This new code completely changes the dynamics IMHO. While it's obviously still the same game with the same shots, it doesn't play the same at all. Old strategies need to be tossed out. I've played about a dozen games, and here's what I see so far. I'm sure the more I play my thoughts may change.
Lighting and callouts - Positive...the new lighting effects and call outs are awesome. New colors have been introduced, and it really differentiates between the mode shots and secondary shots. New callouts are great. "Light is green; trap is clean" on the second lock should end the red/green debate.
Skill Shots - Positive...The auto 6x is removed, but it's actually easier now to get into it (more on that later). The video mode skill shot has also been removed. Getting that possible 60M (now 80M) has to be earned now. You can also get an upper and lower skill shot. More is always better!
Starting Modes - Positive...I'm ignoring the plunge exploit because I just think it's dumb. I like the new code taking away the right flipper backhand. It introduces another element to the right ladder. I like taking away the mode chaining. I really enjoyed planning the shots to end on the correct one in the previous code. But now after completing the last shot, you get to make a choice for the next shot. It doesn't diminish the game and is good for new players.
Auto Mode Completion - Neutral...I'm not digging this after my first few games. It drastically impacts scoring. Sure it's easy to progress, but it eliminates a lot of scoring opportunities. For example, in the old code Spook Central was worth up to 60M (unmulitplied). If I lost a ball after starting this mode, I still had a chance to get the points on the next ball. In the new mode, those possible 60M points just disappear.
Multipliers / Scoring - Neutral / Neutral...Getting into mulitplied playfields is very easy now. Left ramp / proton pack keeps you in Xplay almost indefinitely. However, the proton shot does introduce lateral movement which is dangerous. Also, some mode scoring has been nerfed, so IMHO modes are now just a means to get to MB. One specific "nerf" is the hurry-up on Spook Central. The timer now starts before the ball is released from the post. The best I've gotten is 13M from a one-timer slap shot.
MB - Positive...This is where my strategy will change most. Playing the right ladder made put WCWS the furthest away, the mode points made it worth it. Now that that's no the case anymore, I'm going to be playing Left Scoop / Left Ramp modes much more often. MB with Xplayfield will make big scores.
Rule Changes - Positive (except for one)...I'm not going into detail, but shot changes to StayPuft, spinner for Super Jackpots, limiting Scoleri qualifying, etc are all for the better. The one I don't like is the change to the Gozer mode. Switching the right orbit and right ramp shots definitely makes it easier. But coupling that with Terror Dog target change makes the right ramp virtually unnecessary for anything but PKE.
This is getting way too long, so I'm going to stop. I'd like to hear your new strategies. I'm thinking Librarian Ladder to WCWS MB early.