The history of air hockey table design

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Have you ever stopped to think about the incredible design and engineering that goes into creating an air hockey table? How did it come to be, how has its design evolved, and what makes for a great playing experience? It’s fascinating to look back on the history of this beloved game – from its beginnings as a beer companion invention in 1972 through modern-day designs.

Today we’re taking a virtual trip down memory lane, so get ready to explore air hockey table design like never before!

Who invented the air hockey table?

Air hockey is an exciting game that everyone loves playing. But who could have invented such a great game? It turns out, it was developed in 1969 by two Portland brothers – Bob and Gary Daniels. They noticed there already existed coin-operated table hockey games, which piqued their curiosity about the potential to make one of their own.

They combined their knowledge of plastic vacuum forming and plastics to create a new air-powered version, completely transforming the dynamics of the game. After bringing it to several trade shows and making some changes along the way, the air hockey game as we know it today was born!

When was the air hockey table invented?

Air hockey tables have been a source of entertainment for people of all ages for over four decades! The world’s first air hockey table was invented in 1972 by a trio of Brunswick Billiards engineers—Phil Crossman, Bob Kenrick, and Brad Baldwin. Utilizing an idea first conceived in 1969, the engineers developed an electric version of the popular coin-op game.

They debuted the table in their hometown of Toronto, Canada, at Andy Lynch’s Saloon and quickly received glowing reviews from customers and the press alike. Over time, this electric hockey game spread to become a beloved activity across the United States and into Europe. Today air hockey is still one of today’s most beloved recreational activities to enjoy with friends or family.

Where was the air hockey table invented?

The popular table game of air hockey was invented in the United States back in 1969 by founders Bob Kenrick and Phil Crossman. While working on a prototype of a toy machine at Brunswick Billiards in Connecticut, the two men realized their idea could not only be used for a toy but also for an interactive game too. To determine the airflow needed to manufacture the game, they created an air compressor using motors from an old refrigerator!

It wasn’t long before these creative minds officially patented the first-ever air hockey table and began to produce this popular pastime. Since then it has widely become one of the most beloved games for people of all ages and is still widely popular today.

How was the air hockey table invented?

The game of air hockey started as a brainstorming moment in the basement laboratory of Brunswick Billiards. Working with woodworkers, Brunswick researchers crafted a high-velocity table tennis game using air jets and tiny plastic pucks like those used in shuffleboard. This lab experiment later developed into the popular family game known as “air hockey,” which utilizes the same jet propulsion system to achieve the same effect.

Essentially, plastic pucks are swept up in a thin layer of pressurized air that hovers over an almost frictionless playing surface, providing players with extremely fast and smooth gameplay. Air hockey has since become one of the most popular arcade games in modern times – so much so that it even has its dedicated tables in several countries around the world.


Air hockey is a game of skill requiring coordination, reflexes, and strategy, and with the right amount of practice and dedication, you can become an elite player. Air hockey table design through the years has changed dramatically from the earlier models to today’s advanced designs. At their core, air hockey tables still bring people together in fun and competitive ways.

Many professional leagues now promote Air Hockey as a recreational activity that encourages healthy competition while also encouraging players to have fun. With modern air hockey tables being made with durable materials and built-in features like LED lighting and sound effects, playing this classic game just got a whole lot better. There’s never been a better time to experience the thrill of competing on an air hockey table than right now!

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Tony Fisher

Tony Fisher

I like to hit that puck! As hard as I can, and score a quick one. Here I'll share the best info on the best indoor game there is!

About Me

I like to hit that puck! As hard as I can, and score a quick one. Here I’ll share the best info on the best indoor game there is!

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