I just caught up on the past 4 weeks of this thread, holy cow.
Early in my career, I used to fall into the trap of wanting these big reveal moments. I'll admit, it's hard not to, and I still do it every once in a while.
"We can demo the software in 2 months, let us get some of these other things fixed first....."
I came to learn that people only like the suspense/reveal routine at magic shows, not in business. I'm not saying every prototype along the way has to be shown, but I don't ever recall being told "I wish you would update us less".
Quoted from rai:
I bet John is taking a very small salary. There just isn't enough money in the pool to to towards a substantial salary. His payout is ownership of the company.
Most people starting a company will sacrifice their own capital and not take salary or take minimal salary to get their company off the ground.
Rule #1, pay yourself first.
Quoted from Aurich:
I dunno about the "million lines of ink"
Since I'm an art moron, I'd like to use this chance to say I didn't understand what he meant, lol.
Does he mean that there are 1 million individual lines in his vector art? Is that insane? Seems to me that wouldn't be a good metric. It's like saying "Look how good my code is, there are a million lines."
Quoted from TigerLaw:
I think it is totally dead. No start up company will ever be able to generate sizable paid up deposits for any title again (at least over the next few years). JJP may be able to mine those individuals who completed two pre orders for WOZ and Hobbit in the past but even that number likely falls with each release and each delay.
Unfortunately, I agree. Several pinball startup asshats ruined it for a lot of people.
Quoted from rai:
As I see it, John may actually deliver, but it's unnecessary for him to collect 4+ years in advance of production. Lots of this stuff could have been fermenting in the background for 2-3 years and he should have been starting to collect money about now imo.
I'm not just blaming Jpop, or even factoring in if the manufacturers even deliver.
Just off the top of my head, companies that took money and missed delivery timelines:
Not that I'm intending to start a pinball company with Spaceballs, but even if I was, there's no way I could do a Kickstarter style model in the current environment. It's been completely botched.
There is no possible way that MG, RAZA, or AIW will be so much better than the newer Sterns that you could even compare the difference between them to the difference between a rolls and a Toyota.
Quoted from RobT:
I understand completely. Just not sure if he does. I just don't understand where the "investors" thing came from? Is this something new? What kind of investors is he talking about? Bank loan? Equity partners? Is the project in jeopardy if he is not successful in getting investors on board?
It's an interesting choice of words for sure. If he wants to woo investors for future machines, I would imagine they would want to see the current games successfully shipped before investing any money.
If he wants them to invest in the current projects, what is there to invest in? With no more machines to sell in the limited run, the possible returns would be well documented assuming the associated timeline is met. I wonder what his burn rate is?
Quoted from frolic:
What does this mean, is that game not capable of playing with a real pinball?
If you look, the rings aren't pushed upward, they are laying on the playfield. It just means the spring hasn't been installed underneath, or the yoke isn't connected. Srmonte is saying his guess is that there isn't even a coil bracket underneath.
We are having mexican take out, combo #1 son. You guys are 3 photos of food closer to having completed games.
*Not a photo of our actual meal, just a representative sample of the #1 combo at 90% of mexican restaurants I've been to (2 enchiladas, rice or beans, taco).
No wonder he can't get anything done. He has a bunch of people calling on the phone for hours and stopping by his workshop for days.
So, I have an idea.
Let's get me, the FAST guys, Aurich, and some others and let's create the first professional services group for pinball.
Wow, good luck finding a programmer.
He would be better off trolling college recruiters for someone that doesn't know any better and will take a $45k job right out of college.
It doesn't look like a spinning disk.
It looks like a poorly balanced magnet attached to a motor (think shaker motor with magnet instead of weight). He even changes the speed of the motor to change the effect.
Quoted from frolic:
I just don't see it making the big splash it would have made 2 years ago. Jpop sure was envious of Lebowski last year, he wants that kind of attention for himself, but missed the boat.
The pinball hype train in general was going at full steam then too, he would have blown people's minds with a flipping game. That's what a real rockstar would have done.
Quoted from frolic:
So I don't personally see how legal proceedings will help anything other than permanently kill it and create some theater for the spectators of this thread. But it won't recover any money.
The key is we do not send him any more good money after bad. He's going to have to figure out a way to finance the completion of the games that doesn't include more money from us, he's lost that privilege.
The key to all of this is going to be control. Ice was starting to get a foot in the door, but appears he has been shut out. Until you get JPop to relinquish some control of the project, especially the timeline, I don't know how far you will get.
If you guys want games, you all need to band together and take control of the project away from JPop forcefully.
That's the only way I see this being successful. You need to have a "board of directors" that manages all aspects of the project, and you need to treat JPop like an employee.
I had thought Ice was well on the way to that, but it sounds like he is being cock-blocked by JPop once again.
Quoted from Mocean:
Until we, as a pinball programming community, start working together and stop being down on whatever the next/last guy/gal is doing, we're all cursed to be working in little independent little circles and should be resigned to being pretty much being useless as replacements for the next/last guy. Certainly this problem isn't unique to pinball, but we really should all work together and rally around /something/.
Sorry if this sentiment is out of place here.
I agree, but I don't know that it would be successful. We all have different ideas of what an appropriate architecture would look like even down to what language should be used. I personally think python isn't a great language, and would pretty much do anything to avoid it. I've been REALLY spoiled by .NET.
The hardware isn't exactly open either. For me to be involved in a project like this it would take unhindered access to both the hardware and the software. The designs for both would have to be released under a GPL license, unless I'm getting paid. Barring a world where all the different hardware builders come together and decide on a common board-to-board protocol or something, I don't see everyone aligning their egos to one hardware platform.
I'd like to help current platforms become stronger options, but I also don't put up with politics and ego on a project I'm not getting paid for. Just my 2 cents.
Quoted from rosh:
Not sure how you define 'beautiful', I've not been using python that long, but I think the indentation as a requirement in order for code to properly work has huge benefits in insuring readability, so not sure how you can say annoying/ugly when it gets messed up, other then yes, your code won't run correctly it it is not indented correctly. It also keeps the code less cluttered and easier to read, imo, since you don't have a million braces all over the place.
The spacing doesn't bother me so much, but just for reference, all code written in Visual Studio is auto-aligned to be properly indented, even if it's not required by the language. I don't see indention as a feature of a language, it's more of a proper programming methodology.
Quoted from rosh:
I can't real comment on .net, I've spent the last 15+ years working at start-up companies that all have used open source technologies, so the typical LAMP stack.
I use several technology stacks regularly, including LAMP. They all have pros and cons. As far as coding environments/IDEs go though, Visual Studio just lays shame to any other option out there. Don't get confused by the name, it has nothing to do with visual drag and drop to design interfaces. Technically you could use VS for developing python, which I would recommend trying.
I've mentioned this before, but I used to be a open source purist. I developed in text editors, had make files, and thought Microsoft was evil. There are very few languages I can't code in. I can even still do assembly (with a good lookup, lol). I firmly believe that almost no amount of man hours devoted to open source can make up for the money/effort that MSFT has put into .NET/VS.
I don't want to derail the JPop thread with a debate on python vs other languages, but I think python isn't the best choice for pinball programming. I'd be willing to debate it in another thread devoted to that if anyone wants to.
Quoted from frolic:
Is there a Law for Seinfeld references? This one doesn't quite apply.
Yeah, I know it's the soup nazi and not real nazis, but I thought it was funny.
Godwin's Law says "As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1"
I'm sorry, but this whole thing is stupid. The Jpop projects should die at this point. Even if he produced games, I would never want one because of all of the drama that surrounded it. Especially with Kaneda being involved. Even if he is working for free, his PR ideas are some of the worst I've ever heard.
Exactly what you guys need is another guy who doesn't understand business to piss away more of the owner's money.
It should also really bother you that JPop is seemingly working with multiple people secretly, but doesn't tell them about each other. Why?
Seriously that PDF is laughable. The game pops up at different locations for a few hours at a time? Kaneda has tried to float that idea several times already, saying that's how he would have done Wrestlemania, etc...
It's wrong and it won't work.
Kaneda PMd me to tell me that insulting his professional life was bad, and I challenged him to prove me wrong by revealing his Zidware plan that would blow me away. Anything he is taking personal credit for was obviously the work of a team of individuals and he doesn't want to share credit.
Can you imagine if a car dealer let you preorder a car 4 years ago, missed deadlines constantly and told you that you couldn't get your money back? Then their PR guy told you today it wouldn't be ready until 2017, as a JOKE?
No, you can't imagine that, because it's unbelievably stupid.
I've done a lot of scoping for code, and couldn't put a number on it without seeing some kind of scope/functional spec.
Lots of variables in the pricing, just a few are:
- What does the API for the hardware look like? Is it written yet?
- Are all the game rules and logic mapped out yet? (And not just in JPops head)
- Are all the art assets complete?
That said, my guess is:
Don't do that man. I'd rather work with you and build any pinball game you want, for free if you pay for everything, than see you throw money down a black hole.
I can do the engineering, we could get FAST involved for the hardware and code, and maybe even convince Aurich to do the art.
I just don't want to see anyone lose more money.
Spent 6 hours in the car with 2 other Pinsiders today. Skit-B and JPop definitely occupied some of the conversation.
I really hope you guys get money or games from JPop. Another Skit-B ending would be great harm.
Wow. Best of luck to you guys.
Instead of going after JPop, you should clearly go after pinside instead. After all, he believes anyone with a negative opinion of JPop and Zidware is liable for this whole disaster.
"Not my fault" is basically the same line that Skit-B hangs on to.
Anyone who has actually worked a hard 7x14 knows that it's not sustainable. That's 98 hours of work a week. That's two full time jobs and a part-time job.
I refuse to believe he has done 100 hours of work a week for the past several years.
Just do the math: 100 hours a week x 52 weeks a year x 5 years = 26,000 hours of work. He just stated that he can't get a single pinball machine done with 26,000 hours of work. Wow.
I just don't get how he doesn't feel responsible for the money he is holding.
I would be emotionally and mentally wrecked if I had that much of someone else's money and wasn't delivering on my promises. I would probably be calling those people constantly to apologize and ask for help.
You can't have more of a perfect situation than he has had. He had enough money, time, and space to blow people away. It's so frustrating for someone like me where the thing holding me back on Spaceballs is money. Time is a restriction too, but I'm also not doing it as a full time job or to make money.
As a full disclaimer, this is for my fictional company pronounced Z-Eye'd-Ware. A futuristic glasses manufacturer. Notice our clever use of i in our URL to replace "Eye", as in eye glasses.
Just want to make sure I don't get sued.
Quoted from zombieyeti:
I won't disagree with you at all. I do hope for the best - but am preparing for the worst I suppose.
I do want to say that popping in here (or jpopping in? too soon?) has lifted my spirits. I've been working on the pinball stuff for years with no way to show or get real feedback until recently. It makes me smile to hear so many people appreciate the effort I've put into it. It means a LOT! Thanks everyone - you've got a rad community here!
If you have the time, you should hang out and start posting in some other threads too.
I share everyone's sentiment that your art is really great.
Quoted from frolic:
I'm sure we'll see zombieyeti's work on pinball some day. He's super talented, and he has a desire to work pinball, so something will come together. May not be tomorrow or next year but I'm sure an opportunity will pop up.
I eventually would love to do a community-built machine. I'd like to lead a project here on Pinside where everyone who wants to contribute does so, and we all collectively decide on theme, toys, shots, etc....
I'm not going to take that on while Spaceballs is in development though, so it's going to be a while. If someone else wanted to run it, I wouldn't mind that either.
Quoted from Sjsilver:
I seriously could not think of a worse experience than expanding the concept of "Design by Committee" to an entire internet forum. I'd sooner drag my scrote through 6 miles of glass, but good luck to you if you are serious about it. You'll need it!
I enjoy challenges like that and I'm fairly competent at sifting through internet trolls and bs.
Who knows when I will actually get around to it though, it's just a pipe dream at this point. My boards for Spaceballs will be here in 2 weeks at most, then it's heads down on that for a while.
He also got a badass workshop out of it. I would give my left nut for a giant workshop with awesome tools. I guess I'm just not willing to steal from people to get it.
Quoted from fastpinball:
We even offered to take care of his vacuum form ramp needs. Dammit. Why do I keep reading this thread? It's so frustrating to imagine how different this whole JPOP situation would be if he had sent us a playfield months ago. Sure, there would still be work to do but there would have been some significant progress on MG while he worked on RAZA.
Don't look at it as a missed opportunity. You dodged a bullet, plain and simple.
I wouldn't wish the "privilege" of trying to save JPop on my worst enemy.
Quoted from vid1900:
You could always hire a Crow to break in, copy the hard drives and swap the router on the way out for ~$800.
-I'm not suggesting anyone do this -
Or just sit in a car nearby, work a little wireless magic, take what you want, and drive away.
I'm also not suggesting anyone do this.
Quoted from toyotaboy:
John doesn't allow photography in his studio, and he won't let the public take photos of his backglasses at expo. Either he's hard wired to the internet, or if he is wireless he has 64-bit encryption installed on his router.
I didn't say a grandma with an iPad would be able to do it.
Looks like he pulled the "wipe my posts and go home" routine, which is a shame, he was a good guy.
Quoted from benheck:
All other problem aside, software is the deal-breaker in this scenario. Even assuming final hardware, you're talking 80k for a programmer to spend a year making a game people want to play. TIMES THREE GAMES. (and that's not even considering art / sound / dots)
Grunt programmers that can only follow instructions cost $80k + benefits. Real architects/developers cost quite a bit more. I think John would need to lay out around $130k + benefits to get someone that could handle both the SDLC management and the actual coding.
I love the "No second tries here" line.
That's definitely something said by someone that has never engineered anything to production.
Over the years I've learned the best thing I can do for a project is to fail a lot. Why does he think rapid prototyping is so popular? If you can reduce the time required per test/dev cycle, the entire thing gets more efficient.
IMO, one of the best ways to waste time and money is to try and make the first time perfect.
From the sidelines, I certainly feel bad for StevenP. I don't know if he is being fooled or what, but I get this horrible feeling JPop is using him to buy more time, because JPop has convinced himself that the whole thing can be salvaged if he just had more time.
I do believe JPop wants to "make it right", but I also believe that StevenP is helping to perpetuate the notion that this can all be saved, even if he believes it can be.
If you have money in this and you think it can still be saved, more power to you, but I wouldn't personally be staying in on this.
Quoted from chessiv:
Well, everyone who buys pinball machines. Potential failures like this impact the hobby in general.
To be clear about my own personal motivation, I think the hobby will always be fine. I'm posting because I get riled up over pieces of crap pissing people's money away and want to help end it.
Quoted from RobT:
Looks like the plaintiff is a Pinsider that goes by ZNET:
You JUST beat me to it.
Quoted from nintendo:
What is this? Just an official complaint with Cook County? I see at the bottom that it says: "This data is not an official record of the Court or the Clerk and may not be represented as an official court record." So this is just a heads-up complaint and John needs to refund asap before sh*t hits the fan?
That's just a disclaimer that if their online system shows erroneous data, it's not their fault and shouldn't be used as an "official" record.
The data is on lexisnexis, which is like a big aggregator for legal data. It's pretty accurate, but it's still data pulled from another source, so there is a potential for error/outdated data.
Omg. Nobody should agree to the 4 year "no sue" period. Time for all of you to file lawsuits, do not buy into this sham.
JPop is a complete loser. I'm sorry for you guys that are getting fucked by email. He doesn't even have the decency to talk to you guys.
If StevenP was as smart as a person as he seems to be, this would be the appropriate point for him to walk away from JPop forever.
This is nothing more than a shady-as-fuck tactic. DO NOT SIGN the agreement. JPop has admitted they are 2 years away from manufacture on MG, after previously lying about it.
Go after your money in a court of law, fuck JPop. Every man for himself at this point.
IANAL, but what is the statute of limitations for the type of crime JPop has committed, would the 4 year window push it past that if someone paid their money 3 years ago?
Again, I am not a lawyer, but I would not sign that document!!!!
Quoted from zombieyeti:
I'm not privy to any insight here - but I THINK the idea would be by getting a buy in for MG then production can start yesterday, whereas spreading the resources on 3 machines out of the gate would be suicide (as we've seen). Again - i have no knowledge on these decisions - just drawing my own conclusion.
Except the letter says that production on MG is at least 2 years away.
Yeti, you seem like an awesome dude with a lot of talent. Don't let JPop bring you down with the ship. You'd be best served to not stick your neck out for JPop even if you end up being right.
Someone will pay you for pinball work. Hell, I'd be willing to at some point. If you ruin your rep though by backing a losing horse, that's going to be a lot harder.
Quoted from zombieyeti:
I appreciate that - That's been my fear on this whole ride. I'm soooo with you on that - if this arrangement meant I was still under Zidware/Jpop I'd run for the hills. At the end of the day I try to align myself with earnest people who want to make stuff for the right reasons (ie buyers) & creators who think beyond - so this has been a nightmare in my eyes.
And at the risk of pissing any goodwill i have out the window - I will say I do honestly think John NEVER intended to screw anyone over - he's just an idiot - and he knows it.
I don't anyone thinks JPop did it on purpose. The failure is when he started lying about it and trying to cover it up to save his own ass.
Make us some cool as prints of some unique pinball style artwork. I'll gladly purchase one and frame it in my gameroom.
Quoted from applejuice:
John actually sent me an email once telling me to stop sending invoice reminders as it was "annoying him" ...
This is all you guys should have to know to know that continuing in any relationship with JPop and Zidware is toxic and a huge risk that isn't worth staying in.
You know the money is gone. There is no money to be made, even if the licensee completes their plan.
It's my personal opinion that anyone that wants to get anything (even if that's just the satisfaction of making his life hell) should either pay him a visit or file a lawsuit. This new scheme is a hail mary for a dead company.
Ice, I think you might be a little off your rocker now or something.
There is no option B where people get their games. I know you think this licensee will come in and foot the bill to finish this, and maybe that works for 6 months.
Zidware is going to have to file bankruptcy anyway to get out of the debts they have, both to vendors and consumers. This new company will claim they owe nothing to the previous customers and JPop doesn't even get a smack on the wrist.
This man STOLE your money, good intentions or not. He mismanaged the business to the point of failure. He deserves to be punished.
Quoted from iceman44:
You know the saying, "if we weren't all crazy we might go insane"!
But you are wrong, option B exists, its real and you'll know a lot more very soon.
Brother, I wish you all the success in the world getting your pins. I just wish I thought you had better odds.
If you truly want a beautiful pin, why don't you form a project group and let's do it. We can get FAST, Yeti, Aurich, Scott Danesi, etc... on board. You can be the project manager and accountant. Everyone interested can foot an equal share of the cost or something.
I'll even manage the software development and engineering team for free for the project, in addition to contributing as much code as I can crank out for you.
I would be willing to do a lot to keep good people from getting taken on this ride any longer.
Quoted from deeproot:
For now, those who know, know. We would love to share the EOI of what could have been, and *promise* to do so at the appropriate time. Right now, we are not comfortable doing so as it would play in to Popadiuk and Marsh's scheme to provoke us into offering up a 'tortious interference with a prospective business' claim on a silver platter. We'd rather let this play out and see what happens first. Please do not PM us. We will not discuss the matter any further.
Just for clarity, I am not the Marsh he is talking about.
Blaming Pinside is like blaming Facebook for cyber bullying.
People like Kevin Kulek and John Popadiuk acted like criminals and they should be treated that way.
Good intentions or not, they both lied to try and save their own asses and stole a whole lot of money.
Why do I care if I'm not a direct victim?
1. I don't like to see people get taken advantage of, no matter how much or little money they have.
2. Instead of being a man and owning up to it all, he tries to concoct some scheme with legal papers saying you basically have to leave him alone for 4 years? Not to mention that MG is 2 years away and RAZA/AIW are 4-5 years away? "I want my cake and I want to eat it too."
3. I've busted my ass for my entire life to get what little I have. All my life, my ideas and skills have been constrained by money. JPop gets everything necessary to make his dream happen handed to him on a silver platter, and he doesn't take it seriously enough to do it properly? Fuck him.
Quoted from rommy:
Bill called me and said I killed the whole project. I only mentioned to him that in a bankruptcy or even pursuing assets for recovery that any revenue streams would be explored and that if he was MG licensee to not take it personally if my or the bankruptcy lawyers added him to any recovery attempt. He went ballistic. Jeckyl and Hyde. He said the project was over and that I single handedly killed it.
If you are owed money and you want out, my internet advice would be to go after JPop/Zidware immediately.
Maybe you can get Pintasia to throw you a refund to get you to go away.
Don't be bullied.
Quoted from lowepg:
So you guys are ALMOST caught up to where SkitB was... but not quite....
To be fair, wcbrandes has something SkitB didn't have. Really deep pockets.
If he threw 5 million at MG, I have no doubt he would end up with a finished machine, but that's an awful lot to pay for a custom machine designed by a piece of shit.
Quoted from Code_Blue:
Has anyone considered how exactly Pintasia can afford to give people 1 credit on these things?
Are they going to have to cheap out on building the actual pins now, because they're working with much less money now? So the buyer still pays for a $16,000 pin, but what he actually gets is more like a $9,000 pin?
Why isn't Pintasia more concerned with where the pre-order money went? Something isn't right...
Read their proposal more closely.
They don't *have* to give anyone any credit.
They are hoping to get the first machines completed and work out a manufacturing deal with someone. Then they hope that the profits from selling additional machines will cover the loss of the original owners so they can get their machines.
If those profits never happen, i.e. they don't sell enough extra machines, then the original owners will have some form of subsidized purchase, the size of that subsidy ranging from $0 to the amount they already paid in.
It would be interesting to see how many machines they would have to sell to recoup the money from the original preorders.
I want to make sure the current customers understand the math. Definitely not saying this is the wrong way to do business, just think this is important for people to comprehend.
Pintasia is obviously going to spend a decent chunk of money getting the games finalized.
I'd imagine the the first games will go to fulfilling Pintasia's original order(s). Then, the first profits Pintasia makes will be used to pay back the amount they spend getting the games finished. Then after all that has been paid back, any extra will be divided among the owners to offset a *new* purchase.
Not saying that is the wrong way to do it, but current customers that think this leads to them getting a game just need to understand the raw math behind it and where they fall in the pecking order.
For example, if it takes Pintasia $500k more to get the game to a state someone like Stern would agree to manufacture it, and they make $2.5k profit on each machine sold, they would need to sell 200 new orders to recoup the money Pintasia puts into finishing it. New profits beyond that, minus Pintasia costs, will get split up among owners toward a new purchase.
If JPop took $1M in pre-orders, at $2.5k profit per unit, they would need to sell 400 new units beyond the 200 above to make the owners "whole".
It's not impossible, it's just going to be a VERY long time before owners see a dime, even if they start selling new units through a manufacturer. That very likely means someone off the street could purchase a MG years before an original purchaser gets theirs.
Someone correct me if I misunderstand any of that.
Quoted from unigroove:
On what do you base the profit of 2.5K per unit? $ 1,000.00 profit per game seems reasonable to me. Whoever builds the game could easily sell 1,000 MGs = $ 1M in profit. That would cover the whole investment, right?
I pulled those numbers out of thin air, I have no idea how much profit per unit they would actually make. Cutting it down to $1000 per unit makes the situation even more dire.
You really think they would sell 1000 MGs? That's crazy talk.
Quoted from NJGecko:
I do like how, on one of the playfield artwork pictures, he has it labeled "platinum plate" because, well, he had to outdo diamond plate, but couldn't come up with something original
Which doesn't even make sense because platinum is just barely harder than silver and less hard than a tooth.
Quoted from Rarehero:
Yeah, there's a reason Gary said "Come on in, the water's cold" and "I don't run a game business, I run a manufacturing business" ...this is NOT a business for dreamers and artists - it's a business that can HIRE dreamers and artists, but has to keep them to a budget and schedule. Let's say Jack or Heighway do manage to ramp up and keep a factory churning like Stern - can they successfully sell all of that product? Gary also said something like "if anyone did start a new pinball company they'd kill us all off." Honestly I think Stern's pretty safe at this point, but the other guys will probably end up cannibalizing each other.
I think a lot of people today have the notion that all it takes to start a business is a great idea and customers, the rest will follow. Real work is only about 10% fun stuff, and 90% grunt work that nobody wants to do.
It's really sad to think that if JPop had put in the effort, he might have been successful, but he spent so much time doing the 10% over and over again for different games he never did any of the 90%.
Quoted from TigerLaw:
That boiled down to core competency, which he lacks (no reason to pull punches at this stage). He did not have the mechanical aptitude to actually build the machine (*I won't even address the issue of the absence of his path to manufacturing*). Skit-B actually had more mechanical and electrical aptitude than JPop.
To think that Skit-B got further than JPop just boggles the mind.
We've learned he had more than ample opportunities to be helped, but he just doesn't have the leadership quality to drive the project toward his goal once the staff grew to more than just him. As you said, a core competency like Business Acumen was just missing.
He just kept destroying his relationships because he couldn't be bothered to do the actual admin work of maintaining them (paying invoices, keeping records, putting everything on paper, etc...).
Quoted from Pdxmonkey:
Skit B did get further but their game was a lot simpler
No magnets no toys etc...
Plus it does cut down on the overall costs if your mom does the art.
They both are complete assholes that stole money from their friends by running their companies into the ground.
I don't think either of them feel bad for it either.
Quoted from Rarehero:
One of my local pinbuddies tried a few times to talk me into making a game with him...and I'm like "no way"...he's like "why not!? We have better ideas and can create better art than any of these guys!" ...and I'm like "maybe...but I don't know how to build a f*cking game! I don't know how to cut wood. I don't know how to create or program electronics.....just because I can draw, dream up stuff, and repair my own games does not mean I can mass produce them". He was like "we can find guys to do all that other stuff"....I was just like "Noooooooooo". He was kinda bummed out but I live firmly in reality.
I can do every piece of a pinball machine except the art, and I still wouldn't dare start a pinball company.
Even if there was money to be made, I don't like the idea of making money off of my friends either.
You guys missed like 2 episodes from this season of "Breaking Pinballs" and now it's gone crazytown.
Quoted from PinballHelp:
Is there a snowball's chance in hell MG or any of the titles could be "so awesome" they could make up for the epic clusterf&ck the producers created? Highly doubtful. The cloud hanging over this game will forever make it an "Edsel."
I'd never play a MG because I don't want the bad juju to rub off on me.
Quoted from RobT:
Well crap, I was hoping someone like you could make more sense out of it.
But Bill isn't listed as an owner of Pintasia? Is this accurate?
You have to be a certain kind of crazy to understand what is going on in there. Seems like a poorly written attempt to connect some kind of conspiracy theory. Even if there was something to it, it's so badly written you can't help but dismiss it.
He can delete whatever he wants off Facebook. Law enforcement can still get all of his posts, deleted or not.
Quoted from zombieyeti:
Lastly (for today) unfinished KISS inks... I did the inks for the playfield and color in about 3 days. It was during the 'reality TV' sizzle so we had to prove we could turn around a machine in a short period.
The irony was palpable
You seem like a pretty cool dude. After all this JPop stuff is over, I hope you stick around to hang out.
I really like your art and like whysnow said, do some pinball art prints! We will buy them!
Sold out already.
I told you we would buy it.
Zombieyeti you better stick around and sell your stuff. You've become one with the Pinside now, resistance is futile.
What's the premise of Magic Girl? Who is she and what is the "story" of the pin/gameplay? How does the Owl play into the story?
Quoted from dgarrett:
So you will get a game, at the price you agreed to up front - where's the fraud and damages I should award you from the defendant?
Except they aren't getting a game. Have you looked at the math of how many would have to sell to first recoup the Pintasia investment, then make the original owners whole?
Just to be explicitly clear, I think what Pintasia and the volunteers are trying to do is very noble. Will it work? Not a chance in hell. Sorry, but that's the way I see it.
Quoted from DCFAN:
Was JPoop making this game as a tribute to his ego?
I've gotten the distinct feeling that JPop was including all of the gizmos that his previous employers cut from his game.
Seems like an attempt to justify those items. If someone had picked up his machine in the past 2 years, he could say "See, I told you back then the toys would sell machines."
If he was out for vindication, he failed miserably though. If anything, he reinforced the fact that he can't seal the deal. A pinball designer shooting blanks.
I feel bad that some of the owners think the *noise* in the thread isn't helpful. Sure, lots of repetition and stupid comments, but this is the internet not a board room.
Here, everyone has the privilege of expressing their opinion.
Ease up a bit with attacking each other. Don't take out the anger and hurt on your buddies. We ALL love pinball here. We ALL think JPop is a bag of shit. We ALL appreciate what wcbrandes and the volunteers tried to do.
There will always be assholes on the internet that take a little joy in rubbing someone's face in a mistake, but if you can't handle that and let it roll off your back, I might suggest that you aren't mature enough for an open communication forum.
Now that the what ifs are answered I'm looking forward to seeing people make JPops life difficult to the fullest extent of the law.
Quoted from NPO:
I find myself constantly reading your posts in a "Mr. Wolf" tone. Is that wrong ?
Winston Wolf is my favorite character, which is funny because I'm nothing like Harvey Keitel physically. If he and I did a remake of Twins, I would be the Danny Devito character.
I speak fluent hillbilly as well, so we are better off if you continue with the Mr. Wolf voice in your head.
Quoted from Mocean:
If it's with the Fast/MPF guys, I really don't know what to say. I just hope it's not there, for their sake. It's rapidly becoming a cursed object like some kind of monkey idol
I personally wouldn't touch or be near anything Zidware related. The juju is bad on the MG game, too much "blood".
Quoted from teekee:
Glad this horror story is finally coming to an end. What a nightmare for everyone involved and the hobby as a whole... amidst all the complaining, bashing and finger pointing anyone that sent this whacko money better not forget to look in the mirror and blame the person most responsible for the position they are in.
Tough lesson to learn here... sad thing is some of us won't learn a thing.
No. Just, No.
1. Don't blame the victim. It's not their fault. This is akin to saying "she shouldn't have dressed like that".
2. These people that had the money to send JPop obviously did adult things and made adult decisions to get that kind of money, I'm pretty sure they don't need you telling them that they made a mistake. They already know, and they know better than any of us that didn't send money.
You started out great, but an empathetic person would have stopped after the ellipsis. It became rude shortly after that.
Quoted from teekee:
The truth hurts I know... its still the truth. Plenty of blame to go around. Not putting any on yourself is just simply foolish or in total denial.
You completely misunderstood what I said. It's not about "facing the truth."
Let me break it down for you. It's an asshole move to tell someone they made a mistake when they already know, especially when the only thing they are "guilty" of is trusting another human.
Quoted from dgarrett:
Value to whom? Only a maker pinball who would use them would be a buyer - The content of the patents are published, complete with drawings.
They only have value if someone pays to use them or buys them. Looking at the patents, there is nothing groundbreaking in them, so I don't imagine them having any value at all. Yet another way JPop wasted time.
Quoted from GLModular:
Those are based on the original off-the-shelf RGB "pixels" that John got from Adafruit. The originals had 4 RGB LEDs. I had reverse engineered them and reformatted them into 1, 2, 3, and 4 LED configurations to properly fit a wide variety of insert types.
Apparently these were discarded and redone by Cointaker in a single LED configuration. (I didn't see any of those with more than one LED in them).
BTW, all of the GLM boards had proper locking headers on them.
The pixels from adafruit are basically what the first JJP engineer did. Total and complete idiocy to try and use something like that in a pinball machine.
Good job on the locking headers, I hate cable assemblies that don't have locking headers.
Also, I thought this was hilarious.
JPop said: "I may not get to emails for a while as I average 125 each day or more."
My work inbox laughs in his general direction. It gets reset every quarter.
Quoted from benheck:
Nothing wrong with serial RGB for pinball. WOZ's issue was the driver IC was intended to take a voltage higher than 5 and knock it down to 5... but they piped in exactly 5. Which is why the 7.5v higher voltage fix worked.
WCS TOM TOTAN CV all real JPOP games... just ran through the filter of production, budgets and schedules.
They did not just bump up the supply voltage to 7.5.
Also, I agree there is nothing wrong with serial busses in Pinball, its the WS2801 I have issue with. I personally think it's a great hobbyist driver but is poor for industrial/automotive equipment.
Quoted from GetTheJackpot:
And what do you consider a more appropriate replacement?
I'd say it depends on several factors, but I'm very partial to the TI line of constant current drivers. In a system you want to be high reliability, you don't want a serial chain of all the LEDs because a failure takes out the chain. If you know how to do the math on failure modes, you know that a chain of even 64 LEDs has a HUGE chance of failure.
I prefer a Star/Hub configuration where each LED or group of LEDs is independently driven by a constant current driver that also affords some protection against shorts and thermal damage. More wiring but less system failures. You could easily mount a 24 channel hub in a central location and power 8 RGB leds from it.
Something like a TLC5940 would give you a solid entry level controller, programmers just need to work around the way it blanks between frames. For production a TLD5940-EP would be the upgraded production part.
TI makes several constant current drivers, because there are so many different applications.
Something like the TLC5951 would also open up a lot of options.
Quoted from MXV:
While I knew there was no way in hell anyone was going to finish MG a part of me was secretly hoping it could have been finished just to see if the magnetic ball lock gimmick I came up with for the ends of the ramps could actually worked. I gave him that idea when after working for him for a couple of weeks, he finally showed me his unfinished playfield design for MG and asked for some input and ideas. I guess he couldn't get it together in the nearly nearly 3 years after to prototype something together to see if it could even work.
Release the design public domain, if I can I'll work it into Spaceballs for you. Unless you are looking for money/fame... I don't have that.
Quoted from Hitch9:
Ok, I probably don't have the right to say disparaging things about the U.S.
In fact I love being neighbors to the US, my son has married a gal from L.A. And lives in Phoenix, so consider my comments as coming from a "brother in law"- not really in the family but close enough.
Something is terribly wrong with the US judicial system, if someone can rob another's wallet and end up in jail, and all the lawyers, or lawyer wannabes on Pinside, keep saying..nope can't touch John, he's free to go. Maybe I'm too naive.
(Running outside now, to get the garden hose, to douse the flames, that are surely coming)
I doubt you'll get many flames from the Americans, we know our justice system is fucked. 1 out of every 100 Americans is in jail.
Quoted from lowepg:
Well, it's not really fair to compare the US to Canada in regards to incarceration rates. Why?
Yes, the U.S. Incarceration rates look horrific compared to Canada, but you're comparing apples and oranges. If you adjust for racial differences the numbers are quite different. Sad, but true. Demographics.
Oh, I wasn't comparing to Canada. I have no idea what their incarceration rate is. I do know 1 in every 100 doesn't feel right, something else is going on. We already know that though.
So contractually, JPop owes you 75% of your money for not delivering a game? Can he be held to that?
"When a project is successfully funded, the creator is responsible for completing the project and fulfilling each reward. Their fundamental obligation to backers is to finish all the work that was promised. Once a creator has done so, they’ve fulfilled their obligation to their backers. At the same time, backers must understand that Kickstarter is not a store. When you back a project, you’re helping to create something new — not ordering something that already exists. There’s a chance something could happen that prevents the creator from being able to finish the project as promised."
I've not seen JPop's contracts, but do they say anywhere in them that failure is a possibility? I'm guessing no. He never claimed to be crowd funded, so it's not fair to compare him to someone who is.
Quoted from benheck:
Nobody cares how much a CEO makes as long as the company is successful and delivers products.
When a company fails and takes investors / banks / government money down with it - then people get upset. Because in those cases everyone asks "what went wrong?"
Ding! Ding! Ding!
JPop could have drawn $200k a year and it wouldn't have mattered if he had delivered machines. Unfortunately, JPop doesn't understand one of the first things a startup needs to calculate: Burn Rate.
Quoted from Mhulsebu:
Now you can make your own Magic Girl...with hookers and black jack.
When I first started watching that video, I laughed the concept off as a joke. However, it quickly grew on me. Especially for $50.
Here is my reasoning.... My daughter is 6 and kinda likes pinball and tinkering with stuff but really likes art and drawing. I'm always trying to get her interested in STEM, even if she doesn't end up picking a STEM career, purely because I want her to be empowered with her own knowledge. I see so many young people today that have no clue how to do basic home/auto/etc.. maintenance, and I don't want my kids to grow up like that.
She and I could probably cobble together a cardboard machine for her to decorate and plan a layout on, but it would take us a day or two at least to get flippers working correctly, etc.... Knowing a 6 year old's attention span, two days of engineering isn't a great draw. I'd lose her an hour in and we would never get to the fun part.
For less than the price of a video game, I can get her one of these kits and let her go to town designing her own machines without having to worry about the nuances of flippers or a plunger.
I I'm in for one if they start shipping. I unfortunately won't send money to *any* kickstarter. Nothing against these guys in particular.
1. Ben doesn't own a pinball company that is sitting on a ton of pre-order money. Jack is closer to being JPop than he is to being Ben.
2. Ben has earned more people's respect than Jack has.
3. Ben has no reason to be politically correct. Jack has no reason not to be.
And don't get me wrong, JJP deserves credit for passing the first "make or break" milestone: shipping his first game. Heighway, Spooky and others I'm sure I'm forgetting have also passed that milestone.
The next big one in my eyes is being able to transition out of the pre-pay model. Having Pat's pin shipping before taking any money for it, i.e. the Stern model, will signify passing that point. That goes for all new companies, not just JJP.
This is as bad as someone stealing your phone and seeing them post selfies to your photo stream.
I'd extend that offer as well. If anyone has $250k and wants the pin of their dreams, PM me. I'll take a year sabbatical from work and do it for you.
Is the mobile version of the site working properly? Google drops sites down that don't have correct mobile versions.
It's also very short sighted.
When someone screws you over for a serious amount of money, it's time to play the long game.