(Topic ID: 26628)

New Predator Info Thread

By SkitBPinball

7 years ago

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  • 7,117 posts
  • 329 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 5 years ago by robin
  • Topic is favorited by 50 Pinsiders


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#111 7 years ago

Looking good - can't wait to see the playfield art package.

Two questions:

1) The area between the rollovers and pops seems to work like a choke point - had you considered reducing the amount of space it takes up to allow the pop bumpers to come up the playfield a bit?

2) The one thing I can see now that I really don't like is that pinled display with the strong patchwork quilt effect. I think they're one of the worst inventions in pinball, haven't seen a single one without obvious squares of different intensity and with digitised movie footage it makes it look messy compared to a proper display. Perhaps you could offer a kit at extra cost that lets people put one in? I'm guessing that would require an add-on power board.


#134 7 years ago
Quoted from frolic:

I just love these guys. This is what the pinball world needs... fresh blood. Not to take knock at the old guard who are still making great games, but this is how things go. New blood, fresh ideas, innovation.

I agree, it's strange though - outside of this forum I don't see much noise about it. A few people have posted news on the ukpinball list (myself included) with virtually no response at all.


#136 7 years ago
Quoted from playboywillis:

System 11. Now that you got your answer, could you give us a little how-to. I'd be interested in this down the road I think.

I've no idea I'm afraid! I converted a EU Tron from pinled to gas, but that was easy because I was able to use the US manual contents as a kind of shopping list - and the loom already had a connector to plug the display power board into. With DMDs the plasma and led ones are the same size and fitting pattern, and the same data input. The difference is how they're powered as LED just needs 5v and plasma needs a high voltage one.

If SkitB come up with a kit (maybe designed to work with the Stern display power board to avoid them having to make one) I'd definitely want one in my machine.

Of course if the LED display makers could make a better product, that would work too. The one that came in my Tron was particularly bad, I don't think a single tile matched any other next to it although I got lucky and they did line up at least.

#137 7 years ago
Quoted from Whridlsoncestood:

A few people outside of here that I have talked to seem very skeptical of it and said they playfield looks very basic. It think its sort of WOZ situation where people don't understand seeing stuff in the whole process and comprehend that it's an unfinished product.
With stern they announce the game and pictures are released of the whole finished and polished game(except code which you can't see anyways). If nothing was said about this until they were ready to start producing and had a few finished ones built already it would be crazy.

I think the lack of standups littering the playfield probably make it seem more basic, that and not having some art to look at. I am really curious to see the art and the UV lighting effect. Hopefully they will get their clearcoat done by someone more competant than Stern are!

#139 7 years ago

Definitely a different approach to JJP that's for sure - their whole playfield is finished but I get the impression the code has barely been started.

#146 7 years ago
Quoted from J85M:

Isnt that pretty much normal for the UK groups
Btw since you don't like led displays and have converted a few of your games do you have any of the 4 pin molexs that plug into the led displays? I'd be interested in buying any off you as I'm a fan of led displays and not a big fan of plasma.

Afraid not, I sold the surplus parts to go with the display - new owner was going to need them to do the opposite of what I'd done.

#168 7 years ago
Quoted from Pinballfantexas:

The one thing I hear some people are worried about are the two targets dead center that might throw the ball down the guts of the machine. Personally I'm not to worried myself but I can understand their where their coming from, I love BSD but I do stay clear of the center targets.

I'd asked if the pop bumpers were going to move up the table a little, and Kevin replied that they are on the new whitewood, so I'd expect those targets to move with them.

#172 7 years ago

Has this ever been covered anywhere?

I'm curious to know how a 2-3 man band went about getting a license for one of the iconic films of the 80s. Were the rights owners big fans of pinball? Do they get a percentage cut of the machine? Did they just see it as a promotion of the brand and allow use for free?

#177 7 years ago

There are multiple Predator Blu-Ray releases. None of them are great, but the best of the lot is the one with no Arnie on the cover, no 'ultimate edition' and 'beyond high definition' at the bottom. It's the original, there's a lot of grain, but in the ultimate release they applied DNR with a spade and everyone looks like a waxwork sliding around the screen - it's really bad, worse than the grain ever was.

#197 7 years ago

Have you considered making Skit B t-shirts? Those might earn a few spare dollars too.

#259 7 years ago
Quoted from navajas:

Sorry. Too sophomoric. They asked, "how developed", and I responded with a cup size. :-/
Yes. I feel shame.

I thought you meant Double Dragon, and I thought 'that's a great idea!'.

1 week later
#425 7 years ago
Quoted from ChadNC:

Looking fwd to it. Some of us don't FB.....thx,#179

Yeah, please post the video on the youtube account you were using for the October update - I stay as far from Facebook as possible. #101

#461 7 years ago
Quoted from frolic:

What is interesting is their programming is much farther along than a pin is normally at this stage. I would think things will come together real quick later.

Yeah, I think this was the right move, going straight from whitewood layout to putting time into the code.

The big joke with WOZ at the moment is they've got all this 'stuff' hardware/art wise - and there's nothing using it, like it's stuck in development hell. I do wonder if the choice to use a full size display is slowing things down - and the clips I've seen so far were rather annoying.

#535 7 years ago

I do have a couple of questions on the right ramp.

The direction changes are angles, will those be smoothed out into curves for the final versions?

What about long term damage to the ramp from the ball drop, will there at least be mylar patches at that point on the ramp from the .. factory?

Really looking forward to seeing the UV effect at some point in the future, those looked like new strips in there from the last video?

#589 7 years ago

Predator and Nemo for me. Stern seems to have stopped making things that interest me after Tron was done (and before).

2 weeks later
#837 7 years ago
Quoted from frolic:

I'm sure the skinned bodies can be removed from the playfield if you wanted to tone it down, but at the end of the day Predator is an R-rated movie where the characters are hunted and killed, not a family movie.

Additionally, I don't think a small plastic toy of a skinned body is going to do any lasting damage to any child tall enough to see it. People are so irrational about what kids see and hear (but dressing them up as ghosts, skeletons, zombies and vampires once a year is fine).

#902 7 years ago

If it's the pre-owners mailing list one mine arrived just over 3 hours ago. Was there supposed to be another? Don't use mailchimp, it's classed as a spam source by many antispam lists.

2 weeks later
#1262 6 years ago
Quoted from Betelgeuse:

I had a chance to review the video a few more times after reading the comments. I have to say that watching the game I literally got chills at several points. It's like BSD meets AFM. Overall it is awe inspiring. Some things though...
-The pops and slings did seem a little unresponsive. The slings only fired once or twice. There was also no sound effect for slings or pops as far as I could tell.
-The skill shot beep could use a tweak. I like it ok, but... one thing that annoys me on my TFTC is when someone walks away with a ball in the shooter. You have this continuous hacking noise that just keeps going and going and it grates quickly.
-The DMD needs to be more tied into the modes. On most games the DMD has some kind of animation/special-scoring/info that is mode specific and stays up during the mode. It's also usually followed by a total score for the mode or something like that, so you know it's over and know what you got out of it.
-There are no flashers in the game. Are there any plans to include flashers?
Amazing stuff SkitB. 'Pretty sophisticated for a bunch of half ass'd mountain boys.'
Thanks for sharing so much with us and keeping us in the loop! I know where all my $ is going.

He just said everything I was going to say. Some kind of DMD feedback for what you need to shoot at would be helpful, and the pops/slings seemed to be asleep or just not getting hit. Other that that it's looking great, really looking forward to seeing some art appear on the proto, clear ramps too.

#1273 6 years ago

Plasma displays would help a lot, I asked about them before and Kevin didn't see a reason it couldn't be an aftermarket upgrade. As it stands the grid edges and different brightnesses of the patchwork are easier for the eyes to settle on than the actual moving images, hence the problem. Only way to fix it is epic contrast (Tron did that, I don't think it's ideal because it cripples all machines to improve some), or put in a plasma.

#1317 6 years ago
Quoted from SkitBPinball:

I'm not saying anything bad here, but I read "epic contrast" as "loss of definition."

Yup - exactly what it is. It's just speculation but I've seen the Tron film probably over 10 times now, and the contrast in the Stern animations looks wrong - just like when you turn contrast up too high and brightness down to compensate - emphasises highs and lows by throwing things away.

I'm not a fan, use a good display and you don't have to ruin the source material. Reminds me of people jacking up loudness on CD recordings now, ruining the sound just so people with bad quality earphones can enjoy it.

I'm also really, really not a fan of patchwork quilt and grid lines - I'll be one of the first trying to plasma convert the game Making it compatable with the Stern plasma power board would be a bonus, then all the parts are off the shelf - I converted an EU Tron by buying the stuff from Marco/Bay Area.

1 week later
#1461 6 years ago

Just to add more noise to the signal, #101 deposit paid

#1519 6 years ago

Could there please be one forum in the world free of fucking ponies?

#1657 6 years ago

I love the Arnie war cry at the start of whichever mode it was they cut at in the last video, the audio really is good on this machine.

#1691 6 years ago
Quoted from gambit3113:

What, to where your GIF got the boot? Yet again? Genius.

From time to time, I wonder 'is that idiot I put on ignore for spamming gifs still doing it?', and now I know he is.

#1741 6 years ago

Stern and JJP take note - this and Nemo are how playfield art should look.

#1758 6 years ago

There are more? A lot of us refuse to sign up to Facebook.

#1813 6 years ago

I wonder - does the skull have a hole in the back of the head and sit on the wireform that drops the ball into the right ramp?

#1838 6 years ago

The jungle... It came alive, and took him.

#1852 6 years ago

It would be good to get the emails out to people who have a confirmed deposit paid. I paid for #101 within the deadline and haven't seen anything except for the initial Paypal email.

#1901 6 years ago
Quoted from herbertbsharp:

confirmation received! #33, production order #20

Has the production order been posted somewhere?

#1907 6 years ago
Quoted from herbertbsharp:

One of my earlier emails stated the production #

Thanks, I see it now - missed that detail when I saw it a while ago, #101 in #116th place. Still can't decide what engraving to have.

#2030 6 years ago
Quoted from SkitBPinball:

There have been a few interesting advancements with the lighting that I can share. The UV flood lights that sit above the playfield are going to be interspersed with colored LEDs that can change color with the software. That means we can flood the playfield any color we want whenever we want. Not to say we're going to do it often, but it gives us a lot of room to play with some neat new effects that haven't really been possible with other games in the past.

Please do use it sparingly, there are quite a few of us who like pinball machines to not look like someone puked several bags of skittles all over the playfield.

#2066 6 years ago
Quoted from The_Dude_Abides:

Hahaa, well quite a few of us are also very excited about the new software controlled color changing LEDs being used in new machines like WOZ & Predator. I say use them to your full advantage without over doing it to draw players into different scenes/modes. As always though to each their own.

I think they have their place, for example Space Station multiball mode turning the playfield green, it was striking because it happened rarely (if my multiball times are anything to go by...), but also because hardly any other machines had a similar ability. I think they could be used under inserts sparingly too in some games, allowing you to colour shot indicators by mode. I'm glad Kevin posted that traditional lighting will be an option - it's little to no extra effort for them during the build. Their approach to customers is so very refreshing compared to the other games in town.

I wish JJP would move on from having all their inserts colour cycling constantly, it just looks a terrible mess. Haven't seen a video for a while, maybe that bit is finished now. My prime complaint against bathing the playfield in coloured GI light more than just occasionally, is that it spoils the artwork. On a lot of the LED modified games you see, you can't even tell what colours the playfield art was supposed to be once they're switched on.

Thing I'm looking forward to most in Predator: Arnie war cry
Thing I'm looking forward to least in Predator: With every machine I buy regardless of manufacturer, I have to remove the head to get it in the house. EMs are the only machines where this isn't a royal PITA.

#2111 6 years ago

At least it's out of hand for a good reason, lots of enthusiasm for this project.

#2171 6 years ago

I think this one is my favourite video, the close-ups and demonstration helped to show a lot of stuff that I didn't really pick up from the previous examples, very frank and open.

#2178 6 years ago

I'm happy with the jackpot sound the way it is, not a fan of the Stern style YELL JACKPOT ALL THE TIME IN YOUR FACE approach.

#2224 6 years ago

I'd rather not have to pay more for my machine because someone wants hipster glass in it.

2 months later
#3495 6 years ago
Quoted from playboywillis:

Also, whoever guessed that the skull would be where the ball dropped out of way back when we first saw it, Nice guess.

Seemed like the only reasonable place

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