(Topic ID: 186639)

Explain STTNG to me


By goatdan

3 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 53 posts
  • 32 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 years ago by Frax
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#1 3 years ago

What am I missing? I didn't want to out this in the regular STTNG thread, but I just recently picked one up after on again, off again looking for one for ages. It had never really grabbed me before, but so many people who I really trust their opinions have told me it is one of the greatest games ever.

I started it up tonight, ready to figure it out and... I feel like I'm missing something, which has been what I've felt about it in the past. Is everything basically a mode?

I love the theme and I love the look of it, but... What am I missing? I really want to give this one a fair shake... STTNG lovers... Help?

#2 3 years ago

Lots of modes if you include Neutral Zone modes, a variety of ways to put up points short term vs collecting artifacts for even bigger points long-term, Borg ship/lock is cool, cannons are cool, 6(?) actors doing custom voice work, nice easter eggs like Riker's poker and "thank you, Mr. Data" extra points, orbit to left ramp combo (Picard Maneuver) is great and challenging, awesome Steve Ritchie layout and good rules.

I'm a fan even though I never watched the TV show.

#3 3 years ago

Not sure what to tell you here. Yes it is one of the greatest pins of all time...IMHO. But if it didn't grab you before why do you think it will now?

WOZ...I don't care for it at all. A lot of people that I know and respect think it's one of the greatest games of all time. I will never buy one.

Yes STTNG is mode based. You play all the modes to reach Final Frontier...which is awesome BTW. There is also a ton of other stuff to do. Various multiballs and warp factor 9.9....etc....

There is also the theme integration which is second to none, with custom call outs by All of the main characters (pictured on the translite). This game pretty much has it all.

#4 3 years ago

Take a read through the rulesheet

http://www.ipdb.org/rulesheets/2357/sttng.htm

The game is pretty much built around the missions (modes), you need to do well in those and try to earn the artifact from each one. Then once you've got all the missions done, you can start the Final Frontier 6 ball multi ball where the shot value depends on how many artifacts you picked up on the way.

There is other stuff going on though, read the rulesheet it's pretty thorough

#5 3 years ago

Modes are the main objective ,Collecting artifacts in the modes increases your shot value in final frontier . Final frontier is awesome . Other objectives besides the modes warp factor , borg multiball neutral zone modes are seperate from the missions on the saucer . Star Trek the Next Generation is the game that really got me into pinball , I still think it is the greatest pinball machine ever made .

#6 3 years ago

It's not exactly rocket science. You can shoot the right orbit over and over again for multiballs, or you can focus on modes and clear through those. Or you can try to do both.

#7 3 years ago
Quoted from Astropin:

Not sure what to tell you here. Yes it is one of the greatest pins of all time...IMHO. But if it didn't grab you before why do you think it will now?

I've had do many good friends whose tastes usually align with mine tell me about how awesome it is, and I do love the theme. I never get enough time to just sit and play it. I figured I could get one, play it for a while, and if it really isn't for me, move it along.

I just needed a jump start on exactly what I'm doing, which this thread did. I'll play it some more and see what happens

#8 3 years ago

For me it has the best layout in pinball and the cannons, well they are awesome. I lean down left and right squint and close one eye as I embrace the cannon shots. The third flipper design with the wide body playfield works well together. It is a simple mode based machine and over time the Start Mission shot becomes the money shot and becomes instinctive as you can feel the shot without even glancing at the flippers. Getting to the Final Frontier never gets old for me, and trying to collect all of the artifacts and complete the missions along the way is very rewarding. It helps if you enjoy the franchise and can relate to the characters and call outs. For me it is Steve Ritchie's masterpiece and I am not sure if it will ever be surpassed.

Check out the rules for a more complete guide for gameplay:

http://www.ipdb.org/rulesheets/2357/sttng.htm

#9 3 years ago

Outside of modes, Warp factors are big. Warp 5 is bonus x held, and extra ball at 10x. At warp 8 the first time is an extra ball. Subsequent warp 8's are an artifact which can be huge at FF. But warp 9 will reduce the skill shot to warp 2 and eliminate the Delta ramp from warps. Also warp 9 blocks the active mode so have a plan.

Q's Mission in the only mode you can stack with MB, so save that for 2 locks and lock lit, if possible. Start the mode, hit the right orbit.

Borg MB is one of the best MB's ever. Pops build jackpot value, and the Canon 1 and 1 and 1 can get the value up quickly. Delta ramp to Borg is always 3x even when shields are down. If you are consistent, you can keep hitting the center jackpot without the Borg getting a chance to fire back.

You can get 3 artifacts on Search the Galaxy if you hit the shots in order and then follow up with a Neutral Zone (gamma quadrant) shot.

It's almost impossible to get every asteroid in that mode but you only need 3. Time Rift has a bug and sometimes won't give an artifact.

Learn to back hand the Alpha ramp. And to nudge forward on those outlane areas. That's mostly it. I set kickback to Easy so it's lit at the start of every ball.

#10 3 years ago

It's more fun to play the modes, but if you really want the best score, you're better off skipping most of them and letting them time out. The ones I usually play are Rescue, Asteroid Threat, and Time Rift -- they are easy because they light every single shot. Worm Hole and Search the Galaxy should be skipped because they require the upper flipper shot, which is both a low percentage shot and a major drain risk. Yes I know Search the Galaxy has multiple artifacts up for grabs, but it's just not worth losing a ball over.

Battle Simulation has an extra ball if you make 6 consecutive shots, but missing sends the ball out of control and bricks off the Neutral Zone often go STDM -- play at your own risk.

Holodeck Simulation (video mode) is very important - you can get an extra ball and an artifact, plus about 130 million points if you memorize the correct pattern. If you don't care about points, squeeze the trigger and hit the right flipper button at the same time and you will play poker against Riker instead (although it's not worth much).

One 'easy mode' setting I have turned on (mostly for guests) is unlimited Lite Lock on skill shot. So if you want, instead of starting a mode or Warp 4, you can lock a ball on all 3 of your balls for a guaranteed Borg Multiball on ball 3.

#11 3 years ago

the different ways to play make this a great pin,
the weird things is its a hassle to mantain and thats part of the fun
i love tweaking, repairing, modding, cleaing, adjusting, playing after dialing her in
this pin has it all, the different strategys the toys the look and sounds

but

its all preference
if you want a machine olnly to play
better grab another

#12 3 years ago
Quoted from jorro:

the weird things is its a hassle to mantain and thats part of the fun

Yeah, I'm discovering that already. Mine, which was working last weekend when I picked it up, seems to have lost track of how many balls are in it and doesn't want to move the right cannon... I just want to play it some more until I understand how much I like it, and then I'll be happy to tweak it...

Having said that, I did play a couple games before it lost the balls this morning, and I definitely enjoyed it more already thanks to some of the tips, so... Thanks!

#13 3 years ago

First reseat all your conectors, dont forget the optoboard and ballthrough boards under the playfield.
if that doesnt work try to find out in switchtest if any opto is flaky

#14 3 years ago
Quoted from goatdan:

Yeah, I'm discovering that already. Mine, which was working last weekend when I picked it up, seems to have lost track of how many balls are in it and doesn't want to move the right cannon... I just want to play it some more until I understand how much I like it, and then I'll be happy to tweak it...
Having said that, I did play a couple games before it lost the balls this morning, and I definitely enjoyed it more already thanks to some of the tips, so... Thanks!

Dirty optos can confuse this game as far as the ball count goes . Cannons most likely need new wire harnesses . Wires in there get broken and cannons stop functioning . Both easy fixes .

#15 3 years ago
Quoted from spidey:

Q's Mission in the only mode you can stack with MB, so save that for 2 locks and lock lit, if possible. Start the mode, hit the right orbit.

Did not know that...and that mode is a royal PITA to complete. In fact, it's the ONLY thing difficult to complete on a properly set up STTNG.

#16 3 years ago
Quoted from goatdan:

Yeah, I'm discovering that already. Mine, which was working last weekend when I picked it up, seems to have lost track of how many balls are in it and doesn't want to move the right cannon... I just want to play it some more until I understand how much I like it, and then I'll be happy to tweak it...
Having said that, I did play a couple games before it lost the balls this morning, and I definitely enjoyed it more already thanks to some of the tips, so... Thanks!

I think STTNG needs to be playing well to truly appreciate it, more so than most games. All switches need to be working and the right flipper needs to be strong enough to make the delta ramp, best when it even make it with a ball mostly stopped on the flipper.

#17 3 years ago

The shots, art, theme integration and features are pretty much off the scale.

If you can appreciate it for those, especially if you further reinforce it with a PinSound board and one of the sound packages people have done, it's hard to find a better game.

However, a lot of people don't get on with it because of the super punishing outlanes (particularly left outlane), and really imbalanced score weighting - the video mode is insanely lucrative and completely linear.

I sit somewhere in the middle. I do love the machine and appreciate all it offers, but I really do wish the modes weren't so imbalanced ... and cradling some stuff out wasn't often the best option.

I expect eventually someone will rejig the scoring / modes, or indeed add some new rules. If that happens, I think it has a legit claim to be the greatest DMD era title by some margin.

P.S. I'm not a 'Trekkie' at all.

-1
#18 3 years ago
Quoted from Frax:

Did not know that...and that mode is a royal PITA to complete. In fact, it's the ONLY thing difficult to complete on a properly set up STTNG.

If you bring Q into Borg Multiball, it can be super lucrative. It never times out, in fact, and will keep going until multiball ends. It's a hard trick to pull off, though.

#19 3 years ago
Quoted from Jvspin:

I think STTNG needs to be playing well to truly appreciate it, more so than most games. All switches need to be working and the right flipper needs to be strong enough to make the delta ramp, best when it even make it with a ball mostly stopped on the flipper.

thats why always make sure eos doesnt kick in to early!

#20 3 years ago
Quoted from pezpunk:

If you bring Q into Borg Multiball, it can be super lucrative. It never times out, in fact, and will keep going until multiball ends. It's a hard trick to pull off, though.

Wish I had known that when I owned one of the two that I've had. Doesn't sound too tough to do....certainly not like stacking in some recent games.

-2
#21 3 years ago
Quoted from goatdan:

I feel like I'm missing something,

I am with you. I am convinced at this stage I am not missing anything. It shoots poorly, is clunky, has poorly designed outlanes, used cannons to block outlanes, and is not really much fun codewise.

I forever have been amazed at friends that I respect and usually have similar taste as, keep STTNG in the collection when others have moved along.

I always figured I would pick one up cheap someday to give it a better shot in the home environment, but the more time passes and I play nicely dialed ones, I find it just does not have 'it' for me personally.

In short, you are not alone.

#22 3 years ago
Quoted from Whysnow:

I am with you. I am convinced at this stage I am not missing anything. It shoots poorly, is clunky, has poorly designed outlanes, used cannons to block outlanes, and is not really much fun codewise.
I forever have been amazed at friends that I respect and usually have similar taste as, keep STTNG in the collection when others have moved along.
I always figured I would pick one up cheap someday to give it a better shot in the home environment, but the more time passes and I play nicely dialed ones, I find it just does not have 'it' for me personally.
In short, you are not alone.

Nothing you said remotely describes Star Trek the Next Generation.

#23 3 years ago
Quoted from trilogybeer:

Nothing you said remotely describes Star Trek the Next Generation.

Just my honest opinion of the game.

#24 3 years ago

Shoots poorly and clunky , that's crazy talk .

#25 3 years ago
Quoted from trilogybeer:

Shoots poorly and clunky , that's crazy talk .

Agreed. The game shoots great and has great flow. It doesn't feel clunky at all.

#26 3 years ago
Quoted from trilogybeer:

Nothing you said remotely describes Star Trek the Next Generation.

I'm pretty sure "poorly designed outlanes" is 100% correct, as even Ritchie himself said they were a mistake.

#27 3 years ago
Quoted from Frax:

I'm pretty sure "poorly designed outlanes" is 100% correct, as even Ritchie himself said they were a mistake.

I guess I would have to disagree with Steve on that then . I think if the outlanes weren't so brutal the game would be too easy . Pinball manufacturers have had a quarter century to make a better game , none have succeeded .

#28 3 years ago

I wouldn't try to force yourself to like it. Every pin has it's fans and haters, even top rated pins. I like STTNG but it's not exactly on my want list. I don't know all the rules and such but it's a fun game to shoot for me. Lot's of shots and fun modes. I'm just not a big fan of the theme. Game does a good job with theme integration so it helps to be a fan of the show.

#29 3 years ago

The other part is so many of them have little things wrong just kill the game. I had one that the eddy sensor just didn't like to play nice. Nothing like the super spinner never turning on.

Once you get it cleaned and shopped, get the bugs worked out and fix the little things I will play great. Then you can decide if it's a good game. This is NOT a superbands and hard post rubber game. There is a reason for the black rubbers (and I live the feel of white rubber) and the yellow / black post rubber. If you want to speed the game up and turn it into a 30 second ball time, try white or clear rubber and superbands with purple post rubber. Better make ever shot perfect though. A post brick is an instant drain

#30 3 years ago
Quoted from jawjaw:

I wouldn't try to force yourself to like it. Every pin has it's fans and haters, even top rated pins.

Oh, I'm not. I have enough other stuff that I do like, I just wanted to see what the big deal was here, and I never get it in others collections. I also really enjoy the theme, and I have always enjoyed shooting it.

Oddly, my machine decided it wants more attention and has diverted all balls away from the cannons, and the sound just decided to go out. Obviously, I need to open it up to look more carefully, but in playing it in a gimp edition way, I am finding it a lot easier to understand.

At some point, I'm going to fix it up really nicely, and then I'll decide what happens. In a gimped form though, it's pretty sweet.

I do appreciate how many difficult long shots the game has.

#31 3 years ago
Quoted from spidey:

Q's Mission in the only mode you can stack with MB, so save that for 2 locks and lock lit, if possible. Start the mode, hit the right orbit

Love the game but didn't know that, Q is my least liked mode. Been doing it all wrong.

Some people don't like the outlane drains this game requires the player to play good shots. Floundering will cost you. I'm guessing that being new to to game you may only achieve 2 modes you need to keep playing get that start mission shoot dialed.

Add a few buy ins.

#32 3 years ago
Quoted from goatdan:

What am I missing? I didn't want to out this in the regular STTNG thread, but I just recently picked one up after on again, off again looking for one for ages. It had never really grabbed me before, but so many people who I really trust their opinions have told me it is one of the greatest games ever.
I started it up tonight, ready to figure it out and... I feel like I'm missing something, which has been what I've felt about it in the past. Is everything basically a mode?
I love the theme and I love the look of it, but... What am I missing? I really want to give this one a fair shake... STTNG lovers... Help?

I hear ya..they told me the same thing when I was new to the hobby. Also TZ and TSSP were supposed to be the second coming. I went through all 3. The truth is STTNG is not that great, neither is TZ and TSPP for that matter. Since I'm on a rant I'd like to also throw MMand AFM on that list. If I was king FT, TS and JM would be 10k each.

#33 3 years ago

and if on a williams your flippers feel clunky,

REBUILD YOUR FLIPPERS!

only data east has the rights to clunky flippers

#34 3 years ago

I liked it, but didn't love it. I am not a huge cannon fan on any game, and they block viewing the out lanes. And it drains a lot. If letting modes timeout is a good strategy, then something is wrong

#35 3 years ago

I'm a big fan of 90's Williams/Bally DMD games and have most of the usual favorites in my gameroom, but I never really enjoyed STTNG in the mid to late 00's when I was buying games for my developing collection, mainly due to my dislike of the outlanes. I never cared for the design of the right outlane with the top of the sling shot rubber angled like a funnel helping to direct the ball towards that massive right outlane. I've developed a forward nudge strategy that helps prevent drains in that right outlane area, but I always thought the design of that area was a bummer, and it also sucks that it's covered by the right cannon and you can't see it well (if at all). The left outlane is pretty much just as bad, but it has a kick back at least. However, when that kick back is off, it becomes a game of "re-light the kick back" similar to my High Speed 2 The Getaway. However, you can set the kick back to easy to help things in that area if you wish.

Now here's the thing: Despite the issues with the outlanes, once you start playing the game a lot, you find your shot accuracy goes up, and you start to learn how to react to bad shot bounces, and you learn to nudge the machine in ways that help prevent outlane drains. When this learning curve is complete, the machine really starts to shine. It does have great flow and plentiful shots, and the modes are fun. The dual cannons are great toys, and the theme integration is right up there with the best in all of pinball.

Unfortunately, I didn't play STTNG enough to get the hang of it back when it was a lower price game, and up to this point, it's never been in my collection, but now that I have the hang of it and find myself enjoying it, I'd really like to add one sometime soon. I really think it's one of the best pinball machines to ever come out of Williams/Bally in the heydey of their 90's DMD production.

#36 3 years ago

Bowen does a great job explaining game play and strategy here. I think you can even hear him cursing an outlane drain too

I love this game and bought it back for a second time. I'm also not a trekkie fan at all but am told the theme is as well integrated into the game play.

#37 3 years ago
Quoted from Whysnow:

I am with you. I am convinced at this stage I am not missing anything. It shoots poorly, is clunky, has poorly designed outlanes, used cannons to block outlanes, and is not really much fun codewise.

That's crazy-talk! STTNG is one of the smoothest flowing games of the 90's and has a great rule-set for its time. I think the reason people think the game is clunky is because it takes a while to get the shots dialed in because of being a widebody with no shooter lane which takes some getting used to as the shots aren't always where you would expect them on the flipper. It reminds me of Alien in that regard since Alien is also widebody without a shooter lane that takes a while to adjust to while playing. The outlanes are tough I'll give you that but they really just force you to play more in control.

The coding is great with the exception of the video mode. I wish there was a way to disable it via the settings. The modes are all well varied and I love that it rewards you for completing modes by giving you an artifact. I rarely time out modes as I always try to go into Final Frontier with 2 full sets of artifacts (8 total) which makes it way more lucrative! I could see timing out modes if you are playing in a tournament (I agree that it's a lousy tournament game) but at home I always try to max everything out and go for the best score possible. There is a lot to love in the game, great modes, some of the best multi-balls in pinball, and Warp Factor 9.9 mode which is super fun to achieve but should be more valuable points wise.

To me it is my favorite WPC game and one of the best machines ever made. I've owned mine for over 11 years' which for me is an eternity as I typically rotate games in and out every couple of years. In my current collection It's one of only 2 games i've owned for more than 3 years. It just never gets old and the game is always challenging. The crazy thing is that I'm not even a Star Trek fan.-I've never even watched the show before.

#38 3 years ago
Quoted from MikeS:

To me it is my favorite WPC game and one of the best machines ever made

I think I need to come over some evening and we need to session out the game so I can see the love. Maybe with a tutorial and a night of only playing it, I will see something new that draws me in.

#39 3 years ago
Quoted from Whysnow:

I think I need to come over some evening and we need to session out the game so I can see the love. Maybe with a tutorial and a night of only playing it, I will see something new that draws me in.

That sounds like a good plan. You can checkout the new bar as well... I think if we spent an hour or two just playing STTNG and learning the finer points on the rules you'd come around on the game! Just let me know when you want to stop out.

#40 3 years ago
Quoted from jorro:

and if on a williams your flippers feel clunky,
REBUILD YOUR FLIPPERS!
only data east has the rights to clunky flippers

Now THAT's true!!!

#41 3 years ago

For me, its the whole package that brings it together. Fun shots, variety of modes. Challenging outlanes... but the game gives you many chances for multiballs. Love the sound, laser cannons, shots/ramps, modes. Dat 20x bonus.

I'm pretty new to the game but from what I can tell there are a lot of different ways to stack points which I haven't explored yet.

#42 3 years ago
Quoted from pezpunk:

If you don't care about points, squeeze the trigger and hit the right flipper button at the same time and you will play poker against Riker instead (although it's not worth much)

Isn't a poker win worth 40 million? That's not nothing.

#43 3 years ago
Quoted from Bendit:

Isn't a poker win worth 40 million? That's not nothing.

But it's significantly less than the 150 million + Isolinear Chip that you can get really easily through the video mode. I find myself playing poker a lot though because it takes less time.

And if you lose it's only worth like 5 or 6 million.

#44 3 years ago

I really enjoy sttng like the theme I'm a bit of a trekie but like anything sci-fi.
I don't dress up as mr spook! but I think I would enjoy Romulan ale and i'm a Steve Richie fan.

All the above skew my opinion of sttng.
It may be just not your game as people have posted.

#45 3 years ago

Star Trek: The Next Outlane..

Some days I miss mine but it is one of the super rare cases in this hobby where I prefer the newer pin (St Premium/LE) to the Williams high water mark for the theme and layout.

I liked the innovative cannons and two locks on the borg ship. Even as a fan of TNG the fallouts did get start to feel repetitive quickly..

YMMV

#46 3 years ago
Quoted from Whysnow:

I am with you. I am convinced at this stage I am not missing anything. It shoots poorly, is clunky, has poorly designed outlanes, used cannons to block outlanes, and is not really much fun codewise.

You're describing Ghostbusters. This is the STTNG thread.

#47 3 years ago
Quoted from kvan99:

I hear ya..they told me the same thing when I was new to the hobby. Also TZ and TSSP were supposed to be the second coming. I went through all 3. The truth is STTNG is not that great, neither is TZ and TSPP for that matter.

I'm not new to this by any means. I've been hearing that I should get a STTNG since about 2001. And actually, unlike TZ and TSPP, which I can pinpoint on both of those exactly what I don't like about them, I have never been able to pinpoint not liking STTNG. I just have never been able to pinpoint what is so great about it either, thus a big part of why it appeared in my basement. I have bought games to spend a lot of time with them to figure out, so this isn't my first time trying that, but usually I start to get it much faster.

Having said that, again, this thread has been quite helpful to me already, so I think I understand it better. I now need to repair a few things on it, because STTNG, and then give it a bit more time. If I don't love it, that's fine - I can't fit everything in my basement anyway.

Quoted from MikeS:

The coding is great with the exception of the video mode.

You know, and I never thought about this until you mentioned it, but perhaps this is a contributing factor. I tend to dislike any games with video modes, and I'm both particularly bad at the STTNG video mode, and I know it is worth TONS of points. Disabling it or making it worth FAR less would probably increase my enjoyment of the game significantly, just like making the video mode in Tommy disappear made that game SO much better

#48 3 years ago

I like the video mode I spent a few months just trying to map the tunnels.

#49 3 years ago
Quoted from MikeS:

That sounds like a good plan. You can checkout the new bar as well... I think if we spent an hour or two just playing STTNG and learning the finer points on the rules you'd come around on the game! Just let me know when you want to stop out.

New bar and a STTNG!?!? I'm in!

#50 3 years ago

It's good

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