(Topic ID: 175749)

Are any operators still routing pre-DMD games?


By mbaumle

2 years ago



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  • 19 posts
  • 15 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by Phat_Jay
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders

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    #1 2 years ago

    More or less a question of pure curiosity:

    How many operators are still vending pre-DMD games, and how do they fare against newer DMD competition?

    i.e. Would buying a cheaper title, such as a System 11 (or even earlier), make enough in returns to justify operating it?

    I know operating pinball machines in general probably isn't terribly lucrative regardless, but I'm curious to know comparatively speaking.

    -Max

    #2 2 years ago

    pinballmap.com allows you to search each map by machine. NJ has multiple locations with pre-DMD tables. Earthshaker, Gorgar...

    Pinballz near me has multiple locations with many pre-DMD machines.

    #3 2 years ago

    www.madisonpinball.com

    Operates EMs, early SS, DMD calssic, and new stuff all the way up Full T and Hobbit.

    In short, yes, it can make sense to buy cheaper games for route. We specifically like to provide a variety to play as these are our own games from our personal collections. We put out largely what we like. I plan to share more of my bally classics and some more sys11 in the next year.

    #4 2 years ago

    Pre DMD can do just fine. Not much difference with DMD/SYS 11 from what I know. Brighter games do better regardless of display so LEDs are completely worth it IMHO. LCD and colour changing RGBs are a step change up from DMDs.

    #5 2 years ago

    Yup, a friend has Dr. Dude, Funhouse, Gameshow, and Mousin Around on location.

    #6 2 years ago

    Good to know. Thanks!

    I've always been curious to know. Every once in a while, I'll see an older B/W title, like T2 or Hurricane, but I haven't seen an alphanumeric title (much less something pre-alpha) out in the wild in years.

    I assumed that someone somewhere was still vending them, but It's interesting to know it's still economically viable to do so.

    #7 2 years ago

    We got some in the NYC area, a number of system 11s. A banzai run just showed up at a bar in Brooklyn.

    As long as operators can update these so they are reliable on location, and especially if they install a bill acceptor, these games are still popular and still make money.

    There's a Cyclone at commonwealth in Brooklyn that's probably paid for itself 50 times over.

    #8 2 years ago

    Pincrossing in Linfield, PA has a few

    #9 2 years ago
    Quoted from mbaumle:

    More or less a question of pure curiosity:
    How many operators are still vending pre-DMD games, and how do they fare against newer DMD competition?
    i.e. Would buying a cheaper title, such as a System 11 (or even earlier), make enough in returns to justify operating it?
    I know operating pinball machines in general probably isn't terribly lucrative regardless, but I'm curious to know comparatively speaking.
    -Max

    Yes, around here they do. They make less than the new DMD games, but also cost a lot less to buy. They also are usually only $.50 to play too. It's nice for a little variety.

    #11 2 years ago

    Yes, I run several pre-DMD games in my locations. When priced the same as a DMD game, they usually earn less. When priced less than DMD games, earnings go up. There are certain exceptions such as Funhouse. People do enjoy playing them and often seek them out.

    #12 2 years ago

    I know of a operator that has Target alpha, wizard, Harlem Globetrotters, DE Simpsons and close encounters on route. Everything gets played just some more than others.

    #13 2 years ago
    Quoted from stangbat:

    When priced the same as a DMD game, they usually earn less. When priced less than DMD games, earnings go up.

    If you don't mind me asking, do you find that your lower earnings are justified compared to the lower intrinsic value of those pre-dmd games? Or do you see greater value routing newer games?

    #14 2 years ago

    Village Arcade in St. Peters, PA. Definitely pre-DMD...

    53228184e12e2e194dddca6c8a17b696f4d6f253 (resized).jpg

    #15 2 years ago
    Quoted from mbaumle:

    If you don't mind me asking, do you find that your lower earnings are justified compared to the lower intrinsic value of those pre-dmd games? Or do you see greater value routing newer games?

    It is hard to make a blanket statement. A lot of times, yes. Some non-DMD games priced less earn the same or sometimes more than a DMD game. So if the non-DMD game cost 25% of the DMD, it really made sense. It depends on the title, the location, the pricing, etc. Sometimes I chose wrong, sometimes I chose right.

    1 year later
    #16 1 year ago

    I love my System 11's that I have on route. From a $ perspective, they earn less than the DMDs, but are priced lower as well. From a % perspective for what I buy them for, they crush the DMDs. For example, I have a Diner that I got for $850. It got to 100% in a little more than a year. My GB at $5k is on pace to take 3 years to get to 100%. However, every month, GB earns many multiples of what Diner earns. Everything that is earned goes into the next game, so it's obviously the $ that is more important, but seeing a game get to 100% on my spreadsheet is a pretty good feeling too.

    #17 1 year ago

    as a player, I seek out locations with early solid state games. I’ll stick a couple bucks in a Metallica, but I’ll spend a 20 playing firepower, pinbot, Black Knight etc.... I just like them better, probably just nostalgia. But I’m prob the weirdo exception.

    #18 1 year ago
    Quoted from Phat_Jay:

    as a player, I seek out locations with early solid state games. I’ll stick a couple bucks in a Metallica, but I’ll spend a 20 playing firepower, pinbot, Black Knight etc.... I just like them better, probably just nostalgia. But I’m prob the weirdo exception.

    Where are you finding early SS machines to play around Oshkosh?

    #19 1 year ago
    Quoted from Eric_S:

    Where are you finding early SS machines to play around Oshkosh?

    In Madison, two pizza places down there. I can pm you the where and why I like each. You may already kno them tho.

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