Zen Studios aquires right to Bally/Williams games for digital release

(Topic ID: 224677)

Zen Studios aquires right to Bally/Williams games for digital release


By uncivil_engineer

3 months ago



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  • 201 posts
  • 73 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 day ago by adamross
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    There are 201 posts in this topic. You are on page 4 of 5.
    #151 59 days ago
    Quoted from Sinestro:

    Based on your logic, Farsight is paying double to have Stern titles in the Pinball Arcade and the Stern Pinball Arcade.

    That is correct, they paid to have a second Sku. it's not logic it's the way it is. It's what I do for a living.

    #152 58 days ago
    Quoted from Goalie:

    That is correct, they paid to have a second Sku. it's not logic it's the way it is. It's what I do for a living.

    Again, based on your logic, if Farsight can afford it, then Zen can as well.

    You're not digging yourself out of your initial hole.

    #154 58 days ago

    Was really impressed with some of the Zen features and UI.

    But this censorship is horrible. Can't even show a mermaid? FFS!

    Zen is choosing to target more customers by having an "Everyone" rating, rather than having authentic, original tables... this dude does not abide. I won't buy a single table.

    #155 58 days ago
    Quoted from Sinestro:

    Again, based on your logic, if Farsight can afford it, then Zen can as well.
    You're not digging yourself out of your initial hole.

    Not sure what hole you're referring to. I'm just trying to explain to you how the business of video games works and why they only have one censored version. It's not about affording it, it's about good business sense. Why in the world would a small publisher pay double upfront fees just so they can have an uncensored version of game where the changes are so minor? There would never be enough of a sales difference to make up that cash sink and make a good enough profit.

    #156 58 days ago

    I still dont understand why censoring a few things is such a big deal to people. I mean these tables are fantastic and they are only a little over 3 dollars each. By Zen making these tables, it gets people interested in the hobby and will help pinball become more popular maybe and keep it growing. I am going to buy the tables and support Zen for that reason alone because i care about the future of pinball.

    #157 58 days ago
    Quoted from Who-Dey:

    I still dont understand why censoring a few things is such a big deal to people. I mean these tables are fantastic and they are only a little over 3 dollars each. By Zen making these tables, it gets people interested in the hobby and will help pinball become more popular maybe and keep it growing. I am going to buy the tables and support Zen for that reason alone because i care about the future of pinball.

    People want the game as it is/was, not with all these alterations that take away some of the character from the game.

    Every time reproduction playfields and backglasses come out, there are dozens of complaints if something gets altered, or it's the wrong color, etc.

    If you're making alterations, you're not honoring the original and not respecting the original artistic choices.

    That's like taking The David and gluing on a fig leaf to cover him up. Note that this actually happened to a number of statues in Italy during what's called the "Fig Leaf Campaign", where statues were purposefully defaced and censored just because the style of the statues in The David's time wasn't en vogue any more.

    WB actually handled this issue of artistic integrity with a bit more grace on all their pre-1986 cartoons with a message:

    pasted_image (resized).png

    #158 58 days ago
    Quoted from ForceFlow:

    People want the game as it is/was, not with all these alterations that take away some of the character from the game.
    Every time reproduction playfields and backglasses come out, there are dozens of complaints if something gets altered, or it's the wrong color, etc.
    If you're making alterations, you're not honoring the original and not respecting the original artistic choices.
    That's like taking The David and gluing on a fig leaf to cover him up. Note that this actually happened to a number of statues in Italy during what's called the "Fig Leaf Campaign", where statues were purposefully defaced and censored just because the style of the statues in The David's time wasn't in vogue any more.
    WB actually handled this issue of artistic integrity with a bit more grace on all their pre-1986 cartoons with a message:
    [quoted image]

    I get all of that and if this were CGC censoring their remakes i could definitely understand people being mad but these are 3 dollar virtual pinball tables. Hell i never would have even noticed if someone wouldn't have said something.

    I am not for censorship either but in this case here it just doesnt bother me.

    #159 58 days ago
    Quoted from Goalie:

    Why in the world would a small publisher pay double upfront fees just so they can have an uncensored version of game where the changes are so minor? There would never be enough of a sales difference to make up that cash sink and make a good enough profit.

    Why in the world would Farsight pay double to have games in both the Pinball Arcade and the Stern Pinball arcade?

    Obviously it's not a great cost issue, so Zen could do both.

    I'm not sure I can make it any clearer.

    #160 58 days ago
    Quoted from Sinestro:

    Why in the world would Farsight pay double to have games in both the Pinball Arcade and the Stern Pinball arcade?
    Obviously it's not a great cost issue, so Zen could do both.
    I'm not sure I can make it any clearer.

    Perhaps they made a bad business decision, or Stern made a deal that required them to have a Stern specific sku?

    #161 58 days ago

    Pretty cool. Just played the trial for Junk Yard at 11:59pm. The game stopped and I just figured the trial was over. Nope. Went into Midnight Madness.

    #162 57 days ago
    Quoted from Sinestro:

    Why in the world would Farsight pay double to have games in both the Pinball Arcade and the Stern Pinball arcade?
    Obviously it's not a great cost issue, so Zen could do both.
    I'm not sure I can make it any clearer.

    Split resources. Yes, Farsight did it, but it's clear they were splitting resources off TPA that were already pretty thin, it was a pretty buggy product, and was definitely part of why I went from "buy it all" to "only buy if they had something special enough". (Note: I never bought a table in Stern Pinball Arcade.) And their "TPA After Midnight" non-family mode product never went anywhere.

    Plus, there would be possible confusion among Zen's customers (why can I buy it in two places, and why would I have to buy it in two places), since they've ALWAYS had just one current engine/front end. And that might also clash with their corporate philosophy regarding content ratings, they may specifically be aiming for the most inclusive possible ESRB rating, which makes a second "uncensored" product pretty much a non-starter just from that.

    It's not just money, it's all those other factors going into it. At the end of the day, if you want 'em completely "uncensored"? Either go with Visual Pinball, or complain to Scientific Games about the quality of the licensed product. And I doubt you'd get much traction off the latter, since they'd have reviewed the changes made and signed off on them.

    #163 57 days ago
    Quoted from Who-Dey:

    I still dont understand why censoring a few things is such a big deal to people. I mean these tables are fantastic and they are only a little over 3 dollars each. By Zen making these tables, it gets people interested in the hobby and will help pinball become more popular maybe and keep it growing. I am going to buy the tables and support Zen for that reason alone because i care about the future of pinball.

    Totally agree. If altering a few artistic elements makes it feasible to keep selling these to a larger audience then so be it. It’s still the same gameplay with enhanced theme elements given the new animations and effects. I’d much rather they provide as realistic a physics model as possible than worry about a few visual tweaks.

    If the artistic purity of the game is critical to you buy the real game...

    #164 57 days ago
    Quoted from Fytr:

    If the artistic purity of the game is critical to you buy the real game...

    Silly comment. The beauty of virtual pinball is that you can have hundreds of tables without needing to spend insane amounts of money or have your entire home filled with machines in every room.

    #165 57 days ago
    Quoted from Maken:

    Silly comment. The beauty of virtual pinball is that you can have hundreds of tables without needing to spend insane amounts of money or have your entire home filled with machines in every room.

    How often do you actually look at the backglass and cabinet art, maybe once or twice? They are still virtually identical and they are 3 dollars per table. Seriously its just not that big of a deal. I mean yeah it sucks because censorship is never good and i dont know why they would censor them anyway because they aren't that bad to begin with, but unfortunately this is the f*cked up world we live in today.

    [Removed]

    For 3 bucks you can sure have alot of fun. I have been playing MM non stop. I could have gave 10 dollars for that table alone and it would have been totally worth it.

    #166 57 days ago
    Quoted from Who-Dey:

    I still dont understand why censoring a few things is such a big deal to people. I mean these tables are fantastic and they are only a little over 3 dollars each. By Zen making these tables, it gets people interested in the hobby and will help pinball become more popular maybe and keep it growing. I am going to buy the tables and support Zen for that reason alone because i care about the future of pinball.

    I'm cool with targeting a larger audience, I just wish they made censorship optional like many other games do.

    #167 57 days ago
    Quoted from Reality_Studio:

    I'm cool with targeting a larger audience, I just wish they made censorship optional like many other games do.

    I agree

    #168 57 days ago
    Quoted from Maken:

    Silly comment. The beauty of virtual pinball is that you can have hundreds of tables without needing to spend insane amounts of money or have your entire home filled with machines in every room.

    To expand: virtual pinball already introduces so many compromises vs what playing the actual game that the minor “censorship” art changes don’t really even rate IMHO.

    #169 57 days ago

    Censorship plain sucks and I don't agree with it. We are losing our freedom of speech and expression in this PC world. Here we come 1984!

    #170 57 days ago
    Quoted from Fytr:

    To expand: virtual pinball already introduces so many compromises vs what playing the actual game that the minor “censorship” art changes don’t really even rate IMHO.

    It's not just the artwork that is being changed.

    Don't forget about the audio callouts, many of which add humour and authenticity to the themes.

    Also, the video modes that aren't deemed family friendly and are being removed, like champion pub.

    For some, this type of stuff is not a big deal. But, for many, this type of censorship is over the line and will not be tolerated.

    #171 57 days ago

    Censoring the original artistic vision in order to sell to the small handful of tweens that might actually want these games is not going to appreciably increase sales. Conversely, not offering the game on iOS or mobile is going to be a huge drain on their bottom line when compared to Pinball Arcade. It makes me wonder if Scientific realizes just how big a hit their royalties are going to take.

    #173 57 days ago

    Took a quick look, they claim adding an option to turn off censorship would violate the age rating so seems like the changes are permanent for any version that requires an age rating. I was only interested in the Steam version which already let's you turn family mode off on the audio, hopefully that means they can provide the original art there as well.

    #174 57 days ago

    Kirk also acknowledged that other Williams games added to Pinball FX3 in the future would probably need ratings-related alterations as well. In Champion Pub for instance, a simulated gambling mini-game might have to be removed entirely.

    #175 56 days ago

    I weep for the future.

    #176 56 days ago

    “In extreme cases like this, something Zen has considered for a while is, is there another iteration of Pinball FX that can exist?" he said. "It's a completely different game experience, it has more mature content, it can have blood and guts, there can be more mature themes, simulated gambling. That is something we're actively talking about internally right now... It's really just a matter of how much we want to focus on this. Does it bother us enough that people are mad at us?... It's a vocal minority, but nonetheless they're very important and we want to make them happy too."

    I wonder if the Williams licensee knows about these changes?

    Anyway folks don’t even worry about this stuff, if you play these games long enough (and not the real deal) you won’t even remember what you’re missing...

    ...like the funny parts on Loonie Toones reruns.

    #177 56 days ago

    I played the crap out of Pinbot in the late 80's.
    So when Farsight's version of Pinbot had different "boom" sounds and said only "Tilt...Tilt" Instead of "Tilt...All Data Lost...Tilt...All Data Lost!" it really annoyed me. I thought, "who screws around with the sound ROMs for no justifiable reason? The game was instantly less authentic and some of the magic was lost.

    Having said that, I know the folks at Zen are making these changes for a good reason - to appeal to the largest audience possible.

    I have recently been playing these "tables" in both Zen and in the Pinball Arcade. I am confident that most folks will choose to play the Zen versions.

    #178 55 days ago
    Quoted from Fytr:

    I wonder if the Williams licensee knows about these changes?

    I wonder if the Williams license holder only cares about the smooth flow of money.

    #179 55 days ago

    Damn...Scared Stiff is gonna end up looking like Supreme with no callouts.*

    *apologies for the "D" word, Zen.

    3 weeks later
    #180 30 days ago
    Quoted from PismoArcade:

    Damn...Scared Stiff is gonna end up looking like Supreme with no callouts.*
    *apologies for the "D" word, Zen.

    I bet Scared Stiff never happens. They already said they wouldn’t be doing the movie license pins.

    #181 30 days ago
    Quoted from kermit24:

    I bet Scared Stiff never happens. They already said they wouldn’t be doing the movie license pins.

    I'm pretty sure that Cassandra has the Elvira rights but they might have to censor some of the callouts to other games

    #182 30 days ago
    Quoted from kermit24:

    I bet Scared Stiff never happens. They already said they wouldn’t be doing the movie license pins.

    They said they wouldn't be doing licensed pins for the first few packs, not that they wouldn't do them altogether.

    #183 30 days ago

    They posted a hint on FB. Looks like AFM is in the next pack. Surprise surprise.

    1 week later
    #184 22 days ago

    next table package

    The Party Zone, Black Rose and Attack from Mars are comming to FX3 on 4th of December. Also censoring will be history for the new, but also for the old tables which is awesome.

    #185 22 days ago
    Quoted from OlDirty:

    censoring will be history for the new, but also for the old tables which is awesome.

    I'm curious....where did you see this?

    #186 22 days ago
    Quoted from PismoArcade:

    I'm curious....where did you see this?

    i found a mention of it in the news feed on their (terrible) website. i'm not seeing anything about the old tables though.

    https://www.pinballfx.com/?page_id=7790

    "With the release, also comes the option for players in the PC Steam version of Pinball FX3 to play the tables in their original form. This means family filter off by default and unaltered cabinet and playfield art on all three Volume 2 tables."

    #187 22 days ago

    So I'm stuck playing this all on Zen pinball 2 (I'm on a mac).

    I found the physics really weird and bouncy - is it different on the PC?

    2 weeks later
    #188 5 days ago

    Volume 2 is out today: Black Rose, Party Zone and AFM. Ten bucks. I bought it. Really enjoy them.

    My biggest wish is that they’d work on the lighting. The flashers don’t light the cab, playfield or 3D objects up nearly enough. “Arcade” physics are still a big improvement over TPA.

    #189 5 days ago

    Any news on an Android release? The only time I get much use out of this is on the go.

    #190 5 days ago

    I’m very happy with the first pack, will buy the second one tomorrow.

    #191 5 days ago
    Quoted from jp1985:

    I’m very happy with the first pack, will buy the second one tomorrow.

    Same here, cant wait!

    #192 4 days ago

    I will never like Party Zone

    #193 3 days ago

    How come?

    #194 2 days ago

    Party Zone isn’t my favorite theme or layout either, but the Zen version is really fun. I wouldn’t have guessed I’d enjoy the Zen “remastered” version with animated characters, but they’re great extensions of the table creators’ original vision. PZ is one of their better offerings, among lots of greats.

    Ten bucks — you can’t go wrong. I spend double that on an evening of Stern Star Wars at the local pizza joint! Not the same, I know. But... hell!

    #195 2 days ago
    Quoted from BenLogan:

    Party Zone isn’t my favorite theme or layout either, but the Zen version is really fun. I wouldn’t have guessed I’d enjoy the Zen “remastered” version with animated characters, but they’re great extensions of the table creators’ original vision. PZ is one of their better offerings, among lots of greats.
    Ten bucks — you can’t go wrong. I spend double that on an evening of Stern Star Wars at the local pizza joint! Not the same, I know. But... hell!

    At least it's not the sequel Dr. Dude!

    #196 2 days ago
    Quoted from BenLogan:

    Party Zone isn’t my favorite theme or layout either, but the Zen version is really fun. I wouldn’t have guessed I’d enjoy the Zen “remastered” version with animated characters, but they’re great extensions of the table creators’ original vision. PZ is one of their better offerings, among lots of greats.
    Ten bucks — you can’t go wrong. I spend double that on an evening of Stern Star Wars at the local pizza joint! Not the same, I know. But... hell!

    Agree 100%

    #197 1 day ago

    Trying to download volume two on my switch but the games are blacked out and say "Coming Soon". Any idea why this might be happening?

    #198 1 day ago
    Quoted from adamross:

    Trying to download volume two on my switch but the games are blacked out and say "Coming Soon". Any idea why this might be happening?

    Not sure about the Switch but on the PS4 i purchased them and did the download and they were still saying coming soon. I closed out Zen and went back into the Playstation store and searched for that table pack and found it and i had to download the demo i believe it was so i did that and installed it and opened FX3 back up and the tables were working.

    #199 1 day ago
    Quoted from Who-Dey:

    Not sure about the Switch but on the PS4 i purchased them and did the download and they were still saying coming soon. I closed out Zen and went back into the Playstation store and searched for that table pack and found it and i had to download the demo i believe it was so i did that and installed it and opened FX3 back up and the tables were working.

    I did a hard reset, make sure everything is updated and still won't allow me to buy. it's not even listed in the switch store. Release must be delayed I guess. Bummer

    #200 1 day ago
    Quoted from adamross:

    I did a hard reset, make sure everything is updated and still won't allow me to buy. it's not even listed in the switch store. Release must be delayed I guess. Bummer

    Just looked it up Adam and sorry to say but the tables won't be out until December 18th for the Nintendo Switch. The release got delayed for some reason.

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