(Topic ID: 272992)

I toured Multimorphic.

By hool10

1 year ago


Topic Heartbeat

Topic Stats

  • 11 posts
  • 9 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by Law
  • Topic is favorited by 4 Pinsiders

You

Linked Games

Topic Gallery

View topic image gallery

IMG_20200708_134821.jpg
IMG_20200708_134815.jpg
IMG_20200708_133254.jpg
IMG_20200708_131515.jpg
IMG_20200708_130352.jpg
IMG_20200708_125636.jpg
IMG_20200708_142211.jpg

15
#1 1 year ago

Hello folks! I recently toured Multimorphic on July 8th and I also played their new game "Heist". I'm not sure how many people have toured their facility compared to say Stern so this may be exciting for many of you. I have only toured JJP in the Summer of 2017 when they had "Dialed In!" on the line. Also a small disclosure but I record the panels and create content for the Pintastic Pinball and Game Room Expo. So if I shill anybody it's really everybody related to pinball or a home arcade setting haha.

Multimorphic is located in a business park in Round Rock, TX just north of Dallas, Texas. A bit of a technology related area with a Tesla dealership nearby, etc. In front of them is a church which I found weird in a business park. I'm from Boston and tried to do more outdoor activities on this trip (let the wind blow Covid-19 away) and ALWAYS wore a mask, etc. I'm extremely lucky Gerry let me inside and he wore a mask, socially distanced, their workers faced opposite of each other, etc. Certain places are a bit smarter than the rest of Texas (Austin has under 200 cases and no deaths in fact).

So Multimorphic is a small job shop about the size of the old Spooky Pinball building I was told.
IMG_20200708_142211.jpg

You walk past a lobby area where you can demo Heist and the front office into the shop. Instantly you can see shelving of inventory to build P3 systems. The place is library quiet with classical music playing in fact much like how my JJP tour was. There isn't anyone drilling playfields, hitting stuff with hammers, fans everywhere because the air conditioning can't keep up, etc. The P3 system doesn't use too many off the shelf parts and many are custom made and ordered in bulk. They work very closely with pinballlife in fact for parts.IMG_20200708_125636.jpg
You will notice a common theme with Multimorphic in that nearly everything Gerry and his team built or designed including the shop. Parts are picked from inventory, put into a kit and they adjust inventory numbers. The team at Multimorphic only consists of 3 assemblers, Gerry and his wife (I think it's his wife ). Anyways just like an ISO rated company you have a work procedure and a master example to work from. The P3 system uses a 1/4 of a pinball machine and the games the assemblers were making were cute. The smallest little playfield rotisseries about 2-3' big that didn't require you to lean over the game. Everybody just sat in a chair and assembled a game. The master is on the left while a new Heist playfield being assembled is on the right.IMG_20200708_130352.jpg
Everything including wiring harnesses are done by a 3rd party and Multimorphic inspects incoming inventory and puts into inventory. However some items are created at Multimorphic such as the flipper button area or various other items: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Ito573fg3EFCBLgVEnndjh2vYIhAeyLr/view?usp=sharing I found this fairly interesting because typically 3D printing is made for mock-up prototypes but 3D printing is rapidly becoming a massive industry with massive changes in how manufacturing is done. They use ABS plastic and other forms but ABS is used for things such as hard hats or LEGO bricks. However like the printer they use, you can buy this printer at around $2,500 which is a good mid-range 3D printer. More on my thoughts about this later. They receive cabinets and pre-assemble them by putting in an LCD display for the playfield, etc. That doesn't take too long and they just set them aside in an area of the shop. Most of the work is on those tiny playfield assemblies. Once a playfield is completed they have a test rig that they connect to and assure that everything is functioning correctly. The actual brains of a P3 system isn't hardware bound either. It's an off the shelf GPU, CPU, etc. The LCD playfield screen isn't custom but isn't consumer grade either.IMG_20200708_131515.jpg
So all the translites are stored in a drawer that weighs a ton practically. It uses a system of magnets to easily guide the drawers out because each drawer weighs a ton. This was pretty impressive but again it's Multimorphic so they can engineer anything.

Future stuff with Multimorphic is exciting to say the least and it's said a lot but it really is.IMG_20200708_133254.jpg Pinball games are starting to be connected to the internet and Multimorphic are the first ones to do it. As of right now Cosmic Cart Racing and Heads Up has this capability and it's to prove a concept which works. You can play against 2 different games connected through the internet. Various sensors on the game prevent cheating thankfully. Recently Multimorphic has added internet connectivity, bluetooth (when was the last time you used wired headphones or wired ear buds). The company philosophy is that as the P3 system progresses you will get these features at no additional cost but adds value to a P3 system. Forget the whole buying modular game thing and focus on the P3 system ITSELF. Global/local leaderboards, ranked play, and whatever will come in the future but Gerry is focused first on the actual pinball gameplay first and foremost. That other stuff will come and is fairly easy to put in but there are other bigger things to tackle first. It's coming though along with hardware changes in the P3 system itself whether it be software controlled or how it's physically controlled. The system uses 15 balls, the most out of any pinball game. Many are used to eject in various places on the playfield using an innovative trough system. Even the lighting system is leading class along with Scott Danesi games and inspired by a Raw Thrills game. You can control each LED independently I mean look at how many lights there are. The pieces of tape over certain LED's is to dictate that there are 10 LED's between each section or so: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1IpzCGzNdgp9j_3XnZFkqsrROtZ0ge9WH/view?usp=sharing

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1IeGaF-STKmyWGEPKVkBVszDxGkS_frE1/view?usp=sharing
There is so much more that Pin-Stadium, Multimorphic and others can do and I can't wait to see what the future holds.

So this brings me to the end of the tour and I get to finally play Heist. First off check out that epic artwork.IMG_20200708_134815.jpgIMG_20200708_134821.jpg
Ok so in the past I have played all their games including a 4 player head-2-head Cosmic Cart Racing setup at TPF last year. I wasn't too crazy about Lexy Lightspeed and the others were just ticket redemption style games. Cosmic Cart Racing however was pretty cool but it was sort of like Tetris 99 in which you play for 5min or so and the "race" ends. I was confused by 6 flipper buttons on a pinball machine. The LCD screen isn't real pinball and often the graphics moving about with ball smoke trail would make me lose track of the ball. I'm not really crazy about the games honestly however that all changed on this tour and playing Heist. Heist has MANY shots on that tiny little playfield. It's got a lot of bang for the buck. It's got backhandable ramps, sideshots, etc. It's got it all and the best part is I could keep track of the ball, they reduced the smoke trail and you can turn it off, and the rules were simple to understand but it all just worked. Just like AFM you shoot a member of your team 3 times and start their mission. Drain or fail a mission and they are put in prison where you break them out by shooting their shot or hitting the risky center shot. The crane felt like some game controlling arm that felt like an evolution of crane arms in games. It goes up and down, side to side, and magnetizes a ball to knock it off. LCD elements included falling cash floating downwards and if the ball "touches" them you collect points. I joked about collecting gold or TIE Fighters in other games. Gerry and I are not fans of the action button haha! Sometimes a SWAT van will come speeding across the top and you can try and take it out. The LCD screen and physical part of the game just work together like Pinball 2000 did without the disadvantages of the Pinball 2000 system. This folks, THIS game, Heist, is THE game that will change your mind on Multimorphic and the P3 system. I played 2 games before I headed out to Big Bend State Park in Texas but along the ride and following day I wanted to play it again. It wasn't like "yeah it was a typical fun Stern game and I'll play it again later at the bar". It was more of a "aww crap I really want to play it again and nobody has it around me" feeling.

Multimorphic isn't the biggest company and I think people like his wife do a considerable amount of work (she is a WOMP Mrs. Pin). They are like Dutch Pinball size or Spooky but more like Dutch. They are very small and can't get licenses but really they don't need licensed games. I asked Gerry if somebody wanted to buy just a P3 system but not a game but nobody has requested that as it's not much more to include a game. They are backlogged building P3 systems and are constantly selling P-ROC boards to your favorite manufacturers like American Pinball or Spooky. They are financially secure and are doing just fine during this pandemic. They really need people to buy games and put them at a public location. It often goes unnoticed but recently Gerry pointed out the test games at Dave and Busters earned a fortune. They were pulled but Dave and Busters liked them and Gerry said, and I'll do the pitch for him again, earned "the most he has ever seen for a pinball machine on location". This is a pinball machine in 2020 competing against a Raw Thrills Jurassic Park or those other games that actually earn money for an operator. What hurt sales wasn't the maintenance really but the better players constantly on the games ironically. The P3 system uses opto's and a special flipper assembly that customers haven't complained about and are rock solid. Opto's of course need to be cleaned of coil dust but that is normal. I would imagine the P3 system will tell an operator everything on a internet portal information about all their games like a Touch Tunes.

We have so many custom games being made like Sonic, Doom, to even Metroid. You have to source a donor cabinet first, become a member of a maker space, learn how to program a CAM router, etc. What if that was all done for you and your playfield is a 1/4 of a size and the rest is fluid assets as video on the playfield? Add to this everybody can play your game because it's based on a modular system as the P3 system. People haven't seen that yet and I don't know when people will realize this. Your average homebrew game costs more or about the same as a retail Stern. Everything about the P3 system that I saw I could make. 2" square aluminum tubing cut at a 45 degree angle on a saw for the ball trough. Their P-ROC boardset powered by retail computer parts. The software for coding uses UNITY and another piece of software I forgot the name of but I know UNITY is big and used everywhere like Oracle. 3D printed stuff a homebrew person has access to whether they own one or it's at the maker space. People really need to play Heist, see how a P3 system goes together, and if they are making a custom game ask themselves "maybe I could save money and possibly make money by selling my game on a P3 system". It's the ultimate homebrew pinball machine with support from Multimorphic themselves and the growing P3 community. Don't just flip it at an expo, look at the internals of a P3 system!

#2 1 year ago

Very cool, thanks for the walkthrough

14
#3 1 year ago

Thanks for posting, Derek. Was nice to meet you, and we're glad you walked away with a new appreciation for the P3, its games, and all of our efforts.

A few minor corrections:

- We're just north of Austin (not Dallas).

- (Ok, this one is a major correction) Our team is 14 people plus me and Sarah. Only 3 or 4 people work in the shop at once to maintain distancing. It takes a small army to do what we're doing, and everybody plays an important role. We all do wear a lot of different hats though.

- I think *you* mentioned Raw Thrills, not me. We love what Raw Thrills does, but our cabinet LED implementation is very different.

- We've chosen to not get licenses so far to keep game dev budgets small.

- We have a mix of plastic parts. Some are 3D printed, some are injection molded, some are machined from larger stock. Which process we use depends on the nature of the part and how it's being used.

... and not a correction but a strong reinforcement: You're absolutely right about the D&B machines. 2-player, linked HU was an enormous success compared to any pinball machine(s) I've ever seen on location before. Putting 2 P3s with Heads Up on location and running ladders and/or tournaments is an almost surefire way to make the P3s your highest earners on location. We're integrating internet functionality into Heads Up right now and will officially release the game when that's done. We'll happily include HU for free for anybody ordering two or more P3s together right now (note - HU requires the Cannon Lagoon playfield). We also have a Cannon Lagoon software update that implements full redemption / ticket dispensing. It's simple to load up either software and swap artwork to keep your lineup fresh. Then occasionally swap in Heist, Lexy, and Cosmic Cart Racing too!

I hope you had a nice trip and get back home safely!

- Gerry
https://www.multimorphic.com

#4 1 year ago

What a great write up! I am so psyched to join the P3 squad.

#5 1 year ago
Quoted from gstellenberg:

Thanks for posting, Derek. Was nice to meet you, and we're glad you walked away with a new appreciation for the P3, its games, and all of our efforts.
A few minor corrections:
- We're just north of Austin (not Dallas).
- (Ok, this one is a major correction) Our team is 14 people plus me and Sarah. Only 3 or 4 people work in the shop at once to maintain distancing. It takes a small army to do what we're doing, and everybody plays an important role. We all do wear a lot of different hats though.
- I think *you* mentioned Raw Thrills, not me. We love what Raw Thrills does, but our cabinet LED implementation is very different.
- We've chosen to not get licenses so far to keep game dev budgets small.
- We have a mix of plastic parts. Some are 3D printed, some are injection molded, some are machined from larger stock. Which process we use depends on the nature of the part and how it's being used.
... and not a correction but a strong reinforcement: You're absolutely right about the D&B machines. 2-player, linked HU was an enormous success compared to any pinball machine(s) I've ever seen on location before. Putting 2 P3s with Heads Up on location and running ladders and/or tournaments is an almost surefire way to make the P3s your highest earners on location. We're integrating internet functionality into Heads Up right now and will officially release the game when that's done. We'll happily include HU for free for anybody ordering two or more P3s together right now (note - HU requires the Cannon Lagoon playfield). We also have a Cannon Lagoon software update that implements full redemption / ticket dispensing. It's simple to load up either software and swap artwork to keep your lineup fresh. Then occasionally swap in Heist, Lexy, and Cosmic Cart Racing too!
I hope you had a nice trip and get back home safely!
- Gerry
https://www.multimorphic.com

Hi Gerry,

Yup I got home yesterday and went straight to Urgent Care to get tested for Covid-19 just in case (I have no symptoms thankfully). Sorry about the misunderstandings and thank you again for the tour!

#6 1 year ago

WTF Derek.... the plan was for you to quickly wheel that sweet Heist out of the lobby to bring back for IIA

#7 1 year ago

Looks like you played the Heist whitewood. Thanks for the tour!

#8 1 year ago

I love this and totally want a Heist. Great work Gerry and team!

#9 1 year ago

Heist really is the game that changes everything for P3. Need to get more units out on location!

#10 1 year ago
Quoted from Max_Badazz:

WTF Derek.... the plan was for you to quickly wheel that sweet Heist out of the lobby to bring back for IIA

I tried lol. Who knows maybe in the future when the pandemic is under control and Pintastic '21 is starting Multimophic can get you a deal on a system. I would buy one.

#11 1 year ago

Those red 3d prototype building prints are going to be the next "red prototype board, pretty sure this sample machine is worth an extra $2k" price police bait.

Hey there! Got a moment?

Great to see you're enjoying Pinside! Did you know Pinside is able to run thanks to donations from our visitors? Please donate to Pinside, support the site and get anext to your username to show for it! Donate to Pinside