Quoted from Bartzenegger:
I’m considering this pin for purchase.
Love the theme and the dots and art.
But I have read in the reviews and in this topic some issues.
What do you the owners think about the game. Thanks for your help in advance.
Here is my full review. I love the game!
Full disclosure, I'm an owner, so if you think my rating is biased move along. That said, I am attempting to give my objective opinion based on my experience after a few days of play and maybe 25 games before getting my game.
The playfield layout is packed with shots, and that definitely makes it challenging. There are moments when you are hitting shots and moments when you are hitting posts. I really like the dual access to the upper playfield area, and the shots up there. There is a lot going on and different ways to play the upper. To that point the game rules really mesh with the shots up there. The Alice Cooper mode is pretty tough, but I like that it's not timed since making a ramp shot, trapping up on the upper, then making the guillotine shot is not easy. One of my other favorite parts of the playfield layout is the variety of ways the ball returns, although I think it's tough for first timer players of the game because of not knowing where to expect the return (my girlfriend mentioned this). It just gives the feel that you are lost in some haunted mansion. I would have given perfect marks on everything, but I think some consideration has to be given because of the super tight shots. I had a friend over who is a much better player than me (flipping AC for his first time) and he seemed pretty frustrated with hitting posts. But I do think that will improve over time for those who aren't turned off immediately by the challenge because once you start hitting those shots it's super gratifying! Overall, Bowen is killing it with the rules. I have a friend who played the early code and hated it, but after playing the most recent code it's loving it (even talking about buying).
Just my humble opinion, but I think this is the best artwork on a pinball machine possibly ever. Zornow just killed it with this comicization of Alice Cooper! I also went with the butter cab which I think is a must. I've never seen anything like it on a pinball machine. You can actually feel the texture of the art, and the gloss makes everything pop like nothing I've ever seen. (Yes, I'm starting to sound like a giant fanboy. With good cause though I assure you). Anyone that doesn't believe just swing by my house and check it out. Plus it's an actual backglass, not a translight. The animations are perfectly tied in with the game play (navigating through the castle looks awesome), plus the animations look very close to the art on the cab (same aesthetic).
Sounds and Music
I've never listened to AC much, but the song integration is excellent. They didn't just make it a pinball jukebox like a lot of music themed pins (not that I mind that...love MET, ACDC, and KISS). But to me the music seems second to the theme. I like Cooper's dry comments (Ex: when loading a third player, "ohhhh I didn't think you had that many friends"). To me it fits really well, especially how it starts off very dry and dismissing of the player, but as you progress or make progress on a mode AC has a sense of worry in his comments. The only reason I wasn't perfect here is with the modes that don't have a timer, the song can just play on repeat which can be pretty repetitive.
The game lighting is amazing (see example Cold Ethyl mode or the Insects mode). For me the toughness of the shots, great rules, and amazing art will keep it in my collection for a long time. I didn't give it a perfect rating on fun because in the moments you can't find the shots, it's highly frustrating.
I know this isn't on the pinside list of things to rate, but I have to give massive props to Spooky. I was a little concerned that there could be quality issues seeing all the complaints in the past, but mine plays perfectly out of the box. I have seen Stern and JJP setups that didn't go nearly as smoothly as setting up ACNC did for me. I'm beyond impressed with the quality, and I think Spooky deserves huge praise for this game. The fact I can send an email to Charlie is just something you'll never get with any other company. The care their small team/family puts into it is clear, and I think they are doing amazing things for pinball as a whole. Ok....now I'm just fanboying, but it's true. They've made massive strides since AMH and some of their early offerings. Alright...I'm done telling you how awesome it is. Just go play one and decide for yourself!