit until this feature ends.
- Sally Simpson
- This is a 20-second round, during which the ramps are lit
for an initial value of 5M. Hitting the left ramp increases the subsequent
value by 2M. Hitting the right ramp doubles the subsequent value. The
more-time target resets the timer.
- Pinball Wizard
- This is a 6-ball Multiball, during which the blinder is
active and all playfield switches score 1M. Collecting 25 switch
closures awards an additional 20M and the letter W. The next 50 switch
closures awards 30M and the letter I. This continues for all letters in
WIZARD, (Z=40M, A=50M, etc.). Completing a letter also launches
an additional ball into play. The round ends when fewer than two balls
remain in play.
Multiball is lit by hitting the Mirror to spell TOMMY during single ball
play. When completed, the Mirror lowers and Multiball is lit at the Mirror
scoop and the left scoop. Regular Multiball is 4-ball play; starting Multiball
from the left scoop is only 3-ball play. Subsequent Multiballs are not lit at
the left scoop.
Until you get the first multiball, 2 letters are spotted at the beginning of
each ball, thus guaranteeing you a chance at multiball by the 3rd ball.
Ideally, though, you get at least one mirror hit on ball 1, which then lights
multiball during the 2nd ball, giving you more chance to collect it. Multiball
can be very lucrative, so you definitely want to go for it whenever it is lit.
Modes continue running during multiball (but they do pause the timers
during the multiball opening animation!).
As has become customary on DE games since JP, there are several stages to
multiball, and completing one stage lets you move on to the next.
- Stage 1
- Jackpots: At the start of multiball, the left ramp is lit for Jackpot,
and the right ramp for Double Jackpot. Initial jackpot value is 20M if you
start at the Tommy hole, 15M if you start with the left scoop (or 40M and
30M for Double Jackpot). All playfield switches increase the Jackpot value
by 200K, and the Double Jackpot value by 400K. Collecting any Jackpot
launches an additional ball into play. When BOTH Jackpots are completed,
both are relit.
- Stage 2
- 3rd Jackpot. Collect either the single or double jackpot by
shooting one of the ramps. Jackpots continue to rise by 200K/400K a switch,
and the initial value is carried over from stage 1. After ONE of the two
jackpots, an additional ball is launched into play, and you move on to
the next stage.
- Stage 3
- Spell Tommy: The Tommy hole spots the letters T-O-M-M-Y and
each one scores a 20M jackpot (which does not increase). No balls are
added to play for collecting these jackpots. Completing TOMMY
moves you to Stage 4. In 3.00 ROMs and later, each switch adds 1M to
the Super Jackpot and 2M to the Double Super Jackpot.
- Stage 4
- Super Jackpots: The left ramp is lit for the super jackpot, and the
left ramp is lit for the double super jackpot. The initial values are
250M and 500M respectively, and go up by 1M and 2M respectively for
each playfield switch. You can only collect one of these two, so if you
are going for the big points, avoid the temptation of shooting the much
easier left ramp, and go for the right ramp. When you collect ONE of
the super jackpots, you move to Stage 5.
- Stage 5
- Blind Multiball. You go back to stage 1 of the multiball, but the
blinders are active, and you do not get any new balls added if you
collect a jackpot. Initial jackpot values return to their base values. If you
complete Stages 1 through 4 with the blinders active, then you must be
Tommy, THE pinball wizard! (PS. I heard Lyman has done it :-)).
If you don't collect at least one jackpot, then the left scoop and mirror are
relit for 2-ball multiball (which is not as bad as it seems, because collecting
a jackpot still adds a ball into play, so you can still end up with up to 5
After the first multiball, only the Tommy hole is lit to start/restart
multiball. Note, even though the left scoop is not lit to start multiball, it
doesn't let you collect UJ modes if multiball is lit at the Tommy hole; bug?
7. Other Modes
There are some modes/features which are not started as UJ features.
Captain Walker: During single ball play, the left ramp advances towards
Captain Walker mode (not the same as the Union Jack feature). 2 ramp
shots required to start it first time, 3 for second time, etc. The Captain
Walker round is a 20-second round, during which the left ramp is worth
5M, the right ramp is worth 10M, and the spinners are initially worth
100K, increasing by 100K for each ten spins, to a maximum of 1M per
spin. Hitting the more-time target resets the timer.
Mystery: During single ball play, the right ramp advances towards lighting
Mystery at the GENIUS lane. The possible awards are the following:
- Max Bonus X: Set the end-of-ball bonus multiplier to 7x.
- Max Skill Shot: Raise the value of all subsequent skill shots to 50M.
- Double Scoring: Scoring is doubled for next 20 seconds; however
you cannot start Tommy multiball nor start a UJ, so what's the point?
- Super Pops: Pop bumpers are worth 1M a hit for rest of ball.
- Million Spinners: Set spinners to maximum 1M per spin for rest of ball.
- Silver Ball Lit: The silver ball is lit for 20M, same as completing 2
hits of each silver ball target.
- Extra Ball: haven't seen it myself, but apparently it's possible.
- Special Lit: ditto what I said the previous line!
8. Skill Shot
I really like the thought that has gone into the skill shot on Tommy, as there
are various possibilities, which allow you to combine skill and strategy.
First of all, you have the choice of using either the manual or automatic
plunger (they make everybody happy :-)). I'm sure you know how to
manually plunge the ball. To use the automatic plunger, flip both flippers at the
same time. Be careful though; I have a habit of flipping the flippers before I
launch the ball just to loosen up my fingers. Do this on this game and you'll
accidentally launch the ball. If you want to check the status report, hold
down one flipper and don't press the other one. When the status report
starts, then you can hit the other one to page through the status; but do it
before that and you launch the ball.
There are several things to shoot for:
- the parachute is lit on ball 1 for an initial value of 10M.
Hitting from the plunger shot awards that value, and raises the next value
by 5M. Hitting the parachute at any time during normal play advances
this skill shot value, but does not score the value. This skill shot maxes
out at 50M.
- Right ramp
- this is a flipper skill shot. Instead of shooting for the
parachute (or if you over shoot by too much) the ball is fed to the upper left
flipper, for a shot at the right ramp. Hitting it scores 10M, and advances
you one notch closer to the mystery award.
- Tommy hole
- if multiball is ready and the parachute skill shot is lit, then
shoot the ball around the orbit to the top left flipper. If you hit the
Tommy hole with that shot, you score the oxymoron One Way Combo (Section
9), and start multiball. If you choose to go for this skill shot, make sure
that the mirror is all the way down before launching the ball. The mirror
takes about 4 seconds to lower, so if you launch too quickly, it might not
be all the way down and you'll be very very upset about not starting
multiball if you make your shot.
Generally I shoot for the parachute. However, if multiball is lit, and it is
ball 3, I'll probably go for the Tommy hole instead. If it's ball 2, I figure I
have lots of time to start multiball, so I'll go for the skill shot points.
Also, if the skill shot points are worth 40M or 50M, then I might even shoot
that on ball 3 with multiball lit. But you see what I mean, there is strategy
involved on top of skill!
9. Combos and Bonuses
There are various combos and bonuses in this game, and they are not the
kind you expect as in Williams and Bally games. Most of them are quite
unique. Here are the ones I've seen. Let me know if you find any others:
- One Way Combo
- This is worth 5M, and it is scored by shooting the
Tommy hole when Tommy multiball is lit.
- Extra Ball Combo
- This is worth 5M. It is scored by lighting the UJ extra
ball, and immediately collecting it without hitting any other switch. It
works after light EB from either left scoop or right VUK.
- Sigma Bonus
- This is worth 10M, and named after our fellow R.G.P.er
Kevin Martin. It is scored when you shoot the silver ball, and deflect
into the Tommy hole when multiball is lit.
- Lyman Bonus
- This is worth 2M ... but a BIG 2M! It is named after our
fellow R.G.P.er Lyman Sheats. If you drain and are within 2M of the
replay, you will be awarded an extra 2M, and hence you will get your
- Inlane/Spinner combos
- Shooting a spinner after going through the inlane
on the opposite side doubles the value of that spinner for that shot.
- Silver-Ball Bonus
- Hitting the silver ball after hitting each of the silver
ball targets twice scores 20M. The silver ball is flashing whenever lit
for this bonus.
There are apparently at least two other easter eggs that I haven't come
across, and newer ROMs (3.00 and later) have more combos, but since we
don't have those ROMs on our local machine, I can't tell you what they are.
10. End-of-Ball Bonus
The end-of-ball bonus is 100K per left ramp, 200K per right ramp, and
600K per UJ feature that you've started throughout the game, multiplied by
the Bonus Multiplier, which is a maximum of 7x. The multiplier is reset at
the beginning of each ball.
Here are a few items that didn't really fit anywhere else.
- Extra Ball Buy-in
- As with most modern day games, there is an extra-ball
buy-in. You can use it only once per game.
- Tommy mode
- You can play an entire game with the blinders on by
holding the extra-ball buy-in button when you hit the start button. I don't
think there is any lower replay value, though; there should be!
- Replay scores are typically between 200M and 300M on this
game. When you obtain a replay, the boost is 50M. The score is also
boosted if you match! On Williams/Bally games, if you only have 1
credit with a boosted replay, and you add coins for a multi-player game,
the base replay is reset. This does not seem to be the case on Tommy.
The base replay score is only reset if there are no credits left before you
start any players game.
- High Scores
- The default World Champion score is 1 Billion, with
who else's initials but LFS? Other default high scores are 900M, 800M,
700M, 600M, and 500M. You get 3 credits for getting the World
Champion score, 1 credit for 1st or 2nd score, and no credits for the other
Thanks to the following people for their contribution to this rules sheet:
- PAPA 4 Organizing Committee (for the initial rules summary)
- Kevin Martin
And of course to all my fellow r.g.p.'ers from whom I picked out little
tidbits from USENET posts to make this rule sheet as accurate as possible.
- HTML added by David Gersic dgersic_@_niu.edu
- E-mail addresses have been expunged to prevent web-bot spamming, and Web links have been updated where possible.