TNA VS GOTG Pro VS Houdini


By Ericc123

4 months ago


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  • 18 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 months ago by TomGWI
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#1 4 months ago

Title pretty much says it all. I know that everyone hates the which should I buy threads but this one has me a little stumped. Guardians is a dream theme for me, but I had a chance to play it locally and didn't love it. That being said, I think it was more the code than the shots, and I hope that will be fixed over time. I also know that I can wait for them to get it right before I buy it so no big rush. I currently have four Sterns in my collection and I thought that GOTG might be just more of the same and it seems like Sterns quality has been steadily slipping.

I really like the look of TNA, love the music, and love the light show. It's not something that will be available locally to play prior to purchase, so I'm probably going to have to jump in blind on this one. I really love the Spooky/Scott D. story and would love to support them, but the whole no ramps thing gives me pause and I'm not sure how much staying power it has. Definitively looks like fun and has the easy to learn hard to master aura to it. It just comes down to what do you consider a must have in a new pinball machine. I have four other games, so a change of pace game might be perfect, and I'll always have the mode based games to fall back on.

Houdini is another theme that I love, and I really like the look of this machine. Again, haven't had a chance to play one but a lot of the same arguments as TNA apply here. The trunk shot is one of the most impressive things I've seen in pinball in a while and Rosh in the Houdini thread has been so amazing I really want to support American Pinball as well. I have read that the shots are tight, so I worry about that a little.

So just to summarize:

GOTG: Pro's: Art, Theme, Price Con's: Gameplay?, Current Code, Quality Concerns
TNA: Pro's: Art, Music, Light Show, Company, Different Gameplay Con's: Lastability
HOUDINI Pro's: Art, Theme, Value for the money, Wow Factor, Company Con's: Most Expensive (still a great value) New Company, Tight Shots

Let me know what you think and thank you for your time.

#2 4 months ago

Go TNA.

GOTG won't be done for a bit and it will be easy to buy for awHile.
Houndoni is a brand new company...I don;t know why everyone is so eager to trust a new company.
TNA looks like fun and you can play the hell out of it for awHile and not loos much $$ on it when you want to pick up one of the other titles later

#3 4 months ago

Just played both GOTG and TNA at VUK today in Bethesda MD and my honest opinion is to wait and try them. Out of GOTG and TNA, both are not strong enough for me to buy either. According to the owner, Houdini should be there later this week so will get a chance to play all 3.

GOTG: Like you, love the theme but the code is not there. The shots feel good and my daughter and I both had a good time with it. However, on the way out the door she said no matter how much fun we had today, she thought we would get bored with it in our house. She is 10, so is the voice of reason.

TNA: Fun to play, but my worry is that it would get old quickly, especially if you are playing alone. Everything you hear about the lightshow and sound is absolutely true. However, I think the artwork on the playfield is so-so at best. There is something about the way the inserts are numbered that looks off some how. I love Scott's story and think that this is a big step ahead for Spooky, but recommend that you play it and not buy into the hype train uninformed.

Houdini: Love the concept of it and it looks great. However, will not buy it without trying it out.

I will be building an arcade in the house that I am closing on next week so am in the market. As it stands, want to see how Houdini plays. If not quite up to the task, I will probably be getting MBr and TOMr.

--Matt

#4 4 months ago

Everyone hates these kind of threads because you can't tell someone else what they would like. Play all 4 games and see which you like best.
If you can't play all 4 games, then make a decision based on what you CAN play. There is no reason to buy any of these games without playing first.

#5 4 months ago

How can someone judge a game barely anyone has even played yet? I received my TNA last week and think it’s incredible. But it won’t be for everyone. (No game is!)

#6 4 months ago
Quoted from adamross:

How can someone judge a game barely anyone has even played yet?

Because they hold value pretty well on the secondary market. People do it all the time...some are good and you keep, some aren't good and you sell.

#7 4 months ago
Quoted from luvthatapex2:

Everyone hates these kind of threads because you can't tell someone else what they would like. Play all 4 games and see which you like best.
If you can't play all 4 games, then make a decision based on what you CAN play. There is no reason to buy any of these games without playing first.

I thought I was fairly clear about what I liked/disliked about each machine. I don't think that TNA or Houdini will be available to play in my area for the foreseeable future, so it's a gamble either way. By your logic I should only buy GOTG or wait indefinitely. I was hoping to get opinions because I'm sort of split and they are all very different machines. Thanks for chiming in though.

#8 4 months ago

based on your current collection, GOTG is out as you need more diversity (not just manufacturer, but type of play.)

TNA is a blast

GOTG is ok, but a ways from being fun (code could save it but as of now it is not worth home use)

Houdini is just too new to have enough time on it. I personally found the prototypes to not be fun to shoot (still too tight on the right side) but theme is cool.

#9 4 months ago

for sure make the trip to VUK. It appears that is drivable and they have both TNA and GOTG to play.

#10 4 months ago
Quoted from Whysnow:

for sure make the trip to VUK. It appears that is drivable and they have both TNA and GOTG to play.

This. VUK will have all three of your contenders within a week, and it’s only a few hours drive from you. There are some pretty cheap/decent hotels in the neighborhood, and you can make a weekend of it and do the DC thing if you want to do something other than pinball (crazy as that sounds!)

#11 4 months ago

I had a similar thread a few days ago. It’s just for fun to see other people’s opinions on pinball. I like to get others advise on why they love their pins. The only true way to see what you like is to put some time on all the pins you’re interested in. Play each game and see which you like best!! Good luck

#12 4 months ago
Quoted from DBLM:

GOTG:she said no matter how much fun we had today, she thought we would get bored with it in our house.

She's got good instincts. Took me one ball to get bored of it. I won't be playing it again. They really knocked it out of the park with that one.

Although I am yet to play the other two, TNA looks like the only one that would stand even the slightest chance of entering my game room

#13 4 months ago

It looks like VUK is 4 hours from my place, so definitely an overnight trip for me but something I’ll consider. Thanks to all that have voted/voiced an opinion so far.

#14 4 months ago
Quoted from Spelunk71:

This. VUK will have all three of your contenders within a week, and it’s only a few hours drive from you. There are some pretty cheap/decent hotels in the neighborhood, and you can make a weekend of it and do the DC thing if you want to do something other than pinball (crazy as that sounds!)

VUK is definitely on a tear right now. They have the latest and greatest (GOTG, TNA, DI, BM66, Aerosmith, AFMr, MMr, etc) and are maintaining the games well. I was there today and Friday and both days they had techs there providing maintenance. Don’t know the folks there but kudos to them.

As @spelunk71 said, come to DC. There are several good places to play in the DMV area such as VUK, Lyman’s, Crabtown, Volleyball House, etc. Plus, there is always a ton to do in the area.

#15 4 months ago

Yeah...VUK is awesome. Full disclosure: I plug it whenever I can because it’s less than a mile from my house and I want it to stick around. The guy who owns it is obviously a pinball fanatic and owns a chain of local gourmet grocery stores—which explains the particularly good pizza and soft-serve ice cream they serve (and the financial means to fund all the new games— at 50 cents per play). You can also get beer there, though the menu is limited. The only downside is the size. Unfortunately, whenever a new game comes in, one has to leave.

#16 4 months ago

TNA or Houdini. Both are great looking and fun playing games with unique aspects.

For me, GoTG is not yet worthy of purchase consideration given its current unfinished state.

#17 4 months ago

I’ve played Houdini and GOTG and ordered both. Mind you I don’t have any pinballs right now so I’m not worried about having more of the same. Since you’ve already had an opinion on GOTG, I’d recommend Houdini. It’s an interesting theme that still has a way to go with code but is still good. I haven’t played the other so I’ll let the other guys thoughts speak for themselves.

#18 4 months ago

It’s crazy how close the voting is with 56 votes in. The fact that GOTG is only at 13% really says something about how Stern released that game. Either that or people are convinced that TNA and Houdini are something special. Probably a combination of the two.

#19 4 months ago
Quoted from Ericc123:

It’s crazy how close the voting is with 56 votes in. The fact that GOTG is only at 13% really says something about how Stern released that game. Either that or people are convinced that TNA and Houdini are something special. Probably a combination of the two.

I have over 50 games on both TNA and GOTG at this point. GOTG should not even be a consideration until the code is refined. GOTG is fun to shout (and honestly the best of all those copied layouts), but the code is not in a stage that anyone should consider the game for home use.

Houdini I only have maybe 10 games on so cant make a real judgement call on it. (honestly amazed at how many have voted for it without likely playing it at all/much). I am excited to see how it turns out, but till they have 10-20-30 games out in the wild it is too early to say.

#20 4 months ago
Quoted from Ericc123:

Probably a combination of the two.

I'd say you're right. Given how few TNA's are out there coupled with the fact that the final Houdini is just now appearing (not sure if any have actually hit locations) plus the immediate visceral reaction to Stern's 'antics' with GOTG, I'd say there are probably less than 10 people that have put in, 10+ games on the final production version of each game, let alone the 56 that voted. While it is always sound advice to try them yourself, I think it is especially important in this case.

#21 4 months ago
Quoted from Whysnow:

I have over 50 games on both TNA and GOTG at this point. GOTG should not even be a consideration until the code is refined. GOTG is fun to shout (and honestly the best of all those copied layouts), but the code is not in a stage that anyone should consider the game for home use.
Houdini I only have maybe 10 games on so cant make a real judgement call on it. (honestly amazed at how many have voted for it without likely playing it at all/much). I am excited to see how it turns out, but till they have 10-20-30 games out in the wild it is too early to say.

Lol, thinking the same thing, posts passed in the ether

#22 4 months ago

I got about 20 plays each on GOTG and TNA. Agree with @whysnow that it is fun to shoot and that the code is just not there yet. We will see how it develops but at this point it went from something that I was super pumped for to kind of just there.

As for TNA, it was relatively fun but it is missing something for me. It could be that I tend to play alone and where this could be more fun in a social setting, or that I like ramps. There is something about the playfield artwork that seems off (I keep coming back around to the inserts being big and the way that they were numbered). For whatever reason, the screen did not look very sharp, in that the graphics did not seem to be crisp compared to other games. On the positive side, the game plays very fast (you think it would be slow seeing how the playfield looks relatively flat from an incline perspective compared to other games), and the sound and light show are pretty great. I also absolutely love the old school score displays! We need more of that back in pinball.

Please don't read this as being a slam on Scott or Spooky. Although I have not enjoyed a lot of the Spooky games as of yet, this is easily their best offering and is hopefully a good read on what is to come from them. I love the passion that Scott and the Spooky crew bring to the table and respect what they have created. They are definitely an asset to pinball and I can't wait to see what they do next.

#23 4 months ago

I’ve just went through the same buying decision and went with Houdini. I don’t like that I haven’t played it yet so I am rolling the dice a bit. It comes down to it’s a theme a love, the art and music are great, the layout is interesting, the rules look complete and unique and it seems to represent excellent value for the price.

As to placing my trust in American Pinball, an untested company... I was blown away by their ability to produce a flippable prototype in four months while others take years. I like that they seem to be well funded - a real assembly line, no preorder money taken. I like the constant realistic communication from Josh.

I predict I will own a TNA eventually. I love that game. I thought about GOTG only because I could get one before Christmas but it’s just not ready yet.

#24 4 months ago

Id get on the tna list and buy one of the other two.
By the time tna is ready you can dump the other and have had the opportunity to own one other. The stern pros seem to hold 90% of the value the first year, houdini is an unknown value retention wise.

#25 4 months ago

It's between TNA and Houdini. Thay are 2 different style games. TNA easy to understand but challenging with superior light show and sound.
Houdini is a breath of fresh air. Art package is great, shots are good but very tight. The rules are very good. Not to easy and not to long. Best use of a LCD screen that I have seen. With Houdini you will have to learn how to make the tight shots or you will become very frustrated with it.
With both games the further you make the more rewarding it is (fun factor).
As for GOTG, no more and buy it and wait for it to be finished maybe. These are just my take on these games from an average player.

#26 4 months ago
Quoted from Trekie:

It's between TNA and Houdini. Thay are 2 different style games. TNA easy to understand but challenging with superior light show and sound.
Houdini is a breath of fresh air. Art package is great, shots are good but very tight. The rules are very good. Not to easy and not to long. Best use of a LCD screen that I have seen. With Houdini you will have to learn how to make the tight shots or you will become very frustrated with it.
With both games the further you make the more rewarding it is (fun factor).
As for GOTG, no more and buy it and wait for it to be finished maybe. These are just my take on these games from an average player.

I looked up a video so i could post about how you are so wrong about TNA having the superior light show, and holy crap was I wrong! That game takes a while to grab onto but once it got going, wow! I still think Houdini is a better value but damn I get i about TNA now.

#27 4 months ago
Quoted from Rdoyle1978:

I looked up a video so i could post about how you are so wrong about TNA having the superior light show, and holy crap was I wrong! That game takes a while to grab onto but once it got going, wow! I still think Houdini is a better value but damn I get i about TNA now.

And thus my dilemma. Music and lights vs theme and value for the money. All good choices, even GOTG possibly someday.

#28 4 months ago
Quoted from Ericc123:

And thus my dilemma. Music and lights vs theme and value for the money. All good choices, even GOTG possibly someday.

GOTG won't be complete for at least another year IMO. I cannot stop playing my TNA.. fast and furious. It's insanely fast and unforgiving, and you have to know you're OK with that kind of game before committing.

1 week later
#29 4 months ago

I can tell you GOTG is a lot of fun I have been playing the heck out of it. I have an LE and updated code 0.81 the multi ball is so much fun when groot spits it out of his mouth. I do have a TNA on order the music looks like it would really keep you locked into playing and a great multi player game.

#30 4 months ago
Quoted from Whysnow:

I have over 50 games on both TNA and GOTG at this point. GOTG should not even be a consideration until the code is refined. GOTG is fun to shout (and honestly the best of all those copied layouts), but the code is not in a stage that anyone should consider the game for home use.
Houdini I only have maybe 10 games on so cant make a real judgement call on it. (honestly amazed at how many have voted for it without likely playing it at all/much). I am excited to see how it turns out, but till they have 10-20-30 games out in the wild it is too early to say.

TNA has that, “let’s go one more Game feeling”.

GOTG = Groot Multiball all day long. Keep hitting the Groot Head, Rinse and Repeat.

Houdini - I have only played it 2x so I cannot comment.

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