Background - I’m very interested in Munsters. Cancelled an LE order because I really didn’t like the cabinet art and wasn’t sure about the color PF. I liked the looks of both the Premium and the Pro. But I was very concerned that the code was too shallow and wondering if the lower pf would get old in home play, and, whether it is essentially worth $1600 more than a Pro.
Played both the Premium and the Pro today for a little over an hour. Here are my initial thoughts after seeing them in person.
- all that’s missing is the lower PF and two sign boards above the ramps. Certainly a full-featured Pro compared to some recent titles.
- Really like the translite. Best of the three games (not a big fan of the coach on the LE. Although cool, it reminds me more of the Beverly Hillbillies).
- didn’t miss not having the mini playfield during play.
- seeing the game in person changed my view on the color. It looks far too bright. If Franchi had essentially turned down the overall brightness knob and muted the colors ever so slightly it would have been a great compromise between in your face color and the black and white. I like the color far less in person than in the pictures and videos I’ve seen. The other thing that was very noticeable was the the green GI and colored LEDs gave the playfield even more saturated color during play which made the color playfield even more bothersome/annoying to me.
- don’t really like that the art on both sides of the cabinet is just flipped. I would have liked to see a b&w version of the left side Pro cabinet art.
- the lower playfield cover needed adjustment. The ball was noticeably deflected because the cover was not level. I presume that’s because it wasn’t adjusted after being set up but am wondering if this could be a long term issue.
Also wondered if you could avoid this problem by taking off the cover and putting the Pro version of the petg playfield protector (assuming one is made) over the playfield or if the protector isn’t thick enough to cover over that large a hole without dipping.
- I don’t like the Premium translite as much as the Pro. Wondered if the Pro translite would look out of place on the Premium. But not enough of an issue to rule out the Premium
- liked the mini playfield. Fun. Still not sure if it will get old in home play after the novelty wears off. It would be ideal if there is a setting to disable it if ou don’t want the flow of the game interrupted (which I really didn’t mind).
- The black/white/grayscale art looks AWESOME in person. The pictures and video to date has not done it justice. The green GI is absolutely perfect and the other LEDs add enough color (light shows are awesome) to complement the b&w art. If you are on the fence because you aren’t sure you will like black and white or you think it looks dated or won’t fit in your collection go see one in person before you order. Any doubt about the b&w art I may have had is gone.
- I didn’t like the placement of the two sets of flipper buttons. Changing from one to another didn’t feel as smooth as I thought it should, but I’m sure this is more of a personal preference rather than a design issue.
The Premium was on 0.90 code. Don’t know about the Pro.
I was initially comparing the video to that of Batman 66 which is a very unfair comparison because Munsters use more or less random interchangeable clips that enhance the theming but don’t really add anything to the game play and uses a lot more custom art. The font is more annoying in person, but a minor complaint. The strange thing is that it still fits because the game does feel like an homage to the WPC era when games were simpler.
That brings me to what I was most concerned about - code depth. I got to Munster Madness one game. I’m really not that good of a player and I was more interested in seeing how particular shots were than trying to get a great score so I was kind of surprised.
But I found the game very fun to shoot. I have never had a Borg game so although the layout is familiar to some it was new to me. I absolutely loved the ramps and will probably spend a lot of time just trying to do left/right ramp combos. The left ramp disappearing behind the playfield and the 180 on the right ramp are great. Anyone who has a BM66 and doesn’t like how the orbit shots are so tight will love the smooth as butter orbit shots. Didn’t mind the long Dragula target but Lily should have been individual stand ups or drops (I love drop targets).
In a large collection or for those of us that aren’t pro level players I think the game will be fine. What I saw of the code depth doesn’t bother me as much as it did when I was just watching other people play. It was just fun. A little hectic and some “I really don’t know what’s going on here”. I love the music and the laugh track (if you don’t, it will get old. Think Disney and Small World). And using a Paul Lynde sound alike was brilliant and will be appreciated by anyone who remembers 60’s sitcoms. If Dwight’s vision was “old school, but modern” then this game seems to have hit the mark.
When I went in, I thought I was leaning Pro over Premium. That flipped. If there was a b&w Pro, I’d probably prefer that just because I think the lower pf is fun, but not a must have. Or maybe a Premium with a lower pf in color. But don’t think having/not having the lower pf is going to matter either way long term.
Oh yeah - the Dragula car on the playfield is a tiny, disappointing waste of space. I’m sure the modders will come up with a kickass replacement though.
I don’t have too many pictures because the overhead glare in the front of the Game Exchange showroom made it difficult to get some good shots.
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