The Internet Pinball Serial Number Database or IPSND collects serial numbers of pinball machines and publishes a database of these on the Internet. Our goal is to make available a registration of all pinball machines in existence and allow tools for slicing, dicing and visualization of the data.

Games: 6,217  Serials: 48,430  Visitors: 26,062,526  Members: 3,571  Photos: 25,520  Lat/Lng: 24,717  Masks: 48,430(778.99 %)  Traits: 496  Nudges: 129,899  Backglasses: 1,862
  Most Serials: Twilight Zone(1,012)  Most Submissions: Rod McLarge(3,264)  Most Points: Rod McLarge(27,988)  Highest Quality: Jim Butler(9.08)  Most Nudges: King of Pinball(17,461)
Some manufacturer's assigned serial numbers to their games in a predefind format in order to distinguish the serial number from other games they may have made. Other manufacturer's had a single running sequence of numbers that they used throughout their production run. To complicate things more, these serial number sequences where often changed during a manufacturer's existence as a company. Serial number seqences were also modifed in order to conceal actual production runs of a game from competing companies.

If the submitted serial numbers start to exhibit a pattern or there is other documentation about a serial number format for a particular game, then the Serial Number Submission page will show a section explaining the format for that specific game.


Examples of some serial number format rules are below...

Gottlieb 1947-1959

Gottlieb used a one or two-digit suffix on all serial numbers that distinguished the game name by using letters that were similar to the title. Duette had serials such as '123456D' and Southern Belle had a serial number like '070834SB'.

Bally 1963-1977

Bally started prefixing their games with 1 or 2 letters from the name of the game during this period. Bally's 1963 game 'Hootenanny' started with the letter 'H' while their 1965 game 'Six Sticks' started with the letters 'SK'.  This system was pretty consistent with all Electro-mechanical games up to 1977 when Bally started manufacturing Electronic games.

Bally 1977-1984

As Bally started producing Electronic games they switched took the two letter prefix rule and added an 'E' to the front for 'Electronic'. The original two letter game prefix remained to give prefixes like 'ECE' for Centaur and 'EFA' for Fathom. This continued until Bally merged with Midway in 1984. At this point, they no longer had a game prefix on their serial numbers.

Bally/Midway 1988-1990

At this point, Bally became a part of the Williams family and their serial numbers started a new format. All games had a 4-digit game model number added to a 6-digit sequential production number. Truck Stop had a model number of '2001' so an example serial number would be '2001123456'. This continued until Williams decided to change their serial number formats across the board (See Williams/Bally below).

Williams 1984-1990

Prior to 1984, Williams game used a sequential 6 digit serial number with no prefix. In 1984 with Laser Cue, they started adding a 3-digit game model number to the 6-digit serial number. For example, Laser Cue had serial numbers like '520007393' in which the '520' is the model number and the '007393' is the sequential production number.

Williams/Bally  1990-1999

During this time, Williams revamped the numbering system once again to include a differnentiation between the Bally and Williams line as well as between redemption and pinball games. All games started with a 5-digit 'model number' followed by the standard 6-digit production number. The 5-digit number followed the format of..

  • 200xx : Bally games produced directly after the merger.
  • 400xx : Midway video games
  • 500xx : Williams games produced after the merger and later Bally games.
  • 600xx : Merchandise games produced after the merger.
  • 900xx : Token Pins (ie: Safecracker ...) and Redemption games.

This information for the format of these serials was blatantly stolen from Jonathan D's Williams/Bally ROM page.

 

If you have additional information on serial number formats or corrections to the above data, please email webmaster@ipsnd.net


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