Jumping Jack

Made by Gottlieb in August, 1973. This is a drop target machine. If drop targets aren't your thing, you will not like this machine. It has almost nothing else. This is the two-player version. The four-player version released three months earlier is Jack-in-the-Box. A good picture of Jack-in-the-Box is on page 49 of Slot Machines and Coin-Op Games by Bill Kurtz.

Backglass: Several girls dancing around a giant toy jack-in-the-box.

Playfield: Symmetrical layout with a bank of 10 drop targets as the predominant feature. Four flippers, two upper and two lower give extra angles from which to knock down all targets. The unusual portion of the playfield is the two pop bumpers placed just above and outside the lower flippers. This provides some fast, and sometimes frustrating action. When the entire bank of drop targets as knocked down, the player scores a special or an extra ball.

Cabinet: Colors are blue and red on a white background. The stenciled shapes are geometrics.

This machine has been in my collection for about as long as any. Originally I bought the machine because my son liked the artwork, and because I am a drop target fan. There's just something about the feel and sound of the targets that's fun. This machine also tends to be one of the most reliable. The only problem with this game is that once you've completed the target bank a couple of times it's just not as fun any more. Usually, if I wait a few days and come back, it's fun and challenging again.

This game was rescued from being a parts machine. It needed drop targets, a playfield glass, a lockdown bar, and a schematic. I've owned two of these machines and the other one was also rescued from being a parts machine. Something about these machines must have made them popular, or despised, in the arcades. I've never seen one that was found complete.

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