There's been a number of discussions on Pinside as of late about the lack of code updates coming out of JJP. I still say JJP is making some of the best pinball machines out there (I'm happy to currently own 4 JJP games) but their code support seems to have done a bit of a 180 compared where it was 5 years ago. Maybe some of their latest games are being released with more completed code (Toy Story 4) but there's still a lack of polish for other games.
Besides a few updates for their latest game, Toy Story 4, there's been a complete stop in code releases for over a year for all other JJP games. I can understand no longer releasing updates for Wonka, Dialed In, Hobbit, and WOZ as those games are very polished at this point. However, Pirates with its .99 code (no final wizard mode) and their biggest hit to date GNR not receiving a single update in over a year is puzzling. I was just at a pinball league event with 4 fellow GNR owners, everyone of us agrees that GNR code desperately needs code polishing and by that I mean not just bug fixes. GNR has also taken a good hit on the secondary market and IMO it's heavily tied to the lack of code updates for the game.
Also, and this is just an opinion, there are too many modes in JJP's latest titles that come across as being dull (shoot everything type modes for example), and modes that are almost duplicates of each other that again are just not very fun to play. It doesn't matter if Pirates has 100+ chapter modes and GNR has 25+ song modes when they all basically play the same. Add some more mode variety (Hobbit for example), make more modes stand on their own versus being stacked 3-5x over (LOTR for example), and add more unique mode choreography across all modes (Hobbit and LOTR). Many of the modes in GNR and Pirates almost come across as being procedurally generated versus being noticeably unique as with the modes on say Hobbit.
I would like to continue buying JJP games but code support, depth, and polish just isn't where it should be IMO when compared to Stern who is now regularly cranking out updates for multiple games and constantly polishing existing code.
Last JJP code update release dates
GNR: October 13th, 2021
Wonka: October 21st, 2021
Pirates: April 23rd, 2019
Dialed In: October 14th, 2021
Hobbit: October 22, 2021
WOZ: October 20th, 2021