I'm at the $125 level as well. Why? Well here is my reasoning:
1) The book chronicles Stern 30 years of making Pinball. Their artwork isn't the best as frankly it's what they can work with in Photoshop then it's what the IP holder allows. That being said there is a talented design process to even doing that because I can't Photoshop or draw for shit.
2) Meeting Steve Ritchie, etc at Pintastic this past July really changed my view on how the industry works. They still need to meet deadlines just like in the 80's, they need to make a fun game to themselves and you, they need to make a reliable game, and they are getting increasingly complicated which requires them to ante up their game constantly.
3) I have funded a few KS in the past. I have funded Reading Rainbow for the modern age, The Sanctum in CT, a barcade in ME called "Arcadia", a documentary about Midway, Pinball Arcade: Doctor Who, another barcade in NH called "8-bit Retro", Dragon's Lair: The Film, and a videogame called "Novus Aeterno". The Sanctum and Arcadia I funded because I personally know them and are friends and became a mega success. The barcade in NH isn't open yet, however I'm pretty sure will become big and the owner is very nice. The documentary about Midway is a no-brainer and I actually met the director and former Midway employee of the documentary at an expo this past weekend in CT. It's already been well received even by celebs I mean it's Midway Gaming. Reading Rainbow was a no-brainer and was a major success that appeared all over the news. Dragon's Lair: The Film screwed me over with printed stuff including their autographs. You don't get a copy of the film or anything it's just a demo to sell to investors which I understood but postcards with printed autographs? Major ripoff because they didn't say that! Novus Aeterno is a game I was interested in '11, has gone through major changes, still has not come out with no finish line in sight, and I really would like my $60 back. So essentially a video game created by 2-5 dev's screwed me over which isn't a shocker with KS.
4) This is a high quality book because it represents Paper Flock, a new company trying to impress, and Stern. Believe it or not Stern always aims to impress with how much budget they have before making the game cost too much.
5) It's signed by Gomez, Gary, Steve, etc. Going to Stern is on the bucket list but since I'm in MA, that is hard to do. Going to JJP is more realistic. If they all came to Boston that would be great but this tier guarantees they all sign these 30 books. I consider these people special in my life because of their work that I enjoy.
6) The extra's are a nice added thing. I get another t-shirt that I don't have room for in the closet, a wallpaper for the computer (meh), and a nice framable poster that is a good size. The poster is a big plus to me as it's a collection of all Stern table's of 30 years on a poster which is pretty cool. Only downside is they are folding it so there will be crease marks all over the thing but I hope it won't be too bad. Plus I think putting them in a tube might raise costs.
7) Only 30 made of this LE super duper edition. This I think matters because the Pinball community isn't really shy from spending money. People want one of these editions and are willing to pay for it. After all it did sellout under 24h. Will I sell it? Most likely not, it's staying in the game room. However the last time I spent this much money on a book was the same scenario only it was "The Tales of Beedle the Bard: Collectors Edition". It was $100, the money went to orphanages all across the UK, only 100 made, the quality is exceptional. I figured it went to a good cause, I was going to get a quality book, and only 100 made with millions of Potter fans across the world. I was right because the book is now worth over $400: amazon.com link »
I only read it once and barely opened the thing to read it so really aside from mint it's just celophane removed. Even kept the cardboard packaging. You don't spend stupid amounts of money on a newly minted coin or something "exclusive" when there is a small audience and they are mass made.
8 ) The $200 is just stupid I'm sorry and is wayyy too much in my opinion. I mean if you have the money sure because it's a nice big poster done by Zombie Yeti and it's signed/numbered. However it's likely to be reproduced and quite frankly you're paying ~$60 for that poster. You may not even like or think the poster is worth that extra cost.
9) The $500 is smart to re-sell the books and you would get like $50 after selling them all. Pretty darn good value at this tier. You're most likely a distributor selling 9 books and keeping 1 for yourself.
Irony of all this is I don't own a Stern but I hope to one day (I do own a Space Mission though), I'm banned from their Facebook because I think I asked them to release more code, and yes they do a LOT of crummy things. I wish Paper Flock the best and I hope this gets funded well past $50k. Please don't get pissed off Joe by some of the comments here. It's a dumpster fire of a forum with little mod enforcement. The repair threads are interesting however.