In today's edition of The Silverball Reviews, we're looking at The Incredible Hulk from Gottlieb. Have you played this monster game? Did it make you angry?

A little history first.

The 1970s were a wild time in comic books. Sales were dropping due to lack of distribution, and the introduction of video games (and subsequently, the arcade) was pulling their market away even further. Yet Marvel was finding ways of surviving, and the late 1970s proved to be a turning point for the company.

By the time Gottlieb released The Incredible Hulk in October of 1979, Marvel Comics was financially sound. This was largely due to the Star Wars comic series essentially saving the company, but the television shows based on the most popular Marvel characters helped as well -- in fact, The Incredible Hulk television show inspired the Gottlieb pinball machine!

This was a big machine for Gottlieb as well.

It was the company's first time creating a solid-state (a pinball machine that is controlled electronically by chips) game; Gottlieb would not have the same sunny outcome Marvel Comics would eventually have. The artwork on the machine was provided by Gordon Morison and features bright pink and green coloring with a stunning backglass showing Bruce Banner transforming into the Hulk.

Designed by Ed Krynski (who has designed more pinball machines than anyone in pinball), the game featured the traditional two flippers and two pop bumpers, as well as seven drop targets, standup targets, ball kickers, and one spinning target.

According to The Internet Pinball Machine Database, there is also a special Model #500 version of The Incredible Hulk, which was created as a prototype for Gottlieb's new System 80 MPU. These prototypes didn't vary much from what was released. Rumor has it there are four of these in existence and are held in private collections.

Gottlieb produced 6,150 of these machines so they are fairly easy to find on the second-hand market. Expect to pay around $1300 for a decent machine, but as always, conditions will affect the price. While I wouldn't say this is a game to invest in if you're looking to flip it later,  this is a great piece for collectors and fans.

Gottlieb machines are fairly reliable but also very easy to fix if a problem arises. Restoring a pinball machine can also be a fun challenge, so if you find an Incredible Hulk in poor shape and need a project, this is a great machine to learn off of.

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Do you own any Gottlieb machines in your collection? Tell us about them in the comments below!

*Any perceived investment advice is that of the freelance blogger and does not reflect advice on behalf of GoCollect.