EinStein’s E=mc²

The Space City Pinball League organizes monthly matchplay tournaments held at EinStein’s Pub and Arcade in Richmond, TX. The tournaments are set up to be fun for all ages and skill levels! Typically, this tournament is scheduled for the 4th Sunday of every month at 1pm. Check the website calendar for additional information. Former monthly champions are listed here. The tournament rules are below.


The monthly tournaments will follow a seven round, group match-play format. Each round, competitors will be placed in groups and play a single four-player game. Players will earn points determined by their finishing position in their group (3, 2, 1, or 0). Players will accrue points across the seven rounds.

After 7 rounds of match-play, the top 8 finishers play in PAPA style finals. During each round of the playoff, each group will play three games. Players will score points on each game based on finishing position (4-2-1-0).  After three games, the two players from each group with the most points will advance to the next round. On the final round, the points will determine the final finishing position.  

This tournament is run using Match Play Events software.  Players are encouraged to log onto Matchplay.events in order to determine their game and position as the tournament progresses.


The tournament director will be responsible for managing and organizing the tournament. The TD will also be responsible for making any rulings in the event of malfunctions and errors. The TD has the final say on all rulings. If a game requires a ruling that the TD is directly involved, the ruling will be deferred to an assistant tournament director to be named at the beginning of the tournament.The current TD is listed below and can be contacted with any questions about the tournament.

Matt Quantz



Entry fee for the tournament is $1.00 for IFPA plus coin drop. 


Registration for the tournament will begin at 12:30 PM, and  the tournament will start at 1:00 PM. The length of the tournament will vary, but plan for around 3.5 hours of qualifying and 3 hours of finals. Please do your part to help the tournament run quickly and efficiently!

  • Arrive on time
  • Promptly notify the director of match results or enter them yourself on Matchplay.events
  • Do not disappear between matches without telling someone.


Players that arrive after the tournament has started can still play. However, the player cannot be entered until the start of the next round. Thus, arriving late puts the player at a disadvantage because they will not receive points for the rounds they missed.


There will be seven rounds of match play. Each round, players will be placed in four player groups. Depending on the number of players, there may be three player groups. The software does its best to balance competitors and placement in <4 player groups. Each group will be assigned a game to play on. Again, the software will attempt to ensure all players in a group have been placed on the game an equal number of times, though this cannot be guaranteed.  

Player order will be determined by the tournament software.  

At the end of the game, players will earn points depending on the finish in the group (3, 2, 1, 0). Please notify the tournament director of the results immediately after playing.  


The top 8 finishers will compete in finals.  The points accumulated during the matchplay rounds will determine seeding in the finals.

Players will be placed in two, four-player groups. In the first round of finals, each group will play on 3 machines. For each round, players will have the choice of, in ascending order of their seed (top seed chooses first). Players will earn points depending on the finish in the group (4, 2, 1, 0). The top two players from each group will advance to the final round (determined by points accumulated within the round). Ties affecting advancement to the final round will be broken by playing a single game on a random machine, to be determined by the tournament director.


Ties will be broken automatically by the tournament software. The formula for breaking ties takes into account the number of first place finishes, followed by the number of second place finishes. If the software cannot resolve the tie, critical ties will be broken by playing a single game on a random machine, to be determined by the tournament director. 


All games on location at EinStein’s Pub and Arcade the day of the event are eligible to be entered into the tournament. At the beginning of the tournament, the tournament director will select a set of games to be used that day. Selection will be determined based on the condition of the game. Games that have key scoring features that are broken, or are producing odd behaviors will not be used in the tournament.


These tournaments are sanctioned by the IFPA. The value of the tournament will be determined by the number of rated players in the tournament, and the ratings of those players. 


EinStein’s Pub and Arcade has graciously volunteered to host the tournament. Please respect the establishment so we can continue having tournaments here! Do not abuse the games by forcefully hitting the games (skillful nudging is acceptable).

Please respect the customers–they are priority one! If someone is playing on a machine that you are scheduled to play, please politely ask for the next game and wait for them to finish.

During match play, do not distract your opponent by talking to them (unless they talk to you or tell you it’s okay). Do not hover over their shoulders. Do not coach them or give them advice while they play. It is perfectly fine to talk/exchange high-fives between balls.

Please avoid “rage-tilting” a ball (i.e., intentionally tilting out of frustration). In addition to making you look silly, it is disrespectful to your opponent as they must wait for the tilt bob to settle before starting their ball. This also increases the total duration of the tournament.

All players are expected to conduct themselves in a polite and sensitive manner.  SCPL is first and foremost an inclusive organization.  Outbursts and offensive language are not acceptable.  Derogatory speech towards any age/race/gender/person is not acceptable.  Any overtly aggressive behavior that any TD determines to be inappropriate is not acceptable.  Expressed or implied threats or actions of violence are not acceptable.


Do not play extra balls. If you are awarded an extra ball, you must plunge it. You cannot touch the flipper buttons before plunging. You may try ONCE for a soft skill shot. If the ball does not make it out of the shooter lane on your first attempt, you must plunge the second time at full strength. It is the player’s responsibility to ensure they do not play extra balls by accident. If a player plays an extra ball by accident, they must take a 0 for the game.


Pinball machines are mechanical in nature, and thus often produce unintended behaviors. Moreover, some of these machines are very old! If a game malfunctions in any way (e.g., flipper breaks, debris on field, game reset, etc.), please ask the tournament director for a ruling. The director will attempt to repair the machine without sacrificing the game. If this cannot be done, a new machine will be drawn and all progress in the original game will be scrapped. 


If a ball becomes stuck during single-ball play, notify the tournament director for help. The ball will be placed on the right or left flipper, determined by the side of the game the ball became stuck on.