Quoted from Jr99svt:
Not the best art, or theme, Sounds, or overall, what is the the best Playing game.
Lots of good opinions provided here. . . I think I'll add mine.
I've played most of the Classic Sterns and trying to decide which one is the "best playing" is like trying to decide which of the tractors I've restored is the "best driving." Each one is unique, but some have more appeal than others.
I don't own Quicksilver, Big Game, or Stargazer but have played all a lot and understand the appeal. I would add each one to the collection if the opportunity presented at the right price. That being said I'm not on the hunt for them at top dollar.
I've owned Meteor, Flight 2000, and Galaxy -- all good/great games but ended up selling as I could not connect to the space theme. I rank Meteor at the top of those three due to the spinner shot alone.
Stars is/was another good game in the collection but the chimes did not win me over. I realize that is what a lot of people like about that game. Mine did not play very fast -- I could not get attached to it.
Lightning is definitely different. It has a Classic Stern feel but is a bit more clunky to play until you master the shots to the upper playfield. When you do ripping the spinner before hitting the ramp is almost as satisfying as Meteor. Almost.
I keep a beat Seawitch in my garage to play in between burger flips while cooking out in the summer, or to play just about any other time too. It keeps me content with plenty of drop targets to hit and the loop shot is definitely unique. I might enjoy it more if everything was dialed in perfectly -- I don't get the best spinner hits on this game. Takes some of the fun away.
Nine Ball has been a keeper for me ever since I played my first game on it. Even with a wide open playfield there is still a lot you need to be accurate for. . . and that floating spinner is just cool. The sounds/visual of the resetting drop target bank add a bit to the gameplay experience for me.
I also fell for Cheetah the first time I played one. So much so that I persuaded the games owner to sell it to me. Again a bit of a wide open playfield but a lot of drop targets and spinners (three!) to shoot for. The shot from the lower left flipper to the upper right spinner never disappoints -- neither does the left alley/bonus collect shot. I have the prototype sound roms in mine and while quirky the electronic effects work for me.
More information than most people probably want, but I had a few extra minutes here at work.