Houdini is the first machine by a new company, might want to wait and see how it goes before jumping in. Like others said, your TZ would hold its value and if you want to change it up later you will be able to. The Houdini could drop if it turns out to have a bunch of issues, or it wont increase too much as it should be available NIB for quite some time so no worries there.
Totally agree with all previous posts. While there are many pinsiders who love to have the newest release that's just come out, chances are there will be changes made to machines as production progresses. It seems like early buyers always get stuck waiting for fixes/upgraded boards etc. definitely go with TZ or one of the other machines on your wish list. Houdini is pretty cool,played it at Allentown and York this year but there's no way I'm buying one till it's out for at least 9 months-1yr.
Have you seen the Houdini game play video? The playfield looks decent but the story is incredibly stupid. Help Houdini walk through a wall? Hit the balls and the characters take another step on the screen? This is Candy Land, not pinball. There's no suspense buildup, no energy in the game, and not in the presentation of the story either. The voices are bland, the graphics and animation are circa 1990 computer game quality, and they couldn't even find someone good at pinball to present the game. It feels like they stole a few things from Addams Family TBH... three magnets, a seance mode... I'd rather just play TAF.
My recommendation would be to wait and see if they can sell enough to lay down better quality code, maybe hire a screenwriter and a graphics designer. Nothing that can't be fixed, but everything that happens above the playfield is a huge turnoff.
"Shoot the flashing red arrows to the left" ? give me a break.
I've played both. For home use it's a no brainer for me. Although Houdini is promising, kind of a modern-day TOM, you can't go wrong with TZ. It's incredible with its great variety of shots via 4 flippers plus an upper magna-flip playfield, lots of modes each with interesting rules, great toys, great music and callouts, neat art, super fun, etc.
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