(Topic ID: 253582)

The Next American Pinball

By Charlemagne1987

2 years ago


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#22 1 year ago

I know the most prevalent rumor is that it will be SH but based on Josh's comments about themes he loves on one podcast I listened to I don't think it will be next. He mentioned that it would be one of his "grail" themes and they would need a LOT of time to work on it get it to a level he would be willing to accept so my guess is we see something else as their next pin and maybe SH in another year or so if they are working on it in the background / simultaneously. This is all just rampant conjecture and guessing on my part but that's what these threads are for, right?

#30 1 year ago
Quoted from nogoodnames222:

After their recent Facebook post about the code update w/ a picture of Matrix-style green binary, I can't get the idea of a Matrix pin out of my head. They'd be the company to do it right.

I'm just assuming that clue would be WAY too obvious and it was a complete mis-direction.

#45 1 year ago
Quoted from KenLayton:

Does your machine have "End-of-Stroke" switches installed on the flipper assemblies? Do you have the additional power supply installed? Do you have the latest game code installed?

Yes, yes and yes - still have the issue as well. I'd gladly invite the API folks to my house to play mine and see it first hand.

3 weeks later
#99 1 year ago

Why is there a trademark indication on "The Flying Dutchman"? Does that mean they are paying someone else to use this name, if so who as this seems like a very, very old mystical vessel the rights to which wouldn't be owned by anyone, or does it mean they own the right to that name for use on games? I am almost certain to never see one of these in person, just curious.

3 weeks later
#133 1 year ago

All this from the same guy who announced Joe Balcer had left API so he obviously has a really great connection inside there.

#141 1 year ago
Quoted from BorgDog:

orange ramps with purple connectors ftw

My mom would use a section of that orange track as a "switch" to get my attention when I didn't put my toys away, seeing those would bring back bitter-sweet memories.

1 year later
#239 9 months ago
Quoted from Charlemagne1987:

So with AP’s new hirings, particularly Dennis Nordman, does anyone still think Sherlock Holmes will be AP’s next game?

Based on the comments from the podcast it will be whatever Joe Balcer and team had in the works for game 5 and won't be a Nordman design (doesn't mean he can't have some impact on it).

1 month later
#248 8 months ago
Quoted from Porkfritter:

Crash Test Dummies

This would be a really, really obscure and odd choice for a pinball theme!

#258 8 months ago
Quoted from alexanr1:

I miss the creativity of themes from the 90’s. Funhouse, Roadshow, circus Voltaire, theater of magic, medieval madness, cactus canyon, etc... this is what I like about Houdini and Octoberfest. We don’t need another superhero or Netflix/HBO movie theme, Stern has the market saturated with this crap!
Thank you American Pinball for bringing some unique themes back to pinball.

I agree but unfortunately we are definitely in the minority in this market, I don't know if it's just because Arcades are largely gone and the market is nothing like it was in the 90s or if people's tastes and expectations have changed that much but original themes just don't sell. TNA could be considered a hit but in reality I doubt they sold a whole lot more of them than Houdini and that game gets repetitive quickly unless you have a large collection and / or are playing with / against others. Let's take a look at Legends of Valhalla which is rumored to be picked up and produced by AP, anyone who has played it praises just about everything about it but at the same time they'll say "they won't sell many of them" because of the theme. Nordic Gods is definitely something you could have seen Williams doing their take on in the 90s but today it's not a band, movie, comic book, etc. so few people want it.

2 weeks later
#262 7 months ago

This thread isn't getting a lot of love / buzz but I too am very curious what they have lined up from the "new kid" designer. With new people in charge of art direction as well we may see a major, major shift from their first three, all of which I think are really great games. Houdini seems to finally be overcoming the initial "the shots are too tight" and "they didn't do a whitewood" bullshit and getting a little more of the love it deserves from newer owners. I have no idea how well Hot Wheels is doing sales-wise but that's a fun shooter for sure and I'd like to own an OKT some day too.

1 month later
#351 6 months ago
Quoted from Charlemagne1987:

I’d be stoked for a Sherlock Holmes from AP. I hope you’re right.

LTG is just messing with you, based on the comments from David Fixx and Nordman its a game from an outside designer and I doubt they found someone who already had a Sherlock game nearly in the bag. I guess they could be re-theming LOV but that seems pretty unlikely.

1 month later
#373 5 months ago
Quoted from Charlemagne1987:

I think it will be a surprise only if it isn't Sherlock Holmes.

I'm the opposite, I'd be totally shocked if it IS Sherlock Holmes. I think it will be Sonic Spinball.

P.S. I don't really think it will be Sonic but I don't think that one's been mentioned in this thread yet.

#387 5 months ago

I just saw the news that Joe Balcer and Jeff Busch are now working with Homepin but I haven't had time to listen to that yet so I don't know if they were actually hired by them or just working as contractors (I assume the later). I wonder if that will affect the planned 6th game from API.

#390 5 months ago
Quoted from Charlemagne1987:

I heard that a few days ago. I think Balcer is now a "gun for hire". I don't know about Busch. And I, too, wonder how that will affect API's next game. I don't think Balcer is supposed to be involved with it. I'll bet Nordman will play a big part in it though.

Correct, according the the podcast with Fixx and Nordman the next game is from a "young, new designer" and then a Nordman game followed by the Balcer one which would have been #4. Joe was no longer an employee of AP but was working under contract now.

3 weeks later
#438 4 months ago
Quoted from Skyemont:

Who makes the playfields for AP?

Bader for OKT and Hot Wheels, Houdini used Mirco and Bader.

#444 4 months ago
Quoted from Charlemagne1987:

I must’ve gotten the Bader playfield on my initial run Houdini because I’ve had no pooling or chipping issues with it.

My very early run Houdini has a Mirco and it's been basically perfect with over 2K plays on it at last check. I did put a cliffy on the scoop but that's it. It's easy to tell the difference, the Baders have non-jeweled semi-opaque inserts were the Mircos have the more traditional clear jeweled inserts. I was told by someone who is now a former API employee that they rejected a bunch of Mirco playfields early on and made the switch to Bader at least partially due to that but this was at a show and I had been providing him with borboun so take that with a grain of salt, or a cube of ice if you prefer.

#470 4 months ago

I don't know where this Hip-Hop / Rap tangent started but I seriously doubt and hope that this is even on the lomg list of themes being considered.

1 week later
#489 4 months ago
Quoted from TreyBo69:

I checked and I’m surprised no one has thrown out the possibility that it could be a Capcom Kingpin remake
Those guys need someone to build that game they’ve been slowly tinkering with.

That doesn't really jibe with the comments Fixx made about the next game being from a new designer though. Personally I don't think that Kingpin will ever actually see production which is a shame considering how much work those guys put into it so far.

2 weeks later
#538 3 months ago
Quoted from ThePinballCo-op:

I have a feeling that AP is a company that everyone wants to buy from. They have solid products, great rulesets, fun layouts, and they pack their games and charge fair prices. The next game could be the one that blows this company up (in a good way).

There are always haters out there but it's hard to argue that Theme is more important in pinball now than it's ever been. The other biggest complaint has been art / display animations. I never saw that as too much of problem with APs games as it kinda fits the themes so far but if they do pull in a big license that will be a point that needs to be focused on, of course a theme usually brings a ton of assets to help (while also potentially hindering) in that department. If the game is LOV I think the existing artwork and animations will have been a very, very solid starting point for them. Very much looking forward to the reveal!

1 week later
#565 3 months ago
Quoted from LTG:

It's been posted here on Pinside that Joe is no longer with them.
Dennis Nordman is, and besides the game he is working on. He is training others ( 4 I think ? ) to design games in the future with his guidence.
Joe is with Homepin now.
LTG : )

Will be interesting to see if they still do the game Joe designed that was supposed to be #4 now that he's at Homepin but I wouldn't be surprised if his contract allows him to finish any contract work he had signed on for with AP.

#568 3 months ago
Quoted from johnnyutah:

Please make.
[quoted image]

I can't see this without thinking about the Robot Chicken skits about it.

#583 3 months ago
Quoted from BallyKISS1978:

18 months is insane. That is a huge wait time, especially in that time frame how many pins will come out. This hobby moves so fast.

I like the Spooky peeps and enjoy their games except RZ but it says a lot about the current pinball market that all those games sold out in 4 hours with no gameplay footage or any opportunity for actual hands-on play plus you have to wait at least 6 months and maybe as long as 2 years to get your game. Congratulations and more power to them for being able to do this but it's still pretty crazy in a hobby that was down to one manufacturer putting out stripped-down pretty crappy games not that long ago.

#592 3 months ago
Quoted from chuckwurt:

The ship doesn’t move, it’s a physical ball lock that is fed from the side ramp via the upper flipper. Lock three balls there for multiball.

I hear that if you get drunk enough it rocks side-to-side.

#606 3 months ago
Quoted from jorant:

Who is their main designer, now? Dennis Nordman? Anyone else noteworthy they have on staff?

He's their only in-house design guy and is supposedly training / mentoring at least one new designer but they have hired a couple of industry veteran people including a mechanical engineer and a new art director. Details on those hires can be found here: https://www.pinballnews.com/site/

Balcer was to be working as a contract designer but now that he's at Homepin we're just speculating if the game he was nearly done with ever gets made or not.

#613 3 months ago
Quoted from onemilemore:

Per Kaneda and Ben Heck (for what that's worth), a re-titled LOV is gonna be the next AP release. If that's the case, my hope is not too much else changes from the original layout and mechs.

This has been the leading rumour for months so I'm not surprised one or both of those guys have picked up on it. I guess we'll see how true it is "pretty soon", I hope.

1 month later
#664 64 days ago
Quoted from John_I:

With CCr announced, it's time to at least tease something...

It would be nice to get an idea of what they have been working on but I don't really care much about CCr (not the band) so it doesn't impact my purchasing plans at all.

#666 64 days ago

Posting this from the CCr thread, rosh or Ferret will have to let us know more about how / if this impacts his work for AP when they're ready.

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1 week later
#676 54 days ago
Quoted from Coz:

I recently asked Michael Grant a few questions for an update with American Pinball.
Coz - Will there be a price increase??
MG -We have implemented a temporary surcharge on our games to help offset some of the added costs due to the global supply chain issues that is affecting all industries. We prefer not to implement a permanent price increase at this time, as we are dedicated to offering the best value possible for our customers.
Coz - Any comment on Joe Schober working with CGC? Is he still helping at American Pinball?
MG- Joe Schober’s professional relationship with American Pinball has not changed. Joe is still working with American Pinball on a contract basis in support of future titles and existing ones.
Coz - Any updates on game 4/Pinball expo ?
MG -As for our Expo seminar, you will have to wait until the seminar to see what we have brewing.
-Thanks Michael-
As of now, American Pinbal is scheduled to have a seminar at pinball expo in Chicago on Thursday October 28 at 7:00pm. Will the new game be released before expo or shown for the first time there?? Hopefully there will be a few games for have hands on playtime.

I didn't realize you were the correspondent for AP on The Pinball Show podcast, sometimes I'm not too bright.

I like the idea of the surcharge rather than a price increase but if it's like the fuel surcharges so many companies put on everything a few years ago that never went away even when gas was under $2 a gallon they're here to stay too. Lumber prices have already dropped back down but I understand they already have likely purchased it at higher prices.

#685 53 days ago
Quoted from chuckwurt:

Similar to Houdini and Oktoberfest.

You are probably correct but since both of those games got a bad rap for tight shots very early on, the current demand for games, backlogs from everyone else, etc. I think they may have a chance to do a bit better with this one. Unfortunately I've still not had a chance to play it (damn you Brad!!! ) so I can't comment on how it shoots, AP has a new art director too so maybe the pinside art critics will put down the pitchforks since that will obviously be different.

P.S. I think the art on Houdini is great and fits the theme perfectly.

1 week later
#701 40 days ago

With the latest Stern price increase ($8999 MSRP for a Godzilla premium!!) I think A.P. has a very real opportunity to make some noise in the market if they can get a pretty loaded game like LOV to market for $7K - $7.5K. I don't know if that's really feasible with all the supply issues and increasing costs of goods but I definitely think there's a sweet spot in there.

#708 39 days ago
Quoted from northvibe:

I mean if ap and cgc can keep their entry level game ~$6500 they are going to be the cheapest on the market, should start seeing more on route and hopefully some more sales mean more license and r&d put into their games..... It could be a huge win.

I think that's asking a lot in the current supply-chain restrained world but IF they did this and added the temporary surcharge to compensate for those factors I agree completely, they could take a good chunk of the operator market that used to go to Stern Pros. That will be limited without bigger licenses except for the locations that are more geared toward pinheads but could still be significant.

Seperate discussion, I wonder how much actual cost full RGB inserts and GI adds to a game? I love games with this, especially the inserts but looking at the trend Stern is taking maybe it no longer matters as much to buyers?? Godzilla only has 13 inserts with RGB and the premium only adds two color GI versus full RGB. Of course JJP is still full RGB but their prices keep moving even higher.

#711 38 days ago
Quoted from onemilemore:

I know there are supply chain issues etc., but I almost wonder if the delay on game #4 has to do with AP reassessing if it is a good enough theme to get people excited. They've claimed the next two titles will be unlicensed, but I worry about how well that will play at scale in today's market. Will be very happy to be wrong and have them blow us away though!

They've said they should have the game at Expo next month so I doubt that's the reason but only they know at this point.

#724 33 days ago
Quoted from HIPPY:

I, for one, was excited at Godzilla, but, the price hike for the premium makes it too much. Stern premium should not be in the same price range as some JJP’s. Let’s face it, not the same quality or customer support. I am going to be watching AP and hoping for a good title at a good price.

I think it's fair to say a Stern Premium should cost less than a JJP if you consider the larger screen, generally better video production, full RGB leds, etc. but I would not include JJPs recent track record of quality or customer support even close to Stern. Removing the playfield from the warranty when so many of their playfields have significant issues does not equate to customer support in my opinion at all! Jack's comments about the customer damaging them in that podcast really put a rock in my flip-flop too.

#736 32 days ago
Quoted from mbwalker:

Wasn't AP's next pin already finished when Dennis showed up and his pin would be later? Granted, Dennis might have been able to squeeze in some tweaking if needed.

This has been covered in this thread a few times but in the interview David Fix and Dennis did shortly after joining American they said they had changed their schedule for games - the one that Joe Balcer had been working on got pushed back and at that time he was a contract employee rather than on-staff. They said their next game would be from a new "kid" designer but the design he was bringing with him was essentially finished, this is the primary reason for the LOV speculation. Now that's been months afo and although I know manufacturing pinball games is not easy I have to think their plans have either changed, the design and engineering (possibly the porting of code to APs standard) needed more work than originally thought, supply and labor issues and other COVID (shutdowns) factors have made it take a lot longer than anticipated or some combination of the above. I'm definitely very interested to see what they have to show at Expo, wish I were going but I'll just hold out hope they have games to play and buy at both Freeplay Florida and Pincinnati later this year.

#751 30 days ago
Quoted from onemilemore:

Didn't they also shift to a classic/deluxe model setup?
On the new pin front, I am considering letting TMNT go if LOV ends up being announced - think they will be similar and APs aren't easy to find on location in these parts. We shall see.

Some distributors are selling them that way (Deluxe includes the art blades, shaker, knocker, topper and maybe magic glass all installed IIRC) but nothing I've seen actually from API indicates that was their doing, it may just be nomenclature the distributor came up with for when they order the games that way. The good news is there's no difference in gameplay or actual mechs in the game.

1 week later
#762 19 days ago
Quoted from Looprunner:

Imagine, a Buckaroo Banzai Against the World Crime League "sequel" pinball machine! I'm in!

You and six other people. Seriously, if they are going to do licensed themes they should go for something way more mainstream than a this or a lot of the other recent suggestions.

#780 19 days ago
Quoted from punkin:

Yep i'm talking about them. I've watched and own the kill Bill movies, but who'd want a pinnie of them?
I recognise some of the bands and had BS albums as a child, but who'd want a pinnie of them?
Seen some of those movies advertised, but........
Not one name on that list would interest me or anyone i know, so i think 'rabid fan base' is totally out of touch.

I agree there are too many really odd and obscure ones on there but James Bond certainly would have a HUGE fan base and people lining up with their checkbooks / credit cards ready. Most likely too expensive for API to invest in but who knows. I'd love to see a First Element pin but that's still a bit obscure as well so it wouldn't have the same auto-sales generation that something like 007 would.

#782 19 days ago

There's an entire thread or two about it but we're overdue for an updated South Park pin but to do it properly it needs to have settings to make is very un-family friendly. I doubt AP would touch it for that and the cost reasons.

#791 19 days ago
Quoted from parsonsaj:

Probably wishful thinking, but am I the only one hoping that there might be 2 games announced at Expo by API? LOV is not an entirely original API production, right? Maybe they will want to follow Spooky's lead and let us see their next fully original game at the same time as LOV?

In the past they've said they won't announce until games are ready to ship but there's a new sherriff in town over there now so who knows, sure would be cool if they had two games to show / play at the same time. With the current state of supply chains, delays, labor shortages, etc. I seriously doubt it will happen though.

#795 19 days ago
Quoted from Nepi23:

They should announce that they are doing the upgraded/fixed Magic Girl next!

I think they learned their lesson with JPOP from the originally planned Houdini mess. That guy is poison now and shouldn't be touched by any pinball company.

#802 19 days ago
Quoted from McDoom:

I love the classics, that's all, and I still listen to the music that I listened to at 18 from time to time

I find it hard to believe that anyone doesn't really listen to the music they did when 18 at least occasionally. Doesn't mean you don't listen to other / newer stuff too.

#838 17 days ago

My guess is we see a Nordman game with a non-licensed title before we see Sherlock Holmes. My guess could be really wrong though because Dennis is batting 0.0 for getting his games produced at the last several places he's been but I'm hoping AP breaks that dry spell for him!

#854 17 days ago

I hate K-man and usually downvote anyone who mentions him but I may actually have to go listen to this one unless TWIP or someone else does a nice recap to spare me. Come on Coz tell me you'll cover this in detail on The Pinball Show podcast!

#861 15 days ago
Quoted from Charlemagne1987:

Not that we didn't already know...and take it for what it's worth...but Kaneda just "confirmed" that the next AP game is LOV. He claims to have pictures and a list of game credits for those who worked on the the game. He read them off. I didn't recognize most of the names except for Josh Kugler and Michael Grant.

I would assume most of those names will be the guys that are Riot Pinball.

#882 14 days ago
Quoted from Scoot:

This would be a great IP for American Pinball to get.
[quoted image]

The tilt sequence would be you stepping on one.

1 week later
#886 4 days ago
Quoted from dr_nybble:

Does anyone know if there will be playfield deltas between "Standard" and "Deluxe"? Or is the difference only accoutrements?
Not sure if David Fix mentioned it in his recent interview.

Unless they change dramatically from what they are doing right now the answer is no. The "deluxe" editions are the standard plus things you could always add yourself like art blades, shaker, magic glass and possibly a topper.

I'm looking forward to seeing (virtually) what AP's version of LOV is like and how it's changed from what Riot had out there with the few games they'd built.

#890 4 days ago
Quoted from Coz:

I’ll be there for Expo too. Hope to stop by the new factory as well. Looking forward to seeing the team unveil the new game.

We need a great quality streaming feed of the Expo session for those of us who cannot attend!

#925 1 day ago
Quoted from dr_nybble:Well it's out! I'm underwhelmed by the 3D-printed and sketchily painted figures shown on the deluxe. If Stern put these on a playfield there'd be a riot. Should've had Lior do the sculpts.
Anyone spot differences between this version and what we've seen? The hammer is new?
To me, the art is still 'advanced amateur' and I'm not convinced. For an unlicensed theme, the art is what lets you knock it out of the park. Quite a custom soundtrack available for it though!
Look forward to hearing about how it plays....ultimately comes down to that for me.

I don't know, that thing that passes for Thanos's glove on AIQ is pretty damned sad and that's just the first one I can think of. I bet these looks better in person than you're seeing in the pictures.

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