Pinball Construction Set
BudgeCo - 1983
Pinball Construction Set is probably the most impressive piece of programming I’ve ever come across. Made for the Apple II way back in ’83, it utilised GUI (graphical user interface) features that few had seen before and few would see again until mouse driven computers became popular in the late eighties/early nineties.
Pinball Construction Set involves dragging flippers, bumpers and other bits of pinball tableware onto a blank table to create your own pinball game which you can then play to your heart’s content. For 1983 and the Apple II this alone would have been great but PCS goes further. You can create your own custom artwork, manipulate the physics model and save you construction to swap with your friends. In short, apart from three dimensional graphics, there is nothing you can’t do here that you would expect to be able to do in an equivalent programme today.
On top of all this Pinball Construction Set is fun, really big fun which isn’t always the case with DIY games. Other construction games bog you down with options and often require coding, whereas PCS is the very essence of simplicity and speed; you can be playing your own table within two minutes of loading the disk.
As the very first DIY game you’d expect it to be lacking somewhat in comparison to today’s classic construction kits like Trackmania but the fact is Pinball Construction Set just keeps on giving and I guarantee that if you give it a shot you’ll soon be hooked and spending hours perfecting your tables.
Jakey 24 Apr '08
The Home of the Underdogs' Pinball Construction Set page - The Home of the Underdogs' Pinball Construction Set page.
Wikipedia's Pinball Construction Set page - Lots of great information and some facinating history.