(Topic ID: 240678)

Where is the innovation in the last decade?


By Shapeshifter

5 months ago



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  • Latest reply 5 months ago by Pinballlew
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    #51 5 months ago
    Quoted from smokedog:

    I like this innovation:
    [quoted image]

    Ooohh... thats cool. Are they beefed up internal bracket?

    #52 5 months ago

    I believe the best innovation should be eliminate cost cutting measures while raising prices.

    #53 5 months ago

    Code
    LCD screens
    RGB LEDs

    Playfields and toys/features really haven't really changed much since Funhouse or TAF in my opinion.

    #54 5 months ago
    Quoted from manadams:

    You want more innovation then people have to stop buying games before they even see the damn things. Stern and JJP can put anything out now, charge more for it and certain pinball collector's have to have the newest thing irregardless of the innovation put into it.

    about 500 of "those guys!"

    #55 5 months ago
    Quoted from smokedog:

    I like this innovation:
    [quoted image]

    Really? 8 more screw holes in your cabinet? Imagine a playfield mod that would require to be screwed in like that

    #56 5 months ago
    Quoted from 7oxford:

    I’d like a 7 inch scoreboard screen on the apron or in the playfield in my line of sight. With glass anything is possible. Seldom have time to look up at the scoreboard during gameplay.

    I find head mounted displays a distraction, takes you eye off the playfield where it belongs.

    Just a thought; perhaps the money spent on licensing for properties would be better used on playfield features. I'd rather have a "generic game theme" that was fun than a mediocre game that had "insert popular property" here.

    Pinball went decades without licensing properties, why not?

    #57 5 months ago
    Quoted from gdonovan:

    Just a thought; perhaps the money spent on licensing for properties would be better used on playfield features. I'd rather have a "generic game theme" that was fun than a mediocre game that had "insert popular property" here.

    Pinball went decades without licensing properties, why not?

    While that could make for a better game, it's not going to sell more machines. Look at how many people buy games without having played them, or put down deposits sight unseen for themes they connect with.

    As an operator, I'll add that theme is the single most determining factor on earnings. By far.

    Stern can't go around making unlicensed themes - they've got a hungry production line to feed. I doubt we'll see any in the near future from JJP either. You're only going to see unlicensed themes from the small manufacturers.

    #58 5 months ago
    Quoted from gdonovan:

    Just a thought; perhaps the money spent on licensing for properties would be better used on playfield features. I'd rather have a "generic game theme" that was fun than a mediocre game that had "insert popular property" here.
    Pinball went decades without licensing properties, why not?

    Houdini, Oktoberfest, Dialed In, Black Knight. Go buy them all.

    You’re comparing the days of the relevant arcade to the days of home collectors. Different worlds. People only spend $9k on licenses that they have massive nostalgia for. This isn’t a game of quarter drop anymore.

    -1
    #59 5 months ago
    Quoted from ryanwanger:

    Stern can't go around making unlicensed themes - they've got a hungry production line to feed.

    Which if they were running off unlicensed games they could keep the line moving with lower price point products. How much did The Beatles take on each game? It is reported $500 per pop!

    Medieval Madness is number one on the Pinside SS list and it isn't built on some property.

    #60 5 months ago
    Quoted from 7oxford:

    The 5x spinning ball start to magneto multiball is cool. Maybe wrong but I can’t recall this been done earlier.

    Quoted from Rarehero:

    Borg literally stole it from an earlier game of his - Twister.

    And used it again on Lost in Space.

    #61 5 months ago
    Quoted from rkahr:

    Have you followed pinballrockstar 's thread: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/the-crazy-mansion-by-the-pinball-amigos ? Innovations I remember from the thread: the coffin, the mansion rising out of the playfield, the layers of playfield each rolling in a different direction, the backbox (way over-the-top), the adjusting pitch of the lower playfield. And it's a fun thread to read every Friday.
    -Rob
    -visit http://www.kahr.us to get my daughterboard that helps fix WPC pinball resets or my replacement LED display boards for model H & model S Skee Ball

    Hey thanks bud!!

    #62 5 months ago
    Quoted from Rarehero:

    Borg literally stole it from an earlier game of his - Twister.

    Ahh, never played twister, or lost in space. LOL.

    #63 5 months ago
    Quoted from gdonovan:

    perhaps the money spent on licensing for properties would be better used

    Licensing fees per game have been in the fifty dollar range over the years according to interviews with various people involved in the industry.

    #64 5 months ago

    Bring back gobble holes!

    #65 5 months ago
    Quoted from YeOldPinPlayer:

    Licensing fees per game have been in the fifty dollar range over the years according to interviews with various people involved in the industry.

    Beatles was reported to be $500, I can't say for any other title. I'd assume less, how much so you know more than I.

    Are "subways" really that expensive to implement? They are just ramps under the playfield if you think about it.

    #66 5 months ago
    Quoted from gdonovan:

    How much did The Beatles take on each game? It is reported $500 per pop!

    I agree, that's too much. But they charged $2k+ more for Beatles games, so in this case it was actually more profitable for them than a regular game.

    Quoted from gdonovan:

    Which if they were running off unlicensed games they could keep the line moving with lower price point products.

    Stern already has a successful strategy of keeping the line moving with limited run *higher* priced products.

    Stern is *the* market leader...and their Pros are already the lowest priced machines on the market (excluding Thunderbirds, if you think that counts). There is zero reason for them to start undercutting themselves.

    Yes, we all *want* less expensive games. That's not going to change unless someone new enters the market with significantly lower priced machines that are of similar quality. And even then, Stern doesn't have to compete unless these lower priced machines start selling in massive quantities...which is extremely unlikely if they aren't licensed.

    Quoted from gdonovan:

    Medieval Madness is number one on the Pinside SS list and it isn't built on some property.

    MM and AFM are *the* exceptions in terms of licenses. (Though they're timeless themes that are almost as good as licenses.)

    Those games can go toe to toe and often out-earn licensed games. Looking at the rest of the Top 50...if I were putting a game on location, I don't know that I'd take any of the licensed games over any of the unlicensed games in terms of earnings. (Though Congo and The Shadow are weak earners).

    Yeah, earnings aren't everything...but it's a great proxy for popularity. People buy NIB games sight unseen based on licenses. People play licensed games on location way more than unlicensed games. Ghostbusters was my highest earning game of all time. I removed it for 3 months, and when I polled my regulars about which game should be put in next, it came literally dead last in the voting. (ie: pinheads hated it, noobs filled it with quarters).

    #67 5 months ago
    Quoted from ryanwanger:

    There is zero reason for them to start undercutting themselves.

    The argument put forth that I was responding too was the Stern line needed to be fed, in the automotive world that sometimes means high volume / low cost variants of the product to keep the line moving.

    Yes, we all *want* less expensive games.

    My initial point was money spent on licenses could go to playfield "innovations" instead. If it really is just $50 a game, than it is a moot point. I suspect the price point is higher though. A friend of mine is going through licensing for Mopar product, FCA wants a cash chunk up front and a slice of each sale. Were talking an $80 product and they want $5000 up front and a percent of sales. So you trying to tell me pinball machines are less? I see Hollywood and the music industry squeezing that stone for all its worth.

    Again, I could be dead wrong I'm just going by what I have seen reported and licensing in another industry. Looking around I see CPR was discussing royalties for playfields and it is 25% of the retail price... So I think $50 a game is just a touch low.

    Looking at the rest of the Top 50...if I were putting a game on location, I don't know that I'd take any of the licensed games over any of the unlicensed games in terms of earnings. (Though Congo and The Shadow are weak earners).

    I see the same stagnation that has afflicted Hollywood the last decade or two. Least amount of risk possible flogging sequels and nostalgia.

    #68 5 months ago
    Quoted from Rarehero:

    People keep bringing this up, but it’s absolutely impractical. The likelihood of two people on a pinball machine at the same time in different parts of the country is unlikely. Fortnite works because there are like 100 million players. Pinball machines get to a few thousand if lucky. And then even if you were “playing against someone”, what would that even mean? Even just having high score tables would be irrelevant because games are all set up differently. Someone could take the glass off and cheat. Pinball isn’t a video game. It’s pinball. Online play isn’t going to happen and shouldn’t happen. Programmers barely can get a game finished and functional as-is ...now they have to figure out an online infrastructure & ruleset? Forget it.

    What an incredibly short sided view. Yeah let’s not have internet on our games bc for some reason pinball would be the only thing in this world that some how “wouldn’t work”. Embarrassing. As mentioned below this would only make the experience better. But let’s forget about technology bc hey were pinball players.

    I wonder why we just replaced dmd tech with lcds in freaking 2013! Let’s start to think a little more creatively guys.

    #69 5 months ago
    Quoted from delt31:

    I wonder why we just replaced dmd tech with lcds in freaking 2013!

    Cost? Generic LCD/LED screens are pretty cheap due to volume in other markets. DMD is limited market stuff now.

    Like I said, I keep my eye on the ball while playing, not shifting focus to whats going on off the playfield surface.

    LCD/LED holds no real excitement for me, though I like someone elses idea to set one in the apron or even inset in the playfield with pertinent play information. Till it drains, I look at nothing else but the ball.

    Your tastes of course maybe be different than mine.

    #70 5 months ago

    To the OP, I ask myself the same question. Adding a screen or lights to me is not innovation. The playfields are static. Something like Lexi Lightspeed is pretty cool for teh simple reason the only things static on the playfield is return ramps, flippers and slings. To me, being dynamic is key. Maybe having ramps behind the playfield with a diverter so you aren't sure where the ball comes out. Also a subway system with a diverter, and "super coil" to launch the ball out of wherever the game dynamically chooses to do so.

    Other than that, Stern and JJP need to cater to the route guys and provide a game that's not only fun but mechanically reliable. Apparently fun is never mechanically reliable lol

    #71 5 months ago
    Quoted from whthrs166:

    . ElectroMechanicalMagnetic Coolness is what I am hearing.

    This is exactly what he was saying. Multimorphic's Electo magnet locks:

    #72 5 months ago
    Quoted from delt31:

    What an incredibly short sided view. Yeah let’s not have internet on our games bc for some reason pinball would be the only thing in this world that some how “wouldn’t work”. Embarrassing. As mentioned below this would only make the experience better. But let’s forget about technology bc hey were pinball players.
    I wonder why we just replaced dmd tech with lcds in freaking 2013! Let’s start to think a little more creatively guys.

    Tell me how playing against someone somewhere else would be fun with pinball. In a video game you’re all literally moving around & interacting with each other in real time. What would internet pinball be?

    I’ll tell you. Fucking stupid.

    #73 5 months ago
    Quoted from Rarehero:

    Tell me how playing against someone somewhere else would be fun with pinball. In a video game you’re all literally moving around & interacting with each other in real time. What would internet pinball be?
    I’ll tell you. Fucking stupid.

    Also there are cheaters and modders for video games. What's to stop some A-hole from playing with the glass off. And removing the tilt Bob. Even if they was a security feature, someone would bypass it.

    Just look at Billy Mitchell. If there's a way to cheat. It will happen.

    #74 5 months ago
    Quoted from Rarehero:

    Tell me how playing against someone somewhere else would be fun with pinball. In a video game you’re all literally moving around & interacting with each other in real time. What would internet pinball be?
    I’ll tell you. Fucking stupid.

    Quoted from erak:

    Also there are cheaters and modders for video games. What's to stop some A-hole from playing with the glass off. And removing the tilt Bob. Even if they was a security feature, someone would bypass it.
    Just look at Billy Mitchell. If there's a way to cheat. It will happen.

    Why not have a camera on the other player and the game appear on your lcd backbox screen in real time while your on theirs? I think this could be incredibly fun. I am not saying you still couldn’t cheat but if another Pinsider owns the same game and we could play against each other, I think that would be awesome.

    #75 5 months ago
    Quoted from Zitt:

    This is exactly what he was saying

    I stand corrected. That is very cool.

    #76 5 months ago
    Quoted from Pinballlew:

    Why not have a camera on the other player and the game appear on your lcd backbox screen in real time while your on theirs? I think this could be incredibly fun. I am not saying you still couldn’t cheat but if another Pinsider owns the same game and we could play against each other, I think that would be awesome.

    Please someone define what a "head to head" pinball would even be before we even worry about cheating. Do you really want to be on camera with some stranger while playing pinball? ...and what, your'e supposed to watch them play while you play? No one has really thought this through, IMO. Multimorphic's done some head-to-head in person games and aside from it being a curiosity at shows...no one cares.

    Honestly, all people want in pinball is a GOOD game with magic under the glass. No one wants internet online play gimmick bullshit. I can see the benefits of internet for operators...alerts when a game has issues or a full coinbox...and for location players, games letting you know where they are or where a tournament is, etc....but actual ONLINE PLAY is a horrible idea that doesn't lend itself to the nature of pinball or its limited user base at all.

    #77 5 months ago
    Quoted from 7oxford:

    I’d like a 7 inch scoreboard screen on the apron or in the playfield in my line of sight. With glass anything is possible. Seldom have time to look up at the scoreboard during gameplay.

    This

    #78 5 months ago
    Quoted from Rarehero:

    Tell me how playing against someone somewhere else would be fun with pinball. In a video game you’re all literally moving around & interacting with each other in real time. What would internet pinball be?
    I’ll tell you. Fucking stupid.

    I wish replies like this could be taken out of this pinball forum and into the general public b/c it just sounds so dumb. Of course enabling the internet would be terrible. Man - internet is overrated!

    Back to reality, scoreboards would be great, not b/c I would look to be the best in the world, but it gives me more options to play with. Yes there could be cheating but I don't care b/c I'm not ultra competitive however with a friend it would be enjoyable and you would assume your friend isn't cheating....hopefully.

    Head to Head - challenges could be setup to see who can reach X first and that would be realtime.

    I can go on and on - but your lack of ability to even conceptualize this means you're already lost. That's fine but don't bring the rest of us down with your very limited view on what's possible. It's very disappointing. Why innovate right? please.

    #79 5 months ago
    Quoted from delt31:

    Head to Head - challenges could be setup to see who can reach X first and that would be realtime.

    I would be in the crowd that would be disinterested just because there is so many variables between machines and yes there are those who cheat as to make it pointless. Even with a relatively level playing field for example online 3rd person shooter games like Doom/Quake there is those who always come up with a hack or cheat to take advantage.

    With a physical object like a pin the problem would just be magnified.

    #80 5 months ago
    Quoted from Rarehero:

    No one wants internet online play gimmick bullshit.

    I disagree

    I think having internet online gameplay for competitions or tournaments is a great idea and will help grow and legitimize pinball competitions. I would be interested in playing in a 'virtual tournament' where you play your own dialed in machine in your home at your leisure. With a busy schedule with kids, it is difficult to travel to locations late at night to participate in leagues. Not sure about how all of the logistics would work to make it fair and competitive? People would have to have the same settings with number of balls, open out lanes, etc. I am all for internet online gimmick bullshit-bring it on!

    In terms of innovation how about altering the layout of 99% of pinball machines-maybe eliminate pop bumpers that do nothing or alter slings(maybe get rid of them and have just magnets). I would like to see a 3D pinball with multiple levels like Pinball Circus where you need to play to progress further into the next dimension. Cool physical features and not virtual ball tracking technology. How about altering the playfield. Can we do a wide body at top that narrows down to a standard at the bottom-more of a triangular shape playfield. We have been stuck with what pinball should be without thinking about what pinball could be.

    #81 5 months ago

    Rarehero is right, but I don’t think there’d be the amount of cheating he thinks. About $5 worth of sensors would handle 90% of it.

    As long as there’s no cash on the line, who cares who cheats anyway?

    I have a game design that would work with linked machines. It’s doable.

    In terms of innovation, I think JJP is really delivering on that. Stern plays it pretty safe (IMDN the exception that proves the rule) so I suspect your opinion is mostly formed by the mostly cookie-cutter stuff Stern does.

    Maybe Gary should let the designers run free.

    #82 5 months ago
    Quoted from ryanwanger:

    New things in pinball off the top of my head since 1990:
    - massively more in depth rule sets (AC/DC writeup is over 40 pages long)
    - more balls in multiball
    - stereo sound
    - headphone jack on the front of the machine
    - DMD display
    - color LDC display
    - self diagnosed error messages
    - opto switches
    - subways
    - catapulting ball mechs
    - massively expanded options for rules customization through the menus
    - third party hardware that lets you rewrite the rules entirely
    - color changing inserts
    - color changing GI
    - ability to stage-flip
    - auto-plunge
    - the transformer and driver boards have been reduced to roughly 10-20% of their original size
    - (some) games weight substantially less
    - hinged head that stays attached while folding down
    - Playfields that pull up and out (and have service rails)
    - action button (lol)
    - character and mode selection options
    - cameras that take your picture
    - insight and communication into tilts
    - more hardware and software customization to lengthen or shorten ball times
    - reduced power consumption and longer lasting components (in some cases, particularly lighting)
    Hard for me to agree that this list is technologically inferior and materially different from the car list, and I would argue many of them map directly to your car examples. Cars are nicer, better, faster, stronger. But so is pinball.

    I think maybe we are trying to make the same point, as I possibly misunderstood your intent. I thought you were saying that cars hadn't changed much in the last several years and neither had pinball. My point was that cars have indeed significantly changed and improved with innovation over recent years as well as pinball, and you seem to also make the point that there has also been significant advancement in pinball in your latest post.

    I don't know what the OP is expecting, but to say that pinball technology has been stagnant over the last decade just doesn't seem accurate to me.

    #83 5 months ago

    For the most part, there are very few recent games that actually have mechanisms that interact with the ball or player in interesting ways, and not just a target to bash.

    Some highlights:

    -Zac Time Machine rising playfield section
    -BOP head
    -LCA rotating playfield & animated backbox mini-game
    -FH & RS heads
    -DW rising playfield
    -CFTBL hologram
    -JD deadworld ring prototype ball locks
    -TZ mini playfield magnet flippers
    -TAF thing
    -TS mini playfield kicker
    -CP boxer
    -R911 helicopter
    -Stargate pyramid glidercraft
    -POTC ship
    -MET hammer ball lock
    -WOZ witch, spinning house, castle doors, flying monkey
    -GB magnet slingshots
    -JJP POTC's 3-ring spinning disk
    -Various multimorphic ball lock mechanisms

    Not all games need to have a feature like what has been done in the past, and there are plenty of fun games that don't have a central mech to make it stand out, but it's nice to see something new once in a while other than just bash targets/toys.

    At the show I host, one of the most popular games among visitors has been R911 just because of the way the helicopter interacts with the ball. Players get excited when they see it fly in, grab the ball, and take off again. Yeah, R911 isn't a very deep game, but if it was on location, I bet it would be a pretty good earner even today, just because of the interesting physical mechanism. Pinball is a physical game, and interesting physical stuff in the game is what they want to see.

    #84 5 months ago
    Quoted from ForceFlow:

    For the most part, there are very few recent games that actually have mechanisms that interact with the ball or player in interesting ways, and not just a target to bash.
    Some highlights:
    -Zac Time Machine rising playfield section
    -BOP head
    -LCA rotating playfield & animated backbox mini-game
    -FH & RS heads
    -DW rising playfield
    -CFTBL hologram
    -JD deadworld ring prototype ball locks
    -TZ mini playfield magnet flippers
    -TAF thing
    -TS mini playfield kicker
    -CP boxer
    -R911 helicopter
    -Stargate pyramid glidercraft
    -POTC ship
    -MET hammer ball lock
    -WOZ witch, spinning house, castle doors, flying monkey
    -GB magnet slingshots
    -JJP POTC's 3-ring spinning disk
    -Various multimorphic ball lock mechanisms
    Not all games need to have a feature like what has been done in the past, and there are plenty of fun games that don't have a central mech to make it stand out, but it's nice to see something new once in a while other than just bash targets/toys.
    At the show I host, one of the most popular games among visitors has been R911 just because of the way the helicopter interacts with the ball. Players get excited when they see it fly in, grab the ball, and take off again. Yeah, R911 isn't a very deep game, but if it was on location, I bet it would be a pretty good earner even today, just because of the interesting physical mechanism. Pinball is a physical game, and interesting physical stuff in the game is what they want to see.

    Good list, but here are a few more that I think need to be mentioned.

    Batman 66' turntable
    TNA ball lock
    Alice Cooper Ball save
    Black Knight Sword of Rage interactive Knight
    Aerosmith Toybox
    Houdini Trunk shot

    #85 5 months ago
    Quoted from delt31:

    I wish replies like this could be taken out of this pinball forum and into the general public b/c it just sounds so dumb. Of course enabling the internet would be terrible. Man - internet is overrated!
    Back to reality, scoreboards would be great, not b/c I would look to be the best in the world, but it gives me more options to play with. Yes there could be cheating but I don't care b/c I'm not ultra competitive however with a friend it would be enjoyable and you would assume your friend isn't cheating....hopefully.
    Head to Head - challenges could be setup to see who can reach X first and that would be realtime.
    I can go on and on - but your lack of ability to even conceptualize this means you're already lost. That's fine but don't bring the rest of us down with your very limited view on what's possible. It's very disappointing. Why innovate right? please.

    Again, this is PINBALL, not VIDEO GAMES with 100's of millions of players who can easily download something on a device in their pocket....but, OK, keep insulting me....I hope you get your dream of irrelevant high score tables & head-to-head internet pinball with the whole 4 people worldwide who might also be interested.

    #86 5 months ago
    Quoted from pinmister:

    I think having internet online gameplay for competitions or tournaments is a great idea and will help grow and legitimize pinball competitions. I would be interested in playing in a 'virtual tournament' where you play your own dialed in machine in your home at your leisure. With a busy schedule with kids, it is difficult to travel to locations late at night to participate in leagues. Not sure about how all of the logistics would work to make it fair and competitive? People would have to have the same settings with number of balls, open out lanes, etc. I am all for internet online gimmick bullshit-bring it on!

    I don't give a poop about Tournaments, but ask any tournament player if they'd actually be into this. Playing "against" someone on DIFFERENT machines is instantly disqualifying.

    It works on Zen Pinball FX because everyone is playing under the same exact conditions. Real pinball tournaments work because they're on the same exact machine. Now - Stern's have had tournament play settings forever...and I could see internet functionality being put to good use if Stern had an app that let you know where the tournament machines where, what the prizes are, who's in the lead, etc....that would be a great benefit to location tournament play and be fair due to it being about a single machine....but this "different machines across the world" being involved in some kind of tournament is silly.

    #87 5 months ago
    Quoted from Rarehero:

    I don't give a poop about Tournaments, but ask any tournament player if they'd actually be into this. Playing "against" someone on DIFFERENT machines is instantly disqualifying.
    It works on Zen Pinball FX because everyone is playing under the same exact conditions. Real pinball tournaments work because they're on the same exact machine. Now - Stern's have had tournament play settings forever...and I could see internet functionality being put to good use if Stern had an app that let you know where the tournament machines where, what the prizes are, who's in the lead, etc....that would be a great benefit to location tournament play and be fair due to it being about a single machine....but this "different machines across the world" being involved in some kind of tournament is silly.

    There were RFM and SWEP1 servers up for a good while.

    Even at tournaments, games aren't always set up or play perfectly.

    It's about having fun, and I think a good number of people would like to have online competition or head-to-head type of games. It doesn't necessarily have to be under strict tournament control guidelines.

    #88 5 months ago
    Quoted from ForceFlow:

    There were RFM and SWEP1 servers up for a good while.
    Even at tournaments, games aren't always set up or play perfectly.
    It's about having fun, and I think a good number of people would like to have online competition or head-to-head type of games. It doesn't necessarily have to be under strict tournament control guidelines.

    Again, please explain a head to head online pinball that would be satisfying in anyway. You can't see what someone is doing on their playfield. Who cares what someone else is doing when you're playing pinball? It's you vs. machine. NBA Fastbreak had 2p linked gameplay. No one cared, it was never done again. Multimorphic has 2p games. How many people are even buying ONE P3 let alone 2? Internet gameplay seems like it would be even more pointless than linked machines in person...but hey, I hope all of you clamoring for it get your wish. IMO it won't move the needle at all in terms of sales or anything. Just one more thing for programmers to deal with when they can't even finish a single game until years after release.

    #89 5 months ago
    Quoted from Rarehero:

    Again, please explain a head to head online pinball that would be satisfying in anyway. You can't see what someone is doing on their playfield. Who cares what someone else is doing when you're playing pinball? It's you vs. machine. NBA Fastbreak had 2p linked gameplay. No one cared, it was never done again. Multimorphic has 2p games. How many people are even buying ONE P3 let alone 2? Internet gameplay seems like it would be even more pointless than linked machines in person...but hey, I hope all of you clamoring for it get your wish. IMO it won't move the needle at all in terms of sales or anything. Just one more thing for programmers to deal with when they can't even finish a single game until years after release.

    A camera showing the playfield, perhaps? Honestly, I haven't put much thought into it since I'm not the one who would be designing the system.

    Back when Fastbreak was around, you *had* to be on location for it. The concept of IoT didn't really exist in 1997, and the internet back then really wasn't a big of a thing as it is now. Sure, there were some multiplayer computer games, but they were fairly primitive and most home users were limited to dial-up. Today, there are more home players and broadband access is everywhere. Technology has changed quite a bit since then, so I wouldn't disregard it just because it wasn't popular "back then". There are all sorts of online multiplayer games available today that I'm sure nobody even dreamed of back then.

    Just because you aren't interested in networked gameplay, doesn't mean nobody is interested.

    Heck, people watch movies together remotely, why can't they play pinball together remotely?

    #90 5 months ago
    Quoted from ForceFlow:

    A camera showing the playfield, perhaps? Honestly, I haven't put much thought into it since I'm not the one who would be designing the system.
    Back when Fastbreak was around, you *had* to be on location for it. The concept of IoT didn't really exist in 1997, and the internet back then really wasn't a big of a thing as it is now. Sure, there were some multiplayer computer games, but they were fairly primitive and most home users were limited to dial-up. Today, there are more home players and broadband access is everywhere.
    Just because you aren't interested in networked gameplay, doesn't mean nobody is interested.
    Heck, people watch movies together remotely, why can't they play pinball together remotely?

    I just don't think pinball lends itself to multi-machine multiplayer in different locations. For everyone who wants to compare it to video games, again just look at the numbers and logistics.

    Fortnite has something like 200 million players. There will always be someone to play against.
    Splatoon 2 has sold about 9 million copies. There will always be someone to play against.
    ARMS has sold about 2.5 million copies. Online players consider it a "DEAD" game (although there are always players when I go on).

    Most pinball machines today probably sell 1000-5000 units. They don't have the convenience of of mobility or multiplatform. That's not viable for an online userbase. All we have to do is look at Multimorphic. They saw themselves as a platform that could have some sort of "app store"...and developers would make modules/games for it. However, their userbase is like 12 people, vs. BILLIONS who own phones/pads/computers/consoles with app stores. The numbers don't add up to make it worth it...and again IMO, the nature of the gameplay doesn't make it worth it or viable.

    #91 5 months ago

    Can you imagine head2head... you fire up some kind of challenge showdown and instantly drain. Then you have to sit around waiting for some semi-pro opponent to screw up?

    No thanks

    #92 5 months ago
    Quoted from 27dnast:

    Can you imagine head2head... you fire up some kind of challenge showdown and instantly drain. Then you have to sit around waiting for some semi-pro opponent to screw up?
    No thanks

    Maybe have timed rounds, rather than ending a round on a lost ball? Maybe do a pingolf format to avoid runaway games?

    Nobody said you have to use the exact same game mechanics as with a single-player or in-person game.

    All I'm saying is that there could be some possibilities for networking pins for multiplayer use. I don't really feel like hashing out what those specifics could be--I'm just saying that it wouldn't be impossible to do, and that there is some interest in it since I've seen it brought up several times.

    #93 5 months ago

    Greg is right about some things... we have indeed developed a multi-game pinball platform. We do have a dev kit for 3rd parties. We do have multi-machine, networked games (2-player HeadsUp, up to 4-player CCR). He's also right that our customer base is currently nowhere near 1 billion.

    You gotta start somewhere, and if you have a vision and the stubbornness to bring it to life, you don't let contrarian opinions stop you from pushing forward. Obviously he's right that we'll never have a billion P3 customers, but multi-machine, networked-linked pinball is here, and it will only get better. The P3 game library will continue to grow with traditional-style pinball games and other new ideas too.

    - Gerry
    https://www.multimorphic.com

    #94 5 months ago

    Have you seen the poor scorekeepers at any large pinball tournament? The innovation we really need is local score relay via bluetooth. When your turn comes, you play your game. When you're done, you walk away. The bluetooth module sends your score to the local server. But it's easy to think of ideas like this, hard to execute them.

    #95 5 months ago
    Quoted from swampfire:

    The innovation we really need is local score relay via bluetooth. When your turn comes, you play your game. When you're done, you walk away. The bluetooth module sends your score to the local server.

    Scorbit does better than that. https://scorbit.io/scorbitron

    #96 5 months ago

    The biggest loss we’ve had, besides subway ramps, is the “living game” concept that was developed in the 80s and 90s. There was a terrific sense of honed-in personality to each game that I haven’t seen much of since, I dunno, TSPP? What is the “game” of the game? Stern pins are grab bags of film clips and bizarre announcers and JJP often feels like a slot machine. Even Dialed In felt like it was lacking a heart in that respect - there’s not much sense that the game itself has much of an emotion towards the player or its own mechanics (this could’ve been solved with a single key addition - menace). Alien and Hobbit are probably the best examples of what I’m talking about, where it feels like the pin isn’t just a pin for the sake of being a pin, but a game that interacts with you and has something to say and wants to make you feel a certain way besides “remember this movie?” and “shoot the thing!”.

    Consider what would happen if you replaced Rudy’s voice and mannerisms with a generic Excited Guy, or if there weren’t any jokes in Medieval Madness. That’s what I feel is the most important advancement made in that era.

    #97 5 months ago
    Quoted from trunchbull:

    Even Dialed In felt like it was lacking a heart in that respect - there’s not much sense that the game itself has much of an emotion towards the player or its own mechanics (this could’ve been solved with a single key addition - menace).

    You've never played DI long enough to get your flippers attacked, have you?

    #98 5 months ago
    Quoted from Rarehero:

    Tell me how playing against someone somewhere else would be fun with pinball. In a video game you’re all literally moving around & interacting with each other in real time. What would internet pinball be?
    I’ll tell you. Fucking stupid.

    I agree with you on everything. Internet pinball can only exist on the VRPinball that are out there. IMO this is how they can make their products relevant. Doing online tournaments and leaderboards would go a long ways on market penetration and help set them apart from the analog pinball.

    #99 5 months ago
    Quoted from Mr_Tantrum:

    I think maybe we are trying to make the same point, as I possibly misunderstood your intent. I thought you were saying that cars hadn't changed much in the last several years and neither had pinball. My point was that cars have indeed significantly changed and improved with innovation over recent years as well as pinball, and you seem to also make the point that there has also been significant advancement in pinball in your latest post.

    Weirdly, I think I'm saying both...

    A) There has been innovation/advancement in pinball

    B) At the core, pinball hasn't changed

    There have been lots of additions and improvements in pinball. But when you look at it, particularly if you're not deep into pinball, it's pretty much the same game.

    Anything that's too innovative risks turning into something that isn't "real pinball" (which people say about P3, virtual pinball, VR pinball...and all are arguable).

    I would respect the argument that all these technology advancements we're seeing in mass produced machines aren't "true pinball innovation". But like you said: then what do you want? Mind blowing innovation probably creates some other game that is inspired by pinball, but isn't "real pinball" anymore.

    #100 5 months ago

    Seems like there has been plenty of innovation to me. Just look around.

    Better yet, there have been some amazing pins come out that are incredibly fun. Isn't that what matters most?

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