Quoted from Rockytop:
I wonder how much the aprons will cost
why would you need a new apron?
The kit will include a new apron with a qr reader for Pros, and mostly just a qr reader for Prem/LE as well as a wifi dongle. George said he doesn't know price but said he emphasized that he doesn't want this to be focused on making profit because he wants widespread adoption.
Quoted from cosmokramer:
I hear ya, but I'm open to believing that they won't gouge people (on this single item). I think there is much more value for Stern in this being in every machine than selling the individual units.
But we'll certainly see what they actually sell them for.
Quoted from fooflighter:
I don't care about personal video game achievements, in the same way I probably won't care about personal home pin achievements...
For me personally, I like the idea of "official" challenges within the existing ruleset to go for, I think it will give some games a little more life and might help to keep them fresh for longer. I'm not too worried about leaderboards or anything like that but I'm open to things that get me to play a game in a different way than I might otherwise play it. There is a lot of potential for what the design teams can do with this kind of connectivity, so I'm optimistic.
For people that are interested: new content, for those that aren't: don't bother with it. Seems like a win-win to me.
Quoted from JayTeeF:
It would be cool if they could incorporate some type of head to head/matchmaking capabilities to this. Thinking about it though this might be a challenge with latency, etc.
If you wanted to do heads up-style timed challenges, I don't see why this Insider Connected system couldn't handle that. Set the challenge, start a timer on the screen to plunge and then just compare the times to complete the challenge when both players have completed it. Then you could show a challenge completed screen which compares both players completion times.
The main issue with this would be whether you trust your opponent isn't cheating which would be a far bigger issue in random matchmaking type situations.
Quoted from anathematize:
Obviously free game or loyalty type of promos really only make sense in the location pinball world. But i wouldn't doubt that the home user will be able to setup their own promos to reward family/friends that come over to the game room.
Oh man, it would be awesome if in the home environment you could have games auto linked to QR codes/Insider Profiles so that you don't have to scan anything just select from a short list of pre-linked profiles. AND THEN, also allow for different rules difficulties for different profiles. Like if you could go into the adjustments and create specific difficulty profiles: Level 1, 2, 3 and factory for example and then set those difficulties for individual profiles.
In my opinion, that would be a cool way to add some real value for home users.
Quoted from RatShack:
This was exactly my gripe about the streamed head-to-head competitions that were held.
The PinClash stuff is pretty fair, in my opinion. The qualifying attempts are required to be live streamed so you see the glass is on and the player isn't cheating, plus the qualifying round objectives arent really based on keeping the ball alive for longer so pitch and tilt sensitivity aren't as big of a deal. But even those are verified for the actual tournament so I think its actually a pretty poor example.
Quoted from Isochronic_Frost:
Why on earth would any operator want the PAYING player to be able to CHOOSE EASIER SETTINGS? Obviously skilled players will simply choose easy settings and blow it up and play on the cheap. Sounds like a losing proposition for operators.
I suggested that as being in the home environment, not location. My whole post was about making this stuff valuable for owners and not just location players and operators.
Quoted from NorCalRealtor:
I don't disagree with you. Luckily for me there's a big library off offline pins I will continue to enjoy and collect. We all play for different reasons. I enjoy pinball socially and to unplug.
I don't understand your whining about this ADDITIONAL feature. You can still play any online enabled game without logging in, without doing challenges, without achievements or leaderboards or whatever. It just sounds like this is a reason for you to be angry about mean old Stern Pinball doing things you dont like that dont even have to affect you at all.
Quoted from NorCalRealtor:
Your logic is highly flawed. Firstly, an addition is not always an improvement. Try adding 50 pounds to your girlfriend. Secondly, we've already been alerted to the largest ever Stern price hike in the neighborhood of $600-$1000. This is what we get in exchange. So, as a collector it does affect me. Do you generally pay for discretionary things you don't like or want? That would be pretty stupid. Don't you think?
First things first, my "logic" is that if there's a feature you don't like, don't use it. I certainly didn't say ALL additions are improvements but this one is. If you want to talk about price increases, that's another issue worth discussing. But a price increase was coming with or without this hardware, we'll see what it ends up being but if the increase is $400 or $500 for a Pro but $1000 for a Premium, then clearly there are other considerations than the new hardware.
Quoted from flynnibus:
but this is also the same Stern that is still using the Sega Portals UI for service menus 25 years later...
It would sure be nice if they used this opportunity, where they will be releasing updated code for ALL Spike 2 games, to update the menu system. I know very little about what that would take but it sure seems like an across-the-board change like that would be worthwhile for owners and operators. And if they could give me an option to create custom adjustments profiles/pre-sets that I can quickly switch between, that would be great.
Quoted from BaxterStockman:
And say you win a game with a post game match or high score. It puts that credit into your account. Would be really nice since sometimes my best games are when I'm running late or need to get back to the table because the food is arriving.
This would be cool but a feature like this would have to be locked to a specific operator so you can't get free games on one operator's machine and then spend it on another operator's machine.
In the George Gomez announcement video (around the 1:42 mark) it is mentioned that 7 machines to start will include the Insider Connected platform, and implies they are: Avengers, Deadpool, Jurassic Park, Led Zeppelin, Mandalorian, TMNT, and the next released game (Godzilla).
From the article above: "GG: Insider Connected will remain free. Insider Connected All Access will be a subscription based service just like the existing All Access loyalty program has been. Insider Connected All Access will have specific premium features on top of everything that has been described above."
Quoted from pinballkyle:
It’s blatantly obvious a monthly subscription will occur for op’s. This is how all vending is going. I’m not super excited to see the fee structure but I assume it’s around $20 per mo per game.
I disagree that it's "blatantly obvious," of course it's possible but I'm personally much more interested in what is confirmed to be happening rather than what every random pinball fan THINKS Stern will ultimately do with this technology.
Quoted from pinballkyle:
I’ve been in this industry for a long, long time, to me it’s blatantly obvious it’s going to happen. I wouldn’t call myself a ‘random pinball fan’ I run an arcade with 25 pinballs, and I route games at several locations.
I have a gut feeling that this stern insider will be free or cheap for home use, but at a much higher price point for Op’s
I think you're missing my point (starting with my initial comment/question) in that I'm more interested in confirmed features, costs, requirements, etc. rather than just speculation, even if your experience in pinball informs your current expectations.
I certainly think there is room for speculation and discussion but I keep seeing people say things they expect or that are "blatantly obvious" but saying them in a way that implies it's an actual thing and not just their opinion. That's why I asked the question in the first place.
As an operator, how do you think operators in general would respond to Stern Insider Connected for "free" and as a subscription service? Do you think it will increase earnings to have it enabled? Especially enough to justify an additional expense.
Quoted from DNO:
Free=great! Let’s try it out.
Subscription=Let’s let them earn like always, maybe try putting one on line and see if it makes more $$.
*I don’t think it will significantly raise earnings on casual play locations (which is a lot of route play money), so if it costs it will soon be taken offline.
I feel like the retrofit kit will certainly be a huge stumbling block for operators existing machines. But I guess, the upcoming games with it pre-installed will be a chance to test the waters. As a player, I feel like a single machine at a location with Insider Connected would kind of miss out on the overall potential of the system but I guess that is unavoidable as anything non-Spike2 will lack obviously lack the functionality.
Quoted from thechakapakuni:
Is there an official Stern page that explains what this does or is it a mystery and we’re all guessing?
Bits and pieces from various articles, interviews and a video of George Gomez talking about the system. It actually speaks to the point TaylorVA is trying to make about knowing ahead of time what you're gonna get. Everyone is speculating what it will be, what direction it will go in, whether it's great, whether it is the worst idea Stern has ever had, whether we will get "less" in the core game than we have been, etc. The reality is, Stern announced Insider Connected to coincide with a price increase that it is a part of as well as the release of Godzilla (the first game released with the tech) but haven't yet adequately informed machine buyers what the immediate and long term plans are for it.
Quoted from Insanity199:
"Why $500obo? That was the price increase on this game to cover it and it is currently limited."
Stern's site clearly shows Insider Connected markup as $300 retail. If someone buys that for close to $500, we have really gone mad.
He was pretty forthcoming in the ad that people are hinting at MUCH less direct from Stern when they're actually available. I see no problem with the ad.
Quoted from Insanity199:
I was specifically referencing that he said $500 was the price increase because of it. $300 MSRP was the increase on all machines which can be clearly seen on the Stern website. Regardless, you are right that he was up front that it will likely be sold for less from Stern.
Fair point, that was misleading. I still don't have a problem with the ad.
I'm gonna be honest, I don't really know the specifics of all the drama surrounding the guy but there seems to be a bunch of a pre-existing conflicts at play.
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