I just picked this game up the other day with less than 70 plays on it. Unfortunately, my excitement quickly turned to frustration. Despite the fact that I am a relative novice when it comes to playing LOTR, it didn't take me long to realize that the ball is not travelling around the top of the playfield properly. It is my understanding that hard shots to the right orbit (as well as strong plunges) should send the ball all the way around the back, behind the castle, and then down the left side toward the flippers. This is not the case on my game. Fast moving balls slam right into the castle almost every time.
Upon examining the game, it appears that the upper right steel ball guide is angled too low. The ball is coming off it and being propelled into the tower, instead of behind it. I’m assuming the metal should be more evenly lined up with the turquoise lines on the playfield (see photo). I also assume that it is supposed to be completely under the plastic, not sticking out like that. I’m guessing the ball guide was improperly formed at the factory (gotta love Stern's quality control).
Can anyone with a LOTR confirm that I am correct in my assessment of the problem? Assuming I am, do you have any recommendations on how to fix the issue? Is it as simple as re-bending the ball guide? Also, I'd love to see a photo of someone else's game taken from the same angle showing what this are of the playfield is supposed to look like.
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