(Topic ID: 245661)

SW Home Edition by Stern


By Whysnow

86 days ago



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    There are 1346 posts in this topic. You are on page 27 of 27.
    #1301 56 days ago
    Quoted from jwilson:

    Hilton, I love ya buddy, but you really need to dial it back a bit on the over-the-top reactions to every little thing. Pinball is fun and all but your blood pressure will thank you if you relax more.

    Funny, I am pretty sure that I remember somebody posting this exact same response to Hilton about 6 years ago.

    #1302 56 days ago
    Quoted from CrazyLevi:

    I think it’s the heat.
    This may be the dumbest week for pinside, ever.

    Are you new here?

    #1303 56 days ago
    Quoted from Aurich:

    I think nobody at Stern gives a flying fig that a bunch of disaffected nerds on the internet are leaving unhappy comments on Facebook and forums.
    I know this is the new modern paradigm, "if I whine in public online the company will surely be forced to change their ways and cater to me". Every game company has to deal with it now. Gamers are really the worst. You can't give in to it, or you've set the precedent, it's like negotiating with terrorists.
    But the sentiment being expressed here is just so laughably ridiculous. "Stern shouldn't market their new product, because it's not for us!" Listen to yourselves. I shared some pics and the stream on my Twitter feed. Some people were curious about it. Mostly we talked about how pinball fans were whining and sounded like Diablo fans throwing a tantrum when the new mobile game was announced.
    I'm not saying don't post your opinion on Pinside. Go for it. But don't pretend that Stern shouldn't market their products because they're not speaking to you. That's silly. If you're looking to reach the general public you gotta market more, not less.

    Yeah, but I still have to think $4K for the general public, not wealthy elite, is still waaaaay too much money for people not already deep into the hobby.

    #1304 56 days ago

    Stern missed the mark pricing this at $4k+ when it needed to be sold for $3k to reach people interested in their new product. That may have cut Stern’s profit to the bone, but could have been justified from a strategic standpoint. Put pressure on all other manufacturers and drive them into the ground. We’ll never know now, as they’ve priced themselves out of that market.

    #1305 56 days ago

    We are talking about accounting 101. What more should be cut from a table to get the price point lower to $3k and still stay in business? Balance is more important than cutting prices even lower. I’m all for lowest price possible, but there comes a point. $4k seems to be a magic point to still maintain profitability and table goodies. Lower, means even less, which would not be appealing.

    There are other manufactures that are way over priced on their product, but don’t think Stern is one of them, unless you bring up the Beatles debacle. Lol! Yes, all prices could be $500 lower on different models for sure.

    #1306 56 days ago
    Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

    Stern missed the mark pricing this at $4k+ when it needed to be sold for $3k to reach people interested in their new product. That may have cut Stern’s profit to the bone, but could have been justified from a strategic standpoint. Put pressure on all other manufacturers and drive them into the ground. We’ll never know now, as they’ve priced themselves out of that market.

    I’m constantly amazed how people here who should know better say stuff like this. Don’t you run a pinball store?

    Please tell me how Stern can afford to sell a game like this for $3,000. There’s only so much you can strip out and not have it be a zizzle.

    This game has no coin mechs, a small lcd, and a node board or two less than your average pro, and appears to have plastic armor rather than metal. What else can they remove and still have a decent game?

    Or do you think they have $1,000 to spare per machine they won’t miss by lowering msrp by that number?

    #1307 56 days ago
    Quoted from Aurich:

    I think nobody at Stern gives a flying fig that a bunch of disaffected nerds on the internet are leaving unhappy comments on Facebook and forums.
    I know this is the new modern paradigm, "if I whine in public online the company will surely be forced to change their ways and cater to me". Every game company has to deal with it now. Gamers are really the worst. You can't give in to it, or you've set the precedent, it's like negotiating with terrorists.
    But the sentiment being expressed here is just so laughably ridiculous. "Stern shouldn't market their new product, because it's not for us!" Listen to yourselves. I shared some pics and the stream on my Twitter feed. Some people were curious about it. Mostly we talked about how pinball fans were whining and sounded like Diablo fans throwing a tantrum when the new mobile game was announced.
    I'm not saying don't post your opinion on Pinside. Go for it. But don't pretend that Stern shouldn't market their products because they're not speaking to you. That's silly. If you're looking to reach the general public you gotta market more, not less.

    You are not getting my point. Stern absolutely should market this game using tactics that cater to the target customer. Teaser videos with 72 hour countdowns are the wrong tactics to use. That’s all I was saying.

    #1308 56 days ago
    Quoted from CrazyLevi:

    Please tell me how Stern can afford to sell a game like this for $3,000. There’s only so much you can strip out and not have it be a zizzle.

    Probably not relevant but what were pro prices say 5-6 years ago and why have they gone up? “Honestly curious”

    Have pinball “raw materials” spiked in price or has stern started paying a living wage. All this is to say, what’s the margin and what’s the pulled out of ass price factor here.

    #1309 56 days ago
    Quoted from benheck:

    Theory: What if the SW regular game "ran out of gas" sales-wise and this is simply to burn up the license period?

    I can confirm that Stern has restarted the line to make a few more SW Prems (my brother in law put an order for a NIB two weeks ago. Will arrive in Aus in late Sept). Two years on and still cranking out SW machines - not bad for Stern.

    -1
    #1310 56 days ago
    Quoted from ausretrogamer:

    I can confirm that Stern has restarted the line to make a few more SW Prems (my brother in law put an order for a NIB two weeks ago. Will arrive in Aus in late Sept). Two years on and still cranking out SW machines - not bad for Stern.

    Anyone that plays SW loves the game. The left outlane drain needs to be fixed with a larger Williams post and then she plays fairly and a great deal more fun. What a machine. I’ll put it up against any table in the fun department. Once you dial in the DS shot, the SW universe is yours for the taking. Secret is to move the target near the DS lane to the far right.

    #1311 56 days ago
    Quoted from Thunderbird:

    We are talking about accounting 101. What more should be cut from a table to get the price point lower to $3k and still stay in business? Balance is more important than cutting prices even lower. I’m all for lowest price possible, but there comes a point. $4k seems to be a magic point to still maintain profitability and table goodies. Lower, means even less, which would not be appealing.
    There are other manufactures that are way over priced on their product, but don’t think Stern is one of them, unless you bring up the Beatles debacle. Lol! Yes, all prices could be $500 lower on different models for sure.

    I agree.
    What could be left out out and still have a fun and acceptable pinball experience, which Will keep you around and coming back for more?

    It`s called the PRO version.
    IF the coindoor cost 1k to include, you may remove it for a homeversion, otherwise i think the PRO is it.

    #1312 56 days ago

    I watched the video and thought the layout of the home Edition was better than the pro.

    #1313 56 days ago

    Holy $hit fellas, are you serious? 27 pages of “I know pinball better than Stern”?
    This is exactly why I’ve spent so little time on Pinside as of late.
    Hilton continues to slag Stern at every turn. Some people agree, some disagree. 27 pages later...

    Maybe I’m in the minority, but I’ve learned that for a pinball machine to be worth purchasing, it needs a great layout and awesome code. Regardless of how great a theme it is, I have to wait to play it and see if the code is great before laying out any $. That means that although new releases are always exciting, it’s still nothing more than a “potential step 1” in a multi step process before a game proves itself worthy of my $. Seeing a StarWars home version did nothing for me, but it’s not as though the pin stole my wife and kicked my dog on the way out. I want to see Stern succeed but I truly don’t give a single flying $uck if they want to try selling a simpler version to the masses.

    You guys all appear to be suffering from Brewsters Millions-syndrome, where it’s imperative that you buy every new release.

    Get a life already.

    #1314 56 days ago
    Quoted from Chambahz:

    Holy $hit fellas, are you serious? 27 pages of “I know pinball better than Stern”?
    This is exactly why I’ve spent so little time on Pinside as of late.
    Hilton continues to slag Stern at every turn. Some people agree, some disagree. 27 pages later...
    Maybe I’m in the minority, but I’ve learned that for a pinball machine to be worth purchasing, it needs a great layout and awesome code. Regardless of how great a theme it is, I have to wait to play it and see if the code is great before laying out any $. That means that although new releases are always exciting, it’s still nothing more than a “potential step 1” in a multi step process before a game proves itself worthy of my $. Seeing a StarWars home version did nothing for me, but it’s not as though the pin stole my wife and kicked my dog on the way out. I want to see Stern succeed but I truly don’t give a single flying $uck if they want to try selling a simpler version to the masses.
    You guys all appear to be suffering from Brewsters Millions-syndrome, where it’s imperative that you buy every new release.
    Get a life already.

    One of us. One of us. One of us!

    -1
    #1315 56 days ago
    Quoted from CrazyLevi:

    ...
    Please tell me how Stern can afford to sell a game like this for $3,000. There’s only so much you can strip out and not have it be a zizzle. ...

    You correctly highlighted that Stern must do something differently in order to be able to sell home editions for $3k. I am suggesting Stern cut their profit per machine down to zero if necessary, in order to introduce this new product. From a strategic point of view, if Stern wanted to create a new market and were willing to forgo $2k - $5k they typically make per game, it could happen. Why would they do this? Oh I don’t know but let’s review the definition of loss leader.
    913305B7-F7CB-4A60-B13C-D013E5BD786E.jpeg

    The purpose is defined by an expectation to sell additional goods to buyer in order to make up for the initial loss. Since this is a new product category, maybe they expect buyers to one day buy a full feature game. Other worthwhile goals might include penetrating an untapped market and applying pressure on competitors to keep their offer prices low and hasten their demise.

    Stern won’t sell many home editions at $4k but they could sell thousands at $3k. Let’s face it they will still make some money even at this level and they could choose to further engineer reductions. For instance, some have questioned whether playfield is solid wood and whether it is full length. If not,’ those are areas which could be further cost reduced in order to increase profit per game selling at $3k.

    #1316 56 days ago

    This might... *might* have a shot as a mass market retail item if it was flat packed, $1000 and made in China.

    4K made in USA? Forget about it. Wal-Mart/Target wouldn't even return your calls about distribution. Iron Man Classic was a dud at $2800 and it was far closer to a real game than this thing.

    You don't grow your market by targeting demos that don't exist.

    #1317 56 days ago
    Quoted from benheck:

    This might... *might* have a shot as a mass market retail item if it was flat packed, $1000 and made in China.
    4K made in USA? Forget about it. Wal-Mart/Target wouldn't even return your calls about distribution. Iron Man Classic was a dud at $2800 and it was far closer to a real game than this thing.
    You don't grow your market by targeting demos that don't exist.

    Stern obviously knows what they are doing (???), but I don't see many sales of this on the Star Wars geek appeal alone. I know that crowd fairly well. Some sales maybe, but I just don't think it sells well.

    #1318 55 days ago
    Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

    You correctly highlighted that Stern must do something differently in order to be able to sell home editions for $3k. I am suggesting Stern cut their profit per machine down to zero if necessary, in order to introduce this new product. From a strategic point of view, if Stern wanted to create a new market and were willing to forgo $2k - $5k they typically make per game, it could happen. Why would they do this? Oh I don’t know but let’s review the definition of loss leader.
    [quoted image]
    The purpose is defined by an expectation to sell additional goods to buyer in order to make up for the initial loss. Since this is a new product category, maybe they expect buyers to one day buy a full feature game. Other worthwhile goals might include penetrating an untapped market and applying pressure on competitors to keep their offer prices low and hasten their demise.
    Stern won’t sell many home editions at $4k but they could sell thousands at $3k. Let’s face it they will still make some money even at this level and they could choose to further engineer reductions. For instance, some have questioned whether playfield is solid wood and whether it is full length. If not,’ those are areas which could be further cost reduced in order to increase profit per game selling at $3k.

    Sorry, I don't think the loss leader strategy really applies in the pinball arena. Loss Leader examples are commonly someone like Wal-Mart offering lawn chairs at $5.00 a piece so they can get you into the store to buy milk and and bread at normal, or even slightly higher than normal prices.

    It's not like you're going to Stern for a home version pin, and walking out with a couple of pros and an LE.

    #1319 55 days ago
    Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

    You correctly highlighted that Stern must do something differently in order to be able to sell home editions for $3k. I am suggesting Stern cut their profit per machine down to zero if necessary, in order to introduce this new product. From a strategic point of view, if Stern wanted to create a new market and were willing to forgo $2k - $5k they typically make per game, it could happen. Why would they do this? Oh I don’t know but let’s review the definition of loss leader.
    [quoted image]
    The purpose is defined by an expectation to sell additional goods to buyer in order to make up for the initial loss. Since this is a new product category, maybe they expect buyers to one day buy a full feature game. Other worthwhile goals might include penetrating an untapped market and applying pressure on competitors to keep their offer prices low and hasten their demise.
    Stern won’t sell many home editions at $4k but they could sell thousands at $3k. Let’s face it they will still make some money even at this level and they could choose to further engineer reductions. For instance, some have questioned whether playfield is solid wood and whether it is full length. If not,’ those are areas which could be further cost reduced in order to increase profit per game selling at $3k.

    But loss leader pricing is done for a purpose... to either get customers in the door to buy other things... or establish a toe hold to upsell people to other items.

    Stern doesn’t care about selling other items... and if we don’t see the market wanting to buy 4K (or even 3k ) games... there isn’t much room for stern to upsell from a 3k loss leader. You can’t establish a market that won’t sustain.

    Selling thousands for no profit wouldn’t serve them anything.

    I don’t see anything in these games that make them more amenable to home buyers besides pricing. Are they more reliable? No. Are they more easily serviced or swappable parts? Stern abandoned their last home buyers. And stern still has no consumer facing support that scales up... or level 1 support line. They have zero online help for customers like faqs or kb.

    If people think it’s impossible for stern to build these games cheaper... then I ask how they did it before? And if it truly is as low as they can go.... simply don’t do it because you can’t do it as a viable product.

    If they can’t build a game for 1200$... then you need to change it or just stop trying.

    Maybe instead they should try partnering with an actual toy maker with the skills and production abilities and focus on designing a good toy. Probablynwhy zizzle outsold all the prior stern efforts

    #1320 55 days ago

    Lol @ “loss leader” pinball machines.

    Either a market for $4000 “home version” games exists or it doesn’t. Stern isn’t gonna lose hundreds to thousands of dollars per $2500 game just to whet consumers’ appetites for more.

    11
    #1321 55 days ago
    Quoted from CrazyLevi:

    Lol @ “loss leader” pinball machines.
    Either a market for $4000 “home version” games exists or it doesn’t. Stern isn’t gonna lose hundreds to thousands of dollars per $2500 game just to whet consumers’ appetites for more.

    I do find it amusing to see all of these pinball business experts on Pinside pontificating about how Stern doesn't have a clue about what they are doing.

    #1322 54 days ago
    Quoted from RobT:

    I do find it amusing to see all of these pinball business experts on Pinside pontificating about how Stern doesn't have a clue about what they are doing.

    Isn’t this the fifth time Stern has introduced a home pin? By all accounts, they are batting 0 for 4 and it becomes obvious the world’s largest pinball manufacturer isn’t very good deciding what new product people want either. They’ve tried many combos of the pin and altered the build each time and yet the #1 feedback they received was to lower offer price by thousands. What Stern did each time was ignore this advice and what happened next was nothing - they didn’t sell more than a few hundred pins. Think about the effort required to create, market, manufacture and roll out the pin, only to see it fail. Rinse and repeat and repeat and repeat with a slightly different package each time.

    Then we have the people (Pinside), and they are suggesting 1) they want the pin as designed if it cost much less or 2) additional changes to make before others buy it or 3) changes to Stern’s manufacturing process. Of these, the first option requires one phone call and is practically effortless to implement.

    We are left watching and hoping Stern can pull it off this time, but believing they won’t unless they make changes people are saying they want to see. I view the expert advice given to Stern on the pin as genuine efforts to help them succeed. Even if all the advice sucks, I’ll bet there is at least one good idea (lower the price) contained within.

    -2
    #1323 54 days ago
    Quoted from CrazyLevi:

    There’s only so much you can strip out and not have it be a zizzle.

    This is basically a zizzle with a ruleset.

    Quoted from Thunderbird:

    Anyone that plays SW loves the game.

    I'm forced to play it for league play every week, and I think it's flat out terrible. Dull and uninspired.

    #1324 54 days ago
    Quoted from drsfmd:

    This is basically a zizzle with a ruleset.

    I'm forced to play it for league play every week, and I think it's flat out terrible. Dull and uninspired.

    How do you give a post a thumbs up and down at the same time?

    #1325 54 days ago
    Quoted from drsfmd:

    This is basically a zizzle with a ruleset.

    waf (resized).jpg
    -1
    #1326 54 days ago
    Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

    Isn’t this the fifth time Stern has introduced a home pin? By all accounts, they are batting 0 for 4 and it becomes obvious the world’s largest pinball manufacturer isn’t very good deciding what new product people want either. They’ve tried many combos of the pin and altered the build each time and yet the #1 feedback they received was to lower offer price by thousands. What Stern did each time was ignore this advice and what happened next was nothing - they didn’t sell more than a few hundred pins. Think about the effort required to create, market, manufacture and roll out the pin, only to see it fail. Rinse and repeat and repeat and repeat with a slightly different package each time.
    Then we have the people (Pinside), and they are suggesting 1) they want the pin as designed if it cost much less or 2) additional changes to make before others buy it or 3) changes to Stern’s manufacturing process. Of these, the first option requires one phone call and is practically effortless to implement.
    We are left watching and hoping Stern can pull it off this time, but believing they won’t unless they make changes people are saying they want to see. I view the expert advice given to Stern on the pin as genuine efforts to help them succeed. Even if all the advice sucks, I’ll bet there is at least one good idea (lower the price) contained within.

    The people who want the game for thousands less wouldn’t buy a game that’s thousands less.

    Stern is probably content to sell a couple hundred Star Wars Home Edition. This project got this particular layout on to Spike 2 and with a LCD screen. In a few years they’ll likely sell a commercial version of this game as a contracted game like Supreme (it’s the same game after all). Now Stern can offer multiple boutique pins with score wheels, dots, or a mini LCD. Slap a new art package on and go.

    #1327 54 days ago
    Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

    Isn’t this the fifth time Stern has introduced a home pin? By all accounts, they are batting 0 for 4 and it becomes obvious the world’s largest pinball manufacturer isn’t very good deciding what new product people want either. They’ve tried many combos of the pin and altered the build each time and yet the #1 feedback they received was to lower offer price by thousands. What Stern did each time was ignore this advice and what happened next was nothing - they didn’t sell more than a few hundred pins. Think about the effort required to create, market, manufacture and roll out the pin, only to see it fail. Rinse and repeat and repeat and repeat with a slightly different package each time.
    Then we have the people (Pinside), and they are suggesting 1) they want the pin as designed if it cost much less or 2) additional changes to make before others buy it or 3) changes to Stern’s manufacturing process. Of these, the first option requires one phone call and is practically effortless to implement.
    We are left watching and hoping Stern can pull it off this time, but believing they won’t unless they make changes people are saying they want to see. I view the expert advice given to Stern on the pin as genuine efforts to help them succeed. Even if all the advice sucks, I’ll bet there is at least one good idea (lower the price) contained within.

    Good points...wanted to add one thing.

    Many folks have said the HE product isn't for "us". While this is true, I still think the collector community is large enough that our collective opinion matters.

    Here's why: This type of purchase for MOST people isn't an "impulse purchase". If someone sees the machine @ Costco, I think many will seek out other opinions on the product (either by Googling or asking folks in their neighborhood). I've had many neighbors over the years ask about obtaining a pinball machine for their game room. In this case, I could see someone asking if the HE product is a good value when compared with the commercial quality Stern products.

    #1328 54 days ago

    Another reason for loss leader pricing would be a company trying to undercut the competitions pricing to poach some customers away. As of right now, Stern has no competition at the street level pro price point...so all they would be doing is robbing themselves. Maybe this is a bit of effort turn the screws in on an already far-fetched set of missed promises made by Deeproot. From what I have seen so far, i'd much rather play this than a pro. I'm a big sucker for ramps protected with drop targets. This thing already has 3 more drop targets than a Munsters Pro. We have SW pros all over on location here, and I have no desire to drop quarters in them any more. There is one even set to 5/$2 right now.

    Gameroom Guys or The Pinball Company (I forget) is advertising them at $3999+$400 shipping. If they come down to $3499 shipped, I would possibly consider one. Need to play it first though.

    #1329 54 days ago
    Quoted from TreyBo69:

    The people who want the game for thousands less wouldn’t buy a game that’s thousands less.
    Stern is probably content to sell a couple hundred Star Wars Home Edition. This project got this particular layout on to Spike 2 and with a LCD screen. In a few years they’ll likely sell a commercial version of this game as a contracted game like Supreme (it’s the same game after all). Now Stern can offer multiple boutique pins with score wheels, dots, or a mini LCD. Slap a new art package on and go.

    You talk as if this is some new baseline and breakthrough for them. It's not. Spiderman had spike-like system before the commercial games did. The earlier low-cost games were built on the same platform as the commercial games were.

    The only thing 'new' with this release is how close Stern has gotten the game to a regular pro. And what people keep saying is... it's not the quality of the game experience that held prior versions back. It's the PRICE for that market. Moving it closer to a Pro doesn't solve that.

    You need experience AND price to sell this as a arcade-like experience to home buyers. Arcade 1-up wouldn't have suceeded at $1000... even tho $1000 is cheaper than a $1600 60-1 cabinet... $1000 or even $800 is too high for the target buyer/distribution they were going for. It was the price PLUS experience that got the winning formula.

    Stern is pushing a great experience... but completely missing the other half of the equation if you are going for walk up buyers.

    If their goal was to simply create another tier UNDER the pro for traditional home buyers through their normal distribution... they screwed up because the differentiation isn't enough.. and those buyers (more often than not).. want 'the real thing'... not an approximation.

    #1330 54 days ago
    Quoted from JodyG:

    Another reason for loss leader pricing would be a company trying to undercut the competitions pricing to poach some customers away. As of right now, Stern has no competition at the street level pro price point...so all they would be doing is robbing themselves. Maybe this is a bit of effort turn the screws in on an already far-fetched set of missed promises made by Deeproot

    But if that's the case (and I certainly agree that could be motivation...) - you don't show your cards early.

    Stern could have designed this... and kept it in the wings waiting for deeproot to pop their load. And when deeproot is all promises and splashes... Stern could turn around and say "hold my beer..." and launch their title afterwards with knowledge of what deeproot's price and feature point is.. undercut them... and still ship it before deeproot produced in volume.

    Launching before Deeproot hurts your ability to counter them or take the wind out of their sails.

    -1
    #1331 54 days ago
    Quoted from flynnibus:

    But if that's the case (and I certainly agree that could be motivation...) - you don't show your cards early.
    Stern could have designed this... and kept it in the wings waiting for deeproot to pop their load. And when deeproot is all promises and splashes... Stern could turn around and say "hold my beer..." and launch their title afterwards with knowledge of what deeproot's price and feature point is.. undercut them... and still ship it before deeproot produced in volume.
    Launching before Deeproot hurts your ability to counter them or take the wind out of their sails.

    I personally think Stern will be remaking more classic games of theirs at some point...at a much cheaper price point than pro level pricing. Say $2500-$3000. These games would be direct competition to a competitors "cheap" games. There has to be a way to mass produce an old game with some newer "under the hood" components, and things like LED digital display boards similar to what the aftermarket companies are doing. No Spike2, no R&D resources like a new layout would require, no art package to come up with, etc.

    #1332 54 days ago
    Quoted from JodyG:

    Say $2500-$3000

    Those days are gone.

    #1333 54 days ago

    I know the pinball purist will hate this but I think it would be kinda cool if they went kinda table top with the home editions. Move the tiny little screen to apron and move the boards into the base. Just remove the whole head and make it as thin as possible with it set to the correct slope with a flat glass top. You could go like full table height or no legs for coffee table height. You could go super space saving and do like a wall hanger that slide down and out with two legs. It would be sweet for an apartment dweller. That could also help reduce the price.

    #1334 54 days ago
    Quoted from Darscot:

    I know the pinball purist will hate this but I think it would be kinda cool if they went kinda table top with the home editions. Move the tiny little screen to apron and move the boards into the base. Just remove the whole head and make it as thin as possible with it set to the correct slope with a flat glass top. You could go like full table height or no legs for coffee table height. You could go super space saving and do like a wall hanger that slide down and out with two legs. It would be sweet for an apartment dweller. That could also help reduce the price.

    I was actually thinking the exact same thing, a "cocktail" version of the game as it were. That would cut costs even more and make it easier for people to justify getting one if it could double as a table since it would take no extra space. Would be lighter as well so easier to move around, easier/cheaper to ship, and takes far less space when stored on in a store warehouse.

    -1
    #1335 54 days ago

    As long as pinball is a largely handmade product, prices will be high. If they can automate some assembly, they will be able to drop costs over time. But the human impact is very costly.

    #1336 54 days ago
    Quoted from pintechev:

    As long as pinball is a largely handmade product, prices will be high. If they can automate some assembly, they will be able to drop costs over time. But the human impact is very costly.

    The human time is cheap - It's not even skilled labor for the most part. The expense is the scale of the operation. No volume = high costs. When they are cranking at volume (which requires supply chain, staging, space, QA, and warehousing) the human costs per unit shrink dramatically. But the overhead of the facility, inventory, etc all balloon and require capital.

    So... running a factory is expensive...

    #1337 54 days ago

    Got to play this machine a bunch over the weekend, my thoughts:

    The Good:
    I prefer this playfield layout to the Pro model. The shots feel better, there is far less SDTM drains from failed ramp shots. The captive ball feature is really well done. While the design is 'simpler' the components still feel legit. Flippers are powerful, the shots feel good, so anyone saying this is a 'zizzle' experience can just chill out... Granted I never liked the SW Pro model. The theme was old trilogy, the layout felt un inspired, and in my opinion the features were severely lacking compared to other recent releases like GB or Iron Maiden. Also the SW rules always felt convoluted to me. I'm still not thrilled with the original trillogy theme, but if I were going to buy one, i'd choose the Home edition over the Pro. I actually had fun playing it.

    The Bad:
    Of the 6 tables I saw at the event, I personally witnessed 5 of them have major mechanical failures that required the techs to open them up for repairs. I get that these were fresh off the line first run machines, but as a product being pitched as a 'home' model for folks not deep into the hobby, I think they are going to hit some rough feedback from customers if the machines don't become more reliable. Your 4K machine can easily become a 5K machine if you have to call a local repair guy to come repair stuff for you a few times. This isnt a slam on Stern's quality, (first run machines ALWAYS have issues) This is a observation about the concept of the product. Personally, I'd agree with comments above that I'd prefer a cocktail table style as a home edition.

    My only criticism of the machine other than mechanical issues would be that the rules felt late 70's early 80's at best. I rarely felt i was trying to complete modes, felt more like just racking up points. I do enjoy old games and simple rules sets, but I think they could spice up the experience a little in future code updates.

    As for price point, I can see 4K is what stern needs to charge to make money. It's a product that is expensive to produce, and ship. I agree with the previous comments that the price is only an issue because of how its being marketed. The 'average' family does not spend 4K on a toy. the average family doesn't spend 2K on a home computer... which would be used 100x more than a pinball. 4k is the right price for this machine, 'Average' is not the right descriptor of your target audience. But I get it. Marketing.

    #1338 53 days ago

    Great review scarybeard.
    In the stream, Jack mentioned that the machines were prototypes (not production). But totally agree, if I saw the hood up on a newly revealed machine, i'd be suss about its reliability.

    Just to ask, did it feel durable / heavy to you? I ask as I am one of these folks that wouldn't mind this (I also didn't like the SW Pro).

    #1339 53 days ago
    Quoted from scarybeard:

    Got to play this machine a bunch over the weekend, my thoughts:
    The Good:
    I prefer this playfield layout to the Pro model. The shots feel better, there is far less SDTM drains from failed ramp shots. The captive ball feature is really well done. While the design is 'simpler' the components still feel legit. Flippers are powerful, the shots feel good, so anyone saying this is a 'zizzle' experience can just chill out... Granted I never liked the SW Pro model. The theme was old trilogy, the layout felt un inspired, and in my opinion the features were severely lacking compared to other recent releases like GB or Iron Maiden. Also the SW rules always felt convoluted to me. I'm still not thrilled with the original trillogy theme, but if I were going to buy one, i'd choose the Home edition over the Pro. I actually had fun playing it.
    The Bad:
    Of the 6 tables I saw at the event, I personally witnessed 5 of them have major mechanical failures that required the techs to open them up for repairs. I get that these were fresh off the line first run machines, but as a product being pitched as a 'home' model for folks not deep into the hobby, I think they are going to hit some rough feedback from customers if the machines don't become more reliable. Your 4K machine can easily become a 5K machine if you have to call a local repair guy to come repair stuff for you a few times. This isnt a slam on Stern's quality, (first run machines ALWAYS have issues) This is a observation about the concept of the product. Personally, I'd agree with comments above that I'd prefer a cocktail table style as a home edition.
    My only criticism of the machine other than mechanical issues would be that the rules felt late 70's early 80's at best. I rarely felt i was trying to complete modes, felt more like just racking up points. I do enjoy old games and simple rules sets, but I think they could spice up the experience a little in future code updates.
    As for price point, I can see 4K is what stern needs to charge to make money. It's a product that is expensive to produce, and ship. I agree with the previous comments that the price is only an issue because of how its being marketed. The 'average' family does not spend 4K on a toy. the average family doesn't spend 2K on a home computer... which would be used 100x more than a pinball. 4k is the right price for this machine, 'Average' is not the right descriptor of your target audience. But I get it. Marketing.

    The three components to a successful product launch of the pin may be price, quality/reliability and experience.

    The pin won’t be going home if too richly priced and 3k might be a better level or 2k or 1k - not 4K. Once home, the pin better not break in the first 30 days or it will be going back to Costco. So if the glass has to come off and maintenance beyond clearing a ball jam is required, the pin will not succeed. Anecdotal evidence shows the pin has as many issues as a regular pinball. The pin was cheapened to get its price down and this decreased its reliability. If the pin only weighs 100 lbs and can be thrown about like a rag doll, components will break quickly and the game become a boat anchor for stacking laundry. Finally the pin must be fun and bring the entertainment or it won’t be played or enjoyed over time. That turns out to be the easy part as Stern knows how to build pinball.

    If the adage is true and you can’t optimize all three legs of the stool at once and must choose two - price and reliability are must haves in order to get the pin into people’s homes and to keep it there. The amusement angle is an important motivator for making people want to play the game often. As designed, I see the pin falling short on price and reliability and therefore failing from a sales POV.

    #1340 53 days ago
    Quoted from ausretrogamer:

    Great review scarybeard.
    In the stream, Jack mentioned that the machines were prototypes (not production). But totally agree, if I saw the hood up on a newly revealed machine, i'd be suss about its reliability.
    Just to ask, did it feel durable / heavy to you? I ask as I am one of these folks that wouldn't mind this (I also didn't like the SW Pro).

    Its definitely not as heavy as a Pro. I saw one guy at the show lifting it whenever the ball got trapped in the ball lock, because that particular machine was not registering the lock and would not plunge another ball. He didn't seem to have much issue lifting it. I just played the game the same I would any other machine, and did not notice any difference.

    I was thinking about the concept of a 'home' pin product more, and I have to assume the Spider man home edition did well for them, or they would not be doing a round 2 with SW. I would be interested to see a census of who originally bought the Spider Man Home edition, and where those machines are today. Did those Original buyers keep them as their one and only machine? Was it a gateway drug that got them into buying Pro's? Did they get bored and re-sell them to Pinheads that want a machine but cant afford a pro? If I had to guess I'd say the 'gateway drug' is the most likely. These products may be less about bringing the pinball experience 'home' and more about an introduction product to ease new owners into an expensive hobby. You see this sort of thing with Tabletop wargames. a $100 box with all the rules and figures to play, and before you know it you are online ordering $600 worth of models to add to your forces.

    If you look at the introductory 'box set' as a stand alone game, the product seems week and will stale quickly. But its not about the intro Box, its about getting you into the product line.

    #1341 50 days ago

    I’ve always doubted the durability of Evel Knievel Home Edition, but haven’t seen one in years. Guessing they probably sell from $200 - $1k.

    BD3329FA-1AFB-4902-B811-8A7BBAC4D66F.jpeg
    #1342 50 days ago
    Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

    If the pin only weighs 100 lbs and can be thrown about like a rag doll, components will break quickly and the game become a boat anchor for stacking laundry.

    The SW Pin weighs 220 lbs. Just 25 lbs lighter than a SW Pro.

    #1343 49 days ago

    Just preordered SW Home Edition Arcade, which weighs 110 lb soaking wet. I know people are jumpy about preorders, but what could go wrong? It comes with pedestal as shown and it was $540 including tax, to my door. Not quite a pinball, but it is Star Wars... and it’s $4k cheaper.
    1FC613F8-B795-423A-A26F-A1FB88000D08 (resized).jpeg

    1 week later
    -5
    #1344 43 days ago
    Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

    Just preordered SW Home Edition Arcade, which weighs 110 lb soaking wet. I know people are jumpy about preorders, but what could go wrong? It comes with pedestal as shown and it was $540 including tax, to my door. Not quite a pinball, but it is Star Wars... and it’s $4k cheaper.
    [quoted image]

    It's not 4K cheaper. Star Wars Home is $3,999 everywhere. The $4,500 MSRP is meaningless.

    New to the hobby or what?

    #1345 41 days ago
    Quoted from Sinestro:

    It's not 4K cheaper. Star Wars Home is $3,999 everywhere. The $4,500 MSRP is meaningless.
    New to the hobby or what?

    Ok, $3500 cheaper. Same same.

    #1346 41 days ago
    Quoted from Sinestro:

    New to the hobby or what?

    Judging by the fact that he's been on pinside for 16 years, my educated guess is that he's not new... not sure but its just a hunch

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