This is a good documentary about Pinball. It was made in 2009.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kU52zteEbIE
I remember seeing a non-electric antique amusement machine that was probably from the 1930s, It wasn't very big, but it worked by putting in a coin, like a nickel, and turning a handle to get roughly 7 to 10 metal balls. Then you would pull a lever to shoot the balls at holes. If the balls landed in the holes then they would accumulate in the "score" window. Although the game had a football theme, it was more like a pinball version of skeeball. As primitive as the game was, it was somewhat fun to play.
Growing up in small-city Indiana, there wasn't much amusement in the early 1970s. I remember seeing some mechanical games, like a baseball-themed game and a shooting game, both of which I found thrilling to play. I definitely felt addicted at first. I was young and impressionable. This started me down a path of enjoying games.
As a side note, in late 1974 I began to enjoy playing chess immensely which I still do.
Around summer 1975, an arcade opened up in my local mall, which had mechanical games. My friends and I enjoyed meeting and playing the games. The cost of pinball was 2 games for a quarter. These mechanical games eventually would mostly give way to video games.
There was a perfect storm of events in the second half of the 1970s that would shape my life forever. I already was very interested in electronics because at the time this was the cutting edge of technology. I started reading about computers and I first got to use one in 1975. I lea
rned how to write simple computer programs, taking to programming as a duck takes to water. In 1976 I made friends with someone who had built an extremely primitive computer from a kit, and I learned how to program it using "machine code" which is the more difficult language of the microprocessor itself.
In 1977 video games were starting to become popular and the movie Star Wars came out. Both were very influential on my life. The late 1970s were culturally defined by video games, pinball, Starwars, and disco. It was a time of cheap thrills when the economy was probably the worst since the Great Depression. We had an oil crisis, massive inflation, and unemployment. Most people today are too young to remember how difficult those times were.
I not only became interested in video games but I wanted to write games. I was fortunate that my high school bought computers and taught simple computer programming in algebra class. I was already developing programming skills and I spent much time writing programs on the school computers.
In the mid-1980s I was able to get my own computers and I started a business selling programs that I wrote, some of which were relatively primitive video games.
In 1985 I temporarily had a job at a Showbiz Pizza maintaining and doing minor repairs on the videogames and mechanical games. In 1993 I got my first job as a video game programmer in Utah.