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(Topic ID: 203700)

deeproot Pinball thread


By pin2d

3 years ago



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#6151 1 year ago
Quoted from Potatoloco:

.
What I would really like to see is some sort of accelerator / diverter / drop target put on this ramp. Have the drop target (s) be hit to unlock the ramp itself, but allow the ball to plop back down on the playfield as intended.

Good point, though I would actually prefer it not to plop at all. Maybe go down a lower-value ramp ala TOTAN.

Quoted from Potatoloco:

I can’t wait to see the final product of that because I much prefer this over LCD and movie clips.

Agreed. It’s much easier to integrate the animation into the overall experience. JP2’s animations fit into the overall experience better than Wonka, GoTG, Stern SW, or Elvira where you get a framed video laid on top of the rest of the normal background. It just feels tacked on and doesn’t really add anything to the game experience, IMHO. Call outs are far more important to me than video.

#6152 1 year ago

The ramp would be so much more fun if it had magnets on it and was metal like HS2.

Never gets old hitting ramp on HS2.

This ramp is already old.

13
#6153 1 year ago

I played it a few times and not sure what to think. First, I think they should of waited for a more final pin before revealing. There are some positives such as gorgeous display and great pf artwork. It does feel like a 90s JPOP game whether that's good or gad. I mostly didn't like the sluggish flippers on either machine. That's the one thing that kills any game for me. Code did seem very primitive and buggy. Games had to be rebooted and tweaked constantly. However, both games did run for the entire weekend. I wouldn't form any opinions until Deeproot shows a game closer to production.

#6154 1 year ago
Quoted from cjchand:

Or are they holding something back? I see this weekend’s events as a site test - nothing more.
Can’t confirm, but I got the distinct feeling from talking with the DR folks - and I talked with them a lot - that these prototypes were purposefully stripped down. I guess the intent was real world tests on the layout in general, as well as mechs, input on the theme, etc. I think the lack of “innovations” shown was 100% on purpose as not to show their hand.
We will see in March, I suppose.

From reading the various interviews, I think this is spot on. Leaving as much "wow" for TPF as is possible. Shows through too with the placeholder art, and some other blatantly lacking aspects of playfield "activity". It seems like half a game, it probably is... maybe just enough "to compete with current offerings"?. Just trying to "make par" with current standards, and no more? . Seems like the scratch built boardset performed okay??... my guess, it is some of these aspects they were mostly there for, to focus on puting these new designs to the test.

#6155 1 year ago
Quoted from cjchand:

Good point, though I would actually prefer it not to plop at all. Maybe go down a lower-value ramp ala TOTAN.

Agreed. It’s much easier to integrate the animation into the overall experience. JP2’s animations fit into the overall experience better than Wonka, GoTG, Stern SW, or Elvira where you get a framed video laid on top of the rest of the normal background. It just feels tacked on and doesn’t really add anything to the game experience, IMHO. Call outs are far more important to me than video.

Seems there are two fairly simple additions that would address alot of this ramp issue.

1. Vacuum formed return from the "ramp fail drop zone" to the left inlane.

2. Second level kickback squiggle leads (with or without nudging/post separation maybe?) to the left inlane.

There's your left feed, by making a half ramp from trap. Or via the kickback. This potentially retains the Main left return separately in front of sling?

#6156 1 year ago

The Dude was there but not his machine.

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#6158 1 year ago
Quoted from Nhpolarbear:

The Dude was there but not his machine.[quoted image]

I don’t think he has much hope for RAZA...

Or the Credence!

28
#6159 1 year ago

I was not disappointed with RAZA when I played it. I got to play it several times and each time I walked away saying that was fun. Yes it feels like a prototype. Yes it feels like a JPOP game. It has potential. The ramp was hard to get all the way around but I made it several times and watched others do as well. It reminded me of the Katana shot on Deadpool. Had to be perfect to make it work. I am not sure if it was a flipper issue or what for I did not notice any other games on the floor that had flipper power issues due to so many games on. The staff was extremely nice. Half of them were young Engineers and were eager to hear feedback. It seemed to me that they have been working really hard on this and were excited to show it off. Steve Bowden is a great guy and knows what he is doing and I have faith that he will make this game a lot of fun. The screen was really cool. To me it was a glorified DMD. Unlike a Stern or Jersey Jack game it was easy to follow what was going on and I like the direction they are going with it. Excited to see what the final product is going to be like

Quoted from CrazyLevi:

The band playing in the background of that video was pretty good. Nice garage rock vibe. Maybe we'll book them for NYCPC 2020.

crazylevi that band you were hearing was actually a mixture of my band and another band called Radio Cult. This was after our main set and two of their members jumped up on stage and we were just having fun and throwing songs up. That was me on drums.

30
#6160 1 year ago
Quoted from HookedonPinonics:

I was not disappointed with RAZA when I played it. I got to play it several times and each time I walked away saying that was fun. Yes it feels like a prototype. Yes it feels like a JPOP game. It has potential. The ramp was hard to get all the way around but I made it several times and watched others do as well. It reminded me of the Katana shot on Deadpool. Had to be perfect to make it work. I am not sure if it was a flipper issue or what for I did not notice any other games on the floor that had flipper power issues due to so many games on. The staff was extremely nice. Half of them were young Engineers and were eager to hear feedback. It seemed to me that they have been working really hard on this and were excited to show it off. Steve Bowden is a great guy and knows what he is doing and I have faith that he will make this game a lot of fun. The screen was really cool. To me it was a glorified DMD. Unlike a Stern or Jersey Jack game it was easy to follow what was going on and I like the direction they are going with it. Excited to see what the final product is going to be like

crazylevi that band you were hearing was actually a mixture of my band and another band called Radio Cult. This was after our main set and two of their members jumped up on stage and we were just having fun and throwing songs up. That was me on drums.

I agree with everything said here. I played at least 20 games between both units and always wanted to go back to play more. Yes, it is "simple" right now (its the prototype). Yes The ramp was not 100% make-able every time. However, when I did make the ramp the joy and feeling of achievement was that much more intense. [Sidenote: I suggested that there could be a good drinking game in that you drink every time the ramp rolls back]

One of the staff in attendance was the Head of Engineering, who I had the pleasure of speaking with for a while. He told me some things that I won't share, but needless to say what was said illustrated that he isn't "head in the sand" and takes a serious, objective approach to his work. I also spoke with the VP of Operations for more than an hour just shooting the #*$@ and talking pinball in general. I really enjoyed that converstaion and it was a highlight of my time at the Houston Arcade Expo. He is a great person and seems to really know what they are up against, but is still confident that deeproot will bring value to the market. We spoke about different ways to reach out to and include the pinball community with the launch in March and beyond (all ideas for now) in a more "personal" way. Any frustrations I raised about current game design, he thought the same and always had deeper insight into the issue which showed they have already thought about it internally.

I could go on but I'll just leave it that my takeaway is that the layout is interesting and I had a lot of fun on the prototype, but what really gave me confidence in deeproot was the human conversations I had with the people there. I look forward to March and seeing what else they have in store and being able to support the great group of people who made it all happen.

EDIT: For anyone who continues to complain about not being able to make the ramp, Engineering did confirm that the deeproot games will have all the industry standard adjustability features, i.e. flipper coil strength. So if you really, really have to make it play like a Stern (cannon flipper) and tear up your game, you can do it.

48
#6161 1 year ago

I attended the Houston Expo and played RAZA on and off over 2 days (probably put ~30-40+ games in). Here is a $.02 perspective on top of the other comments already reported in this thread. TLDR: Skip down to "Overall".

Disclaimer: I am not a tournament player, nor a pinball historian, have no fanboi allegiance to any manufacturers/designers, and just a regular novice pin enthusiast.

I spoke with the DR crew about their goal of attending the event and about the pin itself. They confirmed the machines brought to the show were not the final PFs, cabinets, art package, sculpted toys, code, etc... (RM commented on this in his last podcast interview so really no surprises there).

These machines were specifically put together to test at the show to collect data and get initial impressions on some of the design aspects. The goal of bringing to a small event like Expo was to view real life players of all skills interact with the game, collect data on a subset of code, and see what people liked/didn't like. In short, I gathered they wanted feedback but didn't want to reveal everything ahead of their premier early next year.

I don't know if one should hypothesis that there will be changes from what was shown in the actual PF/Mechs but I would expect tweaks and more layers added to the code. The DR reps kept telling me we were not seeing all that is in the game, they pulled a lot for the show, and there will be more in the final build (interpret how you will).

It was apparent that aspects of the code were not complete in that it was lacking full story integration on goals/objectives, fully implemented call outs, all wizard modes, full on light integration, etc. The modes that worked had the animation running like Atomic Mode, Zombie Multi-Ball mode, Duck Hunt. Other items like Bowling Alley, Daredevil Ramp, Dizzie Dozzie sort of registered and displayed animation on the screen but I didn't see how they integrated into the game play story or value to the game objectives.

The DR team did have laptops directly wired into the backbox CPUs of both pins (pins OS run on Unity) collecting data, turning features on and off, rebooting, viewing stats, etc... For example, there were a few times when i saw the ball go into the Xenon ball lock and the CPU ball register would lose track. The game would just sit idle and not do a ball check. They would have to reboot the pin from the laptop. Upon rebooting, a ball check script would run, find the missing ball, eject it back into the game, and cleared the error. By the second day, they must have tweaked code b/c when I saw it happen they said wait (which usually took over a min) but eventually the ball check would kick in and automatically eject out the lost ball. Main difference was no forced reboot.

The rep did comment that they have been play testing extensively in their labs but the show was definitely providing value in that they are seeing some new behaviors/issues they had not run across during their testing.

I was told RAZA's toys were 3D printed and not the final sculptured versions. The Ferris wheel was a pure white plastic wheel and not decorated. The toys (Dizzie Doozie, Zombie Ned, Jet Rocket, UFO Ship, Atomic Shop) looked pretty rough up close to be honest but they represent what will be in place.

They addressed the PFs being dark. The PF lights were not fully implemented for the prototypes and there would be a brighter/better implemented light shows in the final product.

Cabinet art was just a place holder. The silver plate around the screen and speakers was also just a functional cover.

As others stated, the conference area lighting situation wasn't ideal. The game's color palate has a lot of green, purple and blue which combined with conf area lighting (plus lack of full in-game light integration) hurt what can be seen in the photos/videos (green haze). The color scheme does have a feel as if it's being setup for a black-light neon-glow option (speculating). Plus the glass was standard "visiglass" which meant views were blocked by lights/reflections bouncing off the glass.

Screen/Animation: I liked the length of the screen, it felt natural, and didn't distract from game play. Animation was smooth, buttery and professionally done. Want to see more of what's to come in the animation department and how it integrates into the back story. The players' scores, objectives and understanding the layout was pretty straight forward.

Sounds: From what I heard, well composed, professionally done, crisp, and fit well with the game play. Buzz Lightyear meets evil carnival integration is the best way to describe it.

Flow: This is not a fast flowing game. It's a lot of stop, aim, and shoot at your targets. At first when playing, it felt clunky. As I got better on ball control and knowing objectives of where to shoot, the game felt smoother. It is a low scoring game where breaking 1000 was an achievement for many. Towards the end I was averaging 5k-10k scoring games with a personal high of 24k.

JPOP factor: Yes, this is filled with a plethora of past JPOP design concepts, game mechanics and toys. Does one stand out above all the rest? None did for me. I felt like each brought a small uniqueness to the game and as a whole provided entertainment but not one item dominated the game.

Zed Target: Moving target under Zed sculpture. Shoot moving target under Ned to spell out Zombie. Activates Zombie Multiball. Very satisfying and if missed, can lead to SDTM plunges. Most obviously thing to do and focus on at start of the game.

Multipliers: 3x, 6x, 9x underneath left wing of Jet Rocket above the Ride the Coaster ramp. Important to have these hit (often via nudging) and activated before multi-balls. Absolute must to achieve high scores!

Ride the Coaster Ramp: The ramp has a skill factor. Hit it with enough speed, you drive the ball to the top and it can divert to a left or right exit ramp (which direction it takes I could not determine but a majority of the time it would exit down the right ramp). If you try to dead flip it up, you usually won't have enough momentum, it rolls backwards down the ramp and drops off behind the Atomic Shop (Ramp chute has part of it's side missing) into the central top play area near the Zed moving bullseye target. I was in the 30-40% range of making it to the top. Some games it seemed easy to do back to back. Others it was near impossible to get the momentum needed. Partly by design? Or partly due to weak flippers? Lots of cheers when people made it to the top of the ramp tho.

Dizzie Dozzie: This is the spin toy (~TOTAN Lamp) on the left side which was pretty stiff on spinning. Spin it and get points. When I made the comment how it slowed down play, the engineer commented they've tried it where it spins much looser/faster. They tweaked it for the show to try it in the other direction. Most comments from players were that it got in the way, spins too slow, sort of useless, and slowed down play but I did see that it helped redirect the ball often in a positive manner to prevent SDTM. It's location sort of makes the left orbit difficult to hit and can get in the way of the Atomic Shop if the Dizzie Doozie bar is oriented in a blocking pattern of ball flow.

Daredevil ramp: I didn't understand the joy of it. Hit it just right and the ball jumps up an inch off the PF, hits a target, drops down behind the ramp, and pushes the ramp up to roll ball back into play. Code wasn't really integrated to show its value from what I saw.

Twister Spins: Spinning black disk which I saw activate 2x but had no idea why it activated. Just flung the ball in a random direction across PF. Injects risk but no major wow factor for me.

Bowling Alley: Three X's up along the right orbit have targets that call out spares/strikes when hit. They worked but again not fully implemented in how they are part of the game.

Atomic Shop: Hit drop target in front of shop to open the shop. Enter shop before drop target pops back up to activate a mode. I.E House of Mirrors, Duck Hunt,... Pretty straight forward. Noted that Dizzie Doozie's orientation often gets in the way.

Ferris Wheel: Soft right orbit shot I believe will get you a seat on the wheel which just slow spins and drops ball back into play. Not sure the value or if it was fully integrated into game play yet.

Duck Hunt: To the left of Dizzie Doozie is a carnival spin wheel with 3 duck targets that rotates. Hard to hit but one of the modes I believe from Atomic Shop.

Atomic Shot: Shoot left orbit to spell Atomic Shot. Activates modes. Can't recall which.

Xenon Tube: Just to the right of Zed moving target, locks balls for multi-ball mode.

MagnaSave: Above the right lane letter "D", there is a silver magnet that can be activated by a second button below the right flipper button. Press and Hold (as long as you like) and the ball will get pulled to the magnet. Release the button and it drops down the D lane. Great when you see the ball wobbling toward the "E" drain lane. For the show (at least on the second day), the magnasave was always available and never timed out. They said very few people tried using it. I found it invaluable. I assume in final code you will have to earn this function and it will only be on for a limited time.

Carnival Tickets: Throughout the game you collect carnival tickets for achieving actions. How you get to spend these to collect prizes or activate features was not explained or how to use. May be tied with Skill Shot Select item below but wasn't implemented.

Skill Shot Select: Before each plunge, you can choose with your flippers on the screen from 6 (I recall) skill shot targets to hit. You spend different points to select. Maybe this is where you spend tickets? The more points you spend, the greater reward if you hit selected target. For the Expo, it didn't seem to matter if you had points or not, you could select any skill shot to attempt. Maybe I just misunderstood the objectives of this skill shot part of the game. It seemed no matter what you picked, all the skill shots lit up to target. Someone else can correct me on this. There were blips in the code where a skill shot would auto select as you switched players and it ran out your save ball plunge timer before you had a chance to shoot.

Skill Gate: Upon plunging the ball, it sends the ball up a short ramp and dumps it right to your flippers every time. I assume this is aligned to coordinate with the Skill Shot you select.

Wizard Modes: Battle 1, 2, 3, 4, Save the Earth. I don't believe these were active or available.

Hurry Up/Get Ready: Above the R on the far left drain, when lit, actually shoots drained ball up to windy clear plastic trail and drops back to left flipper. Everytime I thought my ball was going to drain I was excited to have this kick in. Small gimmick but an enjoyable one.

Overall: There was a fun factor and challenge to RAZA. I kept going back to play more. I told the reps my curiosity was piqued, it had a lot of potential, definitely needs tweaks (PF mechs/Code), but I wouldn't buy it today in its current state. There has to be a deeper level of code play with objectives and wizard modes (which obviously weren't available for the expo) for me to see and play before I would purchase one.

The discussions on DR innovations under the hood and PF are interesting for long term support/maintenance/cost savings but obviously they were not available in this cabinet build to be shown at Houston Expo.

RAZA has the components to be fun but as a whole I wasn't sure they were fully implemented with code yet. If this is close to final form, then they may have problems with long term play-ability, attracting players, and selling large volumes of machines. As a prototype, this was a pretty solid showing. It definitely has created a spectrum of opinions on PS.

End message is that I am curious to see more and where this goes. They have a good foundation to build and tweak (layout, toys, code, animation). Can they deliver a "Wow-Factor" game in its final form and hit a price range that will draw in the limited dollars from potential pin buyers next year?

To be continued in 2020...

#6162 1 year ago

Jeebus!!

RAZA bringing out the keystrokes that’s for sure.

#6163 1 year ago
Quoted from JRocket:

One of the staff in attendance was the Head of Engineering, who I had the pleasure of speaking with for a while. He told me some things that I won't share, but needless to say what was said illustrated that he isn't "head in the sand" and takes a serious, objective approach to his work. I also spoke with the VP of Operations for more than an hour just shooting the #*$@ and talking pinball in general. I really enjoyed that converstaion and it was a highlight of my time at the Houston Arcade Expo. He is a great person and seems to really know what they are up against, but is still confident that deeproot will bring value to the market. We spoke about different ways to reach out to and include the pinball community with the launch in March and beyond (all ideas for now) in a more "personal" way. Any frustrations I raised about current game design, he thought the same and always had deeper insight into the issue which showed they have already thought about it internally.

Agreed that Craig (VP, Eng) and Sean (VP, Ops) were really gracious hosts. We had a great time talking with them.

I can reiterate your comments about Deeproot's "silence": They are watching here and listening, just like any other manufacturer. They do have - IMHO - a proper assessment of where they stand, what the community is asking for (where reasonable and informed), and I get the impression they have more under the hood (figuratively) than they showed at Houston. As I mentioned separately, I think this was just a field test for them. There's a reason the word "prototype" was used *many* times leading up to this.

I'm really excited to see them take the wraps off of everything at TPF and see how much of Robert's swagger becomes reality.

#6164 1 year ago
Quoted from cjchand:

Agreed that Craig (VP, Eng) and Sean (VP, Ops) were really gracious hosts. We had a great time talking with them.
I can reiterate your comments about Deeproot's "silence": They are watching here and listening, just like any other manufacturer. They do have - IMHO - a proper assessment of where they stand, what the community is asking for (where reasonable and informed), and I get the impression they have more under the hood (figuratively) than they showed at Houston. As I mentioned separately, I think this was just a field test for them. There's a reason the word "prototype" was used *many* times leading up to this.
I'm really excited to see them take the wraps off of everything at TPF and see how much of Robert's swagger becomes reality.

Thanks for the info, it's good to see them engaged....the positive and negative comments can both be useful in the proper context. Honestly, Deeproot deserves praise for bringing a real working prototype to this event and not just a box of lights or slide show....The animations are top notch, and there is no shortage of toys on the pf...like I said in the earlier post, it needs tweaking and hopefully they will go back with some good notes. I'm cautiously optimistic, it's a first effort, and I think DR is only going to get better at this.

#6165 1 year ago
Quoted from PinballManiac40:

Yep, the staff said at the Houston show both were prototypes.

Thank you !

LTG : )

18
#6166 1 year ago
Quoted from kvan99:

Thanks for the info, it's good to see them engaged....the positive and negative comments can both be useful in the proper context. Honestly, Deeproot deserves praise for bringing a real working prototype to this event and not just a box of lights or slide show....The animations are top notch, and there is no shortage of toys on the pf...like I said in the earlier post, it needs tweaking and hopefully they will go back with some good notes. I'm cautiously optimistic, it's a first effort, and I think DR is only going to get better at this.

A low bar is kind and charitable. But we were told this would be different.

We didn’t sign up for “maybe it’ll get better.” This pin is supposed to humble stern, capture 40 percent market share, and basically redefine life we we know it.

Can The bridge between “underwhelming Jpop mess” and “here’s what you were promised with repeated and obnoxious bluster” be built between now and TPF?

#6167 1 year ago
Quoted from JRocket:

One of the staff in attendance was the Head of Engineering, who I had the pleasure of speaking with for a while. He told me some things that I won't share, but needless to say what was said illustrated that he isn't "head in the sand" and takes a serious, objective approach to his work. I also spoke with the VP of Operations for more than an hour just shooting the #*$@ and talking pinball in general. I really enjoyed that converstaion and it was a highlight of my time at the Houston Arcade Expo. He is a great person and seems to really know what they are up against, but is still confident that deeproot will bring value to the market. We spoke about different ways to reach out to and include the pinball community with the launch in March and beyond (all ideas for now) in a more "personal" way. Any frustrations I raised about current game design, he thought the same and always had deeper insight into the issue which showed they have already thought about it internally.

I concur. I had a similar experience talking with these gentlemen and felt like they were earnestly listening, sharing what they could, demonstrated they were aware of many of the communities concerns and looking to address.

Really down to earth and approachable guys. Easy to talk with.

#6168 1 year ago
Quoted from Gasoline:

These gentlemen were really down to earth and approachable guys. Easy to talk with.

Come on now, you're being too courteous when you're supposed to be pouring gasoline on the fire in this thread.

#6169 1 year ago
Quoted from littlecammi:

Come on now, you're being too courteous when you're supposed to be pouring gasoline on the fire in this thread.

#iseewhatyoudidthere

#6170 1 year ago
Quoted from Gasoline:

I attended the Houston Expo and played RAZA on and off over 2 days (probably put ~30-40+ games in). Here is a $.02 perspective on top of the other comments already reported in this thread. TLDR: Skip down to "Overall".
Disclaimer: I am not a tournament player, nor a pinball historian, have no fanboi allegiance to any manufacturers/designers, and just a regular novice pin enthusiast.
I spoke with the DR crew about their goal of attending the event and about the pin itself. They confirmed the machines brought to the show were not the final PFs, cabinets, art package, sculpted toys, code, etc... (RM commented on this in his last podcast interview so really no surprises there).
These machines were specifically put together to test at the show to collect data and get initial impressions on some of the design aspects. The goal of bringing to a small event like Expo was to view real life players of all skills interact with the game, collect data on a subset of code, and see what people liked/didn't like. In short, I gathered they wanted feedback but didn't want to reveal everything ahead of their premier early next year.
I don't know if one should hypothesis that there will be changes from what was shown in the actual PF/Mechs but I would expect tweaks and more layers added to the code. The DR reps kept telling me we were not seeing all that is in the game, they pulled a lot for the show, and there will be more in the final build (interpret how you will).
It was apparent that aspects of the code were not complete in that it was lacking full story integration on goals/objectives, fully implemented call outs, all wizard modes, full on light integration, etc. The modes that worked had the animation running like Atomic Mode, Zombie Multi-Ball mode, Duck Hunt. Other items like Bowling Alley, Daredevil Ramp, Dizzie Dozzie sort of registered and displayed animation on the screen but I didn't see how they integrated into the game play story or value to the game objectives.
The DR team did have laptops directly wired into the backbox CPUs of both pins (pins OS run on Unity) collecting data, turning features on and off, rebooting, viewing stats, etc... For example, there were a few times when i saw the ball go into the Xenon ball lock and the CPU ball register would lose track. The game would just sit idle and not do a ball check. They would have to reboot the pin from the laptop. Upon rebooting, a ball check script would run, find the missing ball, eject it back into the game, and cleared the error. By the second day, they must have tweaked code b/c when I saw it happen they said wait (which usually took over a min) but eventually the ball check would kick in and automatically eject out the lost ball. Main difference was no forced reboot.
The rep did comment that they have been play testing extensively in their labs but the show was definitely providing value in that they are seeing some new behaviors/issues they had not run across during their testing.
I was told RAZA's toys were 3D printed and not the final sculptured versions. The Ferris wheel was a pure white plastic wheel and not decorated. The toys (Dizzie Doozie, Zombie Ned, Jet Rocket, UFO Ship, Atomic Shop) looked pretty rough up close to be honest but they represent what will be in place.
They addressed the PFs being dark. The PF lights were not fully implemented for the prototypes and there would be a brighter/better implemented light shows in the final product.
Cabinet art was just a place holder. The silver plate around the screen and speakers was also just a functional cover.
As others stated, the conference area lighting situation wasn't ideal. The game's color palate has a lot of green, purple and blue which combined with conf area lighting (plus lack of full in-game light integration) hurt what can be seen in the photos/videos (green haze). The color scheme does have a feel as if it's being setup for a black-light neon-glow option (speculating). Plus the glass was standard "visiglass" which meant views were blocked by lights/reflections bouncing off the glass.
Screen/Animation: I liked the length of the screen, it felt natural, and didn't distract from game play. Animation was smooth, buttery and professionally done. Want to see more of what's to come in the animation department and how it integrates into the back story. The players' scores, objectives and understanding the layout was pretty straight forward.
Sounds: From what I heard, well composed, professionally done, crisp, and fit well with the game play. Buzz Lightyear meets evil carnival integration is the best way to describe it.
Flow: This is not a fast flowing game. It's a lot of stop, aim, and shoot at your targets. At first when playing, it felt clunky. As I got better on ball control and knowing objectives of where to shoot, the game felt smoother. It is a low scoring game where breaking 1000 was an achievement for many. Towards the end I was averaging 5k-10k scoring games with a personal high of 24k.
JPOP factor: Yes, this is filled with a plethora of past JPOP design concepts, game mechanics and toys. Does one stand out above all the rest? None did for me. I felt like each brought a small uniqueness to the game and as a whole provided entertainment but not one item dominated the game.
Zed Target: Moving target under Zed sculpture. Shoot moving target under Ned to spell out Zombie. Activates Zombie Multiball. Very satisfying and if missed, can lead to SDTM plunges. Most obviously thing to do and focus on at start of the game.
Multipliers: 3x, 6x, 9x underneath left wing of Jet Rocket above the Ride the Coaster ramp. Important to have these hit (often via nudging) and activated before multi-balls. Absolute must to achieve high scores!
Ride the Coaster Ramp: The ramp has a skill factor. Hit it with enough speed, you drive the ball to the top and it can divert to a left or right exit ramp (which direction it takes I could not determine but a majority of the time it would exit down the right ramp). If you try to dead flip it up, you usually won't have enough momentum, it rolls backwards down the ramp and drops off behind the Atomic Shop (Ramp chute has part of it's side missing) into the central top play area near the Zed moving bullseye target. I was in the 30-40% range of making it to the top. Some games it seemed easy to do back to back. Others it was near impossible to get the momentum needed. Partly by design? Or partly due to weak flippers? Lots of cheers when people made it to the top of the ramp tho.
Dizzie Dozzie: This is the spin toy (~TOTAN Lamp) on the left side which was pretty stiff on spinning. Spin it and get points. When I made the comment how it slowed down play, the engineer commented they've tried it where it spins much looser/faster. They tweaked it for the show to try it in the other direction. Most comments from players were that it got in the way, spins too slow, sort of useless, and slowed down play but I did see that it helped redirect the ball often in a positive manner to prevent SDTM. It's location sort of makes the left orbit difficult to hit and can get in the way of the Atomic Shop if the Dizzie Doozie bar is oriented in a blocking pattern of ball flow.
Daredevil ramp: I didn't understand the joy of it. Hit it just right and the ball jumps up an inch off the PF, hits a target, drops down behind the ramp, and pushes the ramp up to roll ball back into play. Code wasn't really integrated to show its value from what I saw.
Twister Spins: Spinning black disk which I saw activate 2x but had no idea why it activated. Just flung the ball in a random direction across PF. Injects risk but no major wow factor for me.
Bowling Alley: Three X's up along the right orbit have targets that call out spares/strikes when hit. They worked but again not fully implemented in how they are part of the game.
Atomic Shop: Hit drop target in front of shop to open the shop. Enter shop before drop target pops back up to activate a mode. I.E House of Mirrors, Duck Hunt,... Pretty straight forward. Noted that Dizzie Doozie's orientation often gets in the way.
Ferris Wheel: Soft right orbit shot I believe will get you a seat on the wheel which just slow spins and drops ball back into play. Not sure the value or if it was fully integrated into game play yet.
Duck Hunt: To the left of Dizzie Doozie is a carnival spin wheel with 3 duck targets that rotates. Hard to hit but one of the modes I believe from Atomic Shop.
Atomic Shot: Shoot left orbit to spell Atomic Shot. Activates modes. Can't recall which.
Xenon Tube: Just to the right of Zed moving target, locks balls for multi-ball mode.
MagnaSave: Above the right lane letter "D", there is a silver magnet that can be activated by a second button below the right flipper button. Press and Hold (as long as you like) and the ball will get pulled to the magnet. Release the button and it drops down the D lane. Great when you see the ball wobbling toward the "E" drain lane. For the show (at least on the second day), the magnasave was always available and never timed out. They said very few people tried using it. I found it invaluable. I assume in final code you will have to earn this function and it will only be on for a limited time.
Carnival Tickets: Throughout the game you collect carnival tickets for achieving actions. How you get to spend these to collect prizes or activate features was not explained or how to use. May be tied with Skill Shot Select item below but wasn't implemented.
Skill Shot Select: Before each plunge, you can choose with your flippers on the screen from 6 (I recall) skill shot targets to hit. You spend different points to select. Maybe this is where you spend tickets? The more points you spend, the greater reward if you hit selected target. For the Expo, it didn't seem to matter if you had points or not, you could select any skill shot to attempt. Maybe I just misunderstood the objectives of this skill shot part of the game. It seemed no matter what you picked, all the skill shots lit up to target. Someone else can correct me on this. There were blips in the code where a skill shot would auto select as you switched players and it ran out your save ball plunge timer before you had a chance to shoot.
Skill Gate: Upon plunging the ball, it sends the ball up a short ramp and dumps it right to your flippers every time. I assume this is aligned to coordinate with the Skill Shot you select.
Wizard Modes: Battle 1, 2, 3, 4, Save the Earth. I don't believe these were active or available.
Hurry Up/Get Ready: Above the R on the far left drain, when lit, actually shoots drained ball up to windy clear plastic trail and drops back to left flipper. Everytime I thought my ball was going to drain I was excited to have this kick in. Small gimmick but an enjoyable one.
Overall: There was a fun factor and challenge to RAZA. I kept going back to play more. I told the reps my curiosity was piqued, it had a lot of potential, definitely needs tweaks (PF mechs/Code), but I wouldn't buy it today in its current state. There has to be a deeper level of code play with objectives and wizard modes (which obviously weren't available for the expo) for me to see and play before I would purchase one.
The discussions on DR innovations under the hood and PF are interesting for long term support/maintenance/cost savings but obviously they were not available in this cabinet build to be shown at Houston Expo.
RAZA has the components to be fun but as a whole I wasn't sure they were fully implemented with code yet. If this is close to final form, then they may have problems with long term play-ability, attracting players, and selling large volumes of machines. As a prototype, this was a pretty solid showing. It definitely has created a spectrum of opinions on PS.
End message is that I am curious to see more and where this goes. They have a good foundation to build and tweak (layout, toys, code, animation). Can they deliver a "Wow-Factor" game in its final form and hit a price range that will draw in the limited dollars from potential pin buyers next year?
To be continued in 2020...

This ^^^^^; thanks so much for such a thoughtful and honest review.
Anytime a person states up front they are just an average player I tend to listen more closely. Your review has me super excited to see what they do with AIW.

So the question is, should they widen shots that are hard to hit or leave as is and let the code offer higher rewards? Greater the danger, greater the reward right? I feel like Houdini was deemed a clunker because of people feeling the shots were too hard. It also sounds like this is not a game to be considered flow. Personally I'm not a flow fan. Games get long for me and having a holdup/timeout is welcome

#6171 1 year ago

I'm most interested to see how the ramp progresses. With the diverter, changing the code to feed the left flipper more could make it a very repeatable shot and alter things significantly

#6172 1 year ago

All of the reviews are great.

Two questions that matter most. How much will it cost?

How much would you pay for that game?

#6173 1 year ago
Quoted from iceman44:

All of the reviews are great.
Two questions that matter most. How much will it cost?
How much would you pay for that game?

If it was cheaper than a Stern Pro I would still buy a JP over it. That's just me.

#6174 1 year ago
Quoted from iceman44:

All of the reviews are great.
Two questions that matter most. How much will it cost?
How much would you pay for that game?

Depends on how you derive value from these boxes of lights.

I could see it landing at Stern Pro pricing, presuming the comments about the sculpts not being final, code getting finished, etc. If this entered JJP Standard Ed territory, that would be a tough sell for me.

Of course, I'm a cheap ass, so most anything post System 11 is a tough sell

On the topic of value: It was really an adjustment walking over to Elvira, which I had never shot prior to the show. The playfield felt cavernous compared to RAZA (and most any other game, to be fair). Shots were easier to make, but they were also in the same spots where they are in every other fan layout. I played one game, lit up multiple modes, and felt I had seen everything I needed to see. I had way more fun playing Striker Extreme, another pin I had never played, than Elvira.

Point is, theme can make up for a lot of the perceived value in a game. There's alot of folks who are Elvira fans that will be totally happy with that pin. For me, it was just another fan layout.

I just dropped more on a pin than I ever thought I would for TSPP. Being a huge Simpsons fan, the theme adds to the layout and insanely deep rules. I paid just a touch more for it than a NIB Stern, which - logically - doesn't make sense. But, I'm happier with a 15-year old TSPP than a NIB JP2.

$0.02 deposited

#6175 1 year ago
Quoted from wlf_:

I'm most interested to see how the ramp progresses. With the diverter, changing the code to feed the left flipper more could make it a very repeatable shot and alter things significantly

Not really unless they move the return to the inlane and not in front of the sling shot. (Which they should. It could be fun to combo the ramp if it's the right level of difficult and rewarding. ie don't make it Data East Hook)

#6176 1 year ago
Quoted from iceman44:

All of the reviews are great.
Two questions that matter most. How much will it cost?
How much would you pay for that game?

I'm not a NIB guy so I have no opinion.

But anybody considering it should take a look at the Houdini landscape and see how much trouble people are having in dumping theirs before committing to a "what I'd pay" price.

18
#6177 1 year ago

Funny to see all of these people that weren't at the show and have never played the game talking the most shit.

EVERYONE I talked to at the show loved the game. Including me. It was very fun and IT WAS JUST THE PROTOTYPE.

I personally hit the ramp many times, but here is something I haven't seen anyone mention. THE FLIPPER POWER WAS PURPOSELY DIALED DOWN!! Everyone is complaining about flipper strength and not able to hit the ramp as much as you'd like. Again, THE FLIPPER STRENGTH WAS TURNED DOWN!! Flipper strength is adjustable just like other modern pins.

This was verified by the DR staff that was there. Why? because the game IS A PROTOTYPE and as others have mentioned had many 3D printed parts that they did not want to risk breaking during the show. This has been done by other manufactures when debuting a prototype at shows as well. Nothing new here, folks. Whether you agree with that tactic or not, doesn't really matter.

The game was fun as hell and I never saw anyone having a bad time on it. Staff was awesome too. Very hopeful for Deeproot.

#6178 1 year ago
Quoted from pinlink:

Funny to see all of these people that weren't at the show and have never played the game talking the most shit.
EVERYONE I talked to at the show loved the game. Including me. It was very fun and IT WAS JUST THE PROTOTYPE.
I personally hit the ramp many times, but here is something I haven't seen anyone mention. THE FLIPPER POWER WAS PURPOSELY DIALED DOWN!! Everyone is complaining about flipper strength and not able to hit the ramp as much as you'd like. Again, THE FLIPPER STRENGTH WAS TURNED DOWN!! Flipper strength is adjustable just like other modern pins.
This was verified by the DR staff that was there. Why? because the game IS A PROTOTYPE and as others have mentioned had many 3D printed parts that they did not want to risk breaking during the show. This has been done by other manufactures when debuting a prototype at shows as well. Nothing new here, folks. Whether you agree with that tactic or not, doesn't really matter.
The game was fun as hell and I never saw anyone having a bad time on it. Staff was awesome too. Very hopeful for Deeproot.

People can still have an opinion based on pics, videos, and comments from those that played it. I played it and found much to be critical of. Unless they were holding back, they have a long way to go to be competitive imo. Weak flippers was an instant turnoff for me. If that was done on purpose as well as disabling features then not sure what to say about that. IMO they should of showed up strong with games closer to production, flipping strong, and playing well. It was an opportunity to blow minds. Otherwise, what's the point? It's just a glass half full and you still have to wait and see what the game will be like since much of it will change. I wish Deeproot all the best but they were welcoming criticism coming out with games like that.

#6179 1 year ago

It was an interesting game, I put a few games on it. They'll fix the ramp with geometry or flipper power, no way it ships where you can't hit that from a cradle. It was missing a signature mech/toy that might push it from good to great. And I am not down with the dizzy doozie spinning post, that needs to go. It crowds and blocks an already busy area of the playfield.

If this is DR sand bagging, it's brilliant.

#6180 1 year ago
Quoted from HookedonPinonics:

If it was cheaper than a Stern Pro I would still buy a JP over it. That's just me.

Isn’t that the problem for them?

Can’t look at the game in a vacuum.

I would think Stern pro pricing would sell a bunch of these but you need to see the “value” that DR talks about

That means a Stern premium for the price of a pro to me?

#6181 1 year ago
Quoted from jawjaw:

Weak flippers was an instant turnoff for me.

#6182 1 year ago
Quoted from iceman44:

All of the reviews are great.
Two questions that matter most. How much will it cost?
How much would you pay for that game?

Under 5K as it is . Needs work.

#6183 1 year ago

Hey, did you see the part about this being a prototype? Jesus Christ, people.

#6184 1 year ago
Quoted from pinlink:

Hey, did you see the part about this being a prototype? Jesus Christ, people.

Yes I did that is why I said it needs work. My name is Frank.

#6185 1 year ago
Quoted from frankmac:

Under 5K as it is . Needs work.

Plays the prototype, determines it needs work.
Found the expert here.

#6186 1 year ago
Quoted from DerGoetz:

Plays the prototype, determines it needs work.
Found the expert here.

I was responding to iceman44 question . Still needs work in my "expert" opinion ...LOL

16
#6187 1 year ago
Quoted from pinlink:

Hey, did you see the part about this being a prototype? Jesus Christ, people.

Jesus Christ, relax dude. We all know it's a PROTOTYPE as they couldn't possibly expect this to sell more than a couple dozen of these games in it's current state.

Deep Root wants to play with the big boys? Well, knee jerk reactions from Pinside are all part of it. I'm sure they understand that.

This is nothing more than roasting the new guys. It's all part of the fun, it's what Stern gets every single sneak peak pre-release, and it's what they signed up for when they decided the world needed yet another pinball company. We'll see how it goes! I'd love to have more good games to play, and look forward to seeing this in its final non PROTOTYPE state. But yelling PROTOTYPE over and over isn't going to protect them from people forming early opinions on it.

#6188 1 year ago

Game looks great in my opinion. Has the feel that Williams and Bally games had back in the day.

Considering game is a prototype I think it is pretty solid. My hopes is that we can give them support and
praise and not kill the game out of the gate with Pinside hate.

#6189 1 year ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

Jesus Christ, relax dude. We all know it's a PROTOTYPE as they couldn't possibly expect this to sell more than a couple dozen of these games in it's current state.
Deep Root wants to play with the big boys? Well, knee jerk reactions from Pinside are all part of it. I'm sure they understand that.
This is nothing more than roasting the new guys. It's all part of the fun, it's what Stern gets every single sneak peak pre-release, and it's what they signed up for when they decided the world needed yet another pinball company. We'll see how it goes! I'd love to have more good games to play, and look forward to seeing this in its final non PROTOTYPE state. But yelling PROTOTYPE over and over isn't going to protect them from people forming early opinions on it.

Nothing to do with Pinside hate

Stern gets beat to death daily 24/7 yet they sell a shitload of pins! My ElviraLE nib just got delivered an hour ago. I don’t get my panties in a wad because some people hate it

I have a Raza coming so I’m happy for all opinions.

Let’s lose the whole prototype nonsense. The game isn’t going to undergo some magic transformation after 7 YEARS

DR better start worrying when we don’t post or critique it. Then nobody cares and they are in deep shit.

Everybody’s opinion will differ depending on price point. $5k they could sell a lot. $8k? Not so much. I’m guessing $6500

#6190 1 year ago
Quoted from iceman44:

I have a Raza coming

Do you have a potential arrival date already?

11
#6191 1 year ago
Quoted from DS_Nadine:

Basically you're saying: Build a Stern.
Even if the ferris wheell and duck target wouldn't add too much (wich we don't know) it adds to the theme big time.
Remove each and evry mech that is not quintessential is... Well, a Stern.

Not saying build a Stern at all, not even close, but I am saying if you choose to bad mouth Stern, you better deliver one hell of a game and this game does not deliver enough to warrant Roberts attitude. Three of the latest Stern games all destroy this game, i.e. Deadpool, Jurassic Park, Iron Maiden.

#6192 1 year ago
Quoted from thedarkknight77:

Not saying build a Stern at all, not even close, but I am saying if you choose to bad mouth Stern, you better deliver one hell of a game and this game does not deliver enough to warrant Roberts attitude. Three of the latest Stern games all destroy this game, i.e. Deadpool, Jurassic Park, Iron Maiden.

I'd say even Avengers would destroy most prototypes....

#6193 1 year ago

Guys, bottom line, this game is not special enough to get over the theme hump. Unless this is priced aggressively, it won’t sell well.........That is my prediction. If you want to prove me wrong, all you have to do is buy the game.

#6194 1 year ago
Quoted from thedarkknight77:

Not saying build a Stern at all, not even close, but I am saying if you choose to bad mouth Stern, you better deliver one hell of a game and this game does not deliver enough to warrant Roberts attitude. Three of the latest Stern games all destroy this game, i.e. Deadpool, Jurassic Park, Iron Maiden.

Not a huge fan of deadpool, but it really is amazing what Keith was able to build with the same budget as other games from Stern. A good game doesn't mean throwing a bunch of mechs / toys (especially regurgitating old ones). The game has to flow nicely, and the designer has to be smart about adding features. That helicopter blade on the return ramp of JP probably cost less than a dollar between the screw and plastic, but it's sorta satisfying. Also that spinning truck newton ball is pretty innovative.

#6195 1 year ago
Quoted from PinballManiac40:

Do you have a potential arrival date already?

No just what DR says. June of next yr at latest

I like the widescreen. Sound and animations will be great.

Code should be clever and deep.

Artwork should be killer. No excuses there.

Because it’s a non licensed theme it has to be that much better overall

BM66 isn’t a wow factor layout. But it’s got the theme and everything else

#6196 1 year ago

I have not played it, but if it's as much a Stern pro, I don't see it selling too well.

#6197 1 year ago

AAWeirdo (resized).jpeg

#6198 1 year ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

Jesus Christ, relax dude. We all know it's a PROTOTYPE as they couldn't possibly expect this to sell more than a couple dozen of these games in it's current state.
Deep Root wants to play with the big boys? Well, knee jerk reactions from Pinside are all part of it. I'm sure they understand that.
This is nothing more than roasting the new guys. It's all part of the fun, it's what Stern gets every single sneak peak pre-release, and it's what they signed up for when they decided the world needed yet another pinball company. We'll see how it goes! I'd love to have more good games to play, and look forward to seeing this in its final non PROTOTYPE state. But yelling PROTOTYPE over and over isn't going to protect them from people forming early opinions on it.

DAMN.... I agree with you Levi....

If I remember... When Jack was planning to get into the game, Gary Stern commented something like, "jump on in, the water's cold"

10
#6199 1 year ago
Quoted from Fulltilt:

DAMN.... I agree with you Levi....

I had nice long conversations with the DR eng team

Played many games, they were pretty straight forward with what they could say, at one point they we're fixing an issue and had the playfield pulled out, not vertical, and I can tell you from the little I saw, there's alot going on underneath...
I believe they will address our concerns

And the flippers power was turned down,

Personally, I think they knock it out of the park at TPF

#6200 1 year ago

The biggest thing deeproot screwed up was revealing this prototype the way they did.

Now we have crummy cell phone footage (no offense, thanks for sharing), a lot of people heavily dissecting a prototype, and the first impression for many in the core market has been made and it was underwhelming to say the least. Now it’s endless speculation about the price of a retail product based on an working prototype with poor messaging.

I get they needed feedback and some location testing, but there are better ways to do it.

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