Betelgeuse's ratings

Pinsider Betelgeuse has rated 70 machines.

This page shows all all these ratings, and forms Betelgeuse's personal top 70.


Rating comments

Betelgeuse has written 48 rating comments:


8.820/10
11 days ago
I was skeptical about this game after playing on location with early code and reading early reviews. After playing for a while in a home environment and getting a feel for the shots, as a horror fan, I would say this game is... KILLER. I think 'Halloween' is a difficult theme to translate to pinball, but Spooky really managed to nail that early John Carpenter vibe. The code has come a long way since launch and does a fantastic job of tying the gameplay in with the movie, with scenes progressing on the lcd as you make successful shots. It's clear that Spooky has a lot of respect for the source material.

The game shoots pretty nice too, with the possible exception of the pumpkin scoop, which rejects more than it should without modding. It's still probably the best shooting Spooky title, with shots that are a little wider than previous games and some unique ball paths. There's a decent amount of stop and go, but also some flow. The mini playfields are both fun and challenging and it's especially satisfying to chain together pretzel shots through the spinner on the top one.

If you dislike mini-playfields, Spooky games, or horror themes, this game probably won't change your mind. If it does sound interesting to you, you may find yourself pleasantly surprised. I'm not sure how this pin will stack up when complete, but it definitely DOES NOT suck, and may even end up becoming a sleeper hit.
7.260/10
10 months ago
I don't understand the recent demand for this game. I'm a big fan of the GB theme and ordered a Premium immediately when this title was announced. I was initially impressed with all of the fresh ideas and mechs as this was the most loaded game from Stern in a while. Unfortunately, the novelty wore off quickly. The only satisfying shot for me was the subway ramp. I didn't care for the odd flipper angle and I grew to hate the magna slings. The magna slings seemed cool at first, but added too much randomness so close to the flippers. They would even regularly hold the ball and then backhand it out the outlane. This was basically the machine telling me my game was now over regardless of how well I was playing.
On a more personal note, being a big fan of the film, I also felt that the theming missed the mark in a lot of ways. The machine looks nice in general, but the focus is a bit off, like it was made by a team who had never seen Ghostbusters before being tasked with making the game. I know there were (much) later code updates that improved some of this, but I sold my game long before those came out, and have never felt the need to revisit.
8.820/10
10 months ago
I was skeptical about this game after playing on location with early code and reading early reviews. After playing for a while in a home environment and getting a feel for the shots, as a horror fan, I would say this game is... KILLER. I think 'Halloween' is a difficult theme to translate to pinball, but Spooky really managed to nail that early John Carpenter vibe. The code has come a long way since launch and does a fantastic job of tying the gameplay in with the movie, with scenes progressing on the lcd as you make successful shots. It's clear that Spooky has a lot of respect for the source material.

The game shoots pretty nice too, with the possible exception of the pumpkin scoop, which rejects more than it should without modding. It's still probably the best shooting Spooky title, with shots that are a little wider than previous games and some unique ball paths. There's a decent amount of stop and go, but also some flow. The mini playfields are both fun and challenging and it's especially satisfying to chain together pretzel shots through the spinner on the top one.

If you dislike mini-playfields, Spooky games, or horror themes, this game probably won't change your mind. If it does sound interesting to you, you may find yourself pleasantly surprised. I'm not sure how this pin will stack up when complete, but it definitely DOES NOT suck, and may even end up becoming a sleeper hit.
9.080/10
10 months ago
This game wasn't even on my radar at all until I played one. The only other recent Stern I had been considering adding to my lineup was EHOH. I like the theme and it's great to see it's based on the 50s-60s era films and not the newer reboots. The artwork is a little too colorful and poppy for how I envision Godzilla, but it is done well. The rest of the game absolutely nails the theming and it's clear that the team had some passion for the subject matter. Most importantly, this game flows like a monster and I was immediately drawn in by the gameplay and kept going back to it. I got that feeling that this game is going to be something very special and I ordered one the next day. I will adjust my rating as I get more time in and code improves.
9.380/10
1 year ago
One of the top Stern games ever made, possibly the overall best. It re-introduced hand drawn artwork to the next generation of pins. A fan layout, but a great fan layout. Combined with Lyman's excellent code makes this a very approachable game for any player.
9.484/10
1 year ago
This game is, without a doubt, up there with the greatest pins of all time. It will likely appeal most to collectors that enjoy unique mechanical gadgets that interact with the ball, as this is easily the most loaded and complex pinball machine built to date. Every inch of the massive playfield is also utilized to the fullest with more shots than any game before it. With a steep pitch, this game still plays surprisingly fast and flowy for a widebody, even if not quite as fast as many modern Sterns. This game really feels like a new and improved version of TZ, where many games will be short and brutal until you get that one runaway ball where everything starts stacking together.
The code in this game can be a double edged sword, though. The ruleset is LotR like in it's depth, to the point where it can be daunting at first to figure out what to do. There are so many different strategies and approaches to advancing in the game, but it comes with some balancing issues. Average players will struggle to get to one of the game's 5 mini-wizard modes, which are some of the best moments in the game, while experienced tournament players may find qualifying and stacking the 6 multiball modes a little too easy. The 'chapters' and multiballs are numerous, but do have a sort of same-ness to them until you advance further in the game. Fortunately, the game has an absolutely killer musical score with many unique tracks and sounds to help set these modes apart somewhat, provided you can hear the game where you are playing.
Overall, this game provides an incredible experience unlike any other pin, especially in a home setting with the volume up and the lights down. I would highly recommend owning this game, or at least giving it some serious playtime... and I didn't even like the movies! It's become one of my new all-time favorites and we may never see another machine this complex again. A little spit and shine on the code could easily put this in my #1 spot.
9.484/10
1 year ago
This game is, without a doubt, up there with the greatest pins of all time. It will likely appeal most to collectors that enjoy unique mechanical gadgets that interact with the ball, as this is easily the most loaded and complex pinball machine built to date. Every inch of the massive playfield is also utilized to the fullest with more shots than any game before it. With a steep pitch, this game still plays surprisingly fast and flowy for a widebody, even if not quite as fast as many modern Sterns. This game really feels like a new and improved version of TZ, where many games will be short and brutal until you get that one runaway ball where everything starts stacking together.
The code in this game can be a double edged sword, though. The ruleset is LotR like in it's depth, to the point where it can be daunting at first to figure out what to do. There are so many different strategies and approaches to advancing in the game, but it comes with some balancing issues. Average players will struggle to get to one of the game's 5 mini-wizard modes, which are some of the best moments in the game, while experienced tournament players may find qualifying and stacking the 6 multiball modes a little too easy. The 'chapters' and multiballs are numerous, but do have a sort of same-ness to them until you advance further in the game. Fortunately, the game has an absolutely killer musical score with many unique tracks and sounds to help set these modes apart somewhat, provided you can hear the game where you are playing.
Overall, this game provides an incredible experience unlike any other pin, especially in a home setting with the volume up and the lights down. I would highly recommend owning this game, or at least giving it some serious playtime... and I didn't even like the movies! It's become one of my new all-time favorites and we may never see another machine this complex again. A little spit and shine on the code could easily put this in my #1 spot.
7.928/10
2 years ago
My friend and I used to play this game on location and had a blast with it. It's a 'street level' Gottlieb (no ramps), so you can't set your expectations TOO high, but it's got some unique features to set it apart from other games. There are 5 flippers and 3 distinct parts of the playfield, with both upper corners feeling like their own mini-playfields. The most memorable feature is probably the backbox game with the 2 animated boxers. This works similar to 'Lights, Camera, Action!', where you have to time your punches to knock the other boxer's block off. The difficultly also increases as you progress. Some great sound effects (including a real ring bell like 'Fire!') and callouts in this game too, which we often quote like "That's a ball-buster!" and "Bring in the stretcher!".

I've read chatter about this being a bad tournament game because of some easily repeatable shots, but it doesn't seem so easy on my machine. I got mine a few years ago... in a drywall bucket. Someone was going to restore it, but never finished. I got a blank playfield and mostly empty cab and rebuilt the whole game from grainy internet photos. I have a couple extra posts left over after the build (why does that always happen? haha), but she plays great.
9.380/10
5 years ago
Possibly the best code in any game ever. My personal favorite Stern machine at this point.
7.127/10
5 years ago
I think this is a rather polarizing game. If you love all things Rob Zombie, you will probably get a good rush from the music pumping and the lights flashing, combined with the fast and brutal gameplay. The slick animations on the lcd compliment the machine perfectly and the cabinet and backglass art are first class. There is no doubt that this game draws your attention from across the room.
This machine won't be for everyone, though. The playfield layout is unique, but I don't think the shots are as good as on AMH (which I love). The toys are more just for show and there is no real gimmick or hook on the playfield to set this game apart. The rules are also rather shallow (no stacking??) and the scoring is a bit unbalanced, though I believe this will improve somewhat over time.
8.600/10
7 years ago
This is a very challenging, very fast and very fun pin! It has that 'one more game' appeal and there are quite a few different strategies to pursue. There's some good flow and the toys are pretty unique. The audio is outstanding! A fantastic first effort from Ben Heck and Spooky Pinball.

My in-depth review can be found in this thread:
https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/amh-review-after-6-months
7.377/10
8 years ago
I have about 100 games in on WOZ at this point and have played on the latest code (as of this review), as well. This is a tough game to rate because of it's extreme highs and extreme lows in certain categories. A lot of people compare this game to TZ, which is one of my favorite pins...

When I first saw this game at a show pre-release, I was blown away by the build quality. It felt like walking up and playing a 90's B/W widebody that I had somehow never seen before. I told all of my pin-friends how impressed I was with it. As I have now got in more play time, my opinion has changed quite a bit. I am still impressed with where JJP is going with their build quality, but I'm thinking this just isn't such a great 'game'. I'm not sure if this playfield can be saved with any amount of code. There are almost no flow-through or otherwise satisfying shots. Mostly the ball is just bouncing randomly off spot targets all over the place. I really don't know why Joe Balcer was picked as the designer for such an ambitious project. I'm even more surprised that they are using him again for The Hobbit.

Code wise, IF there were to be any hope of this becoming a great game, I think the rules would need to be mostly re-written, which probably will never happen. The most bizarre thing of all is that the main objectives all relate to shooting these push button rollovers that are in random places on the playfield. They are all shots that will send the ball wild. Really, who makes rollovers the primary thing you are shooting for in a game??? The rollovers are also flaky and tend to send the ball airborn or stump your ramp shot.

I still have a lot of hope for JJP and I think they could end up putting out a true masterpiece in the next few years, but this just isn't it.
7.873/10
8 years ago
When I first saw ST, I thought this game looked terrible. I didn't have high hopes. Well, I have played about 100 games on the Pro at this point and this game is fast, flowy and FUN! It can definitely get the adrenaline pumping. The light show is great, especially for a pro. The audio is coming a looong way with the updates. The playfield layout may be a rehash, but it's really a top notch design.

Having said that, this game *looks* like crap. It reminds me of a 90's Sega title like X-Files or JP: Lost World. Almost no real 'art' to speak of. The playfield is just a color gradient! The translite and cabinet are just big photoshopped heads of the actors. Super lame. Code wise, this game seems closer to completion than most recent Stern, but at this point the 6 modes all seem to be the same aside from the DMD animations.

For these reasons, I would love to play this game more... just in somebody else's collection. If you are a fan of ST and want a newer Stern, the gameplay is solid.
5.665/10
9 years ago
As even those who like this game have stated, this game is just loaded with quality control issues. There are a lot of stuck ball problems in this game, visibility problems, breakage of parts, flimsy ramps, etc. I have seen multiple broken cubes, hulks and drops already. The game just isn't nearly good enough to compensate for it's shortcomings. Bland photoshopped 'art' package, lame music and callouts, little flow, lots of airballs and waiting or tilting on stuck balls. The game does have it's moments, but this just seems like a rush job, cash grab by Stern.
7.166/10
9 years ago
Just ok. I have well over 200 games in on the pro edition and a handful in on the LE. Even if the software wasn't botched I think this would still be just an ok title. The addition of hand-drawn artwork (even if Stern hacked it) makes this a very attractive game, which is detracted by the gaudy wolverine and magneto figures on the playfield. Wolverine might be my least favorite thing on this game as it also seems like something better could have been done with the left side of the playfield if he wasn't there. Balls are also always getting stuck under his elbo and draining down the center. On the plus side, the shots are tough and it is rewarding when you are able to loop together a few shots as the game can have decent flow.
7.508/10
9 years ago
I don't understand the hype on this game. It's maybe slightly better than average for recent Stern games, but nothing special. The aesthetics are the games strong point; great music and sounds and it's fairly attractive overall. The feel reminds me a little too much of Avatar... but maybe it's just all the blue.
8.720/10
9 years ago
One of the best Stern games. Certainly the best since SM. The combination of SR's design and Lyman's code, along with some great features make this game a standout.
6.663/10
10 years ago
I picked this one up in a bulk buy, but ended up selling it shortly thereafter. It was fun for a bit and, being a fan of the show, the audio was entertaining. I know the show is risque, but hey really focused on the toilet humor with this game. Gameplay wise, the playfield layout is just awkward. There's a large amount of real estate you can't directly shoot with the flippers. Also, some of the big shots are also just too easy. Yes, there are more challenging shots in the game, but there's no real motivation to try for them when you can keep killing Kenny and going for the multiball with little risk. This was always a fun game to play in the local bars, but it's not so great for a home collection.
7.954/10
11 years ago
The best of the recent 'bare bones' stern titles. While it's no AFM, it succeeds in some of the same ways. It plays well off of it's simplicity and provides plenty of fast paced action. Great audio too.
7.712/10
11 years ago
The moving crane shot is a lot of fun and comes into play often. There's plenty of furious multiball action and decent depth to the rules. It's one of those games where you need to have 20 minutes to spare to play through most games, so I'm not sure how it would hold up for most in a home environment.
7.676/10
11 years ago
A fairly simple but fun game from Zac. The sounds are cool. The mechanical doors on the castle in the backglass open to reveal the vampire when you make the ramp shot, 'blaaaahhh!'. It got a few laughs. Overall an attractive spooky game if you can find one.
7.376/10
11 years ago
Alvin G's highest production game. This has more toys on the playfield than other Alvin G games, but that doesn't really make it the best. The spinning disc at the top is cool and the 'guitar' upper playfield is neat but it's been done a bunch of times by now. The flipper buttons also pulse when the pop bumpers are hit, which kind of surprised me at first. The rules are fairly shallow, though, and I found it somewhat lacking for flow. If you want a great Alvin G game, check out Mystery Castle!
7.360/10
11 years ago
A novelty pinball in downsized cabinet, mainly intended for kids to play. It can be pretty fun and has the same feel as a full size game. I like the inner loop shot under the clown face and the 'dunk' target. The audio quality is pretty good with some quirky sounds and callouts. The game is bright and colorful and suits the theme perfectly.
7.244/10
11 years ago
A neat little novelty pin. It's definitely worth checking out, but I'm not sure about shelling out the bucks it would take to own it. The gameplay is pretty solid and the lower playfield is a fun objective, but there's just not a lot of room to bash the ball around on the small playfields. It is good for some quick 1-on-1 matches. The cabinet is just flat black so it's not much to look at unless you are looking into the machine.
7.363/10
11 years ago
An attractive and rare game with a cool theme. This one is mostly good as eye candy and a conversation piece. Every time I see it I want to play it, but it never goes past one or two games.
7.596/10
11 years ago
This is a pretty solid game for such a low production run. It seems to have all the same sounds as Firepower. The gameplay is pretty good with some multiball mixed in. Maybe a little too much to do with the large row of rollovers at the top. Racking up huge scores is always dependent on how many times you can complete that row.
8.080/10
11 years ago
I think this is DE's best game. The layout kind of reminds me of Whirlwind. When working properly the T-Rex steals the show. The shaker motor and plenty of multiball action keep the game exciting and there's a fairly deep ruleset with plenty of modes, including a wizard mode.
7.483/10
11 years ago
This game seems like it was built around the ideas for the toys. There are some innovative features here. I liked jumping the ball over the jump rope and the speed bag is like a mini version of the upper playfield on The Shadow. The problem for me is the repetitive nature of almost unmissable central bash target combined with the otherwise fan layout.
7.616/10
11 years ago
Decent game with some fairly good gameplay. For some reason the silly golfcart on the upper playfield made the game look cheesy to me. The art is nothing special. The audio is pretty good with some amusing quotes from the gophers which double as bash targets when they pop up from under the ramps. The rules are fairly original, but repetitive, and I found myself wanting more to shoot for on the left side. Does that slam ramp damage the playfield on every one of these?
8.296/10
11 years ago
I love this rare gem and find myself playing a string of games any time I come across it. I wouldn't mind owning one of these. It has a pretty linear path for the rules which can get repetitive, but the shots are fun and the layout is unique. I like the audio too. I guess parts can be pretty hard to find and the dmd's are expensive to replace.
7.800/10
11 years ago
A good solid game that's easy to come by, it makes for a good 'entry level' machine. Some good quotable lines. The multiball with the raised playfield is fun and so is racking up 'who loops' with the upper left flipper. The lightning flippers add to the challenge.
8.480/10
11 years ago
The soccer theme does nothing for me, but this game is great fun! Lots of excitement, decent flow, fun shots, great audio and lights, and a wizard mode. Good bang for your buck.
7.436/10
11 years ago
I can see why a lot of people like this game, but for some reason it just doesn't do it for me. The notoriously deep ruleset and gameplay variations are this pins best features. I'm no flow nazi, but it seemed unnecessary how often the gameplay gets held up by dmd animations and audio clips (ie. entering the mini-pf or the Otto loop). Not much of a straight up fun and excitement factor for me, but maybe I'm missing something.
7.424/10
11 years ago
I didn't think much of this game for a while, but it's grown on me a bit. The playfield artwork leaves much to be desired, but some pretty decent gameplay and amusing audio keep me coming back to this one.
8.055/10
12 years ago
This game is a lot of fun and the audio is really catchy. It could have been much better, but the rules are fairly shallow and there is only one (2-ball) multiball mode in the game. Still, it's unique and great for a quick game that often leads to several quick games in a row for me.
8.600/10
12 years ago
I've never been crazy about the theme or the audio in this game, so it took me a while to warm up to it. It's become one of my favorites! I play this game a handful of times any time I see it in a collection. It's just plain fun! I would buy one in a heartbeat if it didn't clash so horribly with my dark/horror themed lineup.
7.136/10
12 years ago
I never really got it with this game. A lot of my friends like it, but I think it's kind of a snooze fest. The art and audio leave me flat and most of the shots aren't very satisfying. The wrecking ball is kind of cool, though.
8.172/10
12 years ago
One of DE's top games along with 'Guns N Roses' and 'Jurassic Park'. There is a fairly deep mode based ruleset. The ramps are some of the best in pinball. The dots are good and the music is awesome. There is a lot of excitement in this game with the shaker motor and amazing flasher display. I think this game mostly suffers in the art department, and the cackling can grate on some people. I am currently on my second TFTC. The first one went on a trade after 3 years in the game room. I missed it enough to pick up another one in a bulk buy and it's not going anywhere anytime soon. You can remove a lot of the cackling by disabling the switches at the ramp entrance. I just took out one of the switch screws and changed the angle. The switch hits are only worth 25k and it takes out all the repetitive cackling!
7.400/10
12 years ago
I have to agree with some of the other reviews on this one. The game is 'technically' quite good. It has everything you would want in a pin; flow, neat ramps, a large toy and decent rules. Still, somehow it doesn't seem to all come together quite right.
9.100/10
12 years ago
Possibly Stern's best game ever. Playfield is a fairly basic fan layout, but the flow is great and the rules are superb. There are some very satisfying shots in this game. The callouts are memorable.
8.736/10
12 years ago
Monster Bash is a great game, but I do think it may be slightly overrated. I love the theme and the look of the game. It also plays great, but I wish there were some deeper objectives in the game. The scoring is kind of unbalanced with the only real goals being to get Monster Bash or Monsters of Rock for big points. I still think this game should be near the top because of the gameplay, but as far as fan layout games, AFM has more replay value for me.
8.323/10
12 years ago
One of the top Stern's! I would put this right up there with LOTR and SM, and way ahead of TSPP. There is a good variety of different shots, a deep ruleset and the mini-playfield is a lot of fun. One of the better playfield art packages from Stern, but the translight sucks. The audio is top notch with great sounds and tons of quotes.
8.680/10
12 years ago
I have had this game in my collection for a few years now and it may be the game I play the least. The ruleset basically involves completing simple shots a handful of times at your leisure to reach the Stiff-o-Meter. Only then does the real challenge of beating the meter come into play.
Having said that, the game IS great fun, especially for those who aren't so familiar with it or with pinball in general. The ladies love it! It's also great for when you want to bash around a pinball without investing a half an hour in getting to some supreme wizard mode. The audio is good, very funny, and the artwork is great (cabinet aside).
8.340/10
12 years ago
A great game that has grown on me quite a bit. Tremendous bang-for-your-buck! The excitement of stacking multiballs and the eerie audio keep me coming back. There is a nearly bottomless well of amusing audio clips and the dots are some of the best I've seen. This game can be very unforgiving with a lot of short ball times, but it's extremely satisfying when you set everything up and finally hear the 'thiiiiiirrrrrtyyyyy miiiiiiillllliiiooooonnn'. :)
9.680/10
12 years ago
Simply an awesome game! Overall a great looking machine with some of the best audio out there. The gameplay is top notch with lots of flow, speed and excitement. Newbies love it, pros love it, it will be a 90's pinball icon for a long time! I personally like it just a HAIR more than it's close cousin Medieval Madness.
8.716/10
12 years ago
Possibly Popadiuk's best game. It's kind of like a cross between AFM and ToM, but the theme isn't as up my alley. Some great looping shots and awesome light displays, some neat tricks with magnets, a DMD on the playfield and a big evil bash target. The art is subjective, but I like the green/purple thing. The sound effects never get old and blend together well. Great for pro's and noob's alike, it just puts on such a great show. The biggest problem with this game is probably the rules. They are fairly deep, but it's pretty easy to get to the wizard mode. There's also some modes that get very tiring like 'copy cat' and also some scoring issues with modes.
8.989/10
12 years ago
A true classic in every sense! This game never gets old for me. One of the few alphanumeric WPC games, this title was ahead of it's time. Rudy is still one of the best toys ever on a pin. The only downside is that the rules aren't terribly deep and you'll find that you are repeating the same cycle on longer games.
8.763/10
12 years ago
Alvin G's crowning achievement. A really unique, fun and creepy game with some nice flow and plenty of ramp and orbit combo shots. The light shows, music and sounds are a top-notch and the game provides a great sense of atmosphere. There's a surprisingly deep mode based ruleset with plenty of stackable modes and multiballs, each with their own eerie tune and objectives. I've played or owned nearly every horror title manufactured and if you want a good horror game, this is one of the best! I originally played this game on location and knew I had to have one. I finally managed to get my hands on a MC in 2010 and it's still one of the most played games in my lineup.