(Topic ID: 106728)

ALIEN PINBALL - Game Over, Man, Game Over


By HeighwayPinball

4 years ago



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  • 24,687 posts
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  • Latest reply 2 days ago by Durzel
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  • Alien Heighway Pinball, 2017

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10
#17751 1 year ago
Quoted from jwilson:

They've already spent the money they got from these guys. They want the new cash.

The last thing you want to do in a situation like this is underestimate how much cash will be needed...and these "businessmen" should have known better.

Don't ever do a "best case scenario"...assume a worst case scenario and then add another 25%.

#17752 1 year ago

delt31 Connectors for backbox and side panels on my machine (proto).

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#17753 1 year ago
Quoted from Lamoraldus:

delt31 Connectors for backbox and side panels on my machine (proto).

Thanks - mine looks exactly like that too. for the backbox and side, do you have two 12V open connections right to the left of where that is plugged in? On mine I do and if i unplug those two and plug into 12V, both sides work (although a little brighter than others). Backbox still a no go as I believe they are in your second picture. No other place to put that plug (I believe it's the LED strip input that the backbox LED strip is plugged into - or is it RGB backbox plug?) . Either way just curious to know whats going on although happy it's just a light issue and not anything major, with the game itself working 100%.

#17754 1 year ago

Inside the backbox: led strip and everything else goes through one connector down into the body. Is your led strip connected?

The two 12V are unconnected in my machine.

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#17755 1 year ago

yes - mine is the same way. I traced the two wires into the harness and that goes into the cabinet into the board (via LED strip input I believe). Technically the strips do turn on (not full power) if I leave the coin door OPEN. Why would cutting off high voltage allow them to work? When I close coin door, they shut off. Also upon power up, the LED strips go FULL power for a split second and then turn off.

25
#17756 1 year ago

That is some janky shit right there.

ALIEN PINBALL Official Game Thread Pinside Forum (resized).png

#17757 1 year ago
Quoted from delt31:

When I close coin door, they shut off. Also upon power up, the LED strips go FULL power for a split second and then turn off.

Sounds like something is mixed up there...

The level of Jankyosity is high!

#17758 1 year ago

You're right. I think the double talk, lack of refunds and support / communication all point to this new investor underestimating how much cash would be needed to right this ship. They are probably in dire financial straits or half their issues would be solved immediately. This does not bode well as presumably alien is their only income source and nobody (the larger group who WOULD buy) wants to buy it because they want to see if the company will be around in ten years so it's kind of a catch 22.

It sucks because I'd love to throw some money together to place an order, and I've been rooting for this pin and the company for a long time. It's a dream theme for me. Unfortunately the only evidence we have points to them not having enough cash to right the ship. I hope I get proven wrong in the next few months.

#17759 1 year ago
Quoted from Chalkey:

Unfortunately the only evidence we have points to them not having enough cash to right the ship. I hope I get proven wrong in the next few months.

Yeah....they just don't understand that if they had better communication, fixed the problems, made refunds and sent out parts....the orders would be flooding in....JMO

#17760 1 year ago

EDIT - recharge target was stuck causing the points to go up. All good. FYI in case you have this happen. That recharge target is sensitive.

#17761 1 year ago

Heighway needs a guy like Lloyd. We need an Ask Lloyd Tab for Alien.....

#17762 1 year ago

Maybe they are just hoping to flip the company to someone else - quickest way to ROI.

#17763 1 year ago
Quoted from Shapeshifter:

Maybe they are just hoping to flip the company to someone else - quickest way to ROI.

That would explain Bernie Sanders viewing the Alien pinball overseas.

#17764 1 year ago

For the guys with an Alien - can you see if your switch for Tongue Mark 1-1 is constantly active?

#17765 1 year ago

Looking forward to a few more of these getting unboxed and played. Im curious if @delt's multitude of problems is just a lemon (I know his issues are minor but I couldnt think of a better term) or if that is the norm?
I sooo want this to be a home run, and hope to own one someday

#17766 1 year ago
Quoted from cosmokramer:

Im curious if @delt's multitude of problems is just a lemon (I know his issues are minor but I couldnt think of a better term) or if that is the norm?

other Euro delivery sounded like only a couple issues and it was at a show. Where are all these other container games landing?

#17767 1 year ago

So an unfortunate update that is a big deal. The mini playfield tv just did this. After replugging on both ends it barely fixed it and returned to full crap mode shortly there after

It's been less than 4 days and with the lights not working, back light and side either, now the mini tv pulling this, I'm out with this machine. Working with CT now. I like to think I just got a lemon (who knows what's next) and hopefully others have better experiences. I will keep everyone posted.

If I swap out I'm requesting to open and test right there bc this is more than just a, "does the alien work". I'm not interested in money back. The game is such a hit in my house I just want one that works.

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#17768 1 year ago

Just a curious question...

Did any preorder ppl get an Alien yet or is it all new money?

#17769 1 year ago

I'm a pre-order, delivery scheduled Thursday. Games are shipping! hopefully this is a sign of the heighway ship heading back on course.

#17770 1 year ago
Quoted from Kneissl:

I'm a pre-order, delivery scheduled Thursday. Games are shipping! hopefully this is a sign of the heighway ship heading back on course.

I can't wait to be there and see the game with you. Going to be a lot of fun!

#17771 1 year ago

Sensing Charleston Seafood VERY soon for me......

#17772 1 year ago
Quoted from delt31:

so I noticed tonight that when I press my flippers it causes some of the lower lamps to change color. I'm not sure this is normal. You can see it in my video below. Right flipper turns on almost all the lights around on and off colors. Left seems to just enable some lights on the bottom right.
Any owners confirm if yours change color too when pressing flippers? Seems odd:

Mine does the same.

#17773 1 year ago
Quoted from Indypin:

Anyway, my buddy Greg from SDTM will be filming the process and I'm sure doing a podcast on it at a future date, so here's to keeping the fingers crossed and hoping I'll have some good news for the future buyers (if any) for this pin.

I enjoy watching their podcast! Couple of good guys for sure! Cant wait to see their thoughts on ALIEN!

#17774 1 year ago
Quoted from Kneissl:

I'm a pre-order, delivery scheduled Thursday. Games are shipping! hopefully this is a sign of the heighway ship heading back on course.

Ditto.

#17775 1 year ago
Quoted from lodgingdolphin:

Mine does the same.

Thanks for confirming. If you go into active switches in test is your alien Tongue Mark 1-1 active? Mine is....

#17776 1 year ago
Quoted from delt31:

Thanks for confirming. If you go into active switches in test is your alien Tongue Mark 1-1 active? Mine is....

Looks more like a resolution error on your screen? Maybe try a reset in the pc but actually hold the power button on it and turn it back on.

For your board, for sure sounds like a cold soldier joint or loose led or failed led.

Do you have a multimeter? Test your voltace for the backbox leds and Ill test mine . Also test what your 12v is coming out at on your voltage regulator.

#17777 1 year ago
Quoted from libtech:

Looks more like a resolution error on your screen? Maybe try a reset in the pc but actually hold the power button on it and turn it back on.
For your board, for sure sounds like a cold soldier joint or loose led or failed led.
Do you have a multimeter? Test your voltace for the backbox leds and Ill test mine . Also test what your 12v is coming out at on your voltage regulator.

Appreciate the help!

For the board, considering I changed out the first failing LED with one that was working and it no longer worked in addition to taking out the failing LED and plugging it into another socket and that worked, I've concluded it can't be LEDs anymore and must be board related (cold solder) - do you agree or am I missing another LED scenario? If not, where do I look for the potential solder issue specifically? Top or bottom side (which I can see) of the board?

I do have a MM however not entirely sure how to use it (bought it for pinball though!). Any tips on how to use? This is the one I have.

amazon.com link »

As for the voltage regulator, where can I find that?

Thanks!

#17778 1 year ago

Hey Bud.... sorry to see a new owner having such issues.

I would send a High Priority email to
helmut@heighwaypinball.com And
daniel@heighwaypinball.com

I would ask for a Skype Call to be set up Asap so they can see what you see and help diagnose these issues.

#17779 1 year ago
Quoted from delt31:

For the guys with an Alien - can you see if your switch for Tongue Mark 1-1 is constantly active?

The Tongue Mark should show active whenever the xeno toy is either fully extended, or fully retracted. It will be inactive when it is in between. This switch basically tells the code to stop it or reverse direction.

#17780 1 year ago
Quoted from Kneissl:

I'm a pre-order, delivery scheduled Thursday. Games are shipping! hopefully this is a sign of the heighway ship heading back on course.

You providing the Oberon kneissl ?

#17781 1 year ago
Quoted from libtech:

Looks more like a resolution error on your screen? Maybe try a reset in the pc but actually hold the power button on it and turn it back on.

Here is what's in my cab. I see a computer board but no reset.

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#17782 1 year ago
Quoted from delt31:

Random question about your coils. When you go to test them in the service, can you describe how you do that? On my alien, it's a little wonky with me pressing in the coin door power as if I was closing the coin door and then I press the green button and it begins to shoot off coil. If I press the green button and then close the door, nothing happens. Never owned a HW game before so thought that was interesting. What's also interesting is that IN the coil test there is backlight and it actually turns on when I test it (yet doesn't stay on as it's expected too). Not sure what a coil is involved with lights.....

The coil test fires the coil each time you press the green button. Right now, there is no automatic mode in which it will fire continuously.

ferret or I can also make this trigger off the launch button, too - that would help you trigger it while the coin door is closed.

The backbox and side panel lighting are driven by 2 of the 8 "coil outputs" on the cabinet I/O board, as these are 12V outputs. They are controlled differently than the RGB LEDs. It's normal for these to show up in the coil test. Because they are lights they also appear in the single lamp test.

-4
#17783 1 year ago

I can't get over how "Home made" this game looks.

#17784 1 year ago

I’m worried for you, as you’re getting in deep. Is there a schematic included w the game? It sounds like things are getting worse, rather than better, in your troubleshooting efforts. I’m in agreement that you need one of their techs on the phone pronto, to insure your efforts are not damaging other stuff. Remember, they are 8 hours ahead of us on east coast.

Good luck, but I wouldn’t dig much deeper in there until you’re comfortable having proper information. Definitely keep Melissa in this loop.

#17785 1 year ago
Quoted from bcd:

The coil test fires the coil each time you press the green button. Right now, there is no automatic mode in which it will fire continuously.
ferret or I can also make this trigger off the launch button, too - that would help you trigger it while the coin door is closed.
The backbox and side panel lighting are driven by 2 of the 8 "coil outputs" on the cabinet I/O board, as these are 12V outputs. They are controlled differently than the RGB LEDs. It's normal for these to show up in the coil test. Because they are lights they also appear in the single lamp test.

Ok this helps. However I think what you're explaining is that I go into test, coils and then with the coin door open, I press the black button (sorry green was my mistake that just goes back) and the coil should go off right? With mine, it doesn't. The way I can make the pop bumper for example go off is select left bumper AND THEN push in the plastic spring thing that the coin door automatically compresses AND THEN I press black and the coil will go off a couple times and then stop. I can then press in the plastic spring again and the coil will respond to my pressing. That's not normal right? I feel like maybe the cab IO board or voltage is messed up which is why my backbox lights will barely work BUT they do work a little if the coin door is open. Once that plastic springy thing is pressed in by coinbox it stops....

#17786 1 year ago
Quoted from delt31:

So an unfortunate update that is a big deal. The mini playfield tv just did this. After replugging on both ends it barely fixed it and returned to full crap mode shortly there after

I would also check ALL of the display connectors, including the backbox and the airlock screen in the upper left corner. Are they working correctly, and only the playfield screen is doing this? It's hard to measure from the photos but it looks like maybe the in-playfield screen is getting the resolution for the airlock screen, which would happen if it's not connected OK.

Also when resetting, make sure to power off the game entirely, not just the PC - not sure if that's what you did, but I can recommend that in general.

#17787 1 year ago
Quoted from MK6PIN:

I’m worried for you, as you’re getting in deep. Is there a schematic included w the game? It sounds like things are getting worse, rather than better, in your troubleshooting efforts. I’m in agreement that you need one of their techs on the phone pronto, to insure your efforts are not damaging other stuff. Remember, they are 8 hours ahead of us on east coast.
Good luck, but I wouldn’t dig much deeper in there until you’re comfortable having proper information. Definitely keep Melissa in this loop.

Thanks but i haven't really done anything here besides replace an LED with another. No other tinkering as of now. I am keeping Melissa in the loop - just emailed her. Wanted to get her blessing before contacting HW directly.

#17788 1 year ago
Quoted from bcd:

I would also check ALL of the display connectors, including the backbox and the airlock screen in the upper left corner. Are they working correctly, and only the playfield screen is doing this? It's hard to measure from the photos but it looks like maybe the in-playfield screen is getting the resolution for the airlock screen, which would happen if it's not connected OK.
Also when resetting, make sure to power off the game entirely, not just the PC - not sure if that's what you did, but I can recommend that in general.

thanks - all other screens are normal no issue. I also did reset the entire machine and in fact it came up and worked ok, then it went back to the pics I showed after 20 min. Everything is locked in tight. I'll continue monitoring it but again, i didn't touch anything on this machine related to displays as I never had any issue and then this pops up. Maybe it got rattled during use? The game is fun as hell - you guys did a great job with the coding.

#17789 1 year ago
Quoted from delt31:

Thanks but i haven't really done anything here besides replace an LED with another. No other tinkering as of now. I am keeping Melissa in the loop - just emailed her. Wanted to get her blessing before contacting HW directly.

Cool......hopefully you get it back up in short order, and a minor issue.......

#17790 1 year ago

ALIEN PINBALL - Official Game Troubleshooting Thread

-1
#17791 1 year ago
Quoted from delt31:

Thanks but i haven't really done anything here besides replace an LED with another. No other tinkering as of now. I am keeping Melissa in the loop - just emailed her. Wanted to get her blessing before contacting HW directly.

That LCD has been crushed in the fragile area where that mylar semiconductor film meets the edge of the panel. I've damaged decased LCDs like that before. Look how the screen is clamped in and make sure that fragile edge isn't getting pinched some how when you replace it.

#17792 1 year ago

Ok thats the new pc, mine is a zotac which is a compleate mini pc, looks like a mini pc mobo withought the case. Mine has a power button.

Yes once you get your tester you can check where the led strips plug in - but also on the chrome box with the warning sticker, you can adjust it on there as well mine is right at 12v.

For the inserts, I had a similar issue on my full throttle, reflowing the solder joints on the board fixed it 95%, wish a guy could get schematics would make life easier especially the way these leds daisychain...

#17793 1 year ago
Quoted from libtech:

Ok thats the new pc, mine is a zotac which is a compleate mini pc, looks like a mini pc mobo withought the case. Mine has a power button.
Yes once you get your tester you can check where the led strips plug in - but also on the chrome box with the warning sticker, you can adjust it on there as well mine is right at 12v.
For the inserts, I had a similar issue on my full throttle, reflowing the solder joints on the board fixed it 95%, wish a guy could get schematics would make life easier especially the way these leds daisychain...

OK - I have the tester already. How do I check this?

As for the reflow - I've attached a pic which shows the last good LED (in green) and the first bad LED (in yellow). What/Where do I reflow?

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#17794 1 year ago

oh alien - I love you so much but you're not making it easy! I played again tonight and the playfield LCD again started to do those lines down the middle. No other tvs impacted. Unplugged and replugged everything and the only thing that would make a difference was the power line to the mini LCD. Once I plugged that back in, the lines only appeared transparent and the part of the tv that was blocked before was now showing although I can see the lines still there just transparent.

I'll mention this to HW but I'm pursuing the replacement as soon as it's available in the next shipment. I really hope to hear nothing but good/no issues feedback for the guys getting the game this week.

#17795 1 year ago

Come again, delt31 ? Are you saying that if you unplug the power line to the Airlock LCD (I'm assuming that's what you mean by "mini LCD"), the playfield LCD works properly?

#17796 1 year ago
Quoted from delt31:

oh alien - I love you so much but you're not making it easy! I played again tonight and the playfield LCD again started to do those lines down the middle. No other tvs impacted. Unplugged and replugged everything and the only thing that would make a difference was the power line to the mini LCD. Once I plugged that back in, the lines only appeared transparent and the part of the tv that was blocked before was now showing although I can see the lines still there just transparent.
I'll mention this to HW but I'm pursuing the replacement as soon as it's available in the next shipment. I really hope to hear nothing but good/no issues feedback for the guys getting the game this week.

Wow Delt31! I really hope your machine gets fixed quick. That's freaking me out a little. My Full Throttle has runned great since I've had it. Hate to hear this stuff. Cmon Heighway and help this guy out over the phone. Good support is key to a good company. It would be a great success story and great P.R. To help this man out!

#17797 1 year ago

A simple 'turning it off and on again' often works with the screens - they work best when they're all booted at the same time.

#17798 1 year ago
Quoted from BillySastard:

ALIEN PINBALL - Official Game Troubleshooting Thread

Actually it's a delt31 troubleshooting thread now lol, I guess it's what happens when you rush into getting a game last minute hahahah, he got the game which is what he wanted atleast lol. He's the only one posting this insane amount constantly again out of the 24 other games that went out (not sure how many have arrived yet in other people's hands though). Only news we've heard about the game and it's all problems still.

#17799 1 year ago

Moderation question: I wonder if we should create a separate "Alien troubleshooting" thread, or ask owners to post their questions or describe issues in the club thread?
Finding the right answer will be super difficult later in a thread with over 17,000 posts...

23
#17800 1 year ago
Quoted from HoakyPoaky:

Alien code is quite respectable, but it's nothing like the level of depth in LOTR or WOZ.

I thank you for your kind words on the quality of the code in Alien. However, I had to sleep on your comment that Alien's depth isn't comparable to LOTR. (For the record, I own and love LOTR, it's probably #2 on my list of "games I'd want with me on a deserted island" ... I've always been a Tolkien fan, love the LOTR movies, and think the LOTR pin is beautifully executed, represents its theme well, and is great fun to play.)

I consider "depth" to reflect the number of distinct, meaningful rules in a game, and how they can interact with each other. Considering that...

LOTR has 6 very distinct main game modes + 1 mode mini-wiz (based on mode performance), with all modes exclusive. Alien has 8 very distinct main game modes + 2 mode mini-wiz (based on mode performance), with all modes exclusive, and with most modes boostable by out-of-mode activity.

LOTR has 4 very distinct primary multiballs, with 3 exclusive and 1 stackable. Alien has the same. On both games, multiballs can stack on an active mode.

LOTR has Gifts of the Elves; Alien has Weapons. Both of these can stack with other stuff as appropriate. LOTR does have SRFMB, which doesn't have an analog in Alien.

LOTR has Super features; Alien has a more accessible 2x Playfield. Both of these can stack with other stuff.

LOTR has [Super] Ring Frenzy; Alien has Rescue. Both of these can stack with other stuff.

LOTR has Destroy the Ring; Alien has nothing like that.

Both games have über wizard modes; LOTR's is for "winning" everything, while Alien's is for starting everything.

Both games have a nice variety of "miscellaneous" features.

Unless I'm forgetting something major from LOTR, I think Alien's depth is objectively right in line with LOTR's. However, I'd say that LOTR is "longer" than Alien, in the sense that LOTR requires you to do something over and over A LOT if you want to "beat the game". RotK MB alone requires 28 lit shots to "win" (the same 4 shots, 7 times over). That's certainly a LOT of shots, but I don't think that increases the depth of the game, it just makes it more of a grind. FotR MB requires "only" 18 lit shots to win, but if you don't manage that in a single go, it's really a grind to get back to FotR on typical game settings. I think this "length" is why Valinor is nigh unreachable for most players. Frankly, I wasn't interested in that level of exclusivity when designing Alien's rules... I think it's OK if a strong intermediate player "beats the game" once in awhile, and doesn't need an hour to do so.

This really isn't a competition -- I think players should play or buy a game because they love the game's experience, not just because it has the deepest ruleset ever created. But as I said, I went to bed last night with my brain percolating over Alien's depth, and just wanted to give a brain dump of my opinion.

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