Hidden away in the basement of Sim Lim Square, is the all-new Pinball Wizard bar—the first of its kind in the building.
Pushing past the deceptively simple door will instantly transport you to the 90s—neon lights, retro decor, and obviously, old-school pinball machines.
I was excited to visit Pinball Wizard, as my only experience with Pinball was the 3D Pinball Space Cadet on my old Microsoft XP computer. Also, I have never touched a physical pinball machine in my 22 years of life, so this would be a first for me.
My excitement piled on when I learnt that the pinball machines don’t just look old—they are old. Most of the digital pinball machines are manufactured in the early 90s, which explains its 8-bit graphics.
You won’t be looking at the same screen over and over again—you can choose up to 688 tables of varying themes to play Pinball on. With such an extensive library of pinball table themes, I immediately began my search for my favourite game of all-time—Pokémon.
It isn’t just the layout of the pinball game that changes with every theme that you pick. The scoreboard on the back of the pinball machine is designed to change according to whichever theme you have selected The in-game jingle that plays when your ball hits a particular portion, changes as well.
Impressed, I began searching for something else that I liked from my childhood—professional wrestling. I found a game of WWF Royal Rumble pinball and relished every moment that I got to see wrestling legends such as Hulk Hogan and the Undertaker on the screen.
Of course, there will be a select few who might enjoy the feel of a real pinball machine where you can physically release the lever and feel the weight of the ball with your flippers. For those purists, there are two machines here at Pinball Wizard made in the year 1979 that utilises mechanical lever action. The machines have been so well-preserved that it might be hard to tell that some may be older than you.
The opportunity to play one of these pinball machines are few and far in between, as these machines are no longer being produced and are such a rarity here in Singapore. We spent a solid hour experiencing the different varieties of machines available in the bar—I believe the smile on my colleague’s face is enough to say how much fun we had.
You can also expect a unique selection of drinks with Pinball Wizard’s Cocktail Remixes—something you would be hard-pressed to find at other bars in Singapore. One such example is the Berry Poppins, which comes with pearls made from strawberry gelatin.
Another drink that tastes as good as it looks is the Salty White Russian (S$18), which contains spiced rum, Kahlua liqueur, salted caramel, and milk. Topped off with a biscuit, this drink is bound to be a favourite for the ladies who enjoy dairy alcohol.
There is also a selection of shooters exclusive to Pinball Wizard, such as Peanut Butter & Jelly (S$80 for ten shots), which is made up of Black Raspberry Liqueur, Hazelnut Liqueur, Vodka, and Cranberry Juice.
Instead of blaring EDM or House music, the music at Pinball Wizard is reminiscent to that of EmonightSG’s. It’s #throwback to the music we loved when we were younger, creating a relaxed ambience for you to chill after work and carry a conversation without raising your voice.
With the introduction of Pinball Wizard, Sim Lim Square will no longer just be a place for tech-savvy people and those looking to resell their used appliances. It certainly is refreshing to see a modern space such as this, in a building that has been around for more than three decades.
I had a whale of a time at Pinball Wizard, soaking in the 90s atmosphere and raging at my failures at the pinball machine. I may not be a Pinball Wizard, but hopefully, with enough practice, you might call me one sometime.
Operating Hours: 6pm – 1pm (Tuesday & Wednesday) , 6pm – 3am (Thursday & Friday) , 6pm – 4am (Saturday)
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