(Topic ID: 118328)

Longevity of pinball?

By 5280wzrd

4 years ago

Topic Stats

  • 152 posts
  • 81 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 years ago by thedefog
  • Topic is favorited by 3 Pinsiders


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    Topic poll

    “Longevity of pinball?”

    • A few more years 2-5? 15 votes
    • 10 years or until the "Kings" are gone. 64 votes
    • New and exciting innovations will allow pinball to live on 165 votes

    (244 votes by 0 Pinsiders)

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    #128 4 years ago

    The cost factor is going to cause pinball to erode over the next several years I think. The price of entry is too steep relative to what you get now. Used to be the new games (5 or 6 years ago) cost $3k to $4k, old games were mainly at that same point for the best ones (except MM, CC, MB). It's now almost double for all games. Spending $3.5k on a new game is a lot different than spending $8k, you can literally buy a classic car for $8k. Also, relatively, an Xbox One or PS4 is $400, the amount of hours of entertainment you can get for those vs a basic $2k pinball machine isn't close. It's only a matter of time before we see a drop in buying, and when that happens resale values will start eroding and the market will start to collapse...you can't keep increasing prices every year at a high rate without eventually going over the edge.

    #136 4 years ago
    Quoted from ryanwanger:

    If/when the market collapses, won't that just make it easier for new people to get into?

    Yes and no, prices will fall but there may not be anyone to buy the games (nobody wants to catch a falling knife). I just think that the current business model for pinball is unsustainable and that it's going to hit a rough spot sooner rather than later here, and that many collectors will exit the market as the games depreciate.

    You can kind of see it happening this way...at some point, either Stern or JJP is going to raise prices to a point where nobody can afford them or the market is out of money. Either they're going to have to lower prices, cut down on their operations considerably, or go out of business. Lower NIB prices drives used market prices lower, hence you get into this situation where everything is falling.

    I'm really surprised it hasn't happened already with all the missed deadlines, poor code, vaporware, etc with a lot of the NIB games. I feel like it's close though, MM remake was the first domino, just a matter of time before they all start falling.

    #142 4 years ago
    Quoted from jwilson:

    I disagree. As both an art object *and* and something you can play, they will always be worth something because they will always have some appeal.
    Someone mentioned a '57 Chevy lowering in value, but the key is that the price on those have *plateaued* now that the nostalgia factor has been removed (due to the aging out of the boomers) and it's become a pure collectable that you can drive on Sundays. It has essentially reached the bottom of its pricing profile.
    Pinball will do the same thing. EMs, it can be argued, have reached this point. It seems like prices are going up on them but that's mostly inflation and some reflection on the current heat of WPC/Stern prices.
    So, at worst, WPC/Stern pricing will cool off and reach that plateau value, but they'll never be worthless like cigarette machines.

    I'm not saying that they'll go to zero or even close to that, but I would expect that if you drew a trend line of NIB pricing over the past 30 years, the NIB pricing is going to have to get back closer to that (and will take used games down with it) to be sustainable.

    #151 4 years ago
    Quoted from jawjaw:

    Few people can afford a classic car but they are still very popular. A classic muscle car is out of reach of most young guys but that doesn't mean they lose interest. Pins are no different. You may not be able to afford a TZ but maybe a Pinbot or something older. When you can finally afford a dream pin, it becomes more special.

    You bring up muscle cars, that's where I see the issue with pricing and sustainability. 5 years ago, a NIB game was 1/2 the cost of 70's corvette (although technically not a muscle car). Now you can get a 70's/80/90's vette for less than a new pin. Which is why I now own a 72 vette instead of a NIB game.

    Things happen. Look what happened to gas, who would have thought that it would have halved in 6 months? Things can turn quickly when supply/demand curve get out of whack and when speculators exit quickly like they did in the oil market.

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