(Topic ID: 106728)

ALIEN PINBALL - Game Over, Man, Game Over

By HeighwayPinball

4 years ago

Topic Stats

  • 24,899 posts
  • 990 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 33 minutes ago by Averell
  • Topic is favorited by 268 Pinsiders


Linked Games

  • Alien Heighway Pinball, 2017

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Topic index (key posts)

52 key posts have been marked in this topic, showing the first 20

Post #9151 Insight from Alien's programmer on tournament mode Posted by Ferret (2 years ago)

Post #9234 Update on distribution Posted by HeighwayPinball (2 years ago)

Post #9660 Here we show you a short clip from the 'Ambush Multiball' mode Posted by HeighwayPinball (2 years ago)

Post #10128 Photo of Alien at UK Trade Show Posted by unigroove (2 years ago)

Post #10230 game play video from EAG UK tradeshow Posted by Join_The_Cirqus (2 years ago)

Post #10231 game play video from EAG UK tradeshow Posted by Join_The_Cirqus (2 years ago)

Post #10914 Alien ships Posted by ZenTron (2 years ago)

Post #10916 Alien ships Posted by HeighwayPinball (2 years ago)

Post #11230 Key posted, but no summary given Posted by ezeltmann (2 years ago)

Post #11372 Nordman outline for Alien Posted by solarvalue (2 years ago)

Post #11389 CAD comparison of final Aliens vs Nordman drawing Posted by EalaDubhSidhe (2 years ago)

Post #11417 Gameplay from Heighway as of 2/28/17 Posted by HeighwayPinball (2 years ago)

Post #13008 Andrew reveals the LE artwork and ramp installation in an alien day video Posted by HeighwayPinball (2 years ago)

Post #13013 Andrew confirms LE art is finally approved by fox Posted by HeighwayPinball (2 years ago)

Post #13022 Andrew explains the artist difference for the LE backglass Posted by HeighwayPinball (2 years ago)

Post #14488 Andrew returns, hints at big announcement coming in a few days. Posted by HeighwayPinball (2 years ago)

Post #15501 Copy of update posted to Facebook by the new HP Posted by Dust2000 (2 years ago)

Topic indices are generated from key posts and maintained by Pinside Editors. For more information, or to become an editor yourself read this post!

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#3625 3 years ago

Just curious for those that are ordering the LE if the lime green trim would end up being a detriment in the future if you ended up buying future "kits" for it to swap in? I would think that a black cabinet with black nickel or chrome trim would be a safer option as it wouldn't clash with future titles.-I suppose trim can always be swapped out later though.

#3939 3 years ago

For not being hand drawn and having to work within the constraints of a license I think it looks pretty damn good! I would be happy to have one in my collection. Really like what I've seen of the game so far.

#4287 3 years ago

I think it can work without having the actor's rights in the game. Look at TWD LE as an example. When you look at that game there is no indication of Rick, Daryl, or any of the characters but yet it works. In Alien "You" are Ripley and are playing through stories/scenarios from the movies.

#4298 3 years ago
Quoted from 27dnast:


That's the Pro Version. LE doesn't reference the characters anywhere on the cabinet or playfield and they are all absent in the software on all versions. Only reference is on the apron stickers.


8 months later
#8417 2 years ago
Quoted from Zampinator:

The videos I seen of Alien over the weekend were impressive! I'm more excited than ever to receive my Alien pin!
If Andrew & team can start getting these out the door soon, I think they will see huge sales on this pin. But, they need to start mass producing them ASAP.
Here's a great video that you can hear the audio really well in.

I haven't been following that closely but is Heighway capable of producing pins at a quick rate or is it slow going? It seems like for Full Throttle anyway that games kind of trickled out? If they presell 1000 games what do you think the wait time would be for someone new placing an order? I'd be far more prone to order if I knew I could get a game within a few months of ordering.

4 months later
#11593 2 years ago
Quoted from Whysnow:

I cant imagine it without the backbox screen. It is stunning.
Even in the home it is a sure thing IMO.

I'd be interested to see if anyone actually orders one of these games without the big LCD in the backbox. It should really be standard but I guess having options isn't a bad thing. I know it's not technically necessary but it just makes the game that much cooler to play! And $550 is only $150 more than a ColorDMD. Seems like a bargain considering it's a 27" full HD display!

#11604 2 years ago
Quoted from Mfsrc791:

550 seems like a lot for a 27 in HD TV. Bought a 55in Samsung for 650. Still worth it though and will definitely add to the awesome atmosphere of the game

Does anyone know what kind of 27" LCD Heighway installs? If it's a commercial grade wells Gardner or similar monitor it probably runs close to $500. If it's consumer level it's probably closer to $200. Has anyone de-cased and installed their own display in a FT to save some cash?- although you'd have to get a bezel as well. Probably not worth the hassel!

#11637 2 years ago
Quoted from CheapTrick33:

Maybe this is what part of what David and some others are trying to say, but I'm still a bit confused. I've watched the 11 minute Heighway video and some of the Dead Flip video, and so far from the videos I've watched the bottom pop bumper never seems either lit and/or not nearly as bright as the other pop bumpers. Am I missing something? Is it like Twilight Zone, and the pop bumpers can be all lit or lit one at a time??

The game featured in the Deadflip video has pre-production light boards that are hand soldered and several of the LED's have issues because of this (cold solder joints). Production boards are being shipped for this game and it shouldn't be an issue in the future since all games going forward have production boards. The bottom pop bumper light worked when they first got the game but has since flaked out due to the pre-production board issue which should be resolved when the new boards arrive.

#11647 2 years ago
Quoted from HeighwayPinball:

That is a symptom of the board problem only

Sorry, I edited my original post to further clarify... Pre-production light boards = pop bumper light issue. Will be fixed with production boards being sent out.

#11665 2 years ago
Quoted from jonesjb:

I've suggested this before, but I'll mention it again... just make the you have failed an optional operating setting.
In most mode based games, I never really notice if I've been successful or not. But in Alien, success makes a difference on other modes, so it's more important to reiterate.

I like the "You failed" message and think it's much better than not putting out any message at all. I like the feedback of knowing whether you failed or not. Plus it makes it more fun and you feel more accomplished when you do finally pass a mission. I'd vote to keep it in at least on default settings.

They could put in a "You tried really hard, hold your head up. Maybe you'll get them next time. Here's a Snickers bar" message on the Novice and easy settings

#11729 2 years ago

Well it's been just over a week since I first saw and played Alien and the game has been on my mind ever since. I finally broke down and put down a deposit tonight on the standard! I really think this game is something special and I'm looking forward to hearing everyone's reviews of the game from TPF. I can tell that Andrew and his crew are passionate about this game and really put their all into making it great and I'm excited to be a part of it!

#11737 2 years ago

I haven't seen the Fiber Optic ramp lighting but the Madison game has the blade EL lighting on the inner side panels and it looks awesome! it's also a great source of supplemental lighting if you play in the dark.

Check out pics and video in this thread if you want to see what it looks like:


#11746 2 years ago
Quoted from Aurich:

We have some theories about that, the game isn't quite as hard as "no one will ever finish a mode". Amongst other things we think it need to be a little more clear that you need to shoot the airlock to finish out the mode.

FWIW I've finished modes on the game when I've actively tried for them. When I played during the Deadflip stream I basically ignored them as my goal was primarily to show off the flow and the shots and rack up combos, and try to get multi-ball when I could. If I would have played in my normal playing style I would have been trapping up and playing in a far more controlled manner vs. shooting on the fly. I figured I'd save everyone the boredom of that... I really don't think any of the other guys were focused on completing modes either.

I think as software gets more polished on the game it will do a better job of letting you know what shots you need to hit.-particularly using the 3rd playfield screen to do so. I think getting the production light boards installed in the Madison game (they are on their way) will also help a ton as we couldn't always rely on the lights to tell us what we were supposed to hit.

#11796 2 years ago

Great video. Really impressed with all the capabilities of the factory and all the machinery! I'm kind of curious what the special offer will be to Alien buyers for the FT kit. Something tells me I might be saving up for 2 Heighway machines!

#11899 2 years ago
Quoted from freezie:

i thought i read that they have now recessed them for clearance when lifting the playfield , perhaps i read/took that wrong ?

From my understanding the side blades are standard for all Alien games. It's the EL lighting that lights up the blades that's an additional $240 cost. My assumption is that the blades will be included as part of the Alien Kit (I would also think these would be included in the upcoming FT kit as well) but the lack of a recessed inner side panel in the FT cabinet may render it incompatible (depending on clearance issues). I'm not sure what the best solution would be.

#12031 2 years ago

It's nice that Heighway gives you options which allow for you to buy an Alien pin for as low as $6450 which gives you all the same gameplay features and toys. While the backbox display isn't a requirement and isn't necessary I absolutely think it's worth the extra money and wouldn't consider not adding it. It just looks great and also gives other people something to watch when you're playing multi player games and adds to the ambience of the machine. Plus with Heighway kit system you can spread these initial hardware costs among multiple titles.

#12099 2 years ago

When you swap between kits do you need to update the game software each time or does the PC hold multiple game profiles and automatically detect which playfield is plugged in similar to what Nucore does? I know I'd be apt to swap games more often if it didn't require a software update and having to readjust your settings each time.

#12112 2 years ago
Quoted from rcbrown316:

I loved prometheus. Just sat there and watched it in awe.

Prometheus is great! I think it just failed to live up to the hype and expectations as people were expecting it to be as good as the first two films. On its own merits though its great and better than most modern Sci-Fi movies. Sure it has some plot holes and I didn't like some of the dialogue but it's still an enjoyable movie overall and fits the Alien narrative.

I'd also recommend the movie "Moon" which was directed by David Bowie's son Duncan Jones. The Sequel "Mute" is a Netflix exclusive coming out later this year and I can't wait!

#12129 2 years ago

I personally love the kit idea! I'm always at a battle with space in my gameroom and kits will allow me to add more games without having to sacrifice other games. I tend to go in streaks as far as which games I play so I could see myself swapping them out every few months to keep things fresh. I'm kind of anxious to see what kind of deal they put together for FT kits for Alien buyers as I know Andrew mentioned something about that in the tour video.

#12141 2 years ago

I think the benefits of Heighway's system will start paying big dividends once they get a few more games under their belt. Just imagine if Stern would have came up with this system in the early 2000's and sold kits for all of their games at 60% of the full game price ($2200-$2800). I could see myself with 2-3 Full Stern games in my line-up along with another 7-8 kits stored away ready to swap in at a moments notice. It just opens up a lot more possibilities, especially if you are tight on space and money.

But the other good news is that you don't need to buy the kits if you don't like the option. Heighway's full price games are still cost effective compared to some of the other competitors in the industry.

#12186 2 years ago
Quoted from PunkPin:

the computer and electronics would be on that list as well

Yeah my guess is that the non kit portion of the game makes up closer to 60% of the total cost and not the other way around.

#12304 2 years ago

I'm trying to envision in my head what the Fiber lighting will look like on the game and it's hard to picture. Will the light tubes just be installed on the plastic portions of the ramps or will they attach to the metal ramps and the metal habitrail on the right side as well? If it's on the metal I'm curious as to how it will be attached as there aren't any obvious mount points and it's unlike a plastic ramp where you can drill holes and use zip ties. I'm sure it will be cool whatever they come up with but the layout and configuration of the ramps on this game are quite a bit different from games we've seen in the past with all plastic continuous ramps like Tron and Full Throttle that used fiber lighting.

Alien-playfield-top-1 (resized).jpg

#12317 2 years ago

You guys are making me jealous! I'm hoping the wait for my Standard isn't too long. It sounds like the games' held up well over the weekend which should hopefully mean full-speed ahead on getting more games produced! I'm excited to own a game that was such a passion project for Andrew and his team. This is going to shine in a home environment with the sound cranked up!

#12320 2 years ago
Quoted from Mike_M:

Had a lot of fun playing Alien at TPF this weekend.
Question on the glass- will any regular piece of widebody glass work? I was surprised they never replaced the glass on the machine whose sheet broke during shipping; there were multiple vendors on the floor/swap meet selling glass... unless it just happened that no one had widebody sheets.
Did get a pretty good laugh once when someone exclaimed how incredible clear the glass looked on the left machine, and then someone stuck their hand into the machine in response. Now that's invisiglass!!!

I'm pretty sure they confirmed that it used standard widebody glass mounted within the frame.

#12321 2 years ago
Quoted from Rockytop:

I asked Andrew about the location of the fiber optic on the ramps and it's going to be on the long return lane on the left and the return on the right...on the plastic portion and not the wireform. He said in his talk that these fiber optics will do some things not done in pinball before.

That makes more sense on the fiber optics vs. trying to run them over the ramps and habitrail. I didn't order them on my standard but I hope for all you LE folks that it turns out to be a cool addition. I'm excited to see what they come up with!

#12324 2 years ago
Quoted from Taygeta:

The clear chipping around the window is kind of concerning. Did the team notice this or have anything to say about it? Did it look like it was caused only because the display was misleveled?

I'm planning to put mylar down over all exposed edges of the playfield and in front of the scoop and over the playfield magnet and above the drain hole. I'll put a mylar sheet down over the playfield display as well so that it covers all edges. I have a WPT that has a small chip on the playfield display (in the plastic) so it can really happen with any game. It's cheap protection just in-case.

#12370 2 years ago
Quoted from SunKing:

Ohhh Myyy Gaaawwwdddd.... I've tweaked a few things, and ALIEN is playing GREAT. I finally broke 40 million on a few games, finished several multi-balls, completed modes - even got close to seeing a wizard mode. Trust me, if you are a fan of the Alien movies, you will not be disappointed. This game ROCKS!! The lightshow and sounds are truly amazing.
That being said - yeah, my game is early production and not everything was 100% when I brought it home from TPF. I knew this going in. Andrew and I talked, and I let him know I've done a few playfield swaps and know my way around a pin. I wasn't going to freak out if a few adjustments or tweaks were needed. Here's what I've done so far....
Airlock scoop: This is the most important shot in Alien, as it starts modes. The last thing you want it to qualify a mode, hit the start shot - and be rewarded with a SDTM kickout. I adjusted this mech to prevent that.
Outlane posts: I'm not trying to take peoples money, I want to have fun. I tightened the outlane posts. EASY adjustment.
Ball trough kickout: On a rare occasion, the ball would not launch cleanly into the shooter lane. This was also a pretty easy fix.
Pops/slings: Gapped the switches as you would with any new machine.
Leveled the machine. Yep - that helps.
Honestly, I enjoy working on pinball machines, so it doesn't bother me that, yes -even a new machine may not work perfectly 'out of the box' (or in my case, a hastily set up machine that subsequently gets pounded by over 400 players over a 48+ hour period).
I had a BLAST playing tonight.

Glad you are loving the game so far, although hearing reviews like this make it even harder to wait for my game! Thanks for sharing info on what you've needed to tweak as well. Have you played around with any of the game settings yet? I'm curious if the flipper or coil power settings make much of a difference in game speed? How is the audio quality at home compared to the Metallica next to it? I will definitely be hooking mine up to my external sub when I get it!

#12379 2 years ago
Quoted from sed6:

Anyone considering skipping the LCD? I really like Aurichs work on the backglass. Without considering resale value or anyone else's opinion I don't have much of a desire for it. For less money I can add PDI and EL lighted side blades and get more playfield enjoyment.

Just get the LCD, it's awesome! It's a feature that 90%+ of buyers are going to want if you ever decide to sell down the line so you'd be limiting your buyer's pool. You'll get your money back on the LCD but not on the PDI and EL lighting. I'm getting mine with the LCD and EL side lighting as I think those are the best two bang for the buck additions.

2 weeks later
#12633 2 years ago
Quoted from HeighwayPinball:

Honestly - I don't care that we didn't get her in the end. Since the beginning of this game, the player is intended to be playing "as Ripley" so it really makes no sense for Ripley to also be interacting with the player. It would have been "nice" to have her - but we really don't feel the game is poorer without her.

My first pinball machine was an Apollo 13 which went through a similar license issue since they couldn't get Tom Hanks to sign off and appear in the game. In that game you play as Hank's character and I don't really think the game suffered as a result. I think Alien is the same way. I think the game will be just fine without Ripley. It makes sense the way Andrew explained it. The important thing is that Heighway is staying true to the theme. I was watching the Blu-Rays a couple week's back and noticing how even the display for the game seemed to mimic the Blu-Ray menus for the movies.

#12642 2 years ago
Quoted from PACMAN:

The "you're playing AS Ripley" angle is still pretty weak.
Imagine these pinball machines with the main character replaced by the player.
Apollo 13 WITHOUT Tom Hanks.

That being said. The Game is still really amazing in spite of its main, beloved character being absent.

Quoted from MikeS:

My first pinball machine was an Apollo 13 which went through a similar license issue since they couldn't get Tom Hanks to sign off and appear in the game. In that game you play as Hank's character and I don't really think the game suffered as a result. I think Alien is the same way. I think the game will be just fine without Ripley. It makes sense the way Andrew explained it. The important thing is that Heighway is staying true to the theme. I was watching the Blu-Rays a couple week's back and noticing how even the display for the game seemed to mimic the Blu-Ray menus for the movies.

Apollo 13 didn't have approval from Tom Hanks. The game was just fine without him since you played as the Tom Hank's character (Jim Lovell).

#12646 2 years ago
Quoted from frolic:

Seems like they tried their best, then did the best with what they had to work with. In the end, this game just has to get out the door.

Despite not having Ripley, the game still feels more true to the theme than most games these days. For example:

TWD with Hillbilly GWB voicework
GOT with terrible artwork that doesn't resemble anything in the GOT universe
TSPP which has no sound clips or animations fo many of the primary characters including Marge, Lisa and Maggie
IJ4 with the terrible Sean Connery impersonator
NASCAR with the worst Sammy Hagar impersonation I've ever heard..
Star Trek Karl Urban voicework
The list goes on and on...

I'm extremely happy with what I've seen out of Alien thus far and how well it integrates with the theme.

#12851 2 years ago
Quoted from SadSack:

Word UP! I'm still trying to understand how this could be useful for operators. The only place I see any play for this is from guys who have expensive collections and no room for their games. Why would I ever want a nice game sitting in a box. I don't care if it only takes a second to switch it out.
We have experience with this. Just ask the RFM guys how often they switch out to SWEP1.

I think the modular idea is genius but of course Heighway needs to produce a game more often than once every 2-3 years to make it viable. Hopefully this will be the case going forward and we will see Alien flying out the door soon and game #3 released shortly thereafter.

Would Heighway really be saving much money per unit by going non-modular? Really the only advantage to going standard is that you can have artwork on all cabinet surfaces vs just the drop in side panels and translite area. I like at least having the option on future games of buying a kit vs. a full model and that's worth the trade-off of having less cabinet art to me. Games are usually crammed between other games anyway. It's also nice that you can pull the full playfield out of the cabinet really easily to work on.

I know I'm always out of space so the modular idea appeals to me. I even have a WPT populated playfield that I use as a kit that I can swap into my WOF. It's a PITA to swap because the game doesn't have full service rails and you have a lot more connectors to connect. I would really like to see all manufacturers go modular as I think it's a great idea for those of us that are space limited.

#12864 2 years ago
Quoted from PanzerFreak:

Has anyone heard if David Thiel got his game? I recall him posting that he would be working on tweaking a bunch of sounds once he got his game.

That would largely depend on whether he's getting an LE or standard model I would think? I'm guessing that most of the employees/contract staff are opting for LE's which is probably the biggest delay in them not receiving games yet.

#12940 2 years ago

Alien Day eve bump! Even if we don't get a look at LE artwork tomorrow I'm hoping for at least a general update about how things are progressing at the factory. I have a feeling that any day now we'll be hearing some good news!

#13044 2 years ago

Thanks for the update Andrew. The LE translite looks superb! I really wasn't expecting it to be hand drawn which is a pleasant surprise. I'm still happy with my choice of SE though and really looking forward to these shipping out soon!

I took a couple screen captures

Screenshot_20170426-183536 (resized).png

Screenshot_20170426-183543 (resized).png

#13093 2 years ago
Quoted from Manimal:

Andrew, loved the video. Are there any production updates you can share? Thanks

In addition to production updates I'd like to know more info on the improvements they are making on the lighting which Andrew mentioned in the short clip. I don't know if he's referring to adding flashers to the Xenomorph toy (which he's mentioned as a possibility) or if he's actually improving lighting for the whole game.-I think it was Sunking who mentioned something about the LED towers possibly changing? I think the lighting that's currently on the game looks great (the towers are really cool) but maybe there is still room for improvement before hitting the full production run?

#13100 2 years ago
Quoted from Hazoff:

If the game is too dark then its a real easy fix.

Where I play the game on route the game is in a dark room and I don't have any problems with visibility. It's not as bright as a Stern game but you can still see the ball and everything else just fine.

1 week later
#13717 2 years ago
Quoted from SunKing:

I wasn't 100% sure if this was correct or not. Not that I doubted 'Join_The_Cirqus', but I figured we would have had an announcement from Heighway that the new Xeno mechs and boards were ready. So I zapped off an email yesterday evening to Helmut (Heighway Cust Srv Mgr) asking if he could confirm - and he DID!!
I let out a sigh of relief when I read his reply this morning. The new mechs and boards are ready, and going into games. He said he will be out of town until mid-next week, but expects to start sending 'care packages' with new parts to existing owners towards the end of next week. WooHoo!!
Now, let me explain why I let out that sigh of relief. It's not for my own selfish reasons of wanting my xeno to work, it was more for everyone else who wants to get this game someday. To me, the biggest issue holding up delivery of these games wasn't LE art, LE ramp lighting or any other LE related thing - it was reworking the xeno mech which is the main toy on EVERY game. With that hurdle (apparently) behind them, I hope to see more games coming off the line and making their way into owners homes.

Did they give any indication that the games that are going out now are final as far as hardware goes or are they still making changes as far as adding flashers, etc. to the game? At this point I'm just hoping they are at a point where they can start mass producing games!

#13837 2 years ago
Quoted from Join_The_Cirqus:

Oh, its turned up
But sound is night and day with the Polk Attached

Congrats on the Alien! A lot of envious Pinsiders in this thread.

What version of code is your game running and is the Xeno head active? Have you noticed any new lighting effects or sound effects with the Xeno? thanks.

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