Quoted from jonesjb:
when will you be able to share your thoughts that you were preparing us for? Are they complete? I look forward to reading.
sorry, not complete.
perhaps the following will help those who dont mind thinking a little.
here is something for you to ponder. a small part of the bigger picture. presented is a crude drawing of a hypothetical playfield. consider it an example of 'what could have been done differently'. compare with alien. see if you can find a particular design element that is missing from the current pf. i hope i didnt make it too obvious. ignore the purple one, thats just an extra shot off the back of the UR flipper.
its nothing mechanical. its not a software glitch. its a design choice. it is this missing element that impacts the games playbility, especially when it comes to accomplishing certain game objectives.
what is it that is lacking in the games current design?
how does that affect reaching certain objectives?
what game metrics indicate/confirm this is a problem?
what software adjustments have already been made to try and alleviate the problem?
are their existing geometry issues that [if uncorrected] only compound the problem?
did changes from Nordmans original concept improve or worsen the problem?
what can be done today [if anything] to 'fix' things?
thats a lot of questions to be discussed and answered [many unrelated to this image, so dont dwell on it too much]. Still, this never-to-be 'redesign' would have taken the pressure off all of them.
disclaimer1: software/sound truly top notch. if the game plays as it stands, i can see how owners might enjoy playing alien. but, when it comes to overall playability, its just not going to be as fun as it coulda/shoulda been due to design.
disclaimer2: all information required to determine, present, and answer most of the above questions can be found in this thread and by observing youtube videos of gameplay. anyone could have done it. dont make it out like im holding back a conclusion that nobody else could have reached. just a matter of time/effort to put it all together in a cause/effect analysis.