A borderline-illegal tactic in pinball, used to save a ball that is draining in the center outhole (between the flippers).

This is based on typical arrangement of the parts behind the flippers, normally out of sight under the panel with the instructions and pricing information. The important thing is that there's a slanted wall, usually a little steeper than the bottom playfield walls you can see, which guides the ball back into the mechanism which holds the balls which are not in play and serves them up to the plunger.

To perform a bangback, when you think the ball is on this wall, hold the left flipper up, and with the lower part of the palm of your right hand, deliver a quick jab to the middle of the upper part of the front of the machine, usually at least partly hitting the lockdown bar.

If perfectly executed, the ball will bounce up and land right on the right flipper (which you now have to race your hand over to flip), and you may get a tilt warning but not tilt.

If improperly executed, you will not save the ball, tilt the game, slam tilt the game, and/or injure your hand, so be careful! Also, some arcades don't look very kindly on this, so you may find yourself getting warned by an attendant, or thrown out of the arcade if you persist.

Also, most modern games are equipped with biff bars, little metal rails just barely above the surface of the table and located just below the flippers. These act as speed bumps to reduce the chance of a successful bangback or death save. Try to time your bangback so that the ball will not hit the biff bar. Also, if a game has a center post between the flippers, it usually gets in the way of bangbacks, so don't bother.

See also death save.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.