(Topic ID: 148474)

When Will The Stern Bubble Burst?


By thundergod76

3 years ago



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  • Latest reply 1 year ago by erak
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    There are 468 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 10.
    #1 3 years ago

    Stern cranking out more machines and expecting people to buy vault editions of pins they already have. Complete code abandonment of past titles. Continuing to raise prices only to cut even more corners. Current pin resurgence will only last so long. When do you think the inevitable Stern bubble will burst?

    15
    #2 3 years ago

    Never

    #3 3 years ago

    been wondering this as well and have been tracking the MSRP's here

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/sterns-game-release-history#post-2326137

    13
    #4 3 years ago

    When the pinball bubble bursts.

    #5 3 years ago

    Hopefully it won't, when it does, Stern will close the doors.

    #6 3 years ago

    5:37pm Oct 8th 2018. Nailed it.

    46
    #7 3 years ago

    For me it already has.

    18
    #8 3 years ago

    Stern's inconsistent code work and continuing to up prices while offering less will ultimately be their undoing. They cannot keep these business practices up and expect to maintain / grow their market share.

    Hey those are this guys words, not mine, lol. Oh, I'm afraid your KISS code update will not be ready when Spiderman Vault edition arrives.

    palpatine-smile-wait-emperor-palpatine-killed-who-gif-275541_(resized).jpg

    #9 3 years ago
    Quoted from o-din:

    For me it already has.

    Mine too after X-MEN.

    #10 3 years ago

    I can see how they justify selling a re-worked pro for more than a premium when pros back then had as much features as premiums do now.

    16
    #11 3 years ago

    I think Spiderman originally sold for $4k (maybe even $3.7k) NIB in 2007. The CPI inflation calculator says that $4k in 2007 is the equivalent to nearly $4600 today...yet Spiderman Vault edition is going to be around $6500 from distributors. That goes to show just how much Stern has been taking people for a ride with many of their newer games that offer less then those from the POTC, Spiderman, LOTR, and TSPP era of games. All NIB pricing, not just Stern's, is nuts.

    #12 3 years ago

    It will not burst, cause we have enough millionairs who buy all pins unseen. They don't care if its a dud or overpriced. They get rid of it and buy the next pin if it ain't a fun/good one.

    Wish those pin'fans' would move on.

    #13 3 years ago

    IMHO- no, I like the new SM and the idea of VE's. I will probably buy the SMVE many more positive's than negative's for my situation.(SMVE)

    #14 3 years ago
    Quoted from PanzerFreak:

    I think Spiderman originally sold for $4k (maybe even $3.7k) NIB in 2007. The CPI inflation calculator says that $4k in 2007 is the equivalent to nearly $4600 today...yet Spiderman Vault edition is going to be around $6500 from distributors. That goes to show just how much Stern has been taking people for a ride with many of their newer games that offer less then those from the POTC, Spiderman, LOTR, and TSPP era of games. All NIB pricing, not just Stern's, is nuts.

    It likely sold for less then 3.7K since that is around what I paid and I was new to the NIB scene. I'm sure operators and people who purchased previous NIB's paid even less.

    14
    #15 3 years ago

    I have spent thousands on NIB games. I am done. Stern price increases are beyond reasonable and are out of line with normal inflationary trends (especially considering the past few years). Wake up Gary. The feeding frenzy will come to an end.

    #16 3 years ago
    Quoted from o-din:

    I can see how they justify selling a re-worked pro for more than a premium when pros back then had as much features as premiums do now.

    Sm doesn't have as many features as any of the current premiums. Don't get me wrong it's a blast but toy wise what's it got? A magnet,a motorized target bank, and some static dolls? It's pro grade all the way man. A 7500 sm makes a met pro nib a flat out steal! I'd hate to see what a lotr ve or tspp ve would cost!

    #17 3 years ago
    Quoted from tilted81:

    Sm doesn't have as many features as any of the current premiums. Don't get me wrong it's a blast but toy wise what's it got? A magnet,a motorized target bank, and some static dolls?

    Hm, pretty similar to Iron Man.

    #18 3 years ago
    Quoted from tilted81:

    Sm doesn't have as many features as any of the current premiums. Don't get me wrong it's a blast but toy wise what's it got? A magnet,a motorized target bank, and some static dolls? It's pro grade all the way man. A 7500 sm makes a met pro nib a flat out steal! I'd hate to see what a lotr ve or tspp ve would cost!

    I don't think I agree. Looking at GoT, SM seems to have more at the Premium level.

    12
    #19 3 years ago

    Hopefully not before Iron Maiden, Rush, Zeppelin and Sabbath gets made.

    #20 3 years ago

    The pricing is absolutely out of hand.

    Do operators really still buy NIB machines outside of the Pro? What does the ROI look like on something like that? I would love to see the average ROI on a WOZ.

    12
    #21 3 years ago
    Quoted from DaveH:

    I don't think I agree. Looking at GoT, SM seems to have more at the Premium level.

    Since we can't see the BOM it's kinda pointless to argue about it, but when I look at GoT and SM the thing that jumps out to me is the RGB lighting. GoT Premium has a ton of RGB inserts. Which are not only more expensive, but also contribute to the whole "Premium" part of the deal. You get this cool light show that the cheaper Pro game doesn't have.

    SM has none.

    Rob Zombie has a color display. Full Throttle at that price range has RGB lighting for every light, and a high rez color display.

    I think it's reasonable to say that if you're gonna charge that much, we have certain baseline expectations for what we are getting. Normal LEDs and a red DMD? What was the last Premium to not have any RGB lighting? (Honestly can't remember. Before ACDC?)

    #22 3 years ago
    Quoted from DaveH:

    I don't think I agree. Looking at GoT, SM seems to have more at the Premium level.

    Ive not paid much attention to got. I haven't played one yet.. Just not interested. But compared to st premium, met premium, Twd premium, or even kiss premium you feel the same way?

    #23 3 years ago

    Probably when the stock and/or bond market bubble bursts again and/or the economy tanks again.

    Everything goes in cycles and too many people have forgotten 2008. (or worse, 2000-2003)

    Since then however, the mantra is now "the road goes on forever and the party never ends".

    #24 3 years ago

    It already has for me. My next 3 NIB's are not Stern's. Pricing was a consideration, by the time freight and taxes paid they will still be cheaper than a Stern pro in Aust.

    There seems to be a lot of stock at distributors, sales rates have slowed....is it starting to deflate....yes...will it burst..probably not in next two years.

    -2
    #25 3 years ago
    Quoted from thundergod76:

    Stern cranking out more machines and expecting people to buy vault editions of pins they already have. Complete code abandonment of past titles. Continuing to raise prices only to cut even more corners. Current pin resurgence will only last so long. When do you think the inevitable Stern bubble will burst?

    After Jaws I'm sure. That'll be their last huge hit. HD color lcd and all that.

    #26 3 years ago

    image_(resized).jpeg

    #27 3 years ago

    I'm wondering when the market will saturate. Stern (with some help from others) is cranking up new pins like no tomorrow. Although there are more pinheads I doubt the market can continue digesting new pins at this rate, especially since the secondary market is doing pretty well too. The rising cost base will not help either, something has to give at some point. But when, that's a question above my pay grade

    #28 3 years ago

    Closest example is ST premium which has full color changing inserts and a cool laser for the same price.

    People say SM has better code, but I'm not sure personally, I have to play ST more, and possibly there will be a further code update?

    #29 3 years ago
    Quoted from DaveH:

    I don't think I agree. Looking at GoT, SM seems to have more at the Premium level.

    You could argue almost any game looks "premium" next to GOT pro, it has less playfield mechs than any modern Stern. What about comparing to Metallica pro or ST?

    #30 3 years ago
    Quoted from Kkuoppamaki:

    I'm wondering when the market will saturate. Stern (with some help from others) is cranking up new pins like no tomorrow. Although there are more pinheads I doubt the market can continue digesting new pins at this rate, especially since the secondary market is doing pretty well too. The rising cost base will not help either, something has to give at some point. But when, that's a question above my pay grade

    Luckily JJP takes years to make a game and Stern makes games like Mustang and WWF to keep that from happening.

    #31 3 years ago

    When will the Stern bubble burst? Hopefully about 0.36 of a second after Pat Lawlor's new game is unveiled. I'm really hoping Heighway can take a substantial chunk out of Stern's market share as well, they seem to be committed to real innovation and keeping prices low.

    Quoted from thundergod76:

    Complete code abandonment of past titles. Current pin resurgence will only last so long. When do you think the inevitable Stern bubble will burst?

    It amazes me that some people think WOF was a one-off, never to be repeated. That fiasco is always dismissed by Stern's fans as justified 'because they were in financial trouble'. Yet here Stern are a decade later, with the market showing all the signs of a bubble, competition on the horizon for the first time in years, precious few innovations to show for their years of dominance, and STILL releasing games faster than they can code them- all the while experimenting with jacking up prices just to see if customers will pay them. It's a recipe for disaster and soon their profits are going to take a big hit. When they do, what budget items are going to be cut? It won't be physical production or marketing- they bring in money. It will be coding, from here to eternity, and it will make WOF look like a picnic. I wouldn't touch a new Stern with a ten foot pole.

    #32 3 years ago
    Quoted from thundergod76:

    Stern cranking out more machines and expecting people to buy vault editions of pins they already have.

    Um....no, that's silly. They're trying to sell Vault Editions to people who DIDN'T get them the first time around. If you have a Spider-Man already, they have 4 or 5 other games in production for you to buy.

    Quoted from iceman44:

    Probably when the stock and/or bond market bubble bursts again and/or the economy tanks again.
    Everything goes in cycles and too many people have forgotten 2008. (or worse, 2000-2003)
    Since then however, the mantra is now "the road goes on forever and the party never ends".

    Pinball seems to be immune to the financial ups and downs. Stern was rocking in 2003 with TSPP and LOTR selling like crazy. In 2008 they still had Spider-Man, Family Guy, WOF, IJ4, BDK & Shrek....they survived it, they're still here.

    10
    #33 3 years ago
    Quoted from Circus_Animal:

    When will the Stern bubble burst? Hopefully about 0.36 of a second after Pat Lawlor's new game is unveiled. I'm really hoping Heighway can take a substantial chunk out of Stern's market share as well, they seem to be committed to real innovation and keeping prices low.

    It amazes me that some people think WOF was a one-off, never to be repeated. That fiasco is always dismissed by Stern's fans as justified 'because they were in financial trouble'. Yet here Stern are a decade later, with the market showing all the signs of a bubble, competition on the horizon for the first time in years, precious few innovations to show for their years of dominance, and STILL releasing games faster than they can code them- all the while experimenting with jacking up prices just to see if customers will pay them. It's a recipe for disaster and soon their profits are going to take a big hit. When they do, what budget items are going to be cut? It won't be physical production or marketing- they bring in money. It will be coding, from here to eternity, and it will make WOF look like a picnic. I wouldn't touch a new Stern with a ten foot pole.

    So you want stern to crash to earth within a minute of jjp3 gets unveiled and that visual will make them crumble to their knees? Who knows how long it will take Jjp to bring that to market.

    The garbage people post on here shouldn't astound me anymore but it does. Just go play some pinball and have fun, the bitchfest was off the charts today! Congrats to all.

    #34 3 years ago

    I thought GOT Pro had RGB lighting.

    I don't understand the thought that SM has more playfield features than a normal Pro. It seems to be inline with GOT minus the LEDs.

    #35 3 years ago
    Quoted from Circus_Animal:

    When will the Stern bubble burst? Hopefully about 0.36 of a second after Pat Lawlor's new game is unveiled. I'm really hoping Heighway can take a substantial chunk out of Stern's market share as well, they seem to be committed to real innovation and keeping prices low.

    It amazes me that some people think WOF was a one-off, never to be repeated. That fiasco is always dismissed by Stern's fans as justified 'because they were in financial trouble'. Yet here Stern are a decade later, with the market showing all the signs of a bubble, competition on the horizon for the first time in years, precious few innovations to show for their years of dominance, and STILL releasing games faster than they can code them- all the while experimenting with jacking up prices just to see if customers will pay them. It's a recipe for disaster and soon their profits are going to take a big hit. When they do, what budget items are going to be cut? It won't be physical production or marketing- they bring in money. It will be coding, from here to eternity, and it will make WOF look like a picnic. I wouldn't touch a new Stern with a ten foot pole.

    Using Stern history as an indicator it absolutely will be physical production and marketing. Remember the layoffs of 2008? Stern doesn't.

    I wish no ill will towards Stern, it's the buyer's faults. I haven't bought a nib since Oct 2014, and I thought $7200 shipped for an LE was high then.

    #36 3 years ago
    Quoted from underlord:

    Using Stern history as an indicator it absolutely will be physical production and marketing. Remember the layoffs of 2008? Stern doesn't.
    I wish no ill will towards Stern, it's the buyer's faults. I haven't bought a nib since Oct 2014, and I thought $7200 shipped for an LE was high then.

    How much was the Alien you have in your gameroom?

    Screen_Shot_2016-01-05_at_4.54.06_AM_(resized).png

    #37 3 years ago
    Quoted from centerflank:

    So you want stern to crash to earth within a minute of jjp3 gets unveiled and that visual will make them crumble to their knees? Who knows how long it will take Jjp to bring that to market.

    I'm not talking about some half-arsed 'visual', I'm talking about JJP getting this right: launching a complete, groundbreaking, fully functional, fully coded pinball machine with 21st century technology, ready to ship immediately. Don't believe it's possible? That's the entire point. I want JJP to shock everyone with what they come up with- and with Pat Lawlor on board they might actually have a chance to do it.

    As for Stern- yes, they've kept pinball alive for the last 15 years. That is their achievement (well, that and LOTR). They've kept it alive but they haven't kept it relevant and, frankly, don't look like doing so anytime soon. That can only come from a new company like JJP or Heighway looking to push the boundaries now that Stern has built a foundation. Great wartime leaders rarely prosper in peacetime, and the business world is no different.

    #38 3 years ago
    Quoted from Circus_Animal:

    Great wartime leaders rarely prosper in peacetime, and the business world is no different.

    yes....Australia is clearly the leader on that.

    Quoted from Circus_Animal:

    I'm talking about JJP getting this right: launching a complete, groundbreaking, fully functional, fully coded pinball machine with 21st century technology, ready to ship immediately.

    Funniest shit Ive read on pinside today, thank you.

    #39 3 years ago
    Quoted from iceman44:

    Probably when the stock and/or bond market bubble bursts again and/or the economy tanks again.
    Everything goes in cycles and too many people have forgotten 2008. (or worse, 2000-2003)
    Since then however, the mantra is now "the road goes on forever and the party never ends".

    Well then get ready for a bumpy 2016.
    http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2016/01/global-economy-2016/422475/

    #40 3 years ago
    Quoted from centerflank:

    Funniest shit Ive read on pinside today, thank you.

    It is early... Give it a few hours

    #41 3 years ago

    First I admire Stern for getting out so many games, they just do the standard thing in a lot of variations so costs should be low. They have an impressive lineup with various themes (GoT, WWE, Spiderman, Star Trek, Kiss, TWD..) so there is a lot to choose. Innovative....not...the model would fit more to a price fighter than a premium label. As they still have a large part of the market, it's their choice...but we are reaching a point that people will think different about the price. Stern thinks the Spiderman license is worth 7.5k....time will tell. With an Original SM selling in 2007 for $4500 and now one for $7500 that sure is some raise. And It is not in the materials nor the work, you would say that the machine is cheaper to produce with the increased volumes they are pushing out.

    #42 3 years ago
    Quoted from Rarehero:

    Um....no, that's silly. They're trying to sell Vault Editions to people who DIDN'T get them the first time around. If you have a Spider-Man already, they have 4 or 5 other games in production for you to buy.

    Pinball seems to be immune to the financial ups and downs. Stern was rocking in 2003 with TSPP and LOTR selling like crazy. In 2008 they still had Spider-Man, Family Guy, WOF, IJ4, BDK & Shrek....they survived it, they're still here.

    NIB pinball is immune to the ups and downs of the economy because people in the income brackets that can afford them also seem to be the most sheltered from the ups and downs of the economy.

    #43 3 years ago
    Quoted from centerflank:

    How much was the Alien you have in your gameroom?
    Screen_Shot_2016-01-05_at_4.54.06_AM_(resized).png

    Haha. $1000 dollars refundable and backing out if I don't see progress in next 3 months.

    Heighyway is still on probation too.

    Just trying to keep my collection updated for references like this.

    My biggest gripe with Stern is the cash grab with little innovation.

    #44 3 years ago

    It isn't really just a stern bubble but the entirety of pinball. Eventually the people with big money will move on and games will stop selling. The pinball bubble needs to burst before the Stern one does. But can Stern survive? If trends/prices go back to what they were in the early 2000s what will that mean for Stern? Can they produce a game and sell for $4000 and turn a profit? Maybe but things will need cut (code) more than likely.
    At that point will people be willing to sell the CV that they bought for $6700 for $4000? Maybe as long as all games have value relative to each other but what of the people looking to get out? They told their wife "this $6700 CV will never go down in value" and now it is time to sell. Will they? Or will they just hoard it out of spite for their piss poor decision?
    Would anyone see a reason to start a new company to make pinball machines? JJP prices would have been insane in 2002, even with all of the tech/innovation. If prices adjust back down to then would JJP just throw in the towel? Would Heighway and Dutch Pinball continue? There may be little incentive for them at these price points.
    If/when this "bubble" bursts it could be very bad for the hobby.

    #45 3 years ago
    Quoted from thundergod76:

    Continuing to raise prices only to cut even more corners. Current pin resurgence will only last so long. When do you think the inevitable Stern bubble will burst?

    Consider yourself fortunate living in the US. We Europeans (and probably Canadians, Aussies, Kiwis...) not only have to swallow increases in prices by Stern, but also changes in exchange rates (US$ being stronger by 25% in less than 2 years). These two effects are cumulative.

    Add to that VAT and we now have LE costing close to 10k€. Totally insane.
    Good for Stern there are still a few buyers rich enough (or dumb enough) to spend that much. Until when?

    -1
    #46 3 years ago
    Quoted from Aurich:

    Since we can't see the BOM it's kinda pointless to argue about it, but when I look at GoT and SM the thing that jumps out to me is the RGB lighting. GoT Premium has a ton of RGB inserts. Which are not only more expensive, but also contribute to the whole "Premium" part of the deal.

    From a BOM standpoint, RGBs are a minor bump in cost, betting less than $200, and they probably reduce assembly time. The coding, to really leverage them, is a more significant cost in adding them, but then you put that effort in for only a percentage of the games, and so you then have to boost the price to recover that cost. It has not seen to me that Stern had really done a whole lot with the RGB, but, I have not really looked that closely at it since I don't play a ton on the latest Sterns. So, a part of LE cost is not the BOM, but recovering the additional cost of the engineering. This will also be an issue of a move to a color display, which from a BOM standpoint would likely have minimal impact (an LCD is cheaper than a plasma DMD) but the development of that is a big jump from today's dots and if you don't do color on all, you sort of end up doing the dots twice.

    #47 3 years ago
    Quoted from jlm33:

    Consider yourself fortunate living in the US. We Europeans (and probably Canadians, Aussies, Kiwis...) not only have to swallow increases in prices by Stern, but also changes in exchange rates (US$ being stronger by 25% in less than 2 years). These two effects are cumulative.
    Add to that VAT and we now have LE costing close to 10k€. Totally insane.
    Good for Stern there are still a few buyers rich enough (or dumb enough) to spend that much. Until when?

    Canadian Dollar 1.40 to US Dollar right now. $7195.00US is 10,073.00CDN. without shipping and taxes

    #48 3 years ago

    If we still want gold plated trim, different backglasses, other playfield graphics for special editions just like small runs like transformers for example you have to pay the extra dollars.

    If its to expensive buy a pro.

    BUT YOUR RIGHT things (prices) gets out off control.

    Make the pro as le with pro price, and a special edition premium price.

    SKIP THE PRO Stern please THIS IS TO EXPENSIVE.

    #49 3 years ago

    When there's a real competitor. If someone can deliver multi games a year, no preorder, cheaper, in unlimited quantities.. Sure.

    The second way I guess if the net amount of games across all competitors approximated the above then that would count too. 2015 proved that's a tall order as well.

    Third, global economic meltdown. The exchange rate does bring up a good point.. Not sure what % of business that is for Stern but it may hurt their sales.

    #50 3 years ago
    Quoted from pinballwil:

    SKIP THE PRO Stern please THIS IS TO EXPENSIVE.

    ??

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