I'm very excited to see what Stern has in store with BM66. Hearing Gomez talk about it on the latest C2C podcast got me very interested indeed. Check it out if you haven't already.
As far as Hobbit sucking?? You're VERY wrong there. The problem is, people write something like that here, and then people just start parroting it as if it's a fact... It's not.
It doesn't matter at all that the movie was a total miss. I LOVED the LOTR films (and the Pin!), but The Hobbit trilogy was an unmitigated disaster. Even the filmmakers will admit this. They had no idea what they were doing, WHILE they were doing it!? It was a huge opportunity missed. A beloved story, bloated, and overwrought in to something nearly unrecognizable from the source material...
That said, it makes an EXCELLENT pinball theme!
The machine shoots REALLY nicely. Smooth ramp shots that are actually kind of reminiscent of Metallica, nice orbits, and double gobble holes behind drops. Also some super wide and difficult drop shots that are more akin to an old school wide body like Future Spa. The controllable drops make for some VERY interesting mechanics that many probably haven't seen in action. Such as...
Hit the few stand ups revealed in a constantly travelling wave of moving Drop targets. Very cool.
Hit ONLY Drops, while avoiding Stand Ups
Carefully reveal gobble holes without resetting the bank to get Extra Ball
Etc etc. There are loads.
The Beast pop ups, which dominated the early code, become much more of a strategic element as code has matured. My hope is they'll be utilized even more sparingly, but I'm pretty certain Keefer knows what he's doing!
Point is, Hobbit shoots REALLY nicely, with TONS of shot variety. It's flows well, and software is getting good, fast! It doesn't BY ANY stretch suck. If it sucked when you played it, then it wasn't set up right, or code was early. Maybe it's just not your cup of tea... But it certainly doesn't suck!
However, the fact that it's beautiful, and has a giant screen with loads of assets are NOT what's going to make it a great game. Software is going to make or break it. Look at what Lyman did for TWD... I believe KJ will do this for Hobbit.
Speak of the devil. We have a new game announced with Lyman at the helm. I'm halfway in already! Now tell me Gomez got excited in a team meeting, and raised his hand, and said "I have to design this theme". Now tell me he and Lyman talked about what they loved about BDK, and got rid of the rest... I'm getting VERY interested, right??!
Batman 66 (yes, we could debate what that means... Let's agree this pin will feature assets from the TV show as stated on C2C) is a KILLER pinball theme. Campy, nostalgic, bright, zany... It's pressing all the right flipper buttons with me. I hope Gomez, and Lyman knock it out of the park. Can't wait to see what Stern has settled on for their new screen design. It's a good time to be in to Pinball!