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(Topic ID: 167624)

Where will the pinball hobby be in 10 years?


By Rondogg

4 years ago



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  • Latest reply 6 months ago by Rondogg
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    There are 486 posts in this topic. You are on page 4 of 10.
    #151 4 years ago

    I have yet to meet a younger collector than me (31).
    I suppose new people getting into the hobby has to due with budget and game availability. If games arn't out there to play, how will anyone fall in love with the game. And if prices keep going up, how will anyone take that first step?
    Mr. Stern said it right at MGC. We need to get operators going again. Need to get games out there for all to enjoy!

    I grew up at the tale end of the Arcade era in the early 90's, but was mostly into fighting games.
    I didn't really discover pinball until I owned my first one 2 years ago.

    #152 4 years ago
    Quoted from Gotpins:

    I actually have a small collection of barbed wire.

    Hey... there's a pinball machine named "Barb Wire" and pinball machines about cars. So, collecting barbed wire must be just like collecting cars.

    #153 4 years ago
    Quoted from KerryImming:

    Hey... there's a pinball machine named "Barb Wire" and pinball machines about cars. So, collecting barbed wire must be just like collecting cars.

    I had a Barb Wire pinball for a little while, I brought it home in a car too...so there's that. Also, a lot of car lots are surrounded by barbed wire....

    -1
    #154 4 years ago

    hopefully most of the fly by night newbies get bored, and it goes back to the way it was 10 years ago.

    #155 4 years ago
    Quoted from CaptainNeo:

    hopefully most of the fly by night newbies get bored, and it goes back to the way it was 10 years ago.

    old people holding out hope that time will start running backwards at some point always makes me sad.

    #156 4 years ago
    Quoted from Air_Pinball:

    nobody carries money anymore.

    Sure are a lot of people still pumping money in vending and food machines. Wouldn't be surprised if quite a few of them are pinballers too.

    #157 4 years ago

    Predictions, hmm...

    In ten years all of the Bally/WMS are held either by OLD people who got them cheap, or very rich people, or people who have very small collections. Pretty much what is happening right now, just accelerated.

    All boutiques die in a big recession, Stern survives by shifting all material sourcing and manufacturing to China, or Vietnam, making VE or rebadged old pins, to order, for rich people. Stern systematically stops producing all replacement parts for all of their older machines, forcing people to buy super duper galactic limited editions from a select catalog for $50k apiece.

    Similarly, Planetary remakes any machine controlled by their IP, to order for similar price, stops support of repair parts for older machines to avoid competing with itself.

    As for the cargument...

    The cargument, unfortunately begins to apply when the price of a pin and a car become more or less the same. Yes, it's apples to oranges, but both still both fruit, we are not comparing apples to steak. If pins were significantly cheaper, I think there would be fewer references to cars. It's the price which brings out all of the negativity. We have reached the point where everybody subconsciously knows they are being ripped off, just like when we have to buy jewelry for our spouses. We still buy, but know we are getting shafted, and it hurts.

    The cargument really should not apply, comparing a 4000 pound high tech product which costs tens of millions to develop, to a low quality woodish box full of minimalized wiring, cheap LEDs, and a handful of plastic toys all based on manipulation of prior IP. There are hundreds of pinball machines worth of stuff in a car. But the prices are similar, hence the comparison. I'm not defending the cargument, just my thought on why it keeps getting applied.

    In 25-30 years, the housegument will apply, and in some areas like within Detroit city limits, it already does. Lets see, a new Stern, or a big house? In 30 years you could sleep under a pinball machine if you have to, but the house might be a better bargain.

    I hope that beyond 10 years, 3D printers and similar maker-tech can be used to effectively replace all unobtainium parts. Then even if all the manufacturers die off, people will be able to repair their games and maybe build entire games from scratch. I know lots of young engineers who design and build their own PCBs, hack everything related to code, and play with Makerbots. If the Millenials really want to play pinball without paying collector prices, they will eventually build their own.

    -1
    #158 4 years ago
    Quoted from brenna98:

    I have yet to meet a younger collector than me (31).
    I suppose new people getting into the hobby has to due with budget and game availability. If games arn't out there to play, how will anyone fall in love with the game. And if prices keep going up, how will anyone take that first step?
    Mr. Stern said it right at MGC. We need to get operators going again. Need to get games out there for all to enjoy!
    I grew up at the tale end of the Arcade era in the early 90's, but was mostly into fighting games.
    I didn't really discover pinball until I owned my first one 2 years ago.

    ROFL @ Mr. Stern. The scene right now is barcades. That'll end when the video stuff just gets prohibitively expensive to repair, which is pretty much already here. Who knows with these things though, we can prognosticate all we want and still end up eating crow. This "culture" of fake nerds and hipsters is so erratic and ADHD about what it likes at any given moment, it's unknowable which hobby they'll destroy next.

    #159 4 years ago
    Quoted from Whysnow:

    data shows otherwise.
    We have payrange on numerous pins and it has yet to even pay off the cost of the devices let alone the percentage they take off the top to "manage" the account.

    Payrange sucks. Too much setup, and too specific to coin-op.

    Apple Pay, and others are seamless. You already have them setup. Plug and Play.

    #160 4 years ago

    Very true for the most part.

    #161 4 years ago
    Quoted from o-din:

    Sure are a lot of people still pumping money in vending and food machines. Wouldn't be surprised if quite a few of them are pinballers too.

    Dwindling rapidly....

    Only old people....

    #162 4 years ago
    Quoted from mamawaldee:

    Then even if all the manufacturers die off, people will be able to repair their games and maybe build entire games from scratch. I know lots of young engineers who design and build their own PCBs, hack everything related to code, and play with Makerbots. If the Millenials really want to play pinball without paying collector prices, they will eventually build their own.

    People already have from EMs, early SS, up to modern games like MM.
    This has been going on since the 1970s.

    They were made cheaper as well, especially when prices began spiking for certain titles.

    The only things things that have changed are it takes longer to acquire all the needed parts, and there are less people with the correct skill to do it.

    This is no different trying to explain how the entire playfield production process works (From wood blanks, inserts, prep, sanding, poly coats, ink screening, hard coats, or all the various drying stages). To new owners complaining about insert problems, it is pointless. It is just a brick wall.

    #163 4 years ago
    Quoted from brenna98:

    I have yet to meet a younger collector than me (31).
    I suppose new people getting into the hobby has to due with budget and game availability. If games arn't out there to play, how will anyone fall in love with the game. And if prices keep going up, how will anyone take that first step?
    Mr. Stern said it right at MGC. We need to get operators going again. Need to get games out there for all to enjoy!
    I grew up at the tale end of the Arcade era in the early 90's, but was mostly into fighting games.
    I didn't really discover pinball until I owned my first one 2 years ago.

    Most people don't have the space/money until a little later in life...early/mid thirties. I think technology as well as a few other factors will help with the under 30 crowd.

    -tournaments
    -barcades
    -pinball apps
    -twitch feeds
    -podcasts
    -websites like Pinside

    #164 4 years ago
    Quoted from 30FathomDave:

    A lot of doom and gloom in this thread.
    I for one can't wait to load a $500 Medieval Madness into my flying car.

    I am just going to teleport my games home

    #165 4 years ago
    Quoted from CrazyLevi:

    But seriously bro...why cars?

    There's a lot of parallels - there's drivers (players), collectors, restorers and manufacturers in both. There's vintage versus new. There's auctions, and shows, and competitions. Currently there's no "Concours D'Elegance" for pinball but who knows ten years from now.

    There's more overlap than not.

    #166 4 years ago

    Nevermind

    #167 4 years ago
    Quoted from Manimal:

    They don 't, that is the problem. They are just the latest fad and will die a slow death like discos and any number of other businesses. It is the cycle of life.....nothing against them, they will just be replaced by something newer and more hip.

    See, I would have said that 10 or 15 years ago when barcades started popping up... but now it seems bigger than a fad, we have more than ever in my city and nearby towns now, at least a dozen and they all seem to be going strong.

    #169 4 years ago

    I'm guessing sometime in the next ten years we will finally be getting that Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band pinball machine.

    #170 4 years ago
    Quoted from VacFink:

    We'll finally see a Primus pin.

    Maybe there will be a Prius pin in ten years, after the government outlaws gasoline engines.

    Quoted from CrazyLevi:

    Why not collect barbed wire?

    I see from some of the posts above that I'm not the only one who has a Barb Wire pin.

    #171 4 years ago
    Quoted from rotordave:

    Two posts in a day John!! That's a new record!!
    On the subject, I have a pinball website here in NZ. I get emails every week from people wanting to enter the hobby. I'm perso'mnally to blame for doubling the hobby in NZ over the last 5-6 years.
    I think the pinball hobby will be around forever, in one form or another. Just as it has been for the last 25 years I've had machines.
    If there are no new machines being made, there are 10,000s of used ones (worldwide) to share around.
    rd

    Yes rotordave has greatly increased the amount of pins in nz and lifted the presence. we see more and more turning up to comps and meets year after year and in theory the future for pinball will be rosie. Great work rd.

    Unfortunately in 10 years if the rich don't stop buying all the houses in nz raising the price to unobtainum levels pinball machines will be used as emergency housing.

    Throw a tarpaulin over it call it a house.

    +1 for Bob Seger

    #172 4 years ago

    I found this kind of amusing: https://groups.google.com/forum/rec.games.pinball/I8Nyoa9wP04

    Link didn't work

    #173 4 years ago

    Me personally I believe Pinball is for older people. I am 29 and I grew up with arcades but this is what I have seen primarily with my life. Teens, pre-teens, young twenties play video games mainly the Call of Duty shoot'em up games. They tend to avoid anything that requires strategy, patience, or anything that heavily involves practice. Well technically you can argue that video games do and it's true that they do but it often requires finding other player's who are good and teaming up with them. They get discouraged easily and certainly don't want to pay $1 a game. However as we age, well I noticed it with me, I tend to gravitate towards those games the younger people don't like and the community of these games are often older people as well playing with their older sons or commonly veterans.

    Pinball requires patience, time, practice, lot's of money, a stable life, and a great deal of accepting discouragement, and social aspects. Pinball will never go away because it will always appeal to people that are more mature. Digital Pinball is nice but really as a way to get people into Pinball is not really the way. The way is having games on location and having people socially interact and get together to play Pinball. That is something that a major E-Sport can do however it's behind a monitor even if it's in a large stadium.

    #174 4 years ago

    I tend to agree with the above statement.

    Pins are too expensive and big units for the youth to get into the hobby nowadays and VR will be a poor substitute.

    #175 4 years ago

    Pinball arcade has gone great things for pinball. I'm sure they will have a VR mode very shortly.

    #176 4 years ago
    Quoted from fugus:

    Yes rotordave has greatly increased the amount of pins in nz and lifted the presence. we see more and more turning up to comps and meets year after year and in theory the future for pinball will be rosie. Great work rd.
    Unfortunately in 10 years if the rich don't stop buying all the houses in nz raising the price to unobtainum levels pinball machines will be used as emergency housing

    Thanks for the nice words John. Good to see someone notices.

    There are plenty of cheap houses outside of Auckland, ... $180,000 buys you a sweet house in Bulls, 15 mins drive to Palmerston North. Plenty of jobs in Palmy. And a lot less traffic.

    Unfortunately, exactly the same as pins, everyone wants the Big Bang Bar house in the Big Bang Bar area ...

    If people would settle for the Firepower2 house in the Firepower2 area, and be happy with that, then they'd all be much happier. And wealthier. Theres a reason I live in Pukekohe

    Pinsides first ever HOUSEugment! I'm awesome!!

    rd

    -2
    #177 4 years ago
    Quoted from fugus:

    Pinball arcade has gone great things for pinball. I'm sure they will have a VR mode very shortly.

    I absolutely hate pinball arcade and think it's incredibly lame but I can't argue. It's bringing people to the real thing.

    -1
    #178 4 years ago
    Quoted from CrazyLevi:

    I absolutely hate pinball arcade and think it's incredibly lame but I can't argue. It's bringing people to the real thing.

    It's good for n00bs and suckies becasue it does just what a video game's point it; make something that's difficult easy to play.

    #179 4 years ago
    Quoted from rotordave:

    If people would settle for the Firepower2 house in the Firepower2 area, and be happy with that, then they'd all be much happier. And wealthier. Theres a reason I live in Pukekohe

    I'd be looking at the baywatch of plenty area myself. You think I could trade my shack for beachfront there?

    #180 4 years ago

    Some of those older pin-houses are built better than the new ones.

    Well you wouldn't want a TWD house.

    #181 4 years ago
    Quoted from fugus:

    Well you wouldn't want a TWD house.

    Not if it was full of walkers!!

    rd

    #182 4 years ago

    Believe me I'm no fan of paying the high price of a new pinball machine. It's true pinball machines are reaching car prices, but in all fairness there are millions of more cars produced than pinball machines. That fact alone separates the two when comparing price.

    #183 4 years ago

    I think a pinball machine would make a better house than a car just my 2cents.

    #184 4 years ago

    My guess is that pinball machines will become more like art pieces. Similar to how nobody was thinking a 30's - 70's car was cool back when it was a regular driver but now there are a million car collectors.

    #185 4 years ago

    Agreed with scampcamp.

    #186 4 years ago

    I think pinballs are already art items just like classic cars. I just wonder if there's still people out there that liken them to slot machines or some other waste of time and money hobby.

    Within the 10 years I would like to see more non licensed themed pins made.

    #187 4 years ago
    Quoted from scampcamp:

    My guess is that pinball machines will become more like art pieces.

    They already are. At least the ones made prior to 1990....

    #188 4 years ago

    I have a stupid question after reading here.
    I dont play in tournaments, so I hope its not too dumb.

    When we have casual tournaments around here among friends, they give out a trophy that gets passed around.
    When there are the big tournaments, its points towards tournaments with entry fees and cash prizes.

    because state laws vary, and overseas Im clueless, are weekly tournaments in barcades held open to the public with a nightly cash prize? Or does this push it too far?

    #189 4 years ago
    Quoted from pezpunk:

    old people holding out hope that time will start running backwards at some point always makes me sad.

    the thing is with pinball. It's not like other collector markets. We want new stuff, stuff that is exciting and holds our interest more. There is a reason early SS stuff has now dropped into the $500-700 range and lower and stayed there. Before, you could get $1200-1500 for early SS stuff when it was newer. But has been replaced by deeper rules, better toys and just all around more fun games. Which became the higher demand stuff. As time goes on, more games will get even better and make the early DMD stuff look dated and feel stale. THey will go back down in price, especially since some of the highest production numbers are in the early DMD days. There are 5x's more of those games than even stuff being made today. A lot of it sits in warehouses collecting dust and moisture. Some still on route. But there will be a day when prices settle down back where they were on those titles because the stuff being made current, is much more desirable.

    #190 4 years ago
    Quoted from CaptainNeo:

    There is a reason early SS stuff has now dropped into the $500-700 range

    Maybe in your area Neo .. Elsewhere, those 500-700 games are all $1000-1500.

    I used to buy nice tidy Bally/Stern SS games around Los Angeles for $600-700 every week a year ago. Those days are gone now man, you can't get one under $1000 now unless it's hammered.

    Sys11s were the same, 90% of them were under $1000, good luck getting one under $1500 now.

    I know around Chicago/Wis they are a bit cheaper than LA/NYC where I have to buy them (for shipping) but surely you've seen them go up heaps?

    rd

    #191 4 years ago
    Quoted from CaptainNeo:

    the thing is with pinball. It's not like other collector markets. We want new stuff, stuff that is exciting and holds our interest more. There is a reason early SS stuff has now dropped into the $500-700 range and lower and stayed there. Before, you could get $1200-1500 for early SS stuff when it was newer. But has been replaced by deeper rules, better toys and just all around more fun games. Which became the higher demand stuff. As time goes on, more games will get even better and make the early DMD stuff look dated and feel stale. THey will go back down in price, especially since some of the highest production numbers are in the early DMD days. There are 5x's more of those games than even stuff being made today. A lot of it sits in warehouses collecting dust and moisture. Some still on route. But there will be a day when prices settle down back where they were on those titles because the stuff being made current, is much more desirable.

    That is the best case scenario as far as I'm concerned -- if Stern and JJP and other manufacturers start building games that make the best 90s DMD games feel lame, that'd be wonderful. (Hasn't happened yet, though )

    #192 4 years ago
    Quoted from OLDPINGUY:

    because state laws vary, and overseas Im clueless, are weekly tournaments in barcades held open to the public with a nightly cash prize? Or does this push it too far?

    The ones I've been at, usually an outside guy comes in and runs a league.

    At Sunshine Laundry in NYC, Greg comes in every Weds night, people pay him $10 to enter, and at the end he slices up the cash as prizes. I presume he keeps some of it. (Edit: No, it's all paid out ...)

    The house is pleased because there are 20-30 people there, all paying coin drop for the machines, and all drinking $8 beers. So it's a winner for them.

    rd

    #193 4 years ago
    Quoted from pezpunk:

    make the best 90s DMD games feel lame, that'd be wonderful. (Hasn't happened yet, though )

    I disagree. The new Sterns do make the 90s games seem lame in comparison.

    If I sold all my games up, the 90s ones would be the first ones out the door.

    Hey, some of that may be because I've had some of those 90s games for a long time. But when people come to play my 90s games, if they play ACDC or Metallica, they don't go back to the 90s row again.

    rd

    #194 4 years ago
    Quoted from o-din:

    I have a feeling the only new games that will be available will be made by small independent companies, if even that. Pinball has outlived it's relevance by about 15 years already.

    I think it's time for you to take another Pinside sabbatical.

    #195 4 years ago
    Quoted from rotordave:

    The ones I've been at, usually an outside guy comes in and runs a league.
    At Sunshine Laundry in NYC, Greg comes in every Weds night, people pay him $10 to enter, and at the end he slices up the cash as prizes. I presume he keeps some of it. Could be wrong ...
    The house is pleased because there are 20-30 people there, all paying coin drop for the machines, and all drinking $8 beers. So it's a winner for them.
    rd

    Thanks!, RD, Sounds like I need to add Pukekohe to my bucket list!

    I didnt know if this was considered gambling.

    We had a pizza shop in Orlando that had pins in the back.
    I dont think they were licensed, but on Saturday, they would reset hi scores, and from 9 AM to 9 PM,
    the games would have cash rewards as a % of the coin box. You had to be present to win.
    $10, and we would spend all day Saturday, playing, eating Pizza, hanging out, and watching our hi scores.
    A good winner went home with $25.00 and third place was like $5.00.
    They would get creative with this, but boy were they packed.
    They got busted, I guess, when they had a sign to win $100, and the strip was packed, which likely bothered other businesses. 1974

    Apparently this was illegal here.

    Anything like this in the states? Maybe in 10 years? Pinball grows into a Huge Draw because of the prize money?

    My apologies...cant read...you mentioned NYC....time for me to take a break!

    #196 4 years ago
    Quoted from OLDPINGUY:

    Thanks!, RD, Sounds like I need to add Pukekohe to my bucket list!

    Please do that

    The league I mentioned is in New York City.

    I'd be 99% sure that it's probably illegal in some way.

    But you're talking about $200 take, and probably $150 prize money. So hardly a Tony Soprano type operation.

    rd

    #197 4 years ago

    I don't get the negativity, there are barcades popping up, I watch guys 10 years younger than me kill it on the walking dead. My friend bought 2 pins, I bought one and am looking for another, and have other friends that want to get one, we all are around 40. I had a classic bug, my friend had a full resto chevelle, and also collected balloon tire bikes. He sold them all.

    There is a barcade here that you get a wristband and just scan it to play games, with an awesome selection of beer. Another place has a bunch of games and great beer. They always have people there. Everyone that touches them has a blast. A lot of it is younger generations did not have access to games like this, but now they do, and because of that it isn't going anywhere soon.

    I had to convince my wife to buy my first pin, it was a fight up and down, day in and day out, a non stop justification of why it would be great. She played Ghostbusters and asked me how much it would cost, I told her expecting her to gasp and say forget it, she told me to get one as soon as I can (I'm the one that has halted it with all the playfield talk etc. on here, she keeps asking when it is getting delivered)

    Pinball is an interesting thing, not many have ever seen one and when they do they either hate it or love it. I don't think in the next 10 years there will be this dramatic shift the opposite way.

    I do think they could integrate the LCD screen better, imagine star trek now where every hit on the borg ship was a big blast on the screen, and when you are doing hyperspace you see the ship flying, etc. There is a lot you can do still to make it awesome.

    #198 4 years ago
    Quoted from OLDPINGUY:

    Or does this push it too far?

    Depends on local jurisdiction. And if enforced or not.

    LTG : )

    #199 4 years ago
    Quoted from OLDPINGUY:

    Or does this push it too far?

    Read the Midwest Gaming Classic posts, I believe Dan had some problems just like that.

    LTG : )

    #200 4 years ago
    Quoted from OLDPINGUY:

    I have a stupid question after reading here.
    I dont play in tournaments, so I hope its not too dumb.
    When we have casual tournaments around here among friends, they give out a trophy that gets passed around.
    When there are the big tournaments, its points towards tournaments with entry fees and cash prizes.
    because state laws vary, and overseas Im clueless, are weekly tournaments in barcades held open to the public with a nightly cash prize? Or does this push it too far?

    depends on your location and enforcement, much like others have said.

    I have found you can pretty much get away with anything if you just keep quite about it.

    There are a couple of guys that play in our regular monthly tournaments and they always do a side pool for their group.

    I think things are becoming more and more lax and I am seeing more things outside of pinball where there are cash prizes. I can only assume this will continue to come into pinball also.

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