I've been a long time Stern Pinball fan myself... Still not done with them.
Stern had some hiccups with play fields. They have addressed the issue, and communicated to their distributors that they will take care of people affected by the issue... why all the useless drama!??? Some people act like they won't be happy until they see Gomez, and Gary crying on Anderson Cooper about how the company made terrible mistakes... seriously? What is it going to take? Stern admitted there was an issue, and put a plan in place to deal with it. I've moved on from that problem. I received my GBle, and started enjoying it immediately. If there had been a problem with my playfield, I had no fears whatsoever that my issues would be resolved. My distro cares about me as a good loyal customer, and Stern cares about me as a repeat buyer. They will NEVER make the type of statement people are claiming to require before they purchase another NIB Stern. Why would they??!! The number of people affected is small, and they are being dealt with. There is some imaginary concern for people who might have play field issues, but are unaware of the program because they're not hardcore pin nerds like us... really?? We're going to make a big stink in case people we don't know are having an issue that they are unaware of/don't care about?
Another commonly repeated phrase is "Prices are up, while quality is down"... it's said a lot, but I simply don't think it's true. I think the build quality of my Sterns is awesome. I have a few Gottleib's, some BWs too. I have a Spooky pin. I have a JJP.
The price and rollout of the new BM66 pin was a bit hard to take... I'll give you that one! I still ordered one, cause it's an absolute grail theme for me with Lyman on code, and Gomez stepping in to refine a BDK layout. I always enjoyed that machine, but never pulled the trigger. An improvement on that layout, with a better theme... I'm in!
Pinball is supposed to be fun. Stern has given me HANDS DOWN some of the best pinball experiences of all time...
HORDE Mode on my TWDpre might be the most spectacular and immersive pinball mode ever. It's a masterpiece.
Metallica's Crank it Up modes are SO FUN!!! Also, just the sheer fun and complexity of Met code. I NEVER tire of playing that game. It's the spirit of pinball in my opinion!
I HATED my ST for a LONG time. I was SO disappointed with where the code was stagnating... then an update changed everything. Amazing game. Truly fun to play. Everybody ragged on the star field projector, but Klingon Multiball is AWESOME. It's an incredibly hard mode, and super engaging. Sound and lights on that machine are incredible.
Not even getting in to LOTR, TRON, AC/DC etc etc etc etc.
I passed on WWE, KISS, and GOT, but BM66 has me super excited.
I have a Hobbit, and I'm interested to see more about Dialed In.
I think Spooky Pinball are amazing. AMH is one of my fav pins of all time.
One of my fav pins at expo this year was Scott Danesi's Total Annihilation.
There is no question I'm a hardcore Stern fan, but I'm also just a fan of pinball in general. I like it all!
I will continue to support Stern pinball moving forward because they make amazing games. It's that simple. I just don't care about all the drama, and speculation.
Happy flipping everybody.