I thought I would do a little update on the Paignton Pier amusement arcade. My family and I would often enjoy an hour or two playing the tipping point machines on the pier. I'm sure you know the ones I'm talking about, there are two shelves with money on them, the money is then pushed onto the second shelf and hopefully some falls over the lip. Anyway, a couple of years I noticed that hardly any money was coming out, in fact whereas before a £s worth of 2p pieces would last quite a long time, the money was now going in just a few minutes with hardly anything coming out. Under close inspection I noticed that metal bars had been attached to the front tray and lots of coins wedged in and pointing upwards slightly. Basically it makes it look like lots of coins were hanging over the edge ready to fall. In fact these coins will never fall and as far as I'm concerned it was just a ploy to con people into using the machine. So basically they've created a third shelf which now points up.
We decided to visit again this week to see if things had changed. Unfortunately it looks as though everything is exactly the same. On a few of the machines there was a bundle of tokens with a £5 note attached. The £5 note was dangling over the edge of the tray which makes it look as though it could fall at any minute. We put about a £ of 2p pieces in, however the £5 notes didn't budge one little bit. It's quite obvious that it's been either fixed in place, or they've managed to secure it so that it will never fall no matter how much money you will put in.
Every machine is the same, even the tipping point machines in the arcades at the very beginning of the pier, they are all doctored in order to fool people into playing them. Whether any laws are being broken I don't know, I'm not sure whether it's illegal modify these machines so they don't pay out much, but I am absolutely certain it's completely immoral to modify a machine and make it look as though money is going to come out.