Date: 21st & 22nd May, 2016
Location: Unit 5, Turbinestraat, Veenendaal, Netherlands.

The NFV (the Nederlandse Flipper Vereniging, or Dutch Pinball Association) has been
running since 1992 and operates a donation scheme where members can gift a machine to the association. That machine then becomes part of the association's collection which is used to allow shows such as the Dutch Pinball Open to take place each year.

Those machines are housed in the NFV's clubhouse where they are restored and made available for members to play on select dates. The location of that clubhouse has changed a few times over the years, but is currently located on a light industrial estate in the city of Veenendaal in the centre of the country.

Turbinestraat in Veenendaal
Turbinestraat in Veenendaal

The NFV clubhouse building is about as nondescript as you could find.

The NFV clubhouse
The NFV clubhouse

There are very few clues that this is the NFV building. For the Dutch Pinball Masters there was an advisory sign regarding parking arrangements which, other than the sound of flippers flipping and some familiar faces in the 'smoking area' by the door, was the only indication.

You've found the right building
You've found the right building

Once you opened the door though, there were no more doubts.

The table in the lobby had copies of the NFV magazine, 'Spinner'
The table in the lobby had copies of the NFV magazine, 'Spinner'

The opposite wall featured individuals and companies who support the NFV
The opposite wall featured individuals and companies who support the NFV

Then it's into the main building which is a large unit with a high ceiling and a mass of pinballs.

Inside the main building
Inside the main building

For this event, the machines were split into three distinct groups. Those on the left of the picture above were used in the Dutch Pinball Masters (DPM). The machines on the right were free play machines for practice and casual play, while those on the back wall were either part of the Classics tournament or reserve machines for the DPM.

Dutch Pinball Masters machines
Dutch Pinball Masters machines

Free play machines
Free play machines

At the front of the room was a kitchen and bar area which served freshly-cooked food through out the weekend as well as tea, coffee, soft drinks, wine and Heineken beer.

The kitchen/bar area
The kitchen/bar area

Although there was a reasonably captive audience, prices were very reasonable. A hamburger cost €2 ($2.24/£1.55), as did other kinds of meat-in-a-bread-roll snacks. Sandwiches were €1.50, while €6.50 would get you a big meal with fries and salad. Non-alcoholic drinks were all €1, with beer and wine costing double that. We especially enjoyed the homemade chicken soup which cost just €1.50 for a bowl and tasted delicious.

For those enjoying the refreshments or just needing a place to sit and rest, several sets of tables and chairs were set up next to the kitchen/bar.

A chance to relax between games
A chance to relax between games

At the very front of the building were several small rooms, one of which was the repair centre for any tournament games which couldn't be quickly fixed in the tournament area.

Machines in the repair centre
Machines in the repair centre

So that's the setting, now on to the tournaments themselves.

Apart from the glory, WPPR points and prize money, this is what awaited the winners
Apart from the glory, WPPR points and prize money,
these are what the competitors were playing for

The first competitive event was the Team Tournament which began at 6:30pm on Friday. Unfortunately we were negotiating the Antwerp ring road on our way to our hotel in Ede, so missed the Team Tournament.

However, there were eight teams taking part.

DPM Team Tournament Teams
Dutch Pinball Team
Pinball DNA
Pinball Universe Competition Team
Team Switzerland
Team Utrecht-Torhout
Team Archiball

The teams were divided into two groups of four, and played a match against each of the other three teams in their group.

A match was a mix of pairs games where one member of a team plays another member of the opposing team to win one match point, and split-flipper games in which two members of the team take one flipper button each and play against their opponents doing the same to win two match points.

When all matches were over, the two teams with the most match points from each group went into the two semi-final matches, with the winner of the first group playing the runner-up in the second group, and vice-versa.

The semi-final matches were played in the same way as the first round, and the winners of the semi-finals then played another such match for the final.

When all the games had been played, the winners were Team Switzerland who beat the Dutch Pinball Team into second place, with Spain in third.

Winners of the DPM Team Tournament, Team Switzerland
Winners of the DPM Team Tournament, Team Switzerland:
Ramon Richard, Robert Sutter, Levente Tregova & Michael Trepp

Second place, Dutch Pinball Team
Second place, Dutch Pinball Team:
Paul Jongma and Albert Nomden

Third place, Spain
Third place, Spain:
Julio Vicario Soriano & Gabriel Ortiz

While the Team Tournament was taking place, the remaining non-tournament machines in the NFV clubhouse were available for practice in preparation for the start of the main DPM on Saturday.

Entry to the DPM was limited to 144 competitors. This was an increase from the 104 permitted in 2015 and resulted in qualifying being split into three sessions rather than the previous two.

In each session, four groups of twelve players competed in a match-play format, where everyone played a single three-ball game against every other member of their group. Machines for the qualifying round were preassigned from the 24 used for the DPM. They were:

DPM Machines
1 - Tommy, The Who's
2 - Junkyard
3 - Fish Tales
4 - Demolition Man
5 - Scared Stiff
6 - Indianapolis 500
7 - Monster Bash
8 - Roadshow
9 - Attack from Mars
10 - Frankenstein, Mary Shelley's
11 - Tales from the Crypt
12 - World Cup Soccer
13 - Dirty Harry
14 - Medieval Madness
15 - Jurassic Park
16 - High Speed 2: The Getaway
17 - Pirates of the Caribbean
18 - Monopoly
19 - Spider-Man
20 - Avatar
21 - Star Trek: The Next Generation
22 - Congo
23 - Creature from the Black Lagoon
24 - Hoops

If a DPM machine developed a fault which couldn't be quickly fixed, the machine was wheeled out of the area to the repair centre and one of the nominated reserve machines took its place. So the list of machines above would change from time to time.

The right bank of DPM machines
The right bank of DPM machines

The left bank of DPM machines
The left bank of DPM machines

Players inspect the machines before the first round begins
Players inspect the machines before the first round begins

The first qualifying groups (A-D) began at 10am on Saturday, with the second session (E-H) at 1:45pm and the third (J-M)at 5:30pm. All were allocated 3.5 hours to play their 11 matches, and although there were a few which took longer, the timings were about right.

Every player was given a score card which showed the machines and opponents they would play in each round, and whether they would be player one or player two in each game.

Rules for the tournament were posted in the DPM area
Rules for the tournament were posted in the DPM area

The first matches begin
The first matches begin

The score cards also had space to record whether you won or lost a round, but the winner of each round also recorded their win at the main tournament desk.

Results were recorded on your score card
Results were recorded on your score card

The winners of each round were recorded on paper
The winners of each round were recorded on paper

These results were shown on a projector screen using a spreadsheet created by tournaments maestro, Ad Jonker.

The DPM results system
The DPM results system

Results system designer and inputter, Ad Jonker
Results system designer and inputter, Ad Jonker

At the end of each qualifying session competitors could see if they were amongst the top four players with the most wins and so needed to come back the next day for the start of play-offs at 10am, or if they could have a lazy Sunday.

While the DPM was underway, the Classics Tournament was also running at the back of the hall.

Eight machines were used and players had ten qualifying games which they could spread across any or all of the eight, with the restriction that they couldn't play any one machine more than twice.

The Classics Tournament machines
The Classics Tournament machines

The machines were:

DPM Classics Tournament Machines
1 - Nitro Groundshaker
2 - Flash Gordon
3 - Eight Ball
4 - Wizard!
5 - Kiss
6 - Mata Hari
7 - Harlem Globetrotters
8 - Charlie's Angels

Play in the Classics Tournament
Play in the Classics Tournament

Scores were recorded on tablets and fed into a central scoring system which ranked all the scores and showed the results on a terminal.

Players check their standings on a terminal
Players check their standings on a terminal

Players had until 8pm to complete their ten games, at which time the qualifying round ended and the sixteen top-ranked qualified for the play-offs which were scheduled for 9pm that night but actually ended up starting nearer 9:45pm. Those sixteen qualifiers were:

Classics Tournament Qualifiers
Julio Vicario Soriano
Daniele Baldan
Robert Sutter
Roy Wils
Jorian Engelbrektsson
Philippe Bocquet
Carlos Javier Parra
Kevin Roelants
Gabriel Ortiz
David Mainwaring
Albert Nomden
Tobias Wagemann
Martin Ayub
John van der Wulp
Dirk Elzholz
Devis Pierantozzi

The top four qualifiers received two byes to get straight into the quarter-finals, while the next four got a single bye. All play-off matches were best-of-three games on machines drawn at random.

Classics Tournament organiser Paul Jongma keeps track of the results
Classics Tournament organiser Paul Jongma keeps track of the results

The four semi-finalists were Kevin Roelants, Robert Sutter, Jorian Engelbrektsson and Carlos Javier Parra. Jorian played Kevin in one semi-final, while Robert played Carlos in the other.

Robert Sutter playing Wizard! in the final rounds
Robert Sutter playing Wizard! in the final rounds

Robert and Jorian then played the final, in which Robert was triumphant. Kevin and Carlos played for third place, with Kevin taking the win. Albert Nomden presented the awards.

DPM Classics Tournament winner, Robert Sutter
DPM Classics Tournament winner, Robert Sutter

Second place, Jorian Engelbrektsson
Second place, Jorian Engelbrektsson

Third place, Kevin Roelants
Third place, Kevin Roelants

Here are the full results of the DPM Classics Tournament:

DPM Classics Tournament
1 Robert Sutter
2 Jorian Engelbrektsson
3 Kevin Roelants
4 Carlos Javier Parra
6 Roy Wils
6 Albert Nomden
6 Daniele Baldan
6 Julio Vicario Soriano
10 Martin Ayub
10 Philippe Bocquet
10 Dirk Elzholz
10 Devis Pierantozzi
14 Tobias Wagemann
14 John van der Wulp
14 David Mainwaring
14 Gabriel Ortiz
17 Daniele Celestino Acciari
18 Alain Boulieu
19 Jonas Valström
20 Norbert Broman
21 Robert Lau
22 Ergun Erdemir
23 Vincent Chardome
24 Matt Vince
25 Jean Philippe Congnard
26 Paul Jongma
27 Kelly Lembrechts
28 Arjan Neet
28 David Dutton
30 Olli-Mikko Ojamies
31 Ralf de Kleine
32 Joel Wozniak
33 Kirsten Adam
33 Anthony Rorive
35 Jan Anders Nilsson
36 Thomas van Clapdorp
37 César Dubón Martinez
37 Archibald Lefevre
39 Lieven Engelbeen
39 Levente Tregova
41 Michael Trepp
42 Taco Wouters
43 Edwin Nijs
44 Ad Jonker
45 Evert Brochez
46 Aki Seuranen
47 Karl Weber
48 Jonas Johansson
49 Christophe Wozniak
49 Clara Boulieu
51 Jochen Ludwig
52 Sebastien Puertas
53 Fredrik Mellberg
53 Mattias Jeppsson
55 Eric Buysen
55 Benjamin Gräbeldinger
57 Jean Philippe Passarieu
57 Jules Reivers
59 Jürgen Gärtner
60 Arthur de Jong
61 Cayle George
62 Rafael Masedo Rodríguez
63 Norman Heikamp
64 Alex Duin
64 Bjorn Brand
66 Mark van der Gugten
67 Didier Dujardin
68 Nils de Kleine
68 Artur Natorski
70 Jürgen Schmitz
70 Mario Kertels
72 Kevin Sultana
73 Heinz Baumann
73 Adrian Barp
75 Cezary Glowala
76 Olivier Renders
77 Ernö Rotter
78 Glenn Verhoosele
79 Rob Overdijk
80 Peter Blakemore
81 Jasmijn de Jong
81 Sébastien Muller
83 Ivan Geentjens
84 Michel Rorive
85 Ramon Richard
86 Helen de Haan-Verbeek
87 Craig Pullen
88 Frank Wolthers
89 Johan Småros
90 Bart Bartholomeus
91 Ralph Beckers
92 Jim Lindsay
93 Rob Breyne
94 Hinnerk Helbrecht
95 Morten Søbyskogen
96 Magnus Lindström
97 Laurent Mahe
98 Neil Fellender
98 Pontus Qvarfordh
100 Ollivier Francq
100 Matteo Filippin
102 Marc Steinmeier
103 Karin Weilenmann
104 Marco Suvanto
105 Evelyne Desot
106 William Dutton
107 Pascal Leroy
108 Christoph Korrodi
109 Florian Thomas
110 Fred van den Bosch
111 Tobias Löfstedt
112 Tom Andre Andersen
113 Laurence Boulieu
114 Gerard Vos
115 Frank Goeltl
116 Daniela Oymann
117 Greg Mott
118 Vin Jauhal
119 Joeri Stroobants
120 Dirk Klaver
121 Sandra Søbyskogen
122 Kyoo Barbaix
123 Sjoerd Schouwstra
124 Dina Fukson
124 Gema Lopez Torralba
126 Eko Elens
127 Ruben Vrouwe
128 Carlo Vijn
129 Thomas Doepelheuer

The 48 qualifiers (the top four in the twelve qualifying groups) for the DPM had to register at the tournament desk by 10am on Sunday to start the play-off rounds. They were then split into four groups of twelve to play head-to-head match play games in exactly the same way as in qualifying.

Sunday's DPM play-offs begin
Sunday's DPM play-offs begin

More play-off games
More play-off games

The four players with the most wins in each group would progress to the quarter-finals. They were:

DPM Play-Off First Round Qualifiers




Daniele Celestino Acciari
Ivan Geentjens
Will Dutton
Jochen Ludwig

Krisztian Szalai
Albert Nomden
Archibald Lefèvre
Robert Sutter

Jorian Engelbrektsson
Julio Vicario Soriano
Craig Pullen
Michael Trepp

Taco Wouters
Ernö Rotter
Roy Wils
Sylvain Grévin

Many pictures of the results were taken
Many pictures of the results were taken

These sixteen were then paired to play best-of-five matches on randomly-selected machines. Cards with machines numbers were laid out on the tournament desk and players chose an available machine for their next game.

The next machine is chosen
The next machine is chosen

Half the eight pairings needed all five games to decide the 3-2 winner, with three more needing four games.

Quarter-final matches
Quarter-final matches

That round left just eight players to compete the semi-finals. They were:

DPM Semi-Finalists

Daniele Celestino Acciari
Roy Wils
Ernö Rotter
Jochen Ludwig
Jorian Engelbrektsson
Ivan Geentjens
Will Dutton
Michael Trepp

After the semi-finals, the last four who would compete in the final of the DPM 2016 were decided.

Daniele Celestino Acciari, Ernö Rotter, Michael Trepp & Ivan Geentjens
Daniele Celestino Acciari, Ernö Rotter, Michael Trepp & Ivan Geentjens
(picture: Ad Jonker)

So it would be a truly international field of an Italian, a German, a Swiss and a Belgian who would compete for the Dutch Pinball Masters title. Four games would be played, all chosen by the players. Points would be awarded for finishing position in each game, with 9 points for a win, 5 points for second, 2 points for third, and no points for ending in fourth place.

Each player drew a numbered card. Ernö picked #1 and so chose the first machine to play. He also had to take the player one position on that game, and he chose Creature from the Black Lagoon.

After the first ball it looked like a good choice, as Ernö led with 34.4M. Daniele was closest on 12.8M, while Michael and Ivan had 5M scores. When Ernö bumped his score up to 182M on his second ball it was looking good, but Daniele scored 560M to take the lead.

Ernö made a push on his last ball but could only reach 342,554,260. Michael ended on 31,243,830, but Daniele's total of 574,116,430 made him the clear winner with Ivan in fourth on 16,815,710.

So after one game Daniele had 9 points, Ernö 5 points and Michael 2 points.

Michael chose Indianapolis 500 for his game but struggled to put up a big first ball score, earning 64.2M. Ernö was in the lead with 225M, with Ivan on 93.3M and Daniele on just 3.5M.

The second ball changed nothing, but the third and final ball saw Daniele stage a great recovery, leaping from 10.2M to 320,278,870 which was enough to give him the win. Ernö was then in second with his total of 284,504,320, while Ivan was third on 134,858,130 and Michael rued his choice of machine with 118,441,550.

With two wins, Daniele was looking good to take the title on 18 points. Two second places put Ernö in with a chance as well with his 10 points, but with Michael and Ivan on 2 points each, they both desperately needed a win on the next game to remain in contention.

Game three was Daniele's choice of Demolition Man and after two balls it didn't seem like a wise selection as his 37.4M score was the lowest of the four. Ernö was way ahead of the pack with 474.4M, while Michael had 54.8M and Ivan 43.3M.

The final ball saw Daniele make a real charge to end on 516,117,560. Ivan brought his score up to 77,128,360 to put him in third place. Ernö needed to score 42M to regain the lead which he did, although only just, finishing on 524,291,360. Michael's 72,271,020 wasn't quite enough to steal third.

Ernö takes the win on Demolition Man
Ernö takes the win on Demolition Man
(picture: Ad Jonker)

So far, the top two places in each game had been shared by Daniele and Ernö. If Ernö won the fourth and final game and Daniele came second there would be a tie with two wins and two second places each. Ivan and Michael couldn't win at this point, so were playing for third place.

That final game was Tommy, chosen by Ivan who started.

Once again, it didn't appear Ivan had chosen wisely when his first ball ended with 26.4M on the board. Ernö did worse with his 11.7M, but it was Michael who took charge, scoring 231M with his ball one. Daniele was in second place with his 77.2M.

Ball two changed everything and set up an exciting finale. Ivan raised his score to 160.9M, but Ernö stormed ahead with a 773.9M second ball total. Very close behind was Michael who consolidated his good start with a 716.2M ball two score. Daniele was also moving up the board by making a total of 354.9M going into each player's final ball.

If Daniele could win the game he would win the DPM. Second would give him a tie. Ernö needed to win and then hope Daniele didn't take second if he was to take the title.

On that last ball Ivan improved a little to 270,858,700 but was still firmly in fourth place. Ernö improved by a similar amount to end in the lead on 857,045,840. Michael wasn't able to improve his score by much. His 735,047,200 total put him in second place, with just Daniele to play.

Daniele plays the last ball of the last game of the final
Daniele plays the last ball of the last game of the final
(picture: Ad Jonker)

Daniele needed nearly 400M to take second and more than 500M to win, but in the end it was not to be. He could only add 90M before the ball drained and his total of 447,947,230 put him in third place.

That meant, with two wins and two second places, Ernö Rotter was the winner with 28 points. Daniele Celestino Acciari was second on 23 points, his second place on Tommy gave Michael Trepp third on 7 points, while Ivan Geentjens was fourth on 4 points.

The awards were then made, with all four finalists winning cash prizes.

Dutch Pinball Masters 2016 winner, Ernö Rotter
Dutch Pinball Masters 2016 winner, Ernö Rotter
(picture: Ad Jonker)

Second place, Daniele Celestino Acciari
Second place, Daniele Celestino Acciari
(picture: Ad Jonker)

Third place, Michael Trepp
Third place, Michael Trepp
(picture: Ad Jonker)

Fourth place, Ivan Geentjens
Fourth place, Ivan Geentjens
(picture: Ad Jonker)

Here are the full results. Lower places were decided by the number of wins in the last group in which they played.

Dutch Pinball Masters 2016
1 Ernö Rotter
2 Daniele Celestino Acciari
3 Michael Trepp
4 Ivan Geentjens
6 Roy Wils
6 Jochen Ludwig
6 Jorian Engelbrektsson
6 Wil Dutton
12 Robert Sutter
12 Julio Vicario Soriano
12 Craig Pullen
12 Krisztian Szalai
12 Sylvain Grévin
12 Archibald Lefèvre
12 Albert Nomden
12 Taco Wouters
17 Sébastien Puertas
17 Cayle George
21 Thomas van Clapdorp
21 John van der Wulp
21 Dirk Elzholz
21 Martijn van Aken
21 Edwin Nijs
27 Tom Vis
27 Paul Jongma
27 Olivier Renders
27 Martijn van Amsterdam
27 Levente Tregova
27 Jasmijn de Jong
27 Arjan Neet
27 Johan Småros
37 Martin Ayub
37 Jürgen Schmitz
37 Stanislas Chabior
37 Matt Vince
37 Greg Mott
37 Olli-Mikko Ojamies
37 Dirk Klaver
37 Gabriel Ortiz
37 Jules Reivers
37 Glenn Verhoosele
37 Bart Volman
37 Eko Elens
45 David Mainwaring
45 Heinz Baumann
45 Devis Pierantozzi
45 Pascal Leroy
48 Jonas Johansson
49 Nils de Kleine
49 Fred van den Bosch
57 Lieven Engelbeen
57 Jerome Constenoble
57 Cezary Glowala
57 Joel Wozniak
57 Cesar Dubon
57 Rob Breyne
57 Laurent Mahé
57 Thomas Doepelheuer
57 Jürgen Gärtner
57 Robert Lau
57 Alain Boulieu
57 Vincent Chardome
57 Frank Goetl
65 Sébastien Muller
65 Ollivier Francq
65 Evert Brochez
80 Wilbert der Kinderen
80 Philippe Bocquet
80 Vin Jauhal
80 Dina Fukson
80 Kirsten Adam
80 Jean Philippe Congnard
80 Helen de Haan-Verbeek
80 Matteo Filippin
80 Mark van der Gugten
80 Jonas Valström
80 Michel Rorive
80 Gerard Vos
80 Christoph Korrodi
80 Eric Buysen
80 Justin van Schooneveld
80 Jan Anders Nilsson
80 Barry Driessen
80 Ramon Richard
80 Roger Wijnands
80 Tom Loomans
80 Kevin Roelants
80 Benjamin Gräbeldinger
80 Adrian Barp
80 Laurence Boulieu
80 Jean Philippe Passarieu
80 Daniele Baldan
80 Ralf de Kleine
80 Ralph Beckers
95 Marc Steinmeier
109 Peter Blakemore
109 Aki Seuranen
109 Ergun Erdemir
109 Carlo Vijn
109 Kevin Sultana
109 Mattias Jeppson
109 Pontus Qvarfordh
109 Hinnerk Helbrecht
109 Bart Bartholomeus
109 Jasper van Embden
109 David Dutton
109 Florian Thomas
109 Bas van Embden
109 Didier Dujardin
109 Tobias Löfstedt
109 Marco Suvanto
109 Artur Natorski
109 Norbert Broman
109 Anthony Rorive
109 Daniela Oymann
109 Bjorn Brand
109 Kay Kuster
109 Magnus Lindström
109 Bas Vis
109 Fredrik Mellberg
109 Rob Overdijk
109 Kyoo Barbaix
124 Jim Lindsay
124 Steven van der Staaij
124 Alex Duin
131 Evelyne Desot
131 Neil Fellender
131 Tobias Wagemann
131 Karl Weber
131 Mario Kertels
131 Rafael Masedo
131 Morten Søbyskogen
131 Christophe Wozniak
131 Kelly Lembrechts
131 Norman Heikamp
131 Joeri Stroobants
138 Karin Weilenmann
138 Frank Wolters
138 Lars Buge
138 Carlos Javier Parra
142 Tom Andre Andersen
142 Sandra Søbyskogen
142 Gema Lopez Torralba

So once again the Dutch Pinball Masters has proved itself to be one of Europe's major tournaments with many of the top players. The match play format seems to be enjoyed by everyone who took part, giving a guaranteed number of games against different opponents on assorted machines.

The increased field only resulted in one fewer game per group while allowing a third qualifying session to be fitted into Saturday's schedule. Any rulings which were needed were made by Albert and Paul jointly and seemed to be fair to all players. This no doubt contributed to the overall good conduct by all the players, and the generally friendly and laid-back atmosphere in the building.

The schedule of matches and the scoring system all seemed to work well, with only a short delay between recording scores on paper and them appearing in the spreadsheet on the projector screen.

We liked the new Classics Tournament format. Limiting the number of games to ten made it much fairer for everyone and meant all the players got to play all their games in the time available.

The only real issue was with the restricted space in the DPM tournament area. This was the same last year and at times is was impossible to get to your next machine due to spectators and fellow players blocking the way. It got pretty warm in the hall on Saturday, but opening the side loading doors helped keep temperatures down while also providing an alternative entrance/exit.

The team at the bar provided swift, friendly service with a good selection of snacks, full meals and drinks at reasonable prices. Our only suggestion here is for a better beer choice than just Heineken when the Netherlands has so many great beers available. We're sure Ad Jonker would have some good suggestions.

We're already looking forward to next year's DPM and the chance to get just that little bit closer to the final.

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