(Topic ID: 149652)

Stern Pinball Toppers Continues to Rise $$$?


By xTheBlackKnightx

4 years ago



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  • 103 posts
  • 58 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 years ago by PanzerFreak
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There are 103 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 3.
#1 4 years ago

All,

Nothing personal to anyone, but I think this price ceiling situation continues to get out of hand with Stern similar to what happened with the SM VE.
I just do not understand why they are doing this right now.
Yes, I get if "you do not like the price do not buy it", as it is a luxury and not a needed part for functionality of the game.

Another $100 price increase for the Game of Thrones Pinball Topper over the previous one.

http://gameexchange.biz/collections/pinball-parts/products/game-of-thrones-pinball-topper

$500 instead of $400 (and this is on "sale" right now from $550?) in less than just a few months since the TWD topper, even if the dragon moves its wings.
That is like two months of groceries for small families in lower cost of living areas of the USA.

Is the engineering design costs, materials, and functional complexity driving the expense?
I actually conducted a detailed look into its design as a technician and engineer, and it uses *mostly* standard parts other than the resizing of the dragon from the playfield version.
The wings are basically modified flipper coil assemblies in a manner of speaking.

Is the wiring even tied to game mode functioning while playing or is it static like TWD?
I could not find that out.
I do understand the circuit board wiring in this case for power and connections, but I do not know how it wired in function of the wings coils for activation.

It is almost forcing people to prefer aftermarket toppers as a standard.

It is also driving the market to continue to prevent pinball to be affordable as a hobby to new collectors. There is a cause and effect relationship with these type of circumstances. It is not about the topper alone by itself, which some have simplified.

The NOS aftermarket parts inventory is just as hard to accept.
$250 for a Metallica Sparky "Bobble Head"...

#2 4 years ago

If you build it....

49
#3 4 years ago

Better yet, just don't bother buying any topper at all.

Everyone laughs at people who buy dolls and other crap to put on top of their machines.

#4 4 years ago

I'm a huge fan of toppers, I got a few still nib off of Matt McKee runs, even then I thought they were pricey, so vent away bro! Market will tolerate as much as consumers want to pay, when Stern sits on stock, pricing will drop. But not before. On sale from $550? GFY Stern...

#5 4 years ago
Quoted from vid1900:

Better yet, just don't bother buying any topper at all.
Everyone laughs at people who buy dolls and other crap to put on top of their machines.

#6 4 years ago

I think part of the problem is all the channels is has to go through. No idea on this mod, but I know mezel mods made some mods for them in the past. So, now you have a 3rd party making them and needing to get paid, you need to get paid and now distros need to get paid.

Glad they opened the Stern store as I don't think the smaller run and pricey accessories arent really supported by a distro system.

#7 4 years ago
Quoted from xTheBlackKnightx:

Is the wiring even tied to game mode functioning while playing or is it static like TWD?
I could not find that out.

Yes it's interactive w the game. The house lights match what the ones on the playfield are doing - and I'm guessing the dragon animates along with the playfield dragon.

#8 4 years ago
Quoted from jrivelli:

I think part of the problem is all the channels is has to go through. No idea on this mod, but I know mezel mods made some mods for them in the past. So, now you have a 3rd party making them and needing to get paid, you need to get paid and now distros need to get paid.
Glad they opened the Stern store as I don't think the smaller run and pricey accessories arent really supported by a distro system.

Not a lot of markup for a Distro on an already overpriced luxury toy.

But hey, if they're selling then it's our own fault I guess.

#9 4 years ago
Quoted from Rarehero:

Yes it's interactive w the game. The house lights match what the ones on the playfield are doing - and I'm guessing the dragon animates along with the playfield dragon.

Should I perhaps put one on my MM, repaint the dragon red, and change the shield designs to MMs classic ones or rewire directly to game modes of play?
Then rewire the topper to activate the dragon when the damsel ramp switch is hit as well?

Would that make it worth $1000?

#10 4 years ago
Quoted from vid1900:

Better yet, just don't bother buying any topper at all.
Everyone laughs at people who buy dolls and other crap to put on top of their machines.

I'm guilty of liking me some toppers. I like the ambient lighting that they add and I think they look cool. I prefer laseriffic and some of the other moders work over sterns over priced stuff. My GOT will just not have a topper before I pay $500 for that thing. Crazy overpriced and I don't think it looks particularly good. I would love to see what the development cost is and how much in parts each topper really costs. All 3 stern toppers are cool, but more like $200-$250 cool.

#11 4 years ago
Quoted from xTheBlackKnightx:

Would that make it worth $1000?

That's the LE topper with mini powder coated side rails.

#12 4 years ago

Everybody laughs until you put an eye out with one of these things...

#13 4 years ago

Did Stern sell TWD toppers to their distributors? Are they allowing distributors to sell Stern GOT toppers? I think the TWD toppers had to be ordered direct from Stern. Maybe the price increase is a margin thing?

Regardless, at the below link you can see the action of the GOT topper in the first few seconds of this video from Stern and come to your own conclusions on the merit of a price increase.

https://www.facebook.com/sternpinball/videos/10153656829819244/

Terrifying, ...that dragon.

I hope it doesn't frighten young children away from pinball for life.

#14 4 years ago
Quoted from xTheBlackKnightx:

Is the wiring even tied to game mode functioning while playing or is it static like TWD?

The TWD topper lighting is tied into the game. The lit heads match where you are in collecting fish tank heads, and the topper lighting adds to the light show. There is a special connector to connect to the game cpu - which I'm sure most Stern toppers will utilize.

#15 4 years ago
Quoted from xTheBlackKnightx:

Everybody laughs until you put an eye out with one of these things...

He is laughing at all who lay with him.

#16 4 years ago

Hey Stern, for $500 give us some REAL toppers!

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#17 4 years ago

I think they're pricey too, but on the other hand you have to remember these are very niche products. They take time and money to develop, they're made in relatively small runs which is expensive (big difference making a few hundred toys vs churning out a few hundred thousand) and the margins and prices just have to be higher to compensate.

I don't think it's worth $500 personally. But I understand why the price can end up so high.

As with all things, the market will speak.

#18 4 years ago

I still think toppers should be stock on LE's

#19 4 years ago

Matt McKee, in my opinion, make the coolest toppers hands down. I love my POTC topper and now this one ...

IMG_20151020_012651929_(resized).jpg

#20 4 years ago

I haven't seen the Matt McKee POTC topper

#21 4 years ago
Quoted from indypinhead:

I haven't seen the Matt McKee POTC topper

Now you have

IMG_20160117_155250597_(resized).jpg

#22 4 years ago
Quoted from yzfguy:

Matt McKee, in my opinion, make the coolest toppers hands down. I love my POTC topper and now this one ...

IMG_20151020_012651929_(resized).jpg

I loved McKee's Transformers topper but sorry, but that Met topper is butt.

You've already got a nicely modeled Sparky on the playfield - why have a giant "off model" one on top? It's an eyesore on a beautiful game.

#23 4 years ago

TWD topper was hard to do at $400 but ok, it has some custom zombie heads and what not. KISS topper is a joke at $400. It has to be like 70-90 worth of metal and LEDS. Now this one at 500 is just over the top.

#24 4 years ago

Im not a fan of aftermarket toppers. If the game came with it then I'm ok with it. Some of the aftermarket ones I've seen just look goofy in my opinion. But, to each their own.

#25 4 years ago
Quoted from Rarehero:

I loved McKee's Transformers topper but sorry, but that Met topper is butt.
You've already got a nicely modeled Sparky on the playfield - why have a giant "off model" one on top? It's an eyesore on a beautiful game.

I guess that's what make the world go 'round..... As soon as I saw this topper in person, I had to have one. I think it is awesome looking and hysterical. It went on 5 minutes after I unboxed the game and I absolutely love it.

#26 4 years ago

Not a fan of toppers. I even removed the factory FT topper.

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#27 4 years ago

I just like to compare stuff lol.

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#28 4 years ago
Quoted from flashinstinct:

I just like to compare stuff lol.

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Forgot to include that you can play pinball on the phone.

#29 4 years ago
Quoted from BillySastard:

Forgot to include that you can play pinball on the phone.

You can also buy a working game instead of a topper at this point

#30 4 years ago
Quoted from flashinstinct:

I just like to compare stuff lol.

compare_(resized).jpg

I'd take the topper over an iPhone any day.

#31 4 years ago

Aurich said it best. Production quantity matters and the market will speak. How much would that iPhone cost if Apple only made a couple hundred of them? Certainly not $545...

#33 4 years ago

As someone who has seen this topper it is bad ass and worth the money. No one is being forced to buy this topper. You don't like it? That make you way less cool in my eyes than someone who owns a machine with one of these bad asses up top.

#34 4 years ago
Quoted from John_I:

As someone who has seen this topper it is bad ass and worth the money. No one is being forced to buy this topper. You don't like it? That make you way less cool in my eyes than someone who owns a machine with one of these bad asses up top.

Cooler, yes. Poorer, also yes.

-2
#35 4 years ago
Quoted from flashinstinct:

I just like to compare stuff lol.

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Don't forget to compare either of those items with two month's worth of groceries for a small family in "low cost of living areas" in the USA.

Heck, let's compare one of these $500.00 toppers with the cost of attending Expo. $130 ($145 w/taxes)/night host hotel, food: $50/day(all is expensive in the area unless you want junk), $180-$210 per person admission "package". Plus the cost of getting there: 30-50ยข/mile whether driving or flying. If flying, add for ground transportation.

First world problems, eh?

-1
#36 4 years ago

I just compared it to the value you get in my opinion you don't get much for $500. Some people think so, some don't.

#37 4 years ago

I was at Stern on Thursday and saw them assembling these toppers. They are very well made and alot goes into them, including a custom node board. I have been getting alot of emails so I do have a topper coming out and I have shown Stern to avoid any issues and I should have it ready to go 2nd week in Feb.

#38 4 years ago
Quoted from Laseriffic:

I was at Stern on Thursday and saw them assembling these toppers. They are very well made and alot goes into them, including a custom node board. I have been getting alot of emails so I do have a topper coming out and I have shown Stern to avoid any issues and I should have it ready to go 2nd week in Feb.

If I install Stern's topper, then see yours and like it better, we're no longer friends on Facebook.

#39 4 years ago
Quoted from MrBally:

First world problems, eh?

Well I guess Canadia squeeks in as a 1st world country

#40 4 years ago
Quoted from TheLaw:

Well I guess Canadia squeeks in as a 1st world country

No it doesn't.

#41 4 years ago

Fair enough...i defer to the original 13 colonies on this

#42 4 years ago
Quoted from TheLaw:

Fair enough...i defer to the original 13 colonies on this

It's all about Nunavut.

#43 4 years ago
Quoted from yzfguy:

I guess that's what make the world go 'round..... As soon as I saw this topper in person, I had to have one. I think it is awesome looking and hysterical. It went on 5 minutes after I unboxed the game and I absolutely love it.

I completely agree, I may be biased being that Matt is a friend, but the topper with the plasma light tying into the electrocution theme, it's just completely cool! One of his favorite toppers of mine for sure.

#44 4 years ago

Aw fuq it its only money easy come easy go

#45 4 years ago
Quoted from Laseriffic:

I was at Stern on Thursday and saw them assembling these toppers. They are very well made and alot goes into them, including a custom node board. I have been getting alot of emails so I do have a topper coming out and I have shown Stern to avoid any issues and I should have it ready to go 2nd week in Feb.

Sooo... Toppers are very well made but QC on GOT pin itself is not?

#46 4 years ago
Quoted from underlord:

Sooo... Toppers are very well made but QC on GOT pin itself is not?

I'll let you know when the dragon from my topper falls off and breaks through my PDI glass. If that happens, there'll be a bonfire in my backyard. Shame, too...cuz I love this f**king game.

#47 4 years ago

For what Stern charges for their recent LE's and considering what you get over a premium (not much) it should be included at no extra charge.

The unique cabinet artwork means little on an LE in my opinion, as the pro and premium use decals for cabinet artwork as well. For $1500 more people get mirrored backglass, side armor, and a tiny LE plaque that is pretty cheesy on an $8k pinball machine. So yes, Stern should include these aftermarket toppers with all LE's.

#48 4 years ago

pinball isn't a poor man's hobby anymore...

#49 4 years ago
Quoted from PanzerFreak:

For what Stern charges for their recent LE's and considering what you get over a premium (not much) it should be included at no extra charge.
The unique cabinet artwork means little on an LE in my opinion, as the pro and premium use decals for cabinet artwork as well. For $1500 more people get mirrored backglass, side armor, and a tiny LE plaque that is pretty cheesy on an $8k pinball machine. So yes, Stern should include these aftermarket toppers with all LE's.

Translation: Not enough toys.

#50 4 years ago

I am in. Oh well, I paid 600$ for an IGT TZ topper

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