Quoted from Black_Knight:
You are right there are better tools today, but the rules are more complex, LED lighting is more complicated, and display integration is better.
Net net, it takes significantly more effort to deliver the software today than it did in Williams' time.
Uh, you think it takes more time to clip videos than to animate things with dots? The LCD simplifies that process a lot. And rules are deeper on some games, not all. B/W developers had to deal with more archaic audio systems, smaller storage space, lower bandwidth hardware, and lots of challenges that have been solved with improving technology. It was harder back then than it is now.
At some point you have to be honest though. Stern isn't even trying to do anything unique here. This is a legit recycling of code and just changing the name of things.
VIP - Hadron
Crank it Up - Upgrade
Choose Your Track - Choose Your Mission
You qualify multiballs the same basic way
Playfield multipliers function the same basic way
Templates are great for marketing and sales reports. For pinball? Eh, that's weak. Pace of release is an excuse, not a reason. What we end up with games that play just fine, but they're ultimately disposable. I guess that's fine if you're a location player, but it's not the best for building a collection around.
That's all I really have to say on that. Keep making excuses for Stern and giving them a pass though. That will make them REALLY start to push themselves and get creative.