Miscellaneous Skill Games (1 of 2)- PennyMachines MUSEUM
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Museum

Miscellaneous Skill Games

Games of skill became the stock in trade of the British amusement machine industry thanks to the Betting and Gaming Acts of 1853 and 1854 which legislated against gaming machines even before they were invented. Most common were the allwin, ball catching, dropcase and shooting games, but this section of the museum will represent the ingenious diversity of other designs which emerged over the years. Many were genuine tests of skill, and offered no reward, a free game or a returned coin at most. Others, which paid prizes of higher value than the original stake, employed the legend "a game of skill" somewhat liberally. Usually the skill was outweighed by a larger element of chance. It had to be really, otherwise players would quickly have honed their technique and emptied the machines.


Improved Bomb Dropper

Improved Bomb Dropper

This handsome three cannon version of . Typical of it's vintage, game play is quite challenging: 1. insert your penny; 2. press the button below the slot to release three balls; 3. pull the lever beneath this to separate a ball; 4. flick the trigger to send the ball up to the brass platform; 5. tilt the platform by turning the knob on the left until the "bomb" is over a cannon; 6. press the knob to retract the platform, releasing the ball over the target; 7. repeat the process; 8. ditto. If you persevere and succeed in knocking down all three cannons, your coin is automatically returned, but your chance of retrieving your coin can be scuppered on the first ball.

 


The Challenger

Depth Charge

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Up the Pole

Up the Pole

This novel and rather challenging game works on the striker principle. A penny releases both balls to the bottom. The left one is fired upwards and lands by a coloured arrow. If the second ball lands against an identical colour, a solenoid buzzes and the knob can be turned for a coin or coins in the cup.

The payout mechanism is distinctly odd - the balls close electrical contacts to make a circuit which energizes the solenoid, but the solenoid doesn't push the payout slide. It merely links it to the the knob allowing the player to crank it manually.

Although it's clearly from the Brenner stable, it doesn't seem to bear the hallmark of Bernard Brenner's engineering "nous".

Brenner 1956

 


Skill Machine

Skill Machine

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Gretna-Green

Gretna-Green, The Smithy

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BMCo. 1930?

 


Ping Pong

Ping Pong

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Bubbles

Bubbles

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Charles Ahrens, Circa 1930

pointer Click image to enlarge

 


Beat The Goalie

Beat the Goalie

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BMCo. 1930?

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Steer-A-Ball

Steer-A-Ball

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Charles Ahrens. 1930?

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Bubbles

Bomb Dropper

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Handani. 1930?

Click image to enlarge pointer

 


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