Star Wars Pinball coming tomorrow to Android, iOS (video)

Could this be the best thing since "The Empire Strikes Back," or will it prove to be a big pile of Bantha poodoo?

Rick Broida Senior Editor
Rick Broida is the author of numerous books and thousands of reviews, features and blog posts. He writes CNET's popular Cheapskate blog and co-hosts Protocol 1: A Travelers Podcast (about the TV show Travelers). He lives in Michigan, where he previously owned two escape rooms (chronicled in the ebook "I Was a Middle-Aged Zombie").
Rick Broida
2 min read
The Empire Strikes Back table for Zen Pinball looks like the one to get.
The Empire Strikes Back table for Zen Pinball looks like the one to get. Zen Studios

Ready to visit a pinball arcade far, far away?

Tomorrow, Zen Studios will release Star Wars Pinball for Android and iOS, giving you the chance to see how your pinball wizardry matches up with your Jedi wizardry. (The game is getting a simultaneous release for Mac, PlayStation, and Xbox.)

Zen will offer three Star Wars-themed tables as part of its existing Zen Pinball app, which is free and already offers such tables as X-Men, Captain America, and Thor. Each one will cost $1.99 via in-app purchase.

Depending on your level of fandom, "Star Wars" and "pinball" may be all you needed to hear. If that case, check out the just-released trailers for all three, then meet me below for some thoughts.

Boba Fett

The Clone Wars

The Empire Strikes Back

It's hard to tell from the videos whether these extremely elaborate tables involve minigames or just cut-scenes, but either way I'd say there's a lot for Star Wars fans here to enjoy.

On the other hand, did anyone else find it weird to see Boba Fett land on the table and then fight with elements in the table? That whole preview left me wondering whether Star Wars Pinball will succumb to the Dork (er, Dark) Side of the Force. We'll find out tomorrow.

In the meantime, you can install Zen Pinball now (Android|iOS) and try a free table. It's a sweet one, but playing pinball on a tiny smartphone screen is almost painful. To really enjoy it, you need a tablet. (Indeed, this would no doubt rock on the 13.3-inch Archos Family Pad.)

Good or bad, at least we're getting some mobile Star Wars games. Former greats like Battle for Hoth, Falcon Gunner, and Trench Run have all been pulled from the App Store due to licensing changes. (At least Pit Droids survived, though it's not exactly a mainstream favorite.) And with new movies in the works, it's a good bet we'll be seeing a whole lot more.