Around the summer of '98, I was itching to buy a new game. I was on a "one-game-per-summer" thing (with previous games Addams Family and Funhouse). I found an online dealer called R&M Amusements. The owner agreed to bring the game to me and set-up himself (which I was not used to). This intrigued me. He had a Fish Tales. I wanted a Fish Tales. And the deal was made.
The game played well but had a lot of problems. These problems included "average" FT wear like cabinet fade, a lot of wear down by the flippers, and some cracked plastics. Not to mention the fact that the internals weren't the best. However, I knew that this was going to be a keeper. Therefore, I sold the game after a year in my collection and went on a mission to find my "above average" Fish Tales that I would be happy with. If you'd like to see a picture of my original Fish Tales game, click HERE!
Unfortunately, this "mission" of mine was not an easy task. Every Fish Tales game I came across (and there were hundreds over the four years looking) always had negatives. All of them either had too much cabinet fade, too much playfield wear, too many broken items, or a combination of all three. In other words, they were average Fish Tales games.
So, I decided to take on a personal project. I
purchased a few NOS FT parts and two complete/full games. I then took the best
of everything and combined them together. After about 25+ hours of restoration
work, I had my "keeper" FT game. If you're really bored and want to see my
restoration process with pictures, click HERE!
Now I have my ultimate FT keeper machine. Very little cabinet fade with minimal overall cabinet wear. Very little playfield wear (with just a touched-up chip on the orange fish) and no cracked plastics. Plus, it's waxed, shopped, and plays like a rocket. What more could you ask??
Well...a little. This actually has a few goodies along with it. Although no real prototype information exists for FT, it is said that the original releases of the game came with a "light up" ball caster and normal length flippers. The production models of FT came with a small white button on the ball caster and shorter lightening bolt flippers. My game has a "light up" ball caster and normal length flippers. The game plays much better with the longer flippers (it has a much better flow).
I'm so glad to finally have an excellent and above average variation of Fish Tales. It is one of my top-10 favorites. It has a feel like no other. It will remain in my collection forever. "Get the net!!"
My game continues with
other pictures from my
Fish Tales game HERE ......
....or you can check out
my Fish Tales
restoration page HERE
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