Remember those days at the local arcade when you dropped coin after coin into the pinball machine slots? It was fun to hang out with the gang and see who could get their initials in lights on the scoreboard. The likelihood of finding an authentic, functioning pinball machine in Hong Kong is about as high as that of finding the remains of Peking Man in your neighbourhood. However, the experience of playing old-school, pinball-machine games can now be relived with Gottlieb Pinball Classics, for Sony's hand-held PlayStation Portable (PSP) system. The game, also known as Pinball Hall of Fame: The Gottlieb Collection, was created by United States-based game developer FarSight Studios and published by British firm System 3. Founded in 1927, Gottlieb was a US arcade-game developer that produced some of the industry's leading pinball machines. The company went through several owners, including Columbia Pictures (1977), Coca-Cola subsidiary Mylstar Electronics (1983) and Premier Technology (1984), which produced the last pinball game, called Barb Wire, in 1996, shortly before filing for bankruptcy and selling off its assets the same year. Gottlieb Pinball Classics features 11 of the developer's greatest tables, recreated in a 3D environment to simulate the visuals and sound effects of a bygone era. This compilation includes Aces High, Central Park, Big Shot, Genie, Black Hole and Victory, plus three tables never before seen in a video-game collection of this kind. A gamer enters a virtual arcade to find only a couple of tables are free to play. The rest can be unlocked only when a player has accumulated a certain amount of credits. These credits are earned on the free-play tables. Occasionally, the love-meter machine or the Xolten fortune-telling machine will reward a player with extra credits. This facet of the game will remind pinball junkies of those times when they had to scrounge around for change to play in the arcade. A commentator provides gamers with a short history lesson on each table when it is played for the first time. A tutorial on how to rack up the points is also available. The game's 3D rendering of the table and the moving ball is fine when the camera is zoomed in on the action. When the camera zooms out, however, the ball gets too hard to track on the PSP's screen. The game can be played either horizontally or vertically, but the obvious hiccup with the latter is the zoomed-out view: gamers see the whole table but graphics and details are smaller. Another problem is the nudge button, which has been assigned to the top of the analogue stick above the screen. This means a player must hold the bottom of the PSP with one hand, while also using the left and right flipper buttons at the bottom of the screen. This setup can be difficult to manage. Pinball aficionados will surely enjoy the historical art, including a photo tour of the Gottlieb factory, and various fun facts from the golden age of these arcade machines. The game, which includes a function that allows two players to compete via a wireless connection using a single game disc, is perfect for commuters. Pros: A worthy selection of classic tables that can be played anytime, anywhere. Cons: An annoying credit system that prevents access to tables you want to play.