In August 2015, VICE released a video called “Pinball: From Illegal Gambling Game to American Obsessions”. The video was part of VICE’s series called American Obsessions.
The video includes interviews with Zach Sharpe, President of the International Flipper Pinball Association; Walter Day, referee for and founder of Twin Galaxies; Roger Sharpe, known as “The Man Who Saved Pinball”; and Michael Schiess, founder of the Pacific Pinball Museum.
The video also covers the history of pinball and how it was banned in major US cities because of gambling. Roger Sharpe managed to prove that pinball was a game of skill (not chance), thus decriminalizing it in many US cities. Decades later, Schiess had to talk with his city council in order to get pinball legalized for his museum. Near the end, Zach Sharpe competes in a pinball tournament at the Chicago Pinball Expo.
The video was recently shared on VICE’s Facebook page, which brought this to my attention, and I wanted to share with the Maze Rats readers!