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New Stern insider connected system.

Pick Holder

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Just watched a video on it - seems good.

Wonder about the costs of this vs scorbit?

It is a shame that Stern did not work alongside scorbit.

Is there room for two systems?
 

huggers

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Online leaderboards. Friends lists. Live vs play and co-op play. Webcam integration. Achievements and rewards. Weekly challenges. All things that could be implemented.

Sadly it's blatantly heading for a subscription model, control over custom code (Cleland etc) and you'd imagine adverts.
 

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What is the main focus for this? Seems like they want to drive location play to get more games sold to operators?
 

VeeMonroe

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Does anyone know how many machines, globally, are sold to arcades -vs- private individuals?

This is a great feature for arcade players - with the subtly that it‘s not necessarily good for arcade owners because it builds a direct player relationship with Stern Pinball. It makes no sense whatsoever for private home pinball owners.
 
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Pick Holder

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Does anyone know how many machines, globally, are sold to arcades -vs- private individuals?

This is a great feature for arcade players - with the subtly that it‘s not necessarily good for arcade owners because it builds a direct player relationship with Stern Pinball. It makes no sense whatsoever for private home pinball owners.
Well. I think that about scorbit and that is selling to individuals. Soon it will probably unlock sections of games etc.
Think it will be expensive. Games are already shooting up in price so it may end up a dead duck like the tornament LED topper displays.
Scorbit is a tiny market and this is also tiny. Dont know why they are bothering.
 

Paul

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Well. I think that about scorbit and that is selling to individuals. Soon it will probably unlock sections of games etc.
Think it will be expensive. Games are already shooting up in price so it may end up a dead duck like the tornament LED topper displays.
Scorbit is a tiny market and this is also tiny. Dont know why they are bothering.
Ads and usage Neil... They would, in theory, be able to stream Stern (and other related ads.... Maybe "enhancements" you could buy from their store... )directly to your display.... Monetise your machine basically...
 
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Ads and usage Neil... They would, in theory, be able to stream Stern (and other related ads.... Maybe "enhancements" you could buy from their store... )directly to your display.... Monetise your machine basically...
I’m not Neil. :)
Will this be the VHS vs BETAMAX war?
 

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Same retail. Yes Scorbit works on spike and spike 2


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I like the idea of this for a location environment; but cosmetically it ruins the look of the game- hopefully they’ll have a rethink about how it can be integrated into the art package.
 

kevlar

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Couldn't this QR code system have been done the other way around? i.e. Each machine have a unique QR code and everyone use their stern insider phone app to scan the code? Then the machine would just need a wifi dongle and all the software updated of course. I guess it's more complicated than that.
 

Neil McRae

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Couldn't this QR code system have been done the other way around? i.e. Each machine have a unique QR code and everyone use their stern insider phone app to scan the code? Then the machine would just need a wifi dongle and all the software updated of course. I guess it's more complicated than that.

Which is exactly how Scorbit works.

Scorbit has sold loads to home users, its great fun challenging each other (Julian and I have been fighting on The Shadow for a while).

As noted on another thread, all future Stern games will have this system, it will lock down the code as it uses a TPM and yeah it will have a subscription because it costs money to run these things. But the great thing is that if you don't want to participate you don't have to.

I seriously doubt it will have adverts though, maybe signs in arcades about stuff happening in the local arcade the game is in but how Stern could run adverts on this and be taken seriously is a laugh a minute.
 

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My $0.02

I totally HATE (and that's a strong word I know) anything that has to do with "online competitions" or anything similar. I play pinball for MY enjoyment and MY fun - yeah, selfish I know. Pinball is to escape from the rigors of daily chores NOT get more involved in them!

I couldn't care less what scores others get, higher, lower or the same as mine - big deal. If I happen to be playing a multiple player game ON THE SAME MACHINE with another person that is a whole different thing.

I play pinball to ESCAPE from all of this online C.R.A.P. - NOT to be more immersed in it.

Each to their own but I fail to see how this "enhances the players experience" in any meaningful way.....and wonderful - they get to pay hundreds more for the "privilege" Pfttt.

To me - big fail!
 

Neil McRae

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My $0.02

I totally HATE (and that's a strong word I know) anything that has to do with "online competitions" or anything similar. I play pinball for MY enjoyment and MY fun - yeah, selfish I know. Pinball is to escape from the rigors of daily chores NOT get more involved in them!

I couldn't care less what scores others get, higher, lower or the same as mine - big deal. If I happen to be playing a multiple player game ON THE SAME MACHINE with another person that is a whole different thing.

I play pinball to ESCAPE from all of this online C.R.A.P. - NOT to be more immersed in it.

Each to their own but I fail to see how this "enhances the players experience" in any meaningful way.....and wonderful - they get to pay hundreds more for the "privilege" Pfttt.

To me - big fail!

Thankfully you are the past and this is the future!


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Homepin

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Thankfully you are the past and this is the future!


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Your post says more about you than it does about me!

Just because it's possible to connect things to the internet DOES NOT mean you SHOULD connect everything!

Stern will push this "connectivity" rubbish for a couple of years and then will slink away after they discover most don't want it and it will die off, just the same as "The Pin".

Actually, The Pin is a great concept, it's just that Stern in not able to make it so it can sell at the correct price for this product and its target market.
 

VeeMonroe

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Thankfully you are the past and this is the future!


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[Controversial opinion] Neil - I watched @Gonzo’s profile of you. You do realise you’re probably old enough to be my dad, right? 😈

Something is only *the future* if people *my* age think it’s a good idea.

My generation spend ALL our lives online. My job is online. I meet new people…online. My social life for the last year has been… entirely online. I’m pretty much constantly connected to the internet. I can play video games with my morning coffee and stream music through my watch.

For this reason, my generation, and people younger than me, are DESPERATE for physical and non-online assets. This is where the ‘vinyl renaissance’ comes from and the whole ‘millennials are obsessed with authenticity and physical experiences’ thang.

I can’t think of anything worse than connecting a pinball machine, which is inherently a physical mechanical object, to the fracking internet.

Genuinely, I’ve been on this site for like a month, and it is packed with geezers old enough to be my dad getting overexcited about pinball machines that feel, playing them, like video games with plungers. There is a reason why my son (aged four) is absolutely obsessed with physical pinball machines too - for him, also, a physical ball pinging around is a novelty: video games are like breathing and literally everything in his life has screens.

[/end controversial opinion]
 
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AlanJ

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Having put scorbit in many of my machines, I can honestly say it adds a new interesting dimension. - those of you who havent tried it - try it, then give me an informed opinion. I respect that it will not be for some, freedom to choose whether you use scorbit when you play my machines is totally up to each individual.
 

johnwhitfield

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Scorbit is cool but limited due to the small number of people connected. It’s surprising how few players there are on games such as TAF.

Not sure why people would get bent out of shape about have the option to post scores. If it’s not for you then simply don’t use the function.
 

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I personally think it's a bit of a novelty. For most, they'll try it a handful of times then not use the function much after that. I have no doubt it will have a hardcore following amongst some within the pinball community but for the rest of us we would rather it not be added and save ourselves a few hundred pounds off the price of a NIB.
 

Neil McRae

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[Controversial opinion] Neil - I watched @Gonzo’s profile of you. You do realise you’re probably old enough to be my dad, right? 😈

Something is only *the future* if people *my* age think it’s a good idea.

My generation spend ALL our lives online. My job is online. I meet new people…online. My social life for the last year has been… entirely online. I’m pretty much constantly connected to the internet. I can play video games with my morning coffee and stream music through my watch.

For this reason, my generation, and people younger than me, are DESPERATE for physical and non-online assets. This is where the ‘vinyl renaissance’ comes from and the whole ‘millennials are obsessed with authenticity and physical experiences’ thang.

I can’t think of anything worse than connecting a pinball machine, which is inherently a physical mechanical object, to the fracking internet.

Genuinely, I’ve been on this site for like a month, and it is packed with geezers old enough to be my dad getting overexcited about pinball machines that feel, playing them, like video games with plungers. There is a reason why my son (aged four) is absolutely obsessed with physical pinball machines too - for him, also, a physical ball pinging around is a novelty: video games are like breathing and literally everything in his life has screens.

[/end controversial opinion]

"Genuinely", whilst your opinion is no doubt consuming your thinking 24x7 the, perhaps sad, fact is that - no - you are not the target market. The biggest growth in online demand isn't from "millennials" that ship sailed ten years ago (and its pretty dismal). No this, and here is were I make you feel old, this action is aimed at Gen Z, Thats the group _younger_ than you! So yes sadly you are part of this group of old geezers! (ageist and sexist in one post - fantastic!).

This is the first generation that doesn't know what its like to be disconnected; this is the generation that is so connected it's generated the first non-inflationary upward price direction in PC hardware in more than twenty years and the largest IC shortage since the eighties. This is the generation that tries to swipe the screen on my 41 year old Robotron 2084.

You say you watched the interview, did you listen or did you act like most "millennials" and think, well this guy is an "old geezer", I'm just going to ignore him? This group of old geezers are the group thats making more pinball available than ever before. You have been to Flip Out. _every single game_ at Flip Out has been made available for others to play by a group of old geezers, we just had a show with hundreds of games, all provided by old geezers.

In the interview with Kris I'm very specific about what is important in pinball and that is the ball and flippers - themes, online or video screens or even light shows can't make up for **** poor gameplay - and thats what players want great gameplay and tough challenges.

In the last five years that gameplay has taken a huge step forward as players with massive experience have started to design games and the processing power to simulate games quickly is now a reality; the most popular games having been designed by people who have spent more time in pinball than all of us on this forum added up together; and not liking newer games is fine - to say that they are video games is ridiculous.

I've connected my Meteor to the Internet, when this game was released I was 3, through lockdown I played in dozens of challenge matches across the world online with friends I knew and friends I now know. I helped run two online streamed pinball competitions that had as much viewer interest as some of the biggest pinball events in the world with the winners from that gen Z group thats younger than you, we just ran a tournament were having the games connected made running the tournament a breeze, I was knocked out by someone in Gen Z! Challenge tournaments are now big and getting bigger (with one just being aired on ESPN) and taking the games online makes it possible to do challenge tournaments all over the world as well as many things we haven't even thought about.

Perhaps your mental model of what you think connecting a pinball machine to the Internet is about is narrow and from my perception its certainly flawed, with that type of thinking, many of glorious things we now take for granted wouldn't exist. And yes its fair to say we are all a bit onlined out because of covid but were it not for the Internet, thousands of people wouldn't have been able to say good bye to their loved ones, relatives would't have been able to talk and see each other, supermarkets wouldn't have been able to get stuff on their shelves, education would have stopped completely, we wouldn't have a vaccine now, and finally millions of people wouldn't have seen Luke Skywalker appear in The Mandalorian.

I have a 3 year old grandson, he also loves the novelty of pinball, but he also loves the novelty of hot wheels tracks, solving coding problems on his iPad, and my Apollo model collection, discerning the future from that isn't so easy.

Regards,
Neil.
 

Neil McRae

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I personally think it's a bit of a novelty. For most, they'll try it a handful of times then not use the function much after that. I have no doubt it will have a hardcore following amongst some within the pinball community but for the rest of us we would rather it not be added and save ourselves a few hundred pounds off the price of a NIB.

I remember one of my business partners at Demon saying us playing Doom online was a novelty that wouldn't last... I wind him up about it regularly. Most of the hardware to take Spike 2 games online is already in the game, price increases aren't just about this, and if this generates more volume, which I believe it will, it will enable prices to stay flat. The only reason we are not already paying £500 more over the last year is because volume is up massively which has helped offset a significant increase in material costs.

Neil.
 

James

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What app does he use for solving coding problems @Neil McRae and at what age did he get into it. Something for Harry hopefully. I would rather he be doing that on his iPad than watching pinball videos on YouTube... Seriously.
 

Slimetime

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I remember one of my business partners at Demon saying us playing Doom online was a novelty that wouldn't last... I wind him up about it regularly. Most of the hardware to take Spike 2 games online is already in the game, price increases aren't just about this, and if this generates more volume, which I believe it will, it will enable prices to stay flat. The only reason we are not already paying £500 more over the last year is because volume is up massively which has helped offset a significant increase in material costs.

Neil.
Don't get me wrong Stern are a hugely innovative company who are pushing pinball along and keeping it fresh and trying to engage with younger generations but I'm not sure whether this will take off.

Time will tell.
 

Neil McRae

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What app does he use for solving coding problems @Neil McRae and at what age did he get into it. Something for Harry hopefully. I would rather he be doing that on his iPad than watching pinball videos on YouTube... Seriously.

Coding Safari is his favourite.


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VeeMonroe

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"Genuinely", whilst your opinion is no doubt consuming your thinking 24x7 the, perhaps sad, fact is that - no - you are not the target market. The biggest growth in online demand isn't from "millennials" that ship sailed ten years ago (and its pretty dismal). No this, and here is were I make you feel old, this action is aimed at Gen Z, Thats the group _younger_ than you! So yes sadly you are part of this group of old geezers! (ageist and sexist in one post - fantastic!).

This is the first generation that doesn't know what its like to be disconnected; this is the generation that is so connected it's generated the first non-inflationary upward price direction in PC hardware in more than twenty years and the largest IC shortage since the eighties. This is the generation that tries to swipe the screen on my 41 year old Robotron 2084.

You say you watched the interview, did you listen or did you act like most "millennials" and think, well this guy is an "old geezer", I'm just going to ignore him? This group of old geezers are the group thats making more pinball available than ever before. You have been to Flip Out. _every single game_ at Flip Out has been made available for others to play by a group of old geezers, we just had a show with hundreds of games, all provided by old geezers.

In the interview with Kris I'm very specific about what is important in pinball and that is the ball and flippers - themes, online or video screens or even light shows can't make up for **** poor gameplay - and thats what players want great gameplay and tough challenges.

In the last five years that gameplay has taken a huge step forward as players with massive experience have started to design games and the processing power to simulate games quickly is now a reality; the most popular games having been designed by people who have spent more time in pinball than all of us on this forum added up together; and not liking newer games is fine - to say that they are video games is ridiculous.

I've connected my Meteor to the Internet, when this game was released I was 3, through lockdown I played in dozens of challenge matches across the world online with friends I knew and friends I now know. I helped run two online streamed pinball competitions that had as much viewer interest as some of the biggest pinball events in the world with the winners from that gen Z group thats younger than you, we just ran a tournament were having the games connected made running the tournament a breeze, I was knocked out by someone in Gen Z! Challenge tournaments are now big and getting bigger (with one just being aired on ESPN) and taking the games online makes it possible to do challenge tournaments all over the world as well as many things we haven't even thought about.

Perhaps your mental model of what you think connecting a pinball machine to the Internet is about is narrow and from my perception its certainly flawed, with that type of thinking, many of glorious things we now take for granted wouldn't exist. And yes its fair to say we are all a bit onlined out because of covid but were it not for the Internet, thousands of people wouldn't have been able to say good bye to their loved ones, relatives would't have been able to talk and see each other, supermarkets wouldn't have been able to get stuff on their shelves, education would have stopped completely, we wouldn't have a vaccine now, and finally millions of people wouldn't have seen Luke Skywalker appear in The Mandalorian.

I have a 3 year old grandson, he also loves the novelty of pinball, but he also loves the novelty of hot wheels tracks, solving coding problems on his iPad, and my Apollo model collection, discerning the future from that isn't so easy.

Regards,
Neil.
Thanks for the thoughtful response :)

I agree that connecting pinball tables online makes things easier for competitive players.

For me, I have two specific concerns about Stern’s specific tech:

a) Around pinball machines (not my work computers, which are all Apple), I like a ‘freedom to tinker’. Some of the discussion of Stern’s tech here and on Pinside has focused on the possibility that connecting pinball machines to the internet via a proprietary technology means it’s harder to tinker. Stern, quite sensibly, in other areas of its business, is trying to maximise its profits, and internet-enabling technology runs the risk of being used to scrape existing owners for money and potentially police IP. There are a *lot* of bad practices in other areas of gaming around trying to extract as much money from purchasers, as possible, and to prevent them customising existing property, and it’s not something I personally like to see creeping in.

b) Although the tech is good for pinball arcades in the short term, it’s potentially bad for arcade owners in the long term because it creates a direct relationship between Stern and players, rather than with the arcade. Your account works with other Stern machines in a different arcade, but not with other brands of machine in the same arcade.
 
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