A while ago, the company I work for provided the book of the same title as this post to its employees. It magically appeared on our desks overnight one day. This was a book about managing and embracing change, and all the good things that brings to an entrepreneurial business. I was reminded of the book last night while entertaining some guests down in the man cave, playing some pinball on games like Medusa, Black Hole, F14, Grand Prix, etc.
I also introduced them to my new Multimorphic P3. We started out with Lexy Lightspeed, which everyone immediately recognized as pretty traditional pinball but with some new, cool innovations such as the virtual targets, rotating 8-ball lock, ball tracking etc. Cool, unique, but still pretty much regular pinball.
Then we branched out into the things that really drew me to the P3 platform. First up was ROCs. I explained this as "Asteroids with pinballs." Raised eyebrows and skeptical glances were many, until the first of them started to play. As the shields wore down, and the tension increased, people started hollering suggestions and generally going nuts as the game progressed. Shouts of joy erupted when the alien ship was hit, releasing power-ups to recharge the shield or grant an extra ball. Groans of dismay followed as balls drained and players missed shots, exiting the current wave before the power-ups were absorbed at the flippers. Finally, the shields are gone and the 'roids start draining flipper power. Slowly, like old age, each flipper becomes incapable of propelling the ball to the exit scoops until the last one drains and it's "Game Over!" Players couldn't wait for their chance. One snuck his name onto the High Score board.
I pried them away from that and demonstrated the 3-minute process of swapping a playfield and we embarked on some trips around Cannon Lagoon. There were significantly fewer askance looks and more anticipation. Everyone battled, unsuccessfully, to kill the Kraken. Some minor victories were won by clearing a stage with no missed shots, grabbing up that wave's significant bonus. Howls of pain followed when a shot was missed, killing the possibility of that bonus in a new wave. Players were bopping to the catchy Caribbean music while playing.
Finally, we branched further afield from traditional pinball and played a few games of Barnyard. This is a game designed for young children. There are no modes, no special shots to worry about, unlimited balls. Whack away at the flippers and try and hit the animals - as simple as it can be! The game starts in the pre-dawn morning, when you can barely see the animals, proceeds through the day, brightening and waning as the sun rises and sets, until finally twilight sets in and the game ends. The animals are wonderfully-drawn caricatures, with comic movements and sounds when they get hit, followed by a satisfying Poof when hit enough to make them disappear. They cross left to right and even the youngest of potential pinballers will have no trouble knowing what to do - Hit 'em before they get to the barn! Sure, this is not a deep game and was never intended for anyone but kids, but let me tell you, you might be amazed at how much good fun and how many laughs a group of 35-65 year olds can have playing Barnyard! It speaks very highly of the P3's fun factor and adaptability.
All this is my way of saying that if you're at a show and see a P3, do yourself a favor and don't just glance and walk on because it might look strange or it might look like virtual pinball. Stop, play a few games, see for yourself that this IS physical pinball, ask to see some of the titles other than Lexy Lightspeed and try them out. Move your cheese! The P3 is truly a platform. Even now, early in its production lifecycle, I can play 3 unique games on the same machine. Soon that will be up to 7 when Cosmic Cart Racing, Heads Up, Wizard and Grand Slam Rally come out.
My personal challenge comes in the development area. Yes, the P3 supports game development by anyone with the desire to do it! I'm a casual programmer, trained way back in the 60s and early 70s, but I am ramping up my skills to develop a game on the P3. It's a lot to learn for an old guy who's set in his ways - C#, Unity, Object Oriented Programming! What the heck are they talking about? But I'm going in with an open mind and a strong desire. I'm moving my cheese! Join me!
Disclaimer: I'm not employed by or affiliated with Multimorphic in any way other than that of a satisfied customer. The perceptions here are all mine and I am a proponent of their platform.