(Topic ID: 171152)

Stern coffee table book Kickstarter?!?

By MinusWorlds

3 years ago

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  • Latest reply 2 days ago by Backyardace
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    Topic index (key posts)

    19 key posts have been marked in this topic

    Post #2 Link to Kickstarter project. Posted by ForceFlow (3 years ago)

    Post #74 Feedback on Stern editorial control. Posted by JoeDP (3 years ago)

    Post #109 Talk about editorial choices. Posted by JoeDP (2 years ago)

    Post #120 Confirmation that Batman 66 will be in the book. Posted by JoeDP (2 years ago)

    Post #123 Poster(s) shipping arrangements clarified. Posted by JoeDP (2 years ago)

    Post #130 Project update announced. Posted by JoeDP (2 years ago)

    Post #785 December update from publisher - and promise of further updates Posted by Matesamo (1 year ago)

    Post #913 JoeDP says copy for book has been approved Posted by JoeDP (1 year ago)

    Post #1005 Update from Kickstarter page on book project Posted by KLR2014 (1 year ago)

    Post #1337 Well written complaint to Stern. Posted by j_m_ (9 months ago)

    Post #1482 March 12 backer update Posted by cooked71 (7 months ago)

    Topic indices are generated from key posts and maintained by Pinside Editors. For more information, or to become an editor yourself read this post!

    You're currently viewing posts by Pinsider frolic.
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    #275 2 years ago
    Quoted from Strohz:

    Why is Lyman Sheets not highlighted in any of the promos or autographing the books? His programming is one of the main reasons for Stern's success in my book, so I find it very curious he's not prominently featured. Did he just opt not to participate, or how were the featured employees for the book's history chosen?

    I have to agree as well, that Lyman needs to be in this book in a big way, including signing the LE versions. His name associated with a game is as heavily weighted as the actual designer. Stern seems to understand this as well now seeing how prominently he is being promoted for Batman66.

    #351 2 years ago
    Quoted from Whysnow:

    That is how these scam kickstarters work.

    This is only a scam if the backers don't get their rewards.

    Whatever profit is on the table is none of my concern if this book is released and I get my reward.

    Yes Kickstarter has shifted the risk from the founders to the customers, but this horse has left the barn and this business model has existed for years now and won't be going away.

    1 month later
    #427 2 years ago

    Small world. Zack, your author, did a piece recently on my arcade:

    pasted_image (resized).png

    4 months later
    #465 2 years ago

    This whole pass the hat thing, collect $50k, then say nothing until the expected PUBLISHING DATE has passed is really an indictment about crowdfunding. The money comes in too easy with no accountability. Where have we seen this before? Hmmmm.

    If a publisher had paid them $50k advance to write this book, there would be you know... deadlines. No publisher, no accountability, so f it, I guess? It'll get done when it gets done.

    As a backer... "you're welcome?"

    #476 2 years ago
    Quoted from MIL:

    Not long to go if these things are supposed to be finished / shipped in May .

    Well, I think we all know that ain't happening.

    My suggestion to Paperflock, since your entire business model is about crowd funding books, is that if you want to use crowd funding then you have a duty to continue the same communication throughout the process as you did when you were asking for money.

    "Sorry, I've been busy" doesn't work.

    #481 2 years ago

    At your current price of $20.30 US for PM Issue 4, that's only 2,463 issues you need to sell.

    Quoted from unigroove:

    So who's the smartest here? Maybe it's not such a bad model after all?

    It's hard to argue against this model when the free money is sitting there.

    1 week later
    #503 2 years ago

    I guess the decision is made but the book should have capped at 30 years and batman. There will always be a new game coming and the book will be out of date shortly after publishing so this delay seems unnecessary.

    #505 2 years ago

    They're probably talking about the next game after Star Wars.

    Anyhow, nothing much we can do but wait.

    #515 2 years ago
    Quoted from JoeDP:

    The book will be delivered in May of next year as indicated on the pledge level of every reward on the kickstarter page.

    Just a bummer that this was stated clearly, and then the first we hear of a delay is June 2017.

    #517 2 years ago

    It's just a book but i'm burned out on blown deadlines and "radio silence".

    4 weeks later
    #554 2 years ago

    I doubt this think will turn into a bust, paperflock can always launch their next kickstarter for their next book and we're at the top of the pyramid so it's ok. Someone else can pick up the cash burn for the extra year of work.

    It's just annoying and frustrating how it's been handled, the little communication and zero accountability, but hey, I understand that is just how things are done nowadays and I'm an old fart.

    2 weeks later
    #571 2 years ago
    Quoted from hool10:

    Joe is likely on vacation or people he needs to contact are on vacation as well.

    lol. A year long vacation maybe.

    1 month later
    #592 2 years ago

    In their last update about the delay, the latest delay was so they could chronicle the latest Stern title development, and it was the title AFTER Star Wars. So could they have delayed the book to do an extensive profile on John Trudeau's latest game, since he seems to be next up? What a mess.

    They should cut bait, and go back to featuring B66 as the last title in the book, the 30th anniversary game.

    1 week later
    #599 2 years ago
    Quoted from j_m_:

    even if the book doesn't ship? hell, if that's the case I need to start multiple kickstarters now!
    promise the world, deliver nothing and not be held accountable for anything? I can't understand how that would be legal

    Kickstarter is filled with failed projects. Some are straight up cons, most I suspect are just "easy money" that got blown and no way to finish it (see jpop for another example of this).

    1 week later
    #613 2 years ago

    They claimed last time the book would be finished and printing some time in October, so based on their track record I predict no update till November 3 when they announce their latest delay.

    1 week later
    #629 2 years ago

    I counted 69 posts of his in this thread. 63 of those were up to the end of the kickstarter. 6 since, and obviously next to none for most of the past year.

    #645 2 years ago
    Quoted from hool10:

    It's the typical Pinside mentality though and just brutally shut down the project before it gets off the ground because it wasn't like a previous pinball publication.

    Seems like Pinside was very effective in helping raise the $50k.

    #649 2 years ago

    Hmmm.... the Stern book is not the first book Joe has run a kickstarter for and left people waiting on


    THAT book was supposed to be delivered Nov 2016 to backers, and still not.

    #659 2 years ago
    Quoted from Rondogg:

    I'm not too worried yet.

    I'm not "worried" per se, I'm just greatly annoyed by how its been handled.

    We can bet the farm that their 2nd publishing date of October is not going to happen, but they'll only announce it now when the books were due (again). So, lets' get ready for the 3rd publishing date announcement, cause... why not.

    1 week later
    #682 2 years ago

    Last year they had banners promoting the book at the tour. This year will have...?

    #692 2 years ago

    I think everyone understands things on Kickstarter don't go as planned. The problem with this particular project is the radio silence. Never a good way to handle things and never excusable.

    #698 2 years ago

    Someone asked about the book. Said book guys are waiting for Stern comments.

    They hoped by their 32nd anniversary. Said half joking.

    #702 2 years ago

    I wonder if the "real" reason is still their Trudeau problem. How to excise him from the book, and if he was featured as the big game they were following.

    But not surprised they would never say anything about that.

    #703 2 years ago

    I just got an email from Kickstarter with an update.

    Nothing of note. Said what Stern said, Stern is reviewing. They hired an editor. Obviously this isn't going to print any time soon but they didn't give any new dates.


    #706 2 years ago
    Quoted from GotAQuestion:

    They said the full text is complete, that's a pretty big deal. And yes Stern has the text and is reviewing it.

    See, this is the kind of update they could have sent out before today. Obviously the text was finished and was sent to Stern for review. This happened before this week. Why not update us? Oh well.

    #713 2 years ago
    Quoted from master_of_chaos:

    In fact, Trudeau should not really be a problem. He has dedigned some really coolpi vall machines for Stern. He is part of Stern's history.
    The time, it was revealed that there could be something wrong with him, they finished working with him immediately.
    So, in my oppinion, no problem at all.

    Some may share your opinion, but I think they'll likely opt to be cautious at this time. I'll be surprised to see him featured in a large way in the final book. His games will be in there, but no big photo and interview.

    1 month later
    #724 1 year ago

    I think we got our answer at Expo. 32nd year, which is 2018 sometime. If we're lucky, before Expo 2018.

    2 weeks later
    #776 1 year ago
    Quoted from hool10:

    that there was a couple of rewrites that were likely understandably out of their control.

    saw that one coming. Still annoyed that the whole delay for the book was to go past the 30th anniversary game, Batman66, and then it turned into a clusterF.

    #787 1 year ago

    I know it's frustrating having to wait, but you can believe us when we tell you this project is going on longer and is much more complicated than we could have imagined when we started.

    Funny how that happens.

    #800 1 year ago

    I'm guessing it's not to remove all trace of him or his games, but likely when they extended the book to feature in depth new game development, it was a Trudeau title. Because the charges are so unpleasant and toxic, is that the person they want featured in a big way? Not to mention that title (I'm assuming the rumored Iron Maiden) was bumped in release to be retooled, to unbrand it as a "Trudea game" and assign ownership to another designer. So, the book can't destroy that narrative.

    It is what it is at this point.

    #802 1 year ago

    This was always only going to be "a coffee table book", not hard hitting journalism.

    I basically expected some nice pics of their titles, some well-known stories from Gary, factory photos, some bios of who works there. What else was it ever going to be?

    #817 1 year ago
    Quoted from GotAQuestion:

    He didn’t “hound” anyone, come on. He mentioned a product was going to exist to the people most likely to be interested in that product.

    dude, what is your definition of "mentioned"? Once, twice, 3, 5, 10, 20, 30, 40 or 50?:


    4 months later
    #948 1 year ago

    I drained this thread a while ago because it was too frustrating to keep monitoring. Now I'm back and I'm... frustrated!! lol.

    Happy Anniversary to the original book release date (May 2017).

    1 week later
    #958 1 year ago

    I'd like what I paid for.

    1 month later
    #995 1 year ago
    Quoted from tacshose:

    Where did the publisher get the $30,000? From our pockets on Pinside? From suckers on Kickstarter? Nope, sounds like $30,000 of their own money, wow what a difference that makes in motivation and accountability.

    Funny how when you need to make money from something, because you are out of pocket, you do something like... get it to market.

    2 weeks later
    #1006 1 year ago

    hey, let's go back to the archives and restart the book.

    Wasn't Stern "on board" with this from the start? With editorial control? So why the 11th hour offering of images?

    I'm looking forward to Todd's books more and more now. How many can he deliver before the Stern book?

    #1012 1 year ago

    Posted May 8, 2018:

    Quoted from JoeDP:

    I know time frame is the big question right now.

    We believe the design process will be around 8 weeks for a book this size.

    The content is collected.

    The story is written.

    The people are in place.

    And we are excited about finishing this project in the best way we can.

    It's insane to me that an update 2 months after the above was posted doesn't address what should be the final steps before printing, but talks getting assets.

    1 month later
    #1105 1 year ago
    Quoted from puck:

    What is everyone going to do with the book if and when they get it?

    Read it for 30 minutes then put it on the bookshelf. I'll probably have spent more time in this thread, lol.

    4 weeks later
    #1128 1 year ago

    Sounds like we need a new Kickstarter to hire Jonathan to finish the book.

    1 week later
    #1166 1 year ago

    Doesn't seem like this book is anywhere near finished.

    Quoted from phillymadison:

    What do we have left to do?

    1. Filter through all of the new images we got from Stern!

    2. Photoshop / cut out / clean up the images we want to use.

    3. Build the layouts based on the layout formats we have established.

    4. Get the entire book approved by Stern and all involved.

    Holy crap, that seems like a ton of work.

    1 week later
    #1184 1 year ago

    It's amusing to me that this thread has become the place to discuss other successful Pinball books being published and delivered to customers. Pinball Magazine's 360 page tomb, and Todd's volume 1, with more to come.

    1 week later
    #1201 12 months ago

    We'll meet back in this thread a year from now to see if it will be released for the 33rd anniversary.

    1 month later
    #1287 10 months ago

    There's no way today's announcement isn't just some regurgitation of the past ones.

    3 weeks later
    #1349 9 months ago
    Quoted from MrBally:

    Joe having Christmas fun in Las Vegas.
    I wonder if he stopped by the Pinball Hall of Fame or ran into Rotordave?
    [quoted image]

    I would be too ashamed to post photos like that when I was 2 years behind on something. But I get than I'm an old fart and people do things different these days.

    2 weeks later
    #1368 9 months ago

    Are we sure this post wasn't dated January 2017?

    #1377 9 months ago
    Quoted from puck:

    I’ll take how can we justify a trip to Vegas for 100 Alex.

    You've got their number.

    #1410 9 months ago
    Quoted from j_m_:

    "I can assure you it's still being worked on"

    I'm sure that is factual, just a bummer how its all played out.

    3 months later
    #1504 5 months ago

    "Making pinball books is hard"

    We're almost officially 2 years late from their May 2017 release date. Book was announced at Expo 2016.

    #1507 5 months ago
    Quoted from TigerLaw:

    How do failed kick starters work? Do the people behind the failure get something on their record that they were involved in a failed project that took in funding but didn’t deliver the product? Or since they still say it’s coming one day does that mean it’s not deemed a failure?

    Good question. I wonder how many "stalled" projects there are on Kickstarter and how that would affect the real stats on how Kickstarters perform.

    #1524 5 months ago

    Their October 2018 update was regarding the Stern CDs. So Stern was giving them inside material as recently as then.

    #1539 5 months ago

    "I know people are impatient"

    Holy F, Joe!!! You are 2 years freaking past due, on a project you estimated would be completed in 7 months. It's your buyers that are impatient?

    This is what infuriates people.

    It's not:

    "I didn't know what I got myself into when I started this, but I'm committed to finishing it".


    "I understand why people are upset, I would be too if I was waiting over 2 years for something that was supposed to be released May 2017"


    "I know people are impatient".

    Blame your backers. I think we could use some new Vegas trip photos, better get another trip scheduled.

    #1544 5 months ago

    This is dumb.

    "Do you want a piece of shit, or a good book? Take our poll"

    You don't ask the customer this. You make an executive decision and you deliver on deadlines the best product you can. You don't show the customer what it could have been and then say "sorry we ran out of time to give you THIS".

    This poll is tainted because obviously the "ship now" examples are all turds.

    #1571 5 months ago

    I was going to ask here if anyone got a refund. Then I noticed they posted this on the kickstarter:
    Screen Shot 2019-05-09 at 9.15.32 AM (resized).png

    In business (in the real world) if this happens you can be sued into bankruptcy because the business is insolvent.

    It's fitting that this book has followed the exact same pinball trajectory of the most infamous pinball failures, blown deadlines and no cash to refund anyone.

    #1597 5 months ago

    A sick part of me hoped the "Ship it now" would win. lol.

    #1614 5 months ago
    Quoted from J85M:

    Ahh Jpop the joke that keeps on giving

    jpopstapler (resized).jpg
    2 months later
    #1645 3 months ago

    I guess it doesn't even need to be said that we've crossed their "2 months" timeline since their poll.

    1 month later
    #1686 41 days ago

    Hi Kickstarter Backers,

    We have been very cautious over the past 6 months to not mention dates because we don't want to set up another situation where we state a hopeful date and then not meet it.

    But we are going to do give you a date at the end of this post!

    First, where we are now?

    For the scope of this book we set out to document 90 games, as well as construct a loose narrative about how those games came to be; the journey of Gary Stern's pinball career. When we first talked to Stern and insiders in the pinball community, we understood most of the documentation had been done by the company, and a dedicated fan volunteered their archive of thousands upon thousands of 35mm slides and negatives. We believed our job would largely entail scanning slides, cleaning up images in Photoshop, and uncovering long-lost company documents.

    Well, there was SOME of that, but once we got going we learned the company had not documented their own older games very well, and all those slides and negatives in the photo archive had been stored in a flooded basement and rendered unusable. We had successfully completed the Kickstarter, hired a writer, interviewed game designers and Stern employees, but we suddenly found ourselves without a high quality photo resource. This clearly put us in a very tough place.

    Instead of giving up, we vowed to find these games in the wild and document them ourselves. After all, how hard is it to properly photograph a pinball machine?
    92f555edbb36e97a3ddf29d4c853969b h264 high.jpg?ixlib=rb 2.1.0&mark=https%3a%2f%2fksr static.imgix.net%2frendered play button.png%3fixlib%3drb 2.1

    …well, VERY difficult, as it turns out. Simply locating the machines was the first and very daunting challenge. Only 50 or fewer models were produced of some of these games, made decades ago and scattered to the wind! After the machines were located, we needed to get permission to visit the facilities with a crew and lighting setup and take over a large portion of their space to photograph the machines, disrupting business in some cases. An all-day, 10+ hour shoot might result in the proper documentation of 6-8 machines. So we spent a lot of time photographing these things in the wild, from Chicago to Las Vegas to Los Angeles. Wherever we had to go, we went.

    We have now documented 80 of the 90 games! This was an EPIC feat. As you probably know, most pinball books have maybe one or two photos of a machine, and most of those photos were not taken by book’s creator. And most books don’t begin to approach this many machines! Documenting this much pinball history is a first!

    We aren’t stopping there. In May you told us you would rather have the book be the best it can be, instead of just going to print the way it was. So we are dedicated to making this book the best it can be, which means trying to document ALL of the games in our scope! Thanks to Robert Berk, who owns and organizes the Chicago Expo, we’re on schedule to get a few more this month. After that we be down to 6 undocumented games:

    1. Baywatch

    2. Lost in Space

    3. Striker Xtreme

    4. Sharkey’s Shootout

    5. NBA

    6. NFL

    If you have these games and want to document them (and have your personal game in the book), please get in touch! If not, we do have some material for these games, but not as much as we would like.

    Either way, our pledge to you is that we will have this book done before the end of this year! No matter what! We know you have waited. We know it has been a long road, (believe us, we’ve been on that road, too)! And we know you want and deserve a great book. So we pledge to make this book amazing and get it done before the end of the year!

    Please let us know if you own any of the six games above!

    Thank you all for all your support,

    Dameon and Joe, and the Paperflock Team

    #1687 41 days ago

    In May you told us you would rather have the book be the best it can be, instead of just going to print the way it was.

    Uh, the poll was "do we take 2 months to clean up the pages or ship it as-is", not the same as "We're still shooting machines, maybe we'll be done by the end of the year".

    #1703 40 days ago
    Quoted from unigroove:

    Only one word comes to mind: amateurs.

    Tell us how you really feel .

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