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  • Nudging the ball and other intermediate questions

    Hi all,

    purely by accident I downloaded Pinball FX2 a 3 months ago and started playing. I never played Pinball before, so I'm new to the whole genre.

    Over the last weeks I played regularly and saw some progress. I completed my first missions and was even on the brink of getting my first Wizard mode on Spiderman, just failed to lock all the balls, after completing the missions.

    Spiderman, with 96 kk, is also my best table, Mars with 46 kk, Cap with 41 kk and Wolverine with 35 kk should show you that I'm still at a beginner stage, but hopefully are on a good way.

    Now I have a few questions.

    First is nudging the ball. Is there a certain way to do it? In the videos it always looks easy and the ball makes comfortable leaps to the other flippers. When I do it, it just makes small leaps and the ball is always in danger of going to the drain or barely makes the other flipper and is uncontrollable.
    Any tips, how to make comfortable nudges? Does the ball need a certain amount of speed, a certain position on the flipper and in which direction should the left stick go?

    Another question would be, how to aim and train for difficult shots. I played a lot of Wolverine the last couple of days and improved my aiming for the lanes, saucers and orbits, but my biggest issue is that too many balls of missed shots are heading for the outlanes, particularly the left one. So I thought kickback, but I have no chance on hitting those two targets. The only few times I actually hit them, were purely by chance. How to you target and practice those shots? I have the same problems with hitting the Merlin ramp on Excalibur or the ramp at Pasha, which you need to hit after the book opens.
    I know that in both those cases, the upper left flipper is envolved, but I seem to fail aiming with them. Is there a way to practice those shots?

    If you read all this, thanks for your time and I'd appreciate any tips you guys might have, cause I really love the game and like to improve my skills. See you around and feel free to add me on X-Box Live.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Verjigorm View Post
    Hi all,
    purely by accident I downloaded Pinball FX2 a 3 months ago and started playing. I never played Pinball before, so I'm new to the whole genre.
    First off, welcome to the world of pinball and to these forums. I own the PS3 version of this game, so I won't be able to answer all of your question. Especially, on certain tables like Pasha which aren't available on the PS3. However, I should be able to answer the Marvel Pinball questions, since the two version are exactly the same.

    Over the last weeks I played regularly and saw some progress. I completed my first missions and was even on the brink of getting my first Wizard mode on Spiderman, just failed to lock all the balls, after completing the missions.

    Spiderman, with 96 kk, is also my best table, Mars with 46 kk, Cap with 41 kk and Wolverine with 35 kk should show you that I'm still at a beginner stage, but hopefully are on a good way.
    Those are some pretty good accomplishments for a beginner. Many of my friends can't even do half of what you've done. Congrats!

    First is nudging the ball. Is there a certain way to do it? In the videos it always looks easy and the ball makes comfortable leaps to the other flippers. When I do it, it just makes small leaps and the ball is always in danger of going to the drain or barely makes the other flipper and is uncontrollable.
    Any tips, how to make comfortable nudges? Does the ball need a certain amount of speed, a certain position on the flipper and in which direction should the left stick go?
    The best way is to trap the ball first with the flipper. Once the ball is trapped, then release the flipper and let the ball roll to the tip of the flipper. As soon as it gets to the tip of the flipper, nudge the table upward (press up on the analog stick). This will do a perfect "nudge pass" and you should be able to capture the ball with the other flipper.

    Another question would be, how to aim and train for difficult shots. I played a lot of Wolverine the last couple of days and improved my aiming for the lanes, saucers and orbits, but my biggest issue is that too many balls of missed shots are heading for the outlanes, particularly the left one. So I thought kickback, but I have no chance on hitting those two targets. The only few times I actually hit them, were purely by chance. How to you target and practice those shots? I have the same problems with hitting the Merlin ramp on Excalibur or the ramp at Pasha, which you need to hit after the book opens.
    I know that in both those cases, the upper left flipper is involved, but I seem to fail aiming with them. Is there a way to practice those shots?
    For Wolverine, you can hit the two targets by hitting the ball with the tip of the left flipper. Timing is really crucial here. If you hit it too soon, it'll end up in the right orbit and if you hit it too late, it'll hit the right slingshot.

    For Excalibur, again it's the tip of the upper left flipper. And it's another one that needs to be perfectly timed. The only advice I can give is to keep on practicing.

    Comment


    • #3
      Welcome to the forums... glad to hear that you are enjoying the game so much. I had the same experience... starting from no real pinball background and now spending most of my gaming time on this game.

      Here is some general advise that have helped me to become better along the way:

      - Read Blue's FAQ that is stickied first I would say. Especially the Internet Pinball Database Skill section.
      - Learn the rulesheets, table layout and if a guide is available for a table read through that as well.
      - The most important thing to learn is how to best control the ball: the basic is to catch it on a flipper, aim and then shoot.
      - Choose one table that you want to master and stick with that table until you can do everything on it. I chose Rome (I would now start with Wolverine because of the claw save that can be activated) as my first table and spent around 2 weeks or longer just about only playing that table until I managed to complete the Wizard mode.
      - The reason why I say choose one table is because you have to be able to learn how to do each shot on the table with confidence and the only way to learn it is to play over and over and practice until you get it right.
      - For me this was very important because you learn how to deal with balls coming down at different angles and speeds and how to bring the ball under control and best achieve each shot. E.g. bottom saucer on wolverine to activate the claw save have a few ways you can do it: catch the ball on the right, let it roll and shoot from the tip of the flipper, once the ball drop out from the saucer you nudge pass it over to the right flipper, catch it and repeat. Wolverine gives you 3 nudges... more than the normal 2 on other tables. A second way to do it is to shoot the ball up the right ramp (towards fast ball special as 3 times gives you an extra ball and you can get 5 on this table per ball... more than any other table) and then shoot the ball late from the right flipper without catching it first - this is a bit more risky but worth learning as the bottom saucer is the most important target to hit on the table if you plan on having long games. You can also learn to do an orbit pass to get the ball through the left or right orbit back onto the right flipper when you don't have nudges left any more as the ball will fall down from the bumpers ready for you to let bounce and catch (remember nudges recharge every 15 seconds or so).
      - Under the operators menu change the game to easy with maximum balls (10). This will give you the best opportunity to have a chance to play through all the modes. Remember that you scores will then not count on the leaderboards so you will have to change it back to the normal settings at some point. Also remember the slowmotion button to see where exactly to hit the very difficult shots - I have never used it much as it doesn't give you a true feeling.
      - For each table you play you must also learn how to effectively make the table as safe as possible for you - learn how to activate the kickbacks e.g. on Ironman you will lose all your balls very quickly if you don't have you kickbacks always activated; also learn how the easiest way is to get extra balls and start working on getting it as safely as possible e.g. wolverine - fast ball special and the through normal play after 10x multiplier is activated is the two main ways and both quite save; ballsave is not that important for me but on a table like Pasha where you often activate it by chance it can come in quite handy.

      Here are two guides that I wrote to hopefully help somebody to approach Fantastic 4 and Ironman in an efficient but safe way to reach Wizard mode - you will see I approach it using the basic principles explained above. Fantastic 4 is another great table to learn how to play on as you have the Negative Zone Ballsaver that can be activated (despite it having a few game breaking glitches that can sometimes happen).

      Fantastic 4 - http://forum.zenstudios.com/showthread.php?t=3171
      Ironman - http://forum.zenstudios.com/showthread.php?t=3200

      OK - sorry. I just started writing and before I knew it I had started an essay again. Hope it help you some and I'm sure the other guys will add to what I and Shogun have added so far - please feel free to ask about other things you don't understand... the community on this forum is great
      Cloda
      Senior Member
      Last edited by Cloda; 12-01-2018, 05:53 AM. Reason: spelling and small edits
      XBox One Gamertag - PinStratsDan

      Pinball FX3 Tips & Strategy Guide YouTube Channel - PinStratsDan

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      Cloda's somewhat vain and sort of self-indulgent thread

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by shogun00 View Post
        The best way is to trap the ball first with the flipper. Once the ball is trapped, then release the flipper and let the ball roll to the tip of the flipper. As soon as it gets to the tip of the flipper, nudge the table upward (press up on the analog stick). This will do a perfect "nudge pass" and you should be able to capture the ball with the other flipper.
        This is good advice for starters but to start nudging without setting off the TILT warning you will want to learn to do it from a running ball. The momentum means you can use lighter nudges. When the ball is at a stop, you can still do this same 'soft nudge' but the ball will end up right on the very tip of the flipper. This actually may give the OP pretty good practice at hitting those 2 kickback targets. I find the top one is harder to hit accurately than the bottom one, as the bottom one is just that shot. A fast 'flick' shot off the very tip of the left flipper. Not dissing your advice though shogun because its correct, just adding to it.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Cloda View Post
          The most important thing to learn is how to best control the ball: the basic is to catch it on a flipper, aim and then shoot.
          Definitely #1 for a person learning. Just hitting random shots and flailing at the ball at all times will get you nowhere. Master as many little techniques as you can and when its all bought together games will last alot longer and scores will get higher.

          Choose one table that you want to master and stick with that table until you can do everything on it. I chose Rome (I would now start with Wolverine because of the claw save that can be activated) as my first table and spent around 2 weeks or longer just about only playing that table until I managed to complete the Wizard mode.
          This needs to be emphasised because its very important when starting out. Mastering just one table will help greatly in being able to just pick up and be able to play at least decent on all tables. I also would stick with a tougher table to learn (mine was Ironman) with because it almost forces you to use the techniques needed. It can be a brutal learning curve to start but you will come out better in the end. Wolverine could be good but imo I would go with a Rome or Ironman style table as they force you to always make sure your defences are up (kickbacks), you have to have accurate shots because you are punished for missing and the best part for beginners is that a table like Ironman, while tough gameplay wise, has a very easy ruleset to understand, so you won't be just hitting shots around randomly wondering what the hell is happening

          Under the operators menu change the game to easy with maximum balls (10). This will give you the best opportunity to have a chance to play through all the modes. Remember that you scores will then not count on the leaderboards so you will have to change it back to the normal settings at some point. Also remember the slowmotion button to see where exactly to hit the very difficult shots - I have never used it much as it doesn't give you a true feeling.
          I have to disagree a little with this. While I know it is there for this reason, it can take away the 'rewarding' feeling of beating the table the 'real' way. I think its far better to just throw yourself into the deep end and take all the bad bounces and drains as part of the learning curve. Maybe I am saying this because I have never actually been into those options, because I knew with persistence that I would be able to get there. Just my opinion on that though, I just see it as going backwards in a way.

          Thats just a small nitpick though as all your other advice is spot on

          Comment


          • #6
            This is a little OT, but i want to say it all the same. I really like the way pro players are ready to help beginners to improve, spending time reading and writing advices. I nevere expected this before joining the forum ( i was ready to "steal" tricks , maybe hidden in discussions). It makes me proud to be a pinball player!
            "The heart reveals what smiles betray" - Rise against

            Comment


            • #7
              Wow, this was a lot of good advice and really, really helpful. Thank you all!

              Originally posted by shogun00 View Post


              The best way is to trap the ball first with the flipper. Once the ball is trapped, then release the flipper and let the ball roll to the tip of the flipper. As soon as it gets to the tip of the flipper, nudge the table upward (press up on the analog stick). This will do a perfect "nudge pass" and you should be able to capture the ball with the other flipper.
              OMG! Up, that was the magic hint. I always tried to nudge to the side. That was the problem. Now swapping flippers is a very reliable tool in my toolbox. Thanks!


              Originally posted by Cloda View Post

              - Choose one table that you want to master and stick with that table until you can do everything on it. I chose Rome (I would now start with Wolverine because of the claw save that can be activated) as my first table and spent around 2 weeks or longer just about only playing that table until I managed to complete the Wizard mode.
              - The reason why I say choose one table is because you have to be able to learn how to do each shot on the table with confidence and the only way to learn it is to play over and over and practice until you get it right.
              - For me this was very important because you learn how to deal with balls coming down at different angles and speeds and how to bring the ball under control and best achieve each shot. E.g. bottom saucer on wolverine to activate the claw save have a few ways you can do it: catch the ball on the right, let it roll and shoot from the tip of the flipper, once the ball drop out from the saucer you nudge pass it over to the right flipper, catch it and repeat. Wolverine gives you 3 nudges... more than the normal 2 on other tables. A second way to do it is to shoot the ball up the right ramp (towards fast ball special as 3 times gives you an extra ball and you can get 5 on this table per ball... more than any other table) and then shoot the ball late from the right flipper without catching it first - this is a bit more risky but worth learning as the bottom saucer is the most important target to hit on the table if you plan on having long games. You can also learn to do an orbit pass to get the ball through the left orbit back onto the right flipper when you don't have nudges left any more (remember nudges recharge every 15 seconds or so).
              This was also amazingly helpful. In my last session I concentrated on making the "Snitch" shot and that helped stabalize my gameplay. Eventhough I'm only just hitting around 30% - 40% of my attempts, the others go safely into the orbit, speeding up Sentinel and can be controlled when coming back.
              Before your tips, I had a score of 37kk, in the last session (10-12 games) I scored 31kk, 78 kk and 85kk.


              Originally posted by OzV1 View Post
              This needs to be emphasised because its very important when starting out. Mastering just one table will help greatly in being able to just pick up and be able to play at least decent on all tables. I also would stick with a tougher table to learn (mine was Ironman) with because it almost forces you to use the techniques needed. It can be a brutal learning curve to start but you will come out better in the end. Wolverine could be good but imo I would go with a Rome or Ironman style table as they force you to always make sure your defences are up (kickbacks), you have to have accurate shots because you are punished for missing and the best part for beginners is that a table like Ironman, while tough gameplay wise, has a very easy ruleset to understand, so you won't be just hitting shots around randomly wondering what the hell is happening
              That makes alot of sense. As I'm feeling very confident while learning Wolverine, I'll stick with it for the beginning, but when I reach the point, where I think that I should move on to another table, I will definately choose one of the harder tables. Rome and Ironman are both tables that I like very much and where I was able to do a few things already.

              What I noticed from my last session was also that it helps to have a plan. In earlier games, I controled balls as well, but I always had periods, where I just played, saw what happened and then tried to build up on that.
              By actually knowing how to start a table, the amount of controled shots increased rapidly for me and the gaming enviroment felt more secure.

              So, again, thank you very much for all the advice. This community is really amazing and I hope to see you guys around a lot in the future.
              Verjigorm
              Senior Member
              Last edited by Verjigorm; 08-11-2011, 04:21 PM.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by OzV1 View Post
                This is good advice for starters but to start nudging without setting off the TILT warning you will want to learn to do it from a running ball. The momentum means you can use lighter nudges.
                I don't like doing light nudges, but that's just me. Instead, I keep in mind that the tilt warnings reset in about 15 seconds.
                shogun00
                Senior Member
                Last edited by shogun00; 08-11-2011, 04:13 PM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Zuprichy View Post
                  This is a little OT, but i want to say it all the same. I really like the way pro players are ready to help beginners to improve, spending time reading and writing advices. I never expected this before joining the forum ( i was ready to "steal" tricks , maybe hidden in discussions). It makes me proud to be a pinball player!
                  The pinball community has always been different compared to the gaming community. Mainly because pinball has been on a sharp decline over the years and we'll do anything to get people into pinball.

                  I'm really grateful that Zen created this game. It's pumping some new life into pinball and some of my friends are now seeing why I've enjoyed pinball all of these years.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Verjigorm View Post
                    This was also amazingly helpful. In my last session I concentrated on making the "Snitch" shot and that helped stabalize my gameplay. Eventhough I'm only just hitting around 30% - 40% of my attempts, the others go safely into the orbit, speeding up Sentinel and can be controlled when coming back.
                    Before your tips, I had a score of 37kk, in the last session (10-12 games) I scored 31kk, 78 kk and 85kk.
                    Glad it was helpful. I thought of some more bits of advice:

                    - Don't focus on your score at all initially, focus on understanding all that is possible on the table and how to approach it in a safe and effective way so that you can keep the ball alive for as long as possible. Once you can do that, the scores will come by themselves.
                    - Adding to the previous point; Sometimes it is worthwhile to not actually play the table for a score or to complete the missions that you can easily, but to rather focus on just one problematic mission until you can get it right. e.g. on Biolab I could not get the escape mini-game activated because the two targets are hard to hit. For a couple of games I just focussed on that until I got it right and now I am able to easily get extra balls where in the past it felt impossible. There is also a garrison mission on Rome where you have a two ball multi-ball which I just couldn't complete until I just focussed on that and figured out a way to do it within my limitations and off course - the pyramid mission on Mars; still can't do it at will but after countless tries I got better at it and could finally get and complete the Wizard mode.

                    In the end all this figuring out and experimenting goes a long way towards improving your general ability with the game.

                    Originally posted by OzV1 View Post
                    I have to disagree a little with this. While I know it is there for this reason, it can take away the 'rewarding' feeling of beating the table the 'real' way. I think its far better to just throw yourself into the deep end and take all the bad bounces and drains as part of the learning curve. Maybe I am saying this because I have never actually been into those options, because I knew with persistence that I would be able to get there. Just my opinion on that though, I just see it as going backwards in a way.

                    Thats just a small nitpick though as all your other advice is spot on
                    I agree with you in general but for me there has been one or two tables where I first needed to get some confidence and an idea of what actually is possible on the table such as Secrets of the Deep (where I have only been able to beat the wizard mode on easy mode - can't get past the damn probe mission) and Rome when I was still learning the table.

                    Now that I have improved I never change the settings to easy any more when I play a new table, but initially a lack of confidence and believe played a huge role. Before I was able to beat any of the wizard modes I just didn't believe that it was possible, so when I actually achieved it the first time (on Rome) even though it was on easy mode, it gave me so much confidence as I then knew what to expect and soon after that I was able to achieve it the "real" way... and then my reality got shattered when I realised that the bulk of the top scores on Rome are not achieved by reaching wizard mode

                    It is sometimes easy to forget how intimidating pinball can be when you are first introduced to it... you have to learn so much initially and it can easily become overwhelming. When I look at the leader boards and achievements it is always very revealing to me to see how few of the thousands of players have really mastered the game... it just highlights for me that pinball is bloody tough and that apart from a few blessed players the rest of us have to work really hard at it to get anywhere.
                    XBox One Gamertag - PinStratsDan

                    Pinball FX3 Tips & Strategy Guide YouTube Channel - PinStratsDan

                    Discord server - PinStratsDan

                    Twitter - PinStratsDan

                    Facebook - PinStratsDan

                    Cloda's somewhat vain and sort of self-indulgent thread

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by shogun00 View Post
                      The pinball community has always been different compared to the gaming community. Mainly because pinball has been on a sharp decline over the years and we'll do anything to get people into pinball.

                      I'm really grateful that Zen created this game. It's pumping some new life into pinball and some of my friends are now seeing why I've enjoyed pinball all of these years.
                      Also we need to thank ZEN for providing these forums to support their product and give their customers a chance to offer feedback

                      Comment

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