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(Topic ID: 258845)

Rare Hero eats crow: My apologies to Stern Jurassic Park


By Rarehero

11 months ago



Topic Stats

  • 46 posts
  • 30 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 11 months ago by CaptainNeo
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

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67
#1 11 months ago

I’m sure this post will elicit a group “well f’ing DUH” ...but, I have to apologize for writing off Stern’s JP from the initial reveal. The voices and art turned me off, and since I haven’t really dug any Spike era games, I figured this one wouldn’t be any different.

Today I finally played a JP Premium at snaroff ’s house.

Holy. F’ing. Crap.

I was a F’ing A-hole.

What a phenomenal game.

Not gonna write some big review, cuz you guys already know what’s up with this game. But wow. Keith Elwin is a gaddamn American treasure. Everyone involved with this game deserves all the microwave burritos & TWIPYs. Anyone who was cynical and skeptical like I was, try to play one. Feeling this game in action erases the surface nitpicks completely. The design is bonkers fun. Every shot, ramp and combo feels satisfying and new. The sound design is cinematic and exciting. I can’t say I understand the rules yet, but it has that up-front fun factor which makes me want to keep playing to learn the nuance. I picked up on a bit of it, and what was there was fun. The concepts seem new, but still feel firmly pinballish. The T-Rex is awesome...probably the most “alive” character toy since Red & Ted. Loved the raptor paddock & all the little trap posts everywhere.

Dang...haven’t been this impressed with a game in a long time.

Seriously...sorry to everyone I badgered about this game when I wrote it off as “just another Stern”...nope, no way....I get it now. Absolutely special, masterclass in design, first class pinballing. Smile-on-your-face FUN.

#2 11 months ago

Yay!

Up next do you secretly love the nineties throwback of dialed in?

#3 11 months ago
Quoted from Rarehero:

Not gonna write some big review,

actually, it’d be great if you did write a big review of JP because I have no clue why it is getting such high reviews in pinside. I had a few games at Pincinnati and it felt like any other Stern pin. Shots were maybe a bit tighter than other games. I also read through the rules in the Tiltforums - like every Stern pin - there are modes directed by rgbs, 4-5 multiball modes, some playfield multipliers and some wizard modes. Granted, the newton ball on the vehicle which changes which mode you play next and the right ramp feeding the upper flipper are nifty twists, but that can’t be it, right?

My theory up to now has been people are having a knee jerk reaction thinking since it’s Keith Elwin it must be great. The rating comments are not much help. I’ve had a chance to play Iron Maiden a bit more since there is one here in an arcade, it’s definitely a nice game with clever rules, truly innovative layout, not sure yet if I have to have one.

So what’s up with JP?

#4 11 months ago
Quoted from BC_Gambit:

Yay!
Up next do you secretly love the nineties throwback of dialed in?

Hah...I’m relatively neutral on DI. I enjoy it...it has some unique, unexpected things about the layout. I’d play one if it was in front of me. I don’t think I’d ever love it like I do a bunch of other Lawlor games.

22
#5 11 months ago
Quoted from Rarehero:

I was a F’ing A-hole

So what else is new?

#6 11 months ago
Quoted from branlon8:

actually, it’d be great if you did write a big review of JP because I have no clue why it is getting such high reviews in pinside. I had a few games at Pincinnati and it felt like any other Stern pin. Shots were maybe a bit tighter than other games. I also read through the rules in the Tiltforums - like every Stern pin - there are modes directed by rgbs, 4-5 multiball modes, some playfield multipliers and some wizard modes. Granted, the newton ball on the vehicle which changes which mode you play next and the right ramp feeding the upper flipper are nifty twists, but that can’t be it, right?
My theory up to now has been people are having a knee jerk reaction thinking since it’s Keith Elwin it must be great. The rating comments are not much help. I’ve had a chance to play Iron Maiden a bit more since there is one here in an arcade, it’s definitely a nice game with clever rules, truly innovative layout, not sure yet if I have to have one.
So what’s up with JP?

It gets high reviews for the following reasons...

1) it’s not a safe fan layout
2) it was designed for a more advanced player
3) 4 ramps, good loops, tons of combos

But equally as important...
4) the rules

The rules in this game are awesome, and similar to IMDN, there are multiple ways to attack it. Sure you have the map in the middle which may seem at quick glance as the only thing that matters, but there’s more to those than meets the eye (and not all that matters). Each paddock on the map can earn you unique features. Additionally there are carnivores and herbivores, having different levels of aggression. This is why the truck direction plays into strategy for advanced players. So even the rules are “immersed” more than something like GOTG’s “shoot green arrows this mode and red that mode, because... points”.

From there, similar to IMDN’s power features and something else I’m forgetting, JP has Trex modes and Control Room modes. Trex is linear I believe, and control room is selectable.

Then throw in Chaos MB, the raptor pit rules, the missiles, and some of the coolest spinner rules I can ever remember seeing (way cooler than a mystery super spinner award or lighting spinner for more points after a target bank is completed), and there’s a ton to unpack and digest before fully appreciating what’s going on here.

#7 11 months ago

I felt the same way on launch. Played a few games on a pro and felt meh on it and couldn't wait to shove my money in Maiden beside it. Didn't do anything for me.

Last week I went back to the same pinbar and there was 8 credits left in it. Did a 4 player game and burned thru them pretty quick. Started another 4 player game and about half way thru it started to click. Once it clicked, I was hooked. Got replays on all 4 games. I went back a couple more times over the weekend just to play JP. Someone posted a link to the rules after my last visit so I'm looking forward to my next visit and see if I can figure it out some more.

The pro rocks and would be my must buy pinball. Looking forward to trying a premium someday.

#8 11 months ago

Glad you enjoyed it. The game has such a rewarding feel when completing loops and combos. Lots of unexpected ball pathing. 4 ramps, really just great use of the space overall.

#9 11 months ago

Great game. Terrible clear coat.

#10 11 months ago

This is why we should play games and then make opinions

JP premium is legit! Got to play it over the holidays and it is the most fun new pinball that I have played in years. Definitely on my list to pick up once home construction is done.

#11 11 months ago

I had the same experience, didn't like the art and callouts at the reveal. Even initially after playing it, I didn't get the love. Came back, and around 10 plays in, it hit me. This is one of the best machines out there. Gotta get one someday.

#12 11 months ago

Next up....Ghostbusters.

#13 11 months ago

Great game!! Ordered Jan build date premium from Stern! Plan to mod the hell out of it including powder coating armour!!

#14 11 months ago
Quoted from TomGWI:

Great game. Terrible clear coat.

that's a fact :/

else, i took not more than playing just 1 ball (to my son & me, really same feeling) to say : we need one home !

from that day (it was at the very begining, with the 1st LE arrived by plane in Europe), feeling remain the same, we're still thinking JP have to be in our home, but as said above, the NIB idea is now far away due to the PF probs seen here & there... a nice HUO will do it later, we're not under urgency

#15 11 months ago
Quoted from branlon8:

actually, it’d be great if you did write a big review of JP because I have no clue why it is getting such high reviews in pinside. I had a few games at Pincinnati and it felt like any other Stern pin. Shots were maybe a bit tighter than other games. I also read through the rules in the Tiltforums - like every Stern pin - there are modes directed by rgbs, 4-5 multiball modes, some playfield multipliers and some wizard modes. Granted, the newton ball on the vehicle which changes which mode you play next and the right ramp feeding the upper flipper are nifty twists, but that can’t be it, right?
My theory up to now has been people are having a knee jerk reaction thinking since it’s Keith Elwin it must be great. The rating comments are not much help. I’ve had a chance to play Iron Maiden a bit more since there is one here in an arcade, it’s definitely a nice game with clever rules, truly innovative layout, not sure yet if I have to have one.
So what’s up with JP?

A couple people already explained it better than I could! For some, simply - it felt great. Every shot felt great, linked to multiple other shots that felt great. Geometry just had nothing goofy about it to complain about. Each shot had multiple purposes to exist, which added to the satisfaction.

I won’t argue with those who love Maiden...for whatever reason I could never get a hang of it or get a feel for the shots and flow. JP on the other hand, after a few games felt “just right” to me.

Quoted from TomGWI:

Great game. Terrible clear coat.

That always seems to be a crapshoot with Stern. I’ve been very vocal about cratery playfields...the particular machine I played looked very nice still after a few hundred plays. Still, that’s going to be the reason I’m not gonna just run out and order one. I’ll keep my eyes open for a used one I can check out first.

Quoted from Yoko2una:

PS - I also believe neither the Pro nor Premium have any RGB’s so the quoted comment about following colored RGB shots don’t even apply to this game.

There are inserts that change color. There was a T-Rex chase mode where you had to shoot orange inserts, and they would flicker orange/white...in other instances they were green. I could have sworn the inserts for the car were sometimes white and sometimes red.

#16 11 months ago

Without justifying words, simply tons of experience, it really is that Great a Game!

#17 11 months ago

well top banana for admitting you where wrong - waiting for you to play stranger things now

#18 11 months ago
Quoted from Rarehero:

There are inserts that change color. There was a T-Rex chase mode where you had to shoot orange inserts, and they would flicker orange/white...in other instances they were green. I could have sworn the inserts for the car were sometimes white and sometimes red.

Interesting. I don't recall that at all. Not listed on the feature matrix for any model as well. I’ve only played 3 Pros so far but just don’t recall that happening.

#19 11 months ago
Quoted from NeilMcRae:

well top banana for admitting you where wrong - waiting for you to play stranger things now

I’ve said I’ve wanted to play Stranger Things Prem due to the interesting projector gimmick. Not really interested in the Pro, though.

#20 11 months ago
Quoted from Yoko2una:

Interesting. I don't recall that at all. Not listed on the feature matrix for any model as well. I’ve only played 3 Pros so far but just don’t recall that happening.

I played a Premium. I just looked at a playfield pic to refresh my memory - it shows white inserts for T-Rex & the car. Those are def color changing.

#21 11 months ago

Most Stern games fall into a range of good to very good to great. Truly bad games are rare, as I can only think of a handful of Sterns in the past decade plus that I would not take for free. My list of pins to avoid includes: NBA, BBH, IJ, WWE and WNBJM/Primus. It is not uncommon to wait many years for the code on some games to mature and to bring a game up to the level of good. If you want to buy a game, there are plenty of very good to great pins to choose. Good pins are at least enjoyable to play on location. Glad Rarehero has discovered JP.

#22 11 months ago

I thought the art was bad also from online images, but the first thing that stuck me when I took it out of the box was how good the art actually was!

#23 11 months ago
Quoted from Rarehero:

Today I finally played a JP Premium at snaroff ’s house.
Holy. F’ing. Crap.
I was a F’ing A-hole.
What a phenomenal game.

Great seeing you again! So glad you liked the game. I was impressed with how quickly you were able to dial-in many of the tough shots/combos. Once you get into some of the rule nuances, it's even more of a blast! One cool thing about the ruleset (that you mentioned) is you can enjoy the game without groking all the subtle aspects (that take longer to master). Examples: tracking the dinosaur movement, nailing all the red arrow shots in order to boost your score, DNA combos, etc.

Quoted from branlon8:

actually, it’d be great if you did write a big review of JP because I have no clue why it is getting such high reviews in pinside. I had a few games at Pincinnati and it felt like any other Stern pin. Shots were maybe a bit tighter than other games. I also read through the rules in the Tiltforums - like every Stern pin - there are modes directed by rgbs, 4-5 multiball modes, some playfield multipliers and some wizard modes. Granted, the newton ball on the vehicle which changes which mode you play next and the right ramp feeding the upper flipper are nifty twists, but that can’t be it, right?
My theory up to now has been people are having a knee jerk reaction thinking since it’s Keith Elwin it must be great. The rating comments are not much help. I’ve had a chance to play Iron Maiden a bit more since there is one here in an arcade, it’s definitely a nice game with clever rules, truly innovative layout, not sure yet if I have to have one.
So what’s up with JP?

I imagine it's hard to appreciate a game like this in a few games. If you played a Pro and couldn't hear the audio, that might detract from the experience. I've played both, and think the Premium add-ons are "must have" on this title. Both T-Rex and the Raptor pit rock on the Premium/LE.

As you know, Stern release a spectrum of games, and this is on the difficult end of the spectrum. It's a "shooters game"...the shots are tighter (as you've mentioned), but they are also more difficult to put together on-the-fly. One amazing 3-way combo is right loop, left loop, raptor tower. Wow.

#24 11 months ago
Quoted from TomGWI:

Great game. Terrible clear coat.

The PF/clear on mine (built 11/22) has been fine so far (~250 plays). Minor dimpling...only visible from the side of the game. From the players perspective, the PF looks flawless. Since Stranger Things is more recent and I've seen some awful cratering, the PF situation continues to be a crapshoot (unfortunately).

#25 11 months ago

I just paid for one and it should be delivered to my house early tomorrow morning. can't wait.

#26 11 months ago
Quoted from TomGWI:

Great game. Terrible clear coat.

One has awesome CC one not so much.

63C7EE37-C0C8-4AEC-9001-81DE1AA0039C (resized).jpeg
#27 11 months ago
Quoted from Yoko2una:

PS - I also believe neither the Pro nor Premium have any RGB’s so the quoted comment about following colored RGB shots don’t even apply to this game.

Not sure I understand what you are talking about. The dinosaur arrow inserts are constantly changing colors: white, yellow, orange, red, blue, green all communicate different things to the player. If an arrow has multiple colors, it cycles through them.

More info can be found here:

#28 11 months ago

They put in a Jurassic park right here by the theater in Fullerton. In the comic shop.

Sweet. I would agree what a cool game. I really enjoy that I can find it in the field to play easily. A friend of mine bought it.

I prefer Iron Maiden but Jurassic is great. Just great!

It makes me excited about what is next.

#29 11 months ago
Quoted from Pdxmonkey:

One has awesome CC one not so much.[quoted image]

Which was good, which was bad?

#30 11 months ago
Quoted from Pdxmonkey:

One has awesome CC one not so much.[quoted image]

Going to guess the LE is the better one.

#31 11 months ago
Quoted from Rarehero:

I’m sure this post will elicit a group “well f’ing DUH” ...but, I have to apologize for writing off Stern’s JP from the initial reveal. The voices and art turned me off, and since I haven’t really dug any Spike era games, I figured this one wouldn’t be any different.
Today I finally played a JP Premium at snaroff ’s house.
Holy. F’ing. Crap.
I was a F’ing A-hole.
What a phenomenal game.
Not gonna write some big review, cuz you guys already know what’s up with this game. But wow. Keith Elwin is a gaddamn American treasure. Everyone involved with this game deserves all the microwave burritos & TWIPYs. Anyone who was cynical and skeptical like I was, try to play one. Feeling this game in action erases the surface nitpicks completely. The design is bonkers fun. Every shot, ramp and combo feels satisfying and new. The sound design is cinematic and exciting. I can’t say I understand the rules yet, but it has that up-front fun factor which makes me want to keep playing to learn the nuance. I picked up on a bit of it, and what was there was fun. The concepts seem new, but still feel firmly pinballish. The T-Rex is awesome...probably the most “alive” character toy since Red & Ted. Loved the raptor paddock & all the little trap posts everywhere.
Dang...haven’t been this impressed with a game in a long time.
Seriously...sorry to everyone I badgered about this game when I wrote it off as “just another Stern”...nope, no way....I get it now. Absolutely special, masterclass in design, first class pinballing. Smile-on-your-face FUN.

Ok , how much they paid you ??!!

#32 11 months ago

Until the clearcoat/playfield issues are settled, there will be zero NIB purchases. I dont care how fun or over the top immersive a game is. I wont be immersed while watching the playfield artwork disappearing right before my eyes.

#33 11 months ago
Quoted from snaroff:

Not sure I understand what you are talking about. The dinosaur arrow inserts are constantly changing colors: white, yellow, orange, red, blue, green all communicate different things to the player. If an arrow has multiple colors, it cycles through them.
More info can be found here:

I just watched the DF stream of the Pro on YT. There were about 8 inserts which could change color. I guess I didn't remember them since the middle of the PF is all single-color inserts. RGB (anything) is not mentioned on the feature matrix of any model which also I think made my mind's eye think there weren't any.

#34 11 months ago
Quoted from Rarehero:

Which was good, which was bad?

LE nicer than pro.

Pro was also a later build with missing artwork around posts.

#35 11 months ago
Quoted from Pdxmonkey:

Pro was also a later build with missing artwork around posts.

Bad news and first I’ve read of the later/no post art runs also having clear issues.

#36 11 months ago

Yup. Game of the Year for 2019

#37 11 months ago
Quoted from Vino:

Bad news and first I’ve read of the later/no post art runs also having clear issues.

It isn’t bad
I have no issues at all with it, but they are different. LE has no noticeable dimples or craters so comparatively looks nicer.

#38 11 months ago
Quoted from Vino:

Bad news and first I’ve read of the later/no post art runs also having clear issues.

In the PF issues thread, there's a newer run (no artwork around posts) JP Pro where the clear chipped after 15 plays. Seen it in person.

#39 11 months ago

I'm so over these uber-complicated games that you have to watch a documentary for to really 'get' the rules. Probably explains why I only have Crescendo and Cyclone at this point. Deep games are great at home, but the first time I have to play one of these in a tournament, I'm going to get my ass handed to me, just like on IMDN, because either the rules are not understandable at a glance, or the points are buried so far down in the game, there's no practical way to get to them in a reasonable amount of time.

Like..I'm really sick and tired of having to play multiple 45 minute 2 player games of IMDN when I go to leagues or tournaments. And it happens every. Bloody. Time. I'm quite frankly afraid of JP ending up in the same bucket, but it feels less 'friendly' in regards to ball drains than IMDN. Might just be me.

I didn't need a guide for AC/DC or Deadpool or Tron, but I feel like even after hundreds of games on IMDN, I still barely have a clue what the f00k is going on with the scoring, and why some games are 600 million, and others are sub 100. JP...I haven't played enough games on to say the same, but I still feel like I'm just trying to hammer the paddock constantly, because nothing seems worth good points unless I'm stacking a multiball, and the shots just feel clunky to me. I dunno if it's poor flipper alignment at the place I have access to it or what, but that spot target behind the pops? It's damn near impossible to shoot.

I think ultimately...Keith is just designing games for himself. It just HAPPENS that there's enough buyers that agree with his choices to move them out of the factory. But, I'm not Keith, and I will never be Keith, because I don't have 40 hours a week to just play pinball anymore. I hope at some point he'll deign to do something a bit less 'clusterfucky', but in the meanwhile, think I'm just stuck with Borg (Tron and Met are my top modern games...so...).

#40 11 months ago
Quoted from Frax:

I'm so over these uber-complicated games that you have to watch a documentary for to really 'get' the rules. Probably explains why I only have Crescendo and Cyclone at this point. Deep games are great at home, but the first time I have to play one of these in a tournament, I'm going to get my ass handed to me, just like on IMDN, because either the rules are not understandable at a glance, or the points are buried so far down in the game, there's no practical way to get to them in a reasonable amount of time.
Like..I'm really sick and tired of having to play multiple 45 minute 2 player games of IMDN when I go to leagues or tournaments. And it happens every. Bloody. Time. I'm quite frankly afraid of JP ending up in the same bucket, but it feels less 'friendly' in regards to ball drains than IMDN. Might just be me.
I didn't need a guide for AC/DC or Deadpool or Tron, but I feel like even after hundreds of games on IMDN, I still barely have a clue what the f00k is going on with the scoring, and why some games are 600 million, and others are sub 100. JP...I haven't played enough games on to say the same, but I still feel like I'm just trying to hammer the paddock constantly, because nothing seems worth good points unless I'm stacking a multiball, and the shots just feel clunky to me. I dunno if it's poor flipper alignment at the place I have access to it or what, but that spot target behind the pops? It's damn near impossible to shoot.
I think ultimately...Keith is just designing games for himself. It just HAPPENS that there's enough buyers that agree with his choices to move them out of the factory. But, I'm not Keith, and I will never be Keith, because I don't have 40 hours a week to just play pinball anymore. I hope at some point he'll deign to do something a bit less 'clusterfucky', but in the meanwhile, think I'm just stuck with Borg (Tron and Met are my top modern games...so...).

I agree with you in spirit, but it seems to me like JP works on multiple levels & you can kind of play it the way you want. If you want to play for points strategies, you’ve got all that craziness...but with the map aspect of the rules, you can just play for progression, enjoy the various chases and rescues...”let’s see how far I can get”. That’s generally how I approach games, the points just come with the progress. I didn’t get Maiden...that’s a bit more “pointsy”, but JP seems to have a more grounded understandable aspect. I love TNA, but I don’t really know the “tourney way” to play...I generally try to just get through as many reactors as I can, and that’s fun for me.

-1
#41 11 months ago
Quoted from Rarehero:

Hah...I’m relatively neutral on DI. I enjoy it...it has some unique, unexpected things about the layout. I’d play one if it was in front of me. I don’t think I’d ever love it like I do a bunch of other Lawlor games.

I've played both DI and JP2 quite a bit and Dialed In is better in every way!

#42 11 months ago
Quoted from Frax:

I'm quite frankly afraid of JP ending up in the same bucket, but it feels less 'friendly' in regards to ball drains than IMDN. Might just be me.
I didn't need a guide for AC/DC or Deadpool or Tron, but I feel like even after hundreds of games on IMDN, I still barely have a clue what the f00k is going on with the scoring, and why some games are 600 million, and others are sub 100. JP...I haven't played enough games on to say the same, but I still feel like I'm just trying to hammer the paddock constantly, because nothing seems worth good points unless I'm stacking a multiball, and the shots just feel clunky to me. I dunno if it's poor flipper alignment at the place I have access to it or what, but that spot target behind the pops? It's damn near impossible to shoot.
I think ultimately...Keith is just designing games for himself. It just HAPPENS that there's enough buyers that agree with his choices to move them out of the factory. But, I'm not Keith, and I will never be Keith, because I don't have 40 hours a week to just play pinball anymore. I hope at some point he'll deign to do something a bit less 'clusterfucky', but in the meanwhile, think I'm just stuck with Borg (Tron and Met are my top modern games...so...).

Not just you...ball times on JP are definitely shorter than IMDN (I own both). IMHO, JP is more difficult (and more addicting).

The DNA combos are really tough...there are 11 and I think I've only gotten 1 or 2 in over 200 games. Hoping Keith might simplify some of these combos before code is finalized?

No doubt Keith is designing games he'd like to play. From my perspective, this is goodness. With some games, I wonder if the designer actually played the game! Love SR, but AC/DC and SW have the same prominent 3-bank target that is notorious for draining (and very hard to avoid). I'm not a fan of draining after *making* a shot, though I understand some games do this intentionally (e.g. WH20 "extra ball" target).

Quoted from romulusx:

I've played both DI and JP2 quite a bit and Dialed In is better in every way!

Both great games. For me, JP2 is more of an adrenaline rush. I wish the DI audio was more inspiring (not the quality, the content).

#43 11 months ago

Did you said hello to my old Iron Man (nimble pin)

#44 11 months ago
Quoted from TheCnyPinGuy:

Did you said hello to my old Iron Man (nimble pin)

Sold IMNP to Pat Choy (endless pinball) in 2016 (after 3 years of enjoying it.

#45 11 months ago

Agreed, Game of the Year for Sure...It's amazing. We will all be playing this one for years to come.

#46 11 months ago
Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

Most Stern games fall into a range of good to very good to great. Truly bad games are rare, as I can only think of a handful of Sterns in the past decade plus that I would not take for free. My list of pins to avoid includes: NBA, BBH, IJ, WWE and WNBJM/Primus. It is not uncommon to wait many years for the code on some games to mature and to bring a game up to the level of good. If you want to buy a game, there are plenty of very good to great pins to choose. Good pins are at least enjoyable to play on location. Glad Rarehero has discovered JP.

did you forgot about Rolling stones? Avatar is a snoozer too. I'd take BBH over Avatar. 24 and CSI are pretty boring as well, but 24 looks nicer, just half assed rules. 24 if redone in the rules department, could be really good.

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