(Topic ID: 214446)

Houdini, how is it selling and/or earning?


By vdojaq

1 year ago



Topic Stats

  • 53 posts
  • 31 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by pinmike
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#1 1 year ago

Interested to hear how this game is selling or if anyone has one on location and how is it earning.

Jack

#2 1 year ago

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/for-sale-houdini-11

this location one is for sale now after 45 days

#3 1 year ago

I've seen it on location, and judging by the time it was unoccupied versus other machines, I have to conclude earning poorly...

#4 1 year ago

Just played it at Sunshine this past weekend. Had the place to myself for a solid hour. I agree with the pyramid scheme ad, it's far to difficult for a location game. I could see it being really enjoyable at home, but I had no desire to keep feeding it $1, especially with DI right next to it.

#5 1 year ago

Love the game, I have number 150 so they have sold at least that many, but I agree that it might be too difficult for $1.00 per play on location.

#6 1 year ago

shots are way to tight. average player won't like it.

#7 1 year ago

One I played on location has catapult that missed every time and the ball seemed to bounce out of the main mode start shot a lot of the time. On the other hand it's only $.50 per play. I agree it's probably too hard for casual players though.

#8 1 year ago

I played one at Marvin's muesem....Really nice and cool game to enjoy...It gives you the Williams/Bally feel and from the way i see it it's getting more and more popular

#9 1 year ago

$1.00 per play seems like a lot, 2 locations out my way have them set as $0.50 and they are fairly well occupied. The game is definitely hard, and does take time to learn the shots. After you’ve learned which ones to hit gently and which ones to backhand, etc it becomes a lot less “too tight”

15
#10 1 year ago
Quoted from Rdoyle1978:

$1.00 per play seems like a lot, 2 locations out my way have them set as $0.50 and they are fairly well occupied. The game is definitely hard, and does take time to learn the shots. After you’ve learned which ones to hit gently and which ones to backhand, etc it becomes a lot less “too tight”

50 cents seems too cheap. That pricing is 20-30 years old. It's a $7k pin.

#11 1 year ago
Quoted from Rdoyle1978:

The game is definitely hard,

Yes it is a hard game and it gives you a challenge,Fifty cents or a dollar to play is really worth playing...Solid game

#12 1 year ago
Quoted from NorCalRealtor:

50 cents seems too cheap. That pricing is 20-30 years old. It's a $7k pin.

I agree, but it's hard for non-players so I think this help draw in the uninitiated

#13 1 year ago

1000 plays in 6 weeks... so a bit over 150 / week.
And if I recall correctly pyramid scheme does EB's and not replays...

So... is $150/week good or bad? That's payback in <1 year... but I'd guess most want it in 3-6 months?

#14 1 year ago
Quoted from tiesmasc:

1000 plays in 6 weeks... so a bit over 150 / week.
And if I recall correctly pyramid scheme does EB's and not replays...
So... is $150/week good or bad? That's payback in <1 year... but I'd guess most want it in 3-6 months?

yeah, we also dont see if the plays have dropped down dramatically, anytime a new pin enters a location it most likely gets more attention. if say of those 1000 plays 700 where in the first two weeks, then yeah, time to jump ship. doubt it was an even amount of play over 6 weeks. if you see that it is not staying a good earner, time to jump ship

#15 1 year ago
Quoted from tiesmasc:

1000 plays in 6 weeks... so a bit over 150 / week.
And if I recall correctly pyramid scheme does EB's and not replays...
So... is $150/week good or bad? That's payback in <1 year... but I'd guess most want it in 3-6 months?

Would be good to hear from some ops - I am pretty sure 1 year is a fairly good return turnaround

#16 1 year ago
Quoted from Rdoyle1978:

Would be good to hear from some ops - I am pretty sure 1 year is a fairly good return turnaround

Depends if they are splitting coin drop with the location or not.

I was expecting more from the game. It looks so cool in pictures but just seems plasticky in person. I do love the way they integrated the screen into the backbox art. They did an awesome job there, plus I like the size of the LCD compared to the oversize screen on the JJP games.

#17 1 year ago

Someone posted that Dan Rather reported '70s era story about pinball and one operator in the video reported that each of his machines made $1500 a year I think. I assume that it was 25 cents a play back then so that's 6000 plays in a year per machine? He did say he had like 300 machines though if I recall correctly. So 1000 plays in 6 weeks for Houdini seems pretty good I think.

#18 1 year ago
Quoted from tiesmasc:

1000 plays in 6 weeks... so a bit over 150 / week.
And if I recall correctly pyramid scheme does EB's and not replays...
So... is $150/week good or bad? That's payback in <1 year... but I'd guess most want it in 3-6 months?

Not even close. First give 1/2 away for the split with the location owner. Then factor in that earnings for a brand new pin during the first 60 days are not indicative of future earnings. New pins get played because they're new and then earnings drop significantly. And depending on the location they may only be charging 75 or 50 cents, or may lower the price to that once the newness wears off. Full payoff takes years, if ever. Also helps to have multiple locations so you relocate a pin when it gets stale.

I have been operating for 2-3 years. Single location only. Keeping it at a hobby level as it's not my real job.

I think many are putting pins on location for love of the hobby because in most cases there's not a lot of money in it.

#19 1 year ago
Quoted from John_I:

plus I like the size of the LCD compared to the oversize screen on the JJP games

+1

#20 1 year ago
Quoted from John_I:

Depends if they are splitting coin drop with the location or not.
I was expecting more from the game. It looks so cool in pictures but just seems plasticky in person. I do love the way they integrated the screen into the backbox art. They did an awesome job there, plus I like the size of the LCD compared to the oversize screen on the JJP games.

Interesting, surprising take about the look of the game. I thought the opposite - it looked FAR better in person. Maybe different lighting?

#21 1 year ago
Quoted from KozMckPinball:

Someone posted that Dan Rather reported '70s era story about pinball and one operator in the video reported that each of his machines made $1500 a year I think. I assume that it was 25 cents a play back then so that's 6000 plays in a year per machine? He did say he had like 300 machines though if I recall correctly. So 1000 plays in 6 weeks for Houdini seems pretty good I think.

Oh Yeah,Back in the golden age of Pins and arcades operators were making money hand over fist.My father's friend had an arcade back in them days and he made a ton of money and hoping it would never die out.

#22 1 year ago
Quoted from pinmike:

Oh Yeah,Back in the golden age of Pins and arcades operators were making money hand over fist.My father's friend had an arcade back in them days and he made a ton of money and hoping it would never die out.

I've heard stories from old ops from the heyday. I was told you can expect about 1/4 today of what you could back then. Must have been nice.

#23 1 year ago
Quoted from NorCalRealtor:

I've heard stories from old ops from the heyday. I was told you can expect about 1/4 today of what you could back then. Must have been nice.

Yes it was a really great time for operators and arcade owners..Both were racking in the dough,The river of cash or coins i should say..Hehe!!

#24 1 year ago
Quoted from NorCalRealtor:

I've heard stories from old ops from the heyday. I was told you can expect about 1/4 today of what you could back then. Must have been nice.

it was, cause we could smoke whilst we played; damn we didn't now how well we had it.

#25 1 year ago
Quoted from TheLaw:

it was, cause we could smoke whilst we played; damn we didn't now how well we had it.

Ahhh,If i only had 3 wishes that would be one of them..

#26 1 year ago
Quoted from tiesmasc:

1000 plays in 6 weeks... so a bit over 150 / week.
And if I recall correctly pyramid scheme does EB's and not replays...
So... is $150/week good or bad? That's payback in <1 year... but I'd guess most want it in 3-6 months?

Those are total plays, not paid plays. Total plays can include operator testing, free play for an event, owner playing the game for fun, it could be anything. Suffice to say that if the operator was grossing $150/week he wouldn't be selling the pin. So whatever the amount of gross earnings, the operator must believe something else will do more $$ in the same spot.

#27 1 year ago
Quoted from BrianBannon:

Those are total plays, not paid plays. Total plays can include operator testing, free play for an event, owner playing the game for fun, it could be anything. Suffice to say that if the operator was grossing $150/week he wouldn't be selling the pin. So whatever the amount of gross earnings, the operator must believe something else will do more $$ in the same spot.

There is a point where I feel like I'm ripping people off. If someone puts money in a game and it's over 20 seconds later, they can get turned off to pinball in general. And yes, probably 20% of the 1000 are test games.

#28 1 year ago

I've been operating pins for 13 years. I get excited when i pay off a new Stern pro in 4 or 5 years instead of 8 or 9. It hurts when an early solid state Bally or Stern earns the same as the new Stern.

-1
#29 1 year ago
Quoted from BrianBannon:

Those are total plays, not paid plays. Total plays can include operator testing, free play for an event, owner playing the game for fun, it could be anything. Suffice to say that if the operator was grossing $150/week he wouldn't be selling the pin. So whatever the amount of gross earnings, the operator must believe something else will do more $$ in the same spot.

Yeah, $150 a week pays that game off in a year. Not great, but not terrible.

#30 1 year ago
Quoted from pyramidschemebar:

There is a point where I feel like I'm ripping people off. If someone puts money in a game and it's over 20 seconds later, they can get turned off to pinball in general.

This is how I felt when I first played Star Wars. At $1 a play, some of the games would be over in a minute or two. Would only play a few games before moving on to something else.

#31 1 year ago
Quoted from NorCalRealtor:

I've heard stories from old ops from the heyday. I was told you can expect about 1/4 today of what you could back then. Must have been nice.

Not to mention the games cost a heck of a lot less.

LTG : )

#32 1 year ago
Quoted from LTG:

Not to mention the games cost a heck of a lot less.
LTG : )

Yes Sir!! it was a win-win for everyone

#33 1 year ago
Quoted from Jgel:

This is how I felt when I first played Star Wars. At $1 a play, some of the games would be over in a minute or two. Would only play a few games before moving on to something else.

This is exactly why I became a home owner. I really hate how some people have hardened the games to a point that it is worse than a claw machine.

#34 1 year ago
Quoted from zh2oson:

Yeah, $150 a week pays that game off in a year. Not great, but not terrible.

I'm not an operator, but from everything I've read on Pinside, paying any new game off in a year would be incredible.

#35 1 year ago

I would be a buyer but this guy is asking nearly full retail for a used machine that also isn’t huo.

#36 1 year ago
Quoted from kms_pinball:

I've been operating pins for 13 years. I get excited when i pay off a new Stern pro in 4 or 5 years instead of 8 or 9. It hurts when an early solid state Bally or Stern earns the same as the new Stern.

I have a nice, refurbished High Speed that is earning like a nice DMD. Going to add a Taxi soon. I would operate Whirlwind as well.

Star Wars is crushing everything though, as did GB, as will IMDN.

#37 1 year ago
Quoted from NorCalRealtor:

50 cents seems too cheap. That pricing is 20-30 years old. It's a $7k pin.

Non collectors don't care what the operator paid for the machine. They just want to play a game while they're there.

#38 1 year ago

I recently watched several non collectors happily feed dollars into slight premium priced SW machine and get slapped around on short ball times.
They were laughing and having a great time -witnessed no complaints at all.
One said “cheaper than Starbucks, right?”

Imagine navigating titles as an op can be a bit tricky but new or old, location pinball is still incredibly cheap form of entertainment. Big fan.

14
#39 1 year ago
Quoted from Vino:

They were laughing and having a great time -witnessed no complaints at all.
One said “cheaper than Starbucks, right?”

Yeah, I always laugh when guys on here say $1 is too much for a game on location. The games cost $6000 or more, let alone the power or maintenance on top.

Then the same guys will pay $10 for a craft beer which cost 50c to make, and not think twice about it.

Crazy.

rd

-7
#40 1 year ago

Houdini is an unbalanced turd of a pinball machine that is too difficult for your average pinball players who loose interest quickly. They failed to make a challenging pinball machine for the veteran pinball player but appealing and easy enough for the beginner. It's a difficult task but failure to do so can spell D-O-O-M for any pinball company especially someone new like American Pinball. Farewell American Pinball....we barely knew ya!

#41 1 year ago
Quoted from rotordave:

Yeah, I always laugh when guys on here say $1 is too much for a game on location. The games cost $6000 or more, let alone the power or maintenance on top.
Then the same guys will pay $10 for a craft beer which cost 50c to make, and not think twice about it.
Crazy.
rd

Maybe 50 cents to make but $7 in taxes to serve the beer lol

#42 1 year ago
Quoted from PinballBulbs:

Maybe 50 cents to make but $7 in taxes to serve the beer lol

Yes, there is that ....

rd

#43 1 year ago

If anyone wants to play Houdini for free its had Headquarters in Rivernorth.

The game has tough shots and can beat you up pretty quick. The game is very nice looking and has held up for me very well on location.

#44 1 year ago
Quoted from Chicoman:

Houdini is an unbalanced turd of a pinball machine that is too difficult for your average pinball players who loose interest quickly. They failed to make a challenging pinball machine for the veteran pinball player but appealing and easy enough for the beginner. It's a difficult task but failure to do so can spell D-O-O-M for any pinball company especially someone new like American Pinball. Farewell American Pinball....we barely knew ya!

I disagree(That's just me),I played Houdini and yes it was a challenge and game was solid all the way around..2 Thumbs up for American Pinball and I hope they will be around for many many years to come making and building Pins that we all truly Love and Cherish....

-1
#45 1 year ago
Quoted from Chicoman:

Houdini is an unbalanced turd of a pinball machine that is too difficult for your average pinball players who loose interest quickly. They failed to make a challenging pinball machine for the veteran pinball player but appealing and easy enough for the beginner.

Agreed. It's beautiful but Houdini gets in its own way. It''ll go down in the anals of history.

#46 1 year ago
Quoted from NorCalRealtor:

Not even close. First give 1/2 away for the split with the location owner.

If you're giving away half the income for a 7000-9000 pin to the location in 2018, you're probably doing it wrong, unless it's a mega-hot location with non-stop play. Most ops have moved on from 50-50, especially the ones supplying new pins. The ones with old and or busted pins can afford 50 cents and a 50/50 split.

#47 1 year ago
Quoted from pyramidschemebar:

There is a point where I feel like I'm ripping people off. If someone puts money in a game and it's over 20 seconds later, they can get turned off to pinball in general. And yes, probably 20% of the 1000 are test games.

I turn up ball save and turn tilt sensitivity way down to give n00bs a feeling of value for their money, even on harder games. But Ghostbusters Prem is frustratingly hard for n00bs, but they keep feeding it dollars non-stop, so they must feel okay about what they're getting out of it. I think Houdini is more value for the money than Ghostbusters, but people like themes they know.

#48 1 year ago
Quoted from Ilushka85:

I would be a buyer but this guy is asking nearly full retail for a used machine that also isn’t huo.

You're paying a small premium for a pin you can't buy anywhere else with a long line of people waiting for theirs.

#49 1 year ago
Quoted from vireland:

If you're giving away half the income for a 7000-9000 pin to the location in 2018, you're probably doing it wrong, unless it's a mega-hot location with non-stop play. Most ops have moved on from 50-50, especially the ones supplying new pins. The ones with old and or busted pins can afford 50 cents and a 50/50 split.

Without going into detail, this location provides added value for me that I think justifies the split.

I agree with you on making adjustments to increase enjoyment for kids and beginners. We do 15 second ball saves.

#50 1 year ago
Quoted from NorCalRealtor:

Without going into detail, this location provides added value for me that I think justifies the split.

So what you’re saying is you’re routing pins at a strip club?

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