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(Topic ID: 167575)

Batman 66 by Stern new info


4 years ago

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  • 604 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 years ago by Bamatami
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Topic index (key posts)

26 key posts have been marked in this topic, showing the first 10 items.

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Post #1 Flyer announcing Batman 66 Posted by GAP (4 years ago)

Post #4163 Photo of the Batman 66 playfield via Stern Posted by dmbjunky (4 years ago)

Post #4193 Photos of the SLE Cab Posted by cavalier88z24 (4 years ago)

Post #4194 Photo of LE Cab Posted by cavalier88z24 (4 years ago)

Post #4264 Clear photo of the entire SLE Posted by DCFAN (4 years ago)

Post #4449 Video from the Stern tour at Expo 2016 Posted by KingBW (4 years ago)

Post #4974 Batman 66 Product and Feature Matrix Posted by KLR2014 (4 years ago)

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#92 4 years ago

Sort of feels like Stern is just pissing on fans at this point. They have HIGHLY questionable QA going on and they want you to start putting deposits down on games going forward? Oh, and they are going to invite some people to buy a game? So they'll reach out to you when they want you to buy something, but they can't bother to talk to you like a human if you have an issue with their products?

Total joke of a company right now.

#165 4 years ago
Quoted from QuietEarp:

This sounds pretty cool. I will never buy one new, but pretty cool! Is it me or is WOZ and The Hobbit way more machine for the money than these high end machines from Stern?

You get higher quality parts and more extras on the art and details, but I think Stern has a better track record of quality gameplay and reasonable timelines for shipping games. That said, I won't buy a NIB Stern after how frustrating the GB LE experience has been. I'll only buy used games going forward.

#316 4 years ago

I wish people understood how cheap LEDs are these days, especially in bulk. Whatever price hike comes with Stern's move to LCD is not to adjust for increased cost.

#628 4 years ago

I've had it with Stern. This is just jerking people around. They're asking for people to send in money before any sort of reveal. That's just wrong. Either they don't have the confidence in the title to ask for deposits after a real announcement (this is just a cheap tease), or they're really wanting some of that free loan money from buyers as a new way to squeeze every last available penny that this hobby has to offer.

Stern doesn't give a crap about the customer. This is just one more sign of that.

After the GBLE experience I've had, I can't understand why anybody would be putting money down on a total unknown, especially given Stern's current quality issues. This whole rush to preorder is nothing short of madness.

#630 4 years ago
Quoted from robotron:

just got word from my dealer that stern wants pics of faulty playfields and will be replacing them on case by case basis. so basically if you have light ghosting it is gonna be a battle to get a playfield? i wont take another chance. right now i am out.

I've heard this too, and it's total garbage. Any manufacturing flaw should be fixed. I'm afraid that since I just have ghosting, and no cracking (yet), that they won't do anything for me.

#650 4 years ago
Quoted from Rarehero:

TF didn't have Lyman, hand drawn art, LCDs, humor, or a good toy.

With that snoozer of a layout, Lyman, LCDs, and art couldn't have come to the game's rescue. Even a killer toy instead of that awful rocking upper playfield wouldn't have saved the game.

1 week later
#1448 4 years ago

It's insulting. They always talk about how they have kept pinball alive, but thats ignoring the diehards that stuck it out in lean times, through bare playfields, and through economic recessions. Now when they want to celebrate 30 years, it's about squeezing the customer for more. Send in your promos, people. Get a chance to grossly overpay for a pinball machine. Be their organ grinder monkey. Dance! Dance!

#1463 4 years ago
Quoted from vidgameseller:

Chances are, most that are bitching, probably cant afford it anyway, so thir point is useless to start with.

No, we're just finding better places to spend our money. I bought a Ghostbusters LE and the experience was not good. I've bought 3 NIB Sterns and own 6 Sterns. At some point, you get tired of a company trying to make you feel privileged for being able to buy their stuff. It's extra bad when they want money down for something unseen and that's a follow up to games that have been plagued with quality control issues.

#1468 4 years ago
Quoted from Jvspin:

Could it be the distributors that are the ones requiring the deposits and creating the scarcity by saying all the games are sold out, when in reality they are simply reserving all of them?

No, for this one Stern is requiring the deposit.

This would all be very different if they had already shown the game, had announced final pricing, gave an expectation for delivery, and weren't looking to give the "golden tickets" to whoever does the best job promoting on behalf of Stern. It's all so wrong.

#1569 4 years ago

My video is uploading to YouTube. I'll share it here and see if you guys think it will get me picked.

#1573 4 years ago

Here it is!

#1704 4 years ago
Quoted from BoJo:

Kudos to Stern for finding a way to make a quick 9K
Considering the party is limited to 450 people and many will not dress up you have some good odds to be in the top 30 selected. Maybe people will start flipping their tickets since it's sold out.

They're charging for a promotional event. Seems kinda lame to me.

2 weeks later
#3085 4 years ago

The notion that this should cost any more than any other pin Stern makes is ridiculous. I bet this ends up having a larger run than WWE. Stern is telling you it should cost more, but really, why should it? Why should the premium be more expensive than a standard premium? It's going to run the same code as the LE/SLE, so differences are going to be less than the pro/premium split.

This is a gross grab for extra margin hidden behind a false report of limited stock.

#3089 4 years ago
Quoted from iceman44:

How is 240 LEs a false report?
With the premium it's hard to imagine paying those prices as well but maybe people will think it's worth it at the reveal?

I'm talking more about the premiums.

#3133 4 years ago
Quoted from Pimp77:

JJP should come out and charge $7500 for Pat's LE, $7000 for a standard and watch their sales explode.

Stern definitely opened the door for a highly tolerable price increase from JJP. But if JJP maintains their current cost structure, they have a HUGE opportunity to gobble up marketshare in 2017.

#3137 4 years ago
Quoted from clg:

IF they can ramp up production which is uncertain.

Good point. Delivery time is an issue.

Man, I would love to see JJP grow into a more strong competitor to Stern.

#3139 4 years ago
Quoted from flynnibus:

Certainly not every pricing strategy choice is successful or well received But these 'rules' people keep coming up in these threads about market dynamics and pricing are so wrong and generally are trying to replay outcomes verse seeing the actual pieces that matter. Pinball is not an oddball at all.

Stern is aggressively trying to find where that point of diminishing returns exists with their pricing model, but pinball is a type of market where you won't see it happen right away when you hit it. It will be more noticeable a year or two later. Instead of buying 2 NIB games a year, a collector might drop to an average of .75 per year. The way people stagger their purchases, it might not get noticed until they've already committed to a higher price point. The big jump for B66 can't be the new normal, and they've said as much. But if it sells like crazy on the premium model, they've said that this isn't the new price structure, so they better not go back.

#3143 4 years ago
Quoted from MinusWorlds:

You mean like comparing a car that has gone up in features and price vs. a pinball that has gone up in price and down in features?

Cars have gone WAY up in regards to reliability and build quality too. Stern's newest games have dropped off in build quality noticeably.

#3189 4 years ago

It's high quality art that looks odd for pinball. Photorealistic images make it look like a photoshop job where they apply a filter to a photo.

Also, they need to lose the thick outlines. Makes them look like decals.

#3221 4 years ago

Hand drawn art is the way to go, but it's up to the license holder. At times they provide their own approved art assets, and if it's all photos and logos, it's all you have to work with.

Given a choice, however, I think Stern would favor sticking with hand drawn art.

#3252 4 years ago

Thick outlines on photorealistic images is so jarring to look at. Outlines are very cartoony. Looks really odd. Cheapens the art.

2 weeks later
#4631 4 years ago
Quoted from iceman44:

$9500 is bad enough for what you get, $15k is insane for that.

$15,000 is inexcusable. They can't justify it. Some people have means to pay it and the desire, and they're free to do it, but Stern can't even give a single good reason why it should cost $15,000.

#4805 4 years ago
Quoted from o-din:

Did anybody on the tour ask what $5000 gets you for buying a Super LE over a regular LE?

There's no answer to that question, so why ask?

I've never seen such a poor value proposition in pinball. That premium is a pro. That LE is overpriced, and that SLE is simply offensive with its pricing.

#4807 4 years ago
Quoted from o-din:

Why ask? Because if you were there, you could.

"Because this one goes to 11--er, $15,00!"

#4811 4 years ago
Quoted from WackyBrakke:

Does the Premium have reduced game play like a Pro?

One could argue that the game is sparse enough that that they had to remove armor and such because there's not much left to strip from the game...that game is thin.

#4820 4 years ago
Quoted from o-din:

With new BBQ sauce and all.

I have heard NOTHING but good things about that new BBQ sauce.

#4850 4 years ago
Quoted from beatmaster:

i'm looking at the SLE and wondering how much does it cost stern to built the game? 4-5k?

No, try much lower.

#4863 4 years ago

AC/DC Premium street price was $6300. The BIBLE was probably $300-$500 more.

#5095 4 years ago

Here's how I see the three editions:

Premium - PROmium
LE - pLEmium
SLE - Somewhat Limited Edition

No matter which you choose, the price is still bonkers and Stern should be ashamed at the fleecing going on here.

#5097 4 years ago
Quoted from DaveH:

I just came to the weird conclusion that I'm good with the new pricing. I'm also good with the changing of levels, and the price increase Gomez said was coming to the Pro model when they do the next cornerstone game. I'm not going to be a buyer at those new prices, so they don't matter. Enjoy your upper end clientele Stern.

It's often said that Stern saved pinball by keeping manufacturing going, but I think that ignores the fans that stayed in the game through the lean times. To see those same people get chased out by increasing pricing...well, that just hurts to see. I really hope there's a market correction that can occur that won't put any of the manufacturers out of business. But as things are, I'm not priced out, but I'm done paying the prices because it no longer jives with my logical plans for myself.

I still want Stern to be successful. I want JJP, Heighway, Spooky and all the boutique companies to be successful. I just think that things are on a dangerous course.

#5168 4 years ago

The price isn't an issue because I can or can't afford it. It's an issue because it's bad for the industry. This game won't be routed. The secondary market will be very small. Heck, the primary market will be small. This isn't good for anybody except for Stern's very, very short term numbers.

#5238 4 years ago
Quoted from Mojosan:

It's a SPECIALTY pin. Gary described it in his talk as a SPECIALTY pin that they will be producing one every 18mos to 2 years or so. It's not their normal cornerstone pins that get released 3 or 4 times a year.
Chevy just announced a Corvette Grand Sport. It's $85k. No one is freaking out that Chevy is going under because of the pricing, or that the secondary market is smaller, or that its going to ride very harshly on normal roads. It's a SPECIALTY release. It's geared to have extraordinary appeal towards a small segment of buyers.

This is about the stupidest justification ever. STOP. USING. THE. CAR. INDUSTRY.

There are literally almost 100 million cars sold per year worldwide. A dealer (or distributor in this comparison) has a huge range of new makes and models to offer their customers. A specialty car coming out is something that they can completely ignore and it won't affect their business. If Stern wants to start making every 3rd or 4th game a "specialty pin," it's going to cause regular gaps in sales for distributors. It will harm the industry.

And to take it further, that "specialty" car is actually more expensive to make and manufacture. Stern is just arbitrarily charging an exorbitant amount for this game simply because they want to. There's no actual substance provided for the extra cost. This SLE is THREE TIMES the cost of a pro. In your car analogy, it's the equivalent of a going from a KIA Forte to a Tesla Model S. No matter how you want to use cars to support Stern here, it falls apart.

So yeah, c'mon.

#5243 4 years ago
Quoted from flynnibus:

Based on what? Stern is already now maintaining probably double, if not more, titles at any time now compared to just a few years ago. To loose maybe 25%... Stern is still far ahead of where they were previously. Plus, the speciality games could represent different margins/revenue for the disti...

Stern is selling the SLEs directly.

1 week later
#5519 3 years ago

In a general sense, these games aren't worth their price, but in a personal sense, they could be, I guess. I almost understand heavy markups on LE/SLE/CE models in pinball, but for the Batman '66 premiums, it doesn't make any sense for them to be so out of line with traditional pricing. There's nothing extra (in fact, they're stripped down from a standard premium), there's no limit to production, and there's no special one off aspects to it that would drive up production price.

I don't like the pro/premium/LE model much. I have a pro (Tron), a premium (AC/DC), an LE (Ghostbusters), and some games before the pro/premium, LE splits (Spider-Man, Iron Man, TSPP). I think the move to the 3 models really hurt overall value in pinball. But if new revenue had to be found, I wish it was just standard and LE/CE, with no differences in gameplay or code. JJP has it right in that aspect, as does Spooky.

We're never going to unwind what's been done, but I'd love to see premiums disappear and Stern can do a standard and collector's edition. Pack bling into the CE and overcharge for it. Leave the standard to be on par in regards to play, but drop this three model stuff. Simplify the production lines, simplify code development, and speed up game development process overall.

#5527 3 years ago
Quoted from docquest:

I think we should give Stern some credit from saying that some of the LE/SLE features will also be available for separate purchase like the art blades and the bat signal projector. This allows customers to buy the lower priced model and still enhance it later if they want to bling it out a little.

Not when they're using off the shelf trinkets that can be had for a few bucks at Walmart. It's pretty scummy, actually.

#5533 3 years ago
Quoted from docquest:

Im happy Stern is offering them for sale vs saying its just an LE/SLE only item.

This is not a favor to you. It devalues the LE/SLE features while they can squeeze a few more bucks out of the premium buyers.

#5549 3 years ago
Quoted from taz:

I didn't at first, but now I like having the choices. Look no further than BM66 to see what would happen if the Pro model went away. Or, if the Premium went away, we could go back to bare games. I suspect that people who buy the LEs for the extra $$ sort of subsidize keeping a Pro model available and at recent costs. I also have no problem with a small number of people buying the SLEs. If they can afford an SLE then they can go for it. I generally prefer the LE or Premium models myself.

The way Stern handles the pro/premium/LE differences is messed up though. Having different gameplay features is bad for both the buyer and the manufacturer in lots of ways. Differences should be at the features (art, limited numbers, trim, etc.) level and not at the gameplay/code level.

Here's why:

tl;dr - different gameplay features creates inefficiency in game production (manufacturing, assembly, and coding), lesser attention to unique aspects of a game, and we get a compromised version of the designer's original intent.

There's room in the market for 3 levels of machines per release, but the gameplay features should be the same.

#5552 3 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

And which version should they all be the same as?

Whichever the game the designer designs. They get to make one design, their best design.

Even in the Bally/Williams heyday, they had to hit BoM budgets. They worked towards one design within those budgets, however, and they made the best game that they could.

The reason some LEs are worse than pros is because the design didn't warrant whatever extra was included (GoT upper playfield). The best design is the pro, but something HAD to be added to justify the premium/LE feature matrix.

And yes, JJP has it figured out. I mean, actually, Batman '66 basically does this as well. No difference in gameplay between versions. The starting price is just out of whack.

#5554 3 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

You actually just made my point for me.
Stern BM66 has no pro version, and the prices are too high for many people. Great argument for keeping Stern's current 3 tier structure.
And to say that "JJP has it figured out" seems to miss the boat, as their cheapest (standard) model doesn't come close to being as inexpensive as Stern pro models.

This doesn't make your point. All this does is illustrate how freaking greedy Stern is being here to "celebrate" 30 years of pinball. The whole pricing structure is a downright joke.

#5570 3 years ago

It's not just price about Batman that is gross, it's the scummy behavior around it. Raising the SLE from 30 to 80 after being adamant that it was only going to be 30. Not only that, they were meant to be created at as an expression of appreciation for 30 individuals, now they're just a margin grab. There's no no longer any element of appreciation. And no, this wasn't the original plan, that's obvious by George's and Jody's appearance on C2C. They devalued the SLE before launch by raising production numbers. Total dick move.

#5572 3 years ago
Quoted from taz:

I bought an LE and it doesn't bother me that people who want a a greater exclusivity can buy the SLEs, no skin off my teeth, or anyone else's to be honest. I don't get the cost to value of them, but clearly enough folks did for them to sell out, even with the video requirement. What am I missing?

The sole purpose of the LE or SLE purchase is to have something limited. They're making that less so at the expense of the consumer on the SLE. They're devaluing the product. It degrades my confidence in them going forward.

They're doing this with other stuff too. They had sticker packs that were exclusive only to attendees to their party. Well no, you can buy them now anyway. One of the reasons to buy that ticket was to gain access to exclusive things. To screw people over who bought into that idea after the fact is poor form.

There's a pattern of dishonesty and disingenuous behavior from Stern lately. It's just one more example with the SLE. It's not just the price, it's the underhanded business practice.

If someone wants an SLE, that's their business, I agree. But to hype it up as limited to only 30 run to generate a social media campaign and impulse sales only to more than double the production later...that's terrible. Some show of appreciation to fans and partners, Stern.

I hope that the game is fantastic and worth every penny that people pay. That would be great. But if that's how it goes, it still doesn't excuse Stern's poor form.

#5574 3 years ago

They still lied though. That's the issue. It's a bad sign for the company. What reason do we have to trust anything Stern says these days?

#5578 3 years ago
Quoted from PinballManiac40:

Everything is always subject to change.

Not for the honest.

#5586 3 years ago

Is it really that difficult for people to understand? Stern said that there would only be 30. They priced it and presented it as the very special reward for the customer. Once they realized that more profit was to be had, all that went out the window. Customer appreciation be damned, it's about money now. Furthermore, that $15k price was meant to reinforce rarity, which was diluted by more than half.

It's selfish and greedy.

#5589 3 years ago
Quoted from Mojosan:

As soon as you describe a for profit business as 'selfish' or 'greedy' you lose your arguement. You might as well call them Nazis. It's just as ridiculous.
Stern does not exist to make pinball machines. Stern exists to make profit for its shareholders. Period.
You, nor anyone else, is being forced to buy their products. The endless whining is intolerable.

This is not how business works, but whatever. I'm done trying to explain it to people who don't understand business and marketing.

#5593 3 years ago
Quoted from vireland:

Apparently, at Expo, it played pretty much the same as BDK, from the one person who saw it played by a kid.

I'm willing to bet that this game will be quite different in the end. I don't think that they will go the lazy route or screw this up. I'm expecting a great game on regards to code.

#5618 3 years ago

They went with a good size on the LCD, yeah. For the life of me I can't follow everything going on with The Hobbit's LCD. Too much for quick glance info.

#5623 3 years ago
Quoted from NeilMcRae:

Bring back the dots!

I'll miss dots, to be honest. I'm not a huge fan of video clips, but at least we don't have to see video clips ran on a dot matrix ever again. That was the height of terrible "art" in pinball.

#5625 3 years ago
Quoted from pauloz:

Do you ever have anything good to say?

Um, yeah. Do you only read the negative half of what people say and focus on that, or what?

#5679 3 years ago
Quoted from thundergod76:

Just realized it has been an entire month since Stern revealed this at the party. Where the hell is the gameplay video by now???

If you remember, it was a long, long wait between the Ghostbusters official announcement and actual gameplay video.

#5683 3 years ago
Quoted from cooked71:

So, Stern trying to lock away all then non-refundable Sle & Le deposits before showing gameplay?
Too cynical?

Whether it's intentional or not, that's what they are effectively doing, yeah. Pretty nutty.

#5687 3 years ago
Quoted from hawkmoon:

SO,what happens when these pins go out of the country,where they sit, cause the price is to high??And we have buyers that can't get one??What???I think if pins go out of the country,they should already be paid for!!Special order,so to speak!!Now,listen to this... 120 LEs ...120 Gadget LEs!!No other explanation was given! I'm in for a Gadget LE! Anybody else??

I believe that if the distributor has taken delivery of a game, it's "sold" from Stern's perspective. That distributor is then a re-seller of the game.

#5689 3 years ago

Aren't a lot of the animations going to be recycled assets from the slot machine too? The playfield art was largely repurposed previous art too. I don't think that animations are the holdup, because those can easily be off camera for a gameplay demonstration or they can use placeholder animations and just state as much during the video.

My guess is that they have a marketing plan with a specific reveal time window (haha, yeah right Jody knows how to organize something like that), the license holder has a specific time frame in mind, or they're using order volume as a measuring stick as to when to turn the hype dial back up. I mean, maybe it's due to lack of code or animations, but you really don't need much to show how a game shoots and flows. That happens at the whitewood stage.

#5697 3 years ago

It's crazy that they would miss IAAPA with Batman but they'd roll out a "DON'T TOUCH" version of the game for Pinball Expo. Questionable strategy there...

#5701 3 years ago

I'd be shocked if the game was delivered next month. That seems very, very ambitious if they can't even demonstrate it was some basic code right now.

#5739 3 years ago

I can't blame Stern for not wanting to show off product that's not ready, but I can't understand why you would do a reveal of it at Pinball Expo behind ropes if it wasn't going to be shown again for so long. I guess the idea was to provide a counter to Dialed In, but the longer it goes without gameplay, the more that acts as a bit of a backfire. It would probably have been better to sit on the reveal until a flippable game (whether by a Stern employee or by the public) was ready.

I wonder if all the art teases and such just built up to a point where they felt they had to show the cabinet and playfield, despite code being completely unready. It's either that, or something is wrong and there's been some sort of setback.

I was once told by a Stern employee that it was "very important" for them to go into production 21-30 days after a reveal to avoid being like the "other bush league manufacturers" in the industry and that they would never want to be like them.

Something odd has to be going on with this one.

#5774 3 years ago
Quoted from iceman44:

Come on Aurich, people don't believe what Gomez and Lyman say, they like to make up their own facts.

I'd trust what those dudes say, but George did say that there would only ever be 30 SLEs, and that sure changed. Who knows who ultimately made that decision to more than double the SLE run, but claims coming out of Stern are always a bit shaky these days.

All that said, I would expect solid code for this game. Lyman doesn't swing and miss.

#5780 3 years ago

Lyman deserves a new house. He pretty much built one for everybody else at Stern with all the great work he's done. The way he turned AC/DC into an all-time great fueled so many sales.

#5783 3 years ago

I got banned for asking if the extra LEs on the Kickstarter book would make the original LE buyers upset. That's all it took. Also, Jody is a moron that has no idea how modern marketing works, so it's not like I was surprised.

#5855 3 years ago
Quoted from rotordave:

Evidently they had 400 applications so there was more demand than you may think ....
Seems to be lots of people with deep pockets in this hobby.
Wait till all the Star Wars SLE versions come out (that's my guess ... but they'd be silly not to cash in, seeing the demand for BM66SLE)

If they keep pulling this crap going forward, it would be nothing short of a dick move (there's nothing special or outstanding in these games aside from the price itself).

If this was my dream theme, I would be absolutely furious. You finally get the game you want and Stern decided to jack the price up thousands of dollars over the norm to "celebrate" 30 years in business. Some celebration. Some "special treat" for the fans.

#5868 3 years ago
Quoted from Hazoff:

I hope Stern keeps going with this boutique style now and then, theres always the LE/Pre models and it gives some of us the chance to own dream themes in the best possible way.

Honest question: Besides paying a LOT more, what is special about this? How is the "best possible way" to own a pinball machine?

#5877 3 years ago
Quoted from docquest:

It special because in addition to the premium and LE versions it also has: limited to 80 machines worldwide, special embossed metallic "Hyper-Chrome" side art, 4 translites, red cerise pinstripping, unique front panel with back lit bat emblems, upgraded speaker package, bat signal projector mounted to topper, extra toys on playfield, headphone jack and volume control on front of coindoor, and some type of personalized voice message/call from adam west.

Limited to 80 machines - Was promised to be "NO MORE THAN 30," but they more than doubled it without dropping the price. They devalued it in the process. Also, they only limited to 80 so that they could charge more. These were also supposed to be ONLY available to business partners and special buyers that Stern preselected. Oops, they found a way to fleece the public and ran with it.

Theme - We've never had to pay insane extra amounts of money for that before.

"Hyper-chrome" side art - Buzzword for a print process

4 translites - Nice touch, sure. But they're translites...this is supposed to be SUPER SPECIAL. Why not glass?

Pinstripping - Again, buzzword for a print process.

Front panel with back lit bat emblems - Pretty ordinary, to be honest

Upgraded speaker package - Standard upgrade in upper models

Bat signal mounted topper - It's a flashlight in a plastic shell

Extra toys - Off the shelf $5 toys at Toys R Us (literally, not an exaggeration)

Headphone jack - An inexpensive upgrade a 3rd party has already been doing better

Voice mail message - Uh, ok!

Justifying the price on this just sucks. Seriously, giving Stern and JJP a pass for what they're doing with their asking prices is just asking for them to continue doing it. All this price jacking is being done arbitrarily. Ok, so the SLE is only 80 machines, so you can use that list above to make yourself feel better about it, I guess. But what about the premium (which is totally a pro)? There's no valid defense for that price increase. It's not limited to any number, there's nothing unique, and it has LESS features than a premium typically has. It's a stripped down premium selling for LE money. Total joke.

Buy the game, whatever. I don't care if people decide to buy the game. But to come here and say "we're lucky" or that this is the "best possible way" to buy a pinball machine is doing a disservice to future of pinball. If this continues, it's bad, bad, bad.

If they had pulled this with Ghostbusters, I wouldn't have one sitting behind me right now. There has to be some limits placed on how far Stern can just abuse their buyers. I hope people enjoy their games, because man, they're paying a silly markup on this one.

#5880 3 years ago
Quoted from iceman44:

Unless Stern is lying, they are going back to the normal pricing for the cornerstone games, or whatever they are calling them, with some boutique titles mixed in.
I think its great. A ton of options to suit whatever anybody wants. I'm looking forward to whatever else Joe puts out there.

But there's nothing different. It's just more expensive. I really don't understand why this is even a discussion.

This is the "it goes to 11" scene. You're all Nigel.

It's also disheartening to see 80 people dictate the direction of pinball. If Stern can always find 80, well, screw the rest.

#5886 3 years ago
Quoted from iceman44:

It will have ZERO impact on future sales and/or the future of pinball, other than expand it.

You can't expand pinball by selling fewer games and making machines that won't go on route. That will do the exact opposite.

#5929 3 years ago

Interesting. 12/15 would mean that they have to have those games on the line by now.

#5937 3 years ago
Quoted from bkfiv:

Have they said for sure that we can't get the topper for the Premium? I remember it from somewhere, but I can't remember where. I was hoping to get the topper for a Premium too.

Pretty sure that I heard that the premium would have a different topper made if it gets a topper.

#5969 3 years ago

I think that the LE looks best. Better cabinet and head art.

#6026 3 years ago

Didn't Ritchie design GoT with the pro first and then add the mini playfield? Not sure if I've heard confirmation on that, but that's what I've heard. I think every designer does things a little differently.

#6054 3 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

What are the chances of this being a "physical nightmare" though? It's a BDK with a few tweaks, and I don't see those tweaks having much of an impact on how the pin is going to shoot.
And while GB definitely has it's issues, I think calling it a "physical nightmare" is a bit hyperbolic.

I don't see any possible red flags with the layout. The shooting is fairly straightforward. Feel is something you simply can't judge from pics, and that's not something we'll know until people start playing it, but it should be fine.

Lyman on code makes me feel pretty optimistic in that regard.

#6065 3 years ago
Quoted from andrew2015hk:

Is there any pin announced for the foreseeable future that would justify passing on the Batman 66?

Batman hasn't been played by anybody. Wait. If you want a game now, check out Game of Thrones, Ghostbusters, Metallica, or The Walking Dead. They're easy to resell if you want Batman down the road, but lately Stern games have been iffy in the first run.

Also take a look at at Dialed In and Wizard of Oz. The latter is fantastic, and the former is getting good early impressions.

#6175 3 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

Any chance our first video could be from Dead Flip/Jack Danger from the Stern factory like we saw with GOT and GB?

I expected that, but Jack's lack of an announcement of it coming makes me think that owners get first crack at this. That's kind of cool in a different way, I guess. Pay that much and maybe your first impression should be your own.

That said...I WANT VIDEO!!!

#6205 3 years ago

Apparently code isn't up to par to show the game quite yet. It's understandable, I guess. I do wonder if they're ship with skeleton code or delay shipping until a full 1.0 release code is ready to go.

#6222 3 years ago
Quoted from MK6PIN:

If GAP stated there were completed LE's on the line, I believe him. Suspect Chances are good they start shipping next week. What shape, gameplay wise, no one will know until video posts...from Stern or end user.....

I know that the code is in rough shape. I would wager that people would rather have the game with beta code than wait until after Christmas, but if that happens, there better be a loud uproar so Stern doesn't think that it's ok to do going forward.

#6224 3 years ago
Quoted from MK6PIN:

Eeks!!! you know this from first hand, or based on recent performance? I'm up for a complete LE by Christmas ( don't mind a few code updates as time progresses), but mechanically, appearance, and being actually able to play it are going to have to be complete at this price....( for me)...

Secondhand, but 100% reliable. No question.

I don't think it's a dumpster fire or anything, it's just not ready.

#6244 3 years ago
Quoted from Aurich:

I'd never buy a Super LE, the whole idea is beyond stupid to me. But if I did I'd absolutely ignore that clause. WTF is Stern going to do? Sue? Try and black ball a huge customer? It's just dumb.
I think people should spend their money however they want. If it's not stupid to you then I wish you nothing but happiness with it.
If you think no gameplay video is dumb don't give them money. Paying them and then complaining on a forum is pointless. Money talks.

Everything about the SLE is about the dumbest thing I've ever seen in pinball. Seriously. So many freaking lies, misdirections, anti-consumer hooks, and a totally unjustified price tag. But whatever, there's a group that will pay it, so there we go.

#6246 3 years ago
Quoted from flynnibus:

It won't drop much for the same reason Xmen and other modern, but crappy sterns still demand way too much money. The games were bought almost solely by private buyers who won't lower their prices because they think they should at least get their money back out of the game or games should only appreciate. The prices only drop when some of those buyers MUST sell.. and reality sets in.. when no one wants to pay full price.
The supply will be so limited here that demand will probably always outstrip any 1-5 buyers getting desperate.
There is no volume.. so supply will always be tight... and the buyers will largely be buyers willing to hold out until the next sucker is ready to step up. Even if the game gets a WWE reputation.. the buyers will largely stay because of the role/story of the game.

Just saw an Avengers LE go up for $5,300 today. I don't think Batman 66 will be a stinker, but it better be good or I can't see it holding onto a $15,000 valuation. It'll never tank outright though. Scarcity will demand that.

#6278 3 years ago

The Catwoman art under the flap is unfortunate, but I don't think it's THAT big of an issue. The real issue is that they photoshop collaged the playfield. Yes, it's using some very nice hand-drawn art, but that art wasn't drawn with a playfield as its canvas. It was art laid upon a playfield in same sort of collage effect as we've seen from Stern outside of Ghostbusters and Metallica. The major bummer is that such a fantastic artist was not used to their full potential. The art doesn't have the same sort of cohesive flow to it across the playfield as you see on GB or Metallica. I'm sure that Aerosmith's playfield art will make that even more obvious.

Fantastic art, just not used to its full potential, for sure. And maybe it's just the pictures, but it all looks oversaturated. Batman '66 is colorful, but it seems like it's overly bright. I would need to see that in person, however. Some games look way different in person than they do in pictures.

#6304 3 years ago
Quoted from teekee:

Not fair to put Stern in the same category with PPS and JJP... Stern may be late by a month or two but the other two are usually off by a year or two... if you're lucky!

Yeah...but post-launch support is the shortest from Stern than anybody else. You might wait longer on JJP, Spooky, or whatever, but they'll keep updating their product more regularly after release. Games with never-to-be-used inserts, shoddy coded releases, and really long gaps between game updates all point to an approach that favors speed over quality and commitment. I like Stern's games plenty, but they're never quite ready when they come off the line.

#6311 3 years ago
Quoted from musketd:

They did
Not shut down guys; who comes up with this crap

Well, Stern closes for a couple of weeks over the holidays every year. Not sure why it would be all that different now.

#6319 3 years ago
Quoted from teekee:

JJP has two games... TWO games in their arsenal. They should have enough time to go to each customers house and install it for them... monthly!

Stern put out essentially one new game this year. We got Ghostbusters. Yeah, Pabst came out (no intense coding there), and Spider-Man VE (again, no intense coding) did as well, but Stern's release schedule cannot be used an excuse for such piss poor code releases and scheduling.

#6322 3 years ago
Quoted from teekee:

and yet you keep buying...

I do? No, not me. Until major changes come, I'm done buying Stern games or products. I hope they continue to make good games for those that are buying, and I'm still interested as a player, but I'm out of the NIB game with them.

#6324 3 years ago
Quoted from teekee:

Yes, you do... You have a GB correct? Stern has pretty much been doing this for years...

*cough* *cough*

I hit my breaking point with them.

#6326 3 years ago
Quoted from Banker:

In reality, 95% of people playing pinball have no clue about the code.

While that's true for location play, collectors very much care about code. I held off buying an AC/DC Premium until code matured. I know lots of people that passed on Metallica initially but came back when code improved. Mustang went from fairly lame to excellent via code updates. It's very important to most Pinsiders and collectors.

#6335 3 years ago
Quoted from pauloz:

Problem with that approach is you mostly miss out on the LE,s
If I really like a theme, I'm happy to get the LE when I can and code can come later.

I get that, but Stern's been slipping hard on code support. I have a GBLE and I don't really have all that much hope that the game is going to be coded up to its full potential. It's a great game right now, but there's so much more that they could do with it. It's essentially the same game today as it was when it released with just a few adjustments added and new video mode. Very little has been done to the game, and the wizard modes are in dire need of attention.

#6341 3 years ago

I heard again that 2nd or 3rd week of January is the expectation to start shipping. Seems pretty likely at this point. Not too far away now.

#6371 3 years ago
Quoted from frolic:

Can we wait to see the production games before we get our titties in a twist about ramp flaps?

Catch-22. If nobody complains, Stern assumes that there is no issue and releases things without changes. If people complain about something, fanboys whine about the complaining and their complaints get passed off as an extreme example of Internet whining. I think that those complaining would rather that Stern fix the problems, however. Fanboys aren't interested in a better product as much as going into white knight mode.

If you're spending $15,000 on something that is arbitrarily far more expensive than it should be, then I think that you have a right to complain about every bit of sloppiness.

#6376 3 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

Funny, I don't see the guys who actually spent the $15k on this pin that you make reference to complaining much at all.

Are any of them them saying anything at all? I'd be quiet about that decision too...

#6395 3 years ago
Quoted from Chambahz:

Thinking that your opinion is worthy of dominating a 128 page thread, droning on and on, spewing hate, in a thread that's celebrating this pin? It's past sad, all the way through pathetic. Possibly nearing "time to seek help".

Tell us more about how back in July Stern definitely fixed all the playfield issues. You certainly repeated that enough in other threads.

If Stern wants to change the narrative around this game, they need to get out there with new info, new pictures, and new video to stir up excitement. As it stands now, it still hasn't been played by anybody outside of a very small handful of people, the existing pictures are supposedly only of non-production prototypes, and we know very little about what the game is going to do in regards to code and integration with features. If these things are supposed to be shipping real soon, there's no reason why they can't share a few things to control the message around the product a bit more.

And it's not just a Batman '66 thing. Stern does a pretty bad job at controlling the narrative around their products, especially around game launches. Ghostbusters was launched amid tons of rumors of "something must be wrong" or "Stern is hiding something with this one." They go silent for such long stretches that it shows that they either have a lack of confidence in their product or they lack a basic awareness of how product launching and marketing works. Based on George's enthusiasm, I assume it's the latter, because Jody is a dolt.

#6402 3 years ago
Quoted from taz:

Jar, the problem in this particular thread is that we BM66 SLE and LE buyers didn't appoint you as our consumer reports representative and you're not Stern's Ombudsman. You've made your same points over and over to help save us from Stern. But, your constant wailing about Stern seems fringe to us, or as Chambahz wrote, "time to seek help." We get it, you're outraged at Stern for a number of reasons. There are some other threads dedicated specifically to that, including one that you started, I believe. However, your efforts in this thread seem purposefully calculated at draining the joy from BM66 buyers.

It's a new info thread. It's a thread to discuss all aspects of the game. If someone wants a cheerleaders thread, an official/club thread would be for that. I've pointed out the good stuff around this project as well, but Stern has really not given much to work with.

I hope it's great. A local collector is waiting for his. Nobody wants a stinker. But holy jeez, give us something to work with.


Ramp flaps appear to be fixed. I wonder how many playfields exist with the old placement. Probably just a small run of test/prototype games. That would probably mean that the Little Shop of Games B66 is a production model.

#6405 3 years ago
Quoted from MK6PIN:

New year rocks!!!! btw...the negativity, while annoying as it's incredibly redundant, doesn't bother me. I'm very excited for this game...only way it changes is if, AFTER I have it, gameplay sucks beyond belief. Not gonna happen.

I don't think it's going to be a stinker. I wouldn't worry about that. It's got the best of BDK (a game I and many others feel is pretty underrated), much improved art, probably a better sound package, and I'm sure better code. The unknown aspects are really about how the features and new screen are going to be tied into things. It's pretty easy to estimate how it will shoot, as it's a fairly basic layout.

#6411 3 years ago

There it is. This time around, let's not make it a point to make Jody hulk out on the stream.

#6415 3 years ago
Quoted from DaveH:

Jack Danger should be SLAPPED!!! for cutting and pasting himself into Robin's seat. Bad Bad Bad...

Can't cover the hair with the cowl, man.

If this thing is ready to be streamed, then it can't be too long before it starts going into shipping. A guy in our pinball league has an LE coming, so I'm hoping that's there before the next event at his place in early February. Seems like it should happen, as I imagine that after the holiday break that they'll be pushing these out.

#6422 3 years ago

I've not seen it said, but what is the street price on the LE and premium games? Usually you get that $700-$1000 difference from MSRP. The SLEs were direct, so no break, but what about the others?

#6429 3 years ago
Quoted from kklank:

Does anybody have anything bad to say about his work?

Keith Johnson is responsible for the deepest code in pinball, but I think Lyman is responsible for the most fun code in pinball. If I had to pick a single programmer to work on a game that I had money on, it would be Lyman. He might work a bit slower than other programmers, but his code is incredible by the time he calls it complete.

#6443 3 years ago
Quoted from dmbjunky:

90 posts in 6400 comments is less than 2 percent of the posts in this thread. I've made 145 posts in this topic (which is a very surprising number to me because I rarely check this thread).
We are all potential buyers and more likely all players. A miss in QC or PR on one game has the potential to affect future sales so everyone's opinions should matter.
The best tactic if someone is annoying you is to ignore them. It's hard for a person to have a conversation by themself for very long.

Never mind that in those 90 some odd posts that I've had good things to say about the game as well. I've also shared info about the game that I've received from people who are 100% in the know.

Anyway...last time Stern did the reveal stream for Ghostbusters they answered a lot of questions in the chat, despite the whole "I am Spartacus/kpg/kaneda" silliness. There's a good opportunity next week to understand a lot about the game's finer details and what future plans are if we don't wreck the chat. I'd love to know of the SLEs how many went to the invited buyers and how many were through submissions. When it was 30, it seemed like 20+ accepted the invitation to buy, based on the initial video submission contest and how it was worded. When it upped to 80, I don't know if all buyers came from video submission or how that was handled.

#6461 3 years ago
Quoted from hawkmoon:

My dealer has a alotment to sell!! this is not random choice! if your not in at time of deposit,then ?? There all sold now,so well see!!!

Wait, your distributor still has LEs available?

#6466 3 years ago
Quoted from docquest:

If jar155 buys one this will be the biggest flip-flop in history.

I have no interest in buying one, but he's not the first person saying that LEs are still up for sale. If Kaneda is claiming that he's flipping his LE for $11,000, someone could direct a buyer to an available game instead.

#6469 3 years ago
Quoted from docquest:

I guess a distibutor could order more machines than they had preorders for them using their own money. If its a hit like ghostbusters they will come out ahead. If it ends up being like WWE or Kiss then they are in trouble.

That's true. There's a guy I spoke to about a year ago that was still sitting on NIB games from long ago. He still had TSPP and LOTR NIB. He would generally save one or two to just age in his storage space. I called him to see if he had anything used, and he surprised me that he was still sitting on those older games.

#6552 3 years ago

Looking at pics, I still think that the LE has the best art. It doesn't have the best finishing touches, but I think that the LE owners have the best of the three options.

#6606 3 years ago

I hope that actual animations get added in. I don't really like LCDs being used for clip shows. I'll really, really miss dots if that's where JJP, Stern, and the rest end up going with things.

#6734 3 years ago
Quoted from Manic:

Look at the clip art purple penguin they put on the crane to make it "fit" the theme. Love the toy but why not put the grinning Penguin himself on with a sticker? This just looks too forced and half assed at the same time.
I'd have to peel that off day one
Others will undoubtedly love it.

They probably didn't have an art asset of The Penguin that fit. The art is from artist, but he didn't create the vast majority of the art for the pinball machine. The art is still pre-existing art and was put onto the game in collage fashion. That limits a bit what they could do for small stuff or really special placement. I'm guessing that it was license restriction, because the sound effects are recycled from the Batman '66 slot machine as well. High quality art, sure, but it's still not custom.

#6743 3 years ago
Quoted from docquest:

There is a grinning penguin inside the cab via a plastic insert. Actually 3 plastics so he's on all 3 sides. Not sure if it lights up or not. If it doesn't that could be a nice mod.

Pretty sure that art is custom since it shows him controlling the 2 handles for the crane. Artist also created a lot of other custom art for the game.

Oh there is some custom art, sure. It's just that the vast majority is from pre-existing assets. That's why it's not really fair to nitpick little things in this instance. There was definitely some sort of licensed art package to work with.

#6827 3 years ago
Quoted from musketd:

Don't care if they finished 4th as long as the display and its content are the best

It's a clip show, man. I'm REALLY hoping for custom animations in updates, because right now it's the laziest thing ever.

People saying that Stern has to raise prices to "account for development cost with the LCD" aren't looking at what the LCD is actually doing. It's removing the need to create art. Instead some intern can just chop up video into 3-4 second clips and they throw it on a solid state drive. An LCD is also cheaper than a DMD to produce. If the LCD is going to be just a bunch of video clips and there's no custom animations or clever uses for the display, it's a step backwards for pinball.

The high score newspaper thing is neat. It's just 32 years old. But lots more of that style of integration would be nice. That's easy stuff though. Let's see some animations. Let's see some custom art.
pasted_image (resized).png

JJP, Spooky, and Dutch Pinball have all shown good amounts of custom art in their games. I just hope that we don't backslide to the easy out and just beat players over the head with lazy video clips.

#6832 3 years ago
Quoted from fishbone:

I hope so too. Pedestrians, moving cars and repeated mini clips of the joker seem pretty lame. Since it's their first LCD game, I'm sure they'll improve over time.

I'm expecting more with this game. Custom animations could take a while, but they could be coming. Post launch, I'm sure we'll hear more about future plans.

#6835 3 years ago
Quoted from musketd:

They must have not been watching the same video we were I guess

They were overlays. OVERLAYS! That's something you make in Photoshop that takes all of ten minutes. Don't call that a custom animation. Push Stern to do more with the medium. It's for all of our own good.

TWD has a FAR more impressive display than B66 at this point. So much better stuff to look at on TWD, despite the older tech.

#6837 3 years ago
Quoted from iceman44:

No F ing way! Now I know you are on the pipe Jar.
Comparing TWD dots to what we have now and saying it's so much better is a JOKE! Have you gone and lost your damn mind son
Secondly, why T F would Stern reinvent the wheel when that have so much material to work with. Sorry that is asinine as well.
The background is and will be cool custom stuff.
We are in the early 1st inning of code here.
This pin is gonna kick ass and the LCD will be a great complement.
The whole idea of dots being better gets a huge WTF

It's not my fault that you have poor taste. There is zero artistry in video clips. They sucked rendered in dots, and they still suck as straight rips on an LCD. Not saying that they shouldn't be used at all, because there is reason to have some, but when it's the main visual element...that's terrible. Boo. Boring and stale.

#6874 3 years ago
Quoted from iceman44:

I blame JJP. They got me back into pinball with the LCD.

LCD got you back into pinball? That's cool and all, but man, we're definitely in the hobby for different reasons. Why not, uh, watch movies or something? Serious question, I'm not being facetious. I keep hearing about how the Texas pinballers buy to own, not necessarily play. Like, it's the collecting that is the hobby. I guess I just don't get that mindset.

1 week later
#7006 3 years ago
Quoted from spfxted:

They just might have felt it projected a nicer Bat Image on the wall....

Nah, it was just the off-the-shelf thing available.

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