Quoted from RavenBlackthorn:
I think it would look fantastic if they used the screen built into the playfield for the "smaller" video clips like the motion tracker, sentry gun bullet counts, computer screen readouts counting down the self destruct mode etc., and having the bigger full motion video clips on the monitor.
There's several use case scenarios throughout the two movies that could incorporate video content and mode progression on the larger screen and "status" related content on the smaller screen. From an experience and immersion standpoint, this would be an incredible direction to take this game.
[Forgive me as I tend to get long winded when my interest is peaked.]
I agree with you... this would be great. But unfortunately I don't see that happening with what we know so far on the Alien pin. Here is what we know. The Heighway architecture can only support 2 differing video feeds. The Alien pin already has 2 differing LCD video feeds on the playfield - the airlock toy and the playfield LCD. It was mentioned earlier the Heighway Team got a little vague when asked about the subject amongst their presentation.
Any video sent to the backbox LCD is just going to mirror the playfield LCD and not offer anything new or different on this title. A home user is probably going to get used to what comes naturally and get information from the playfield LCD above the flippers where all the action is and not deviate their attention. What would be the point of looking away from the playfield during a game if the backbox LCD is just mirroring the exact same playfield LCD information? It would just be diverting your attention away from the action on the playfield, yes? So the giant LCD for a backbox just doesn't have me too excited right now.
I have mixed feelings for the Big Boy LCD option in the backbox for this title. I personally wanted the small LCD in the backbox for Alien just for family and friendly bystanders and of course simply for the very cool bling factor and in hindsight knowing it will not affect the full artwork presentation. Now the Big Boy LCD option is revealed. There goes the full gorgeous green backbox translight artwork which will probably be beautifully accentuated by the (RGB?) addressable LED lighting features there. And now there is a big weird art free negative empty space there when the machine is not on.
If, and this is a big giant (unlikely) IF, the Heighway Team goes through the effort of creating the extra coding and changing their equipment parameters to allow for a 3rd differing video feed providing the visuals for the backbox LCD for their next title - Alien - WOW! YES! It would be an outstanding additional immersive element and I would definitely want to have the Big Boy LCD option. But will they expend the resources and time and cost to do that? All for a 3rd LCD that doesn't come with the game? That would only benefit just the buyers that purchase the 3rd LCD as an optional accessory? I'm guessing realistically - not on this title.
I hope I'm wrong - I would be all about the Big Boy LCD if it will provide a new and immersive additional visual experience on the Alien pin. The downside of the Big Boy LCD is just too great for me otherwise - losing the full art picture and what it looks like when it's not turned on. Eeeeeek!
It was speculated that maybe an "artificial" 3rd video feed could be implemented readily in the Heighway system for Alien if the airlock toy video feed could be diverted to the backbox LCD when it is turned around revealing the Queen and not in view of the player. That's a neat idea if Heighway could pull that off. But again the question remains if it's worth implementing this sort of "3rd" video feed when the necessity of such is only demanded for the percentage of buyers that go down the road of purchasing an additionally optional extra LCD, not to mention a bit of added licensing hurdling work that might compound $$ and timeframes.
On the other hand, for those in on a Full Throttle that is natively built on only one video feed, I think it may make more sense to seek the Big Boy LCD there. The option is more readily present to code in secondary differing visuals resulting in a more relevant immersive experience and especially since it is an original non-licensed theme that can be changed with out third party involvement.
I'm leaning toward an Alien LE with the glorious Lime Green trim and legs with a small LCD underneath the full translight artwork panel that glows and pulses and has who knows what kind of LED interactivity for the 35th Anniversay Artwork translight. I'm not worried about future titles. I'm only concerned about an Alien pin. If future Heighway titles warrants a must buy from me I'll deal with that then. Haha.
Fortunately I suspect there is still a lot of time for the Heighway Team to figure these things out if they don't already have the whole plan set. Andrew always says Alien is his dream title and he and his Team want to make the best Alien pin possible. Because of that kind of passion, I believe he will.