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Thread: More realistic tables?

  1. #1
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    Default More realistic tables?

    Hi there, i've bought the Zen Pinball finaly, it is freakin awesome!
    I would like to know one thing, are there plans for more realistic tables, without the things that couldn't be replicated on a real table?
    That kinda kills the buzz for me, seeing those space ships flying over, Robot shooting lasers on the table.. Ninjas fighting.. i prefer the tables you could actually find in real life. V12 is my favorite so far..
    I'm looking at the pictures for Paranormal, and i think see those 'unrealistic' stuff there too..
    I know it's a video game and for that reasons it's a great chance to do stuff that couldn't be done in real life, but it kinda makes it too much a 'video game' for my taste..

    And one more question, how much better or realistic is FX2 pinball gona be, compared to Zen Pinball? I just bought this one but i would feel bad knowing there's better/realistic one, on the 360, which i don't intend to buy..

    Regards, Boris.

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    Personally I think table design is great as it is now and more realistic tables won't be so fun to play.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zuch80 View Post
    Personally I think table design is great as it is now and more realistic tables won't be so fun to play.
    I agree that design is great, the only thing stopping me from byuing those tables are those unrealistic things, like stuff flying over the table, Laser beams, etc.. i couldn't be the only one that doesn't like that?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris Lozac View Post
    I agree that design is great, the only thing stopping me from byuing those tables are those unrealistic things, like stuff flying over the table, Laser beams, etc.. i couldn't be the only one that doesn't like that?
    That's why I like video pinball so much... It's not limited to what the real world physics... Pinball, but with added features. Well that, and you only have to pay once But that's just me


    The SF2 table is pretty realistic though, apart from a couple of details, everything could be placed on a real table. Including the Bison doll. If you haven't already, try it out

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    Quote Originally Posted by steviej View Post

    The SF2 table is pretty realistic though, apart from a couple of details, everything could be placed on a real table. Including the Bison doll. If you haven't already, try it out
    Yep, i got that one, huge fan of SF, and yes i think the whole table could be replicated in RL..
    I don't know, those things really put me off..
    Last edited by Boris Lozac; 10-07-2010 at 06:26 PM.

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    Cool special effects should always stay in video pinball games

    I totally disagree with Boris...

    I think that the extra things are perfect. I love to see more features, mini games and tasks in Zen tables. It is a video game, it is possible.
    If you want to play realistic pinball only then maybe you can go play the real pinball machines. That way you have the perfect look and feel of real tables.

    I hope Zen will go on like this and bringing out more tables with the extra things that are not possible on real tables.

    Seeing the extra features always brings up the 'wow situation'. I was really surprised with the Mars table when all balls went flying anywhere. COOL !!!

    Can't wait for the Paranormal table

    Kind regards,
    SWProzee1.

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    Hehe, it really seems like i'm in the minority here.. Yes it's a game, but based on a real life game, called Pinball I love the designs and everything, ONLY if it wasn't for those things that really couldn't be seen in real life..
    I guess that "Pinball Hall of Fame Williams" is more for my taste.. but i can't find it anywhere.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris Lozac View Post
    Yes it's a game, but based on a real life game, called Pinball
    I'm pretty sure you answered your own question, it's "based" on pinball, doesn't mean it has to conform to the physical rules of a pinball table... if they wanted to do that they might as well switch to making actual physical pinball tables, lol. It would be a huge waste of the PS3 capabilities to just make boring pinball tables.

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    Quote Originally Posted by skippycue View Post
    I'm pretty sure you answered your own question, it's "based" on pinball, doesn't mean it has to conform to the physical rules of a pinball table... if they wanted to do that they might as well switch to making actual physical pinball tables, lol. It would be a huge waste of the PS3 capabilities to just make boring pinball tables.
    lol, "boring pinball tables" It would be boring for you if there wasn't a space ship flying across the table? That's all i'm asking for.. I will play Wipeout if i wan't flying space ships. From a pinball game i'm expecting great physics (which it pretty much has), great table designs (which it also has), but i'm not expecting flying things and robots shooting laser beams on the table... it kills the buzz.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris Lozac View Post
    lol, "boring pinball tables" It would be boring for you if there wasn't a space ship flying across the table? That's all i'm asking for.. I will play Wipeout if i wan't flying space ships. From a pinball game i'm expecting great physics (which it pretty much has), great table designs (which it also has), but i'm not expecting flying things and robots shooting laser beams on the table... it kills the buzz.
    You keep on saying that you don't like it and it kills the buzz for you...

    Well, you can play other games, the majority wants it the way it is. Please stop talking negative about how you are affected.
    Don't like it ? Then don't buy it ! (but don't buy it and keep complaining)

    Kind regards,
    SWProzee1.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris Lozac View Post
    lol, "boring pinball tables" It would be boring for you if there wasn't a space ship flying across the table? That's all i'm asking for.. I will play Wipeout if i wan't flying space ships. From a pinball game i'm expecting great physics (which it pretty much has), great table designs (which it also has), but i'm not expecting flying things and robots shooting laser beams on the table... it kills the buzz.
    You make a valid point, and this is a topic that comes up often at the office. Different people like different styles, and we've attempted to make some tables that appeal to each type of player.

    We've probably been leaning more to the flashy but unrealistic side lately, simply because people have responded more positively to them as a whole. But we're still mindful that some people prefer the pure electromechanical simulation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Solitude View Post
    You make a valid point, and this is a topic that comes up often at the office. Different people like different styles, and we've attempted to make some tables that appeal to each type of player.

    We've probably been leaning more to the flashy but unrealistic side lately, simply because people have responded more positively to them as a whole. But we're still mindful that some people prefer the pure electromechanical simulation.
    Thanks for the response, apreciate it! I think you guys have awesome sense for design and creativity, i don't mind the tables like V12, it is extravagant, maybe too complicated for a real life table, but it doesn't have anything totally fictional, you know.. that's all i want, i like the fact that you can do more complicated things then in real life, ONLY if there are no levitating balls, flying things, etc.. that's what i don't like, everything else is simply awesome.
    Keep up the great work, and hopefully you'll do something for people like me Regards!

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    I would be very disappointed with a new table that has no special features.
    Especially after there have been very nice tables with all the extra's that we were hoping for.

    I personally think people will not buy 'plain simple' tables without the extra effects. (That includes me)
    Zen Pinball is the best in this area, for plain pinball gamefun there are enough alternatives.

    Keep up the effects, that is what we want.

    Maybe Zen Pinball should start a 'poll' here so people can choose what they like better.... Plain machines, or special effects machines.

    Kind regards,
    SWProzee1.

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    plain machines thank you
    just like street fighter.

    i play pinball fx it has more realistic tables.
    and i like the special tables aswell just dont over do it thats what boris mean i think
    Last edited by chivato; 10-10-2010 at 11:36 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chivato View Post
    plain machines thank you
    just like street fighter.

    i play pinball fx is has more realistic tables.
    like the special tables aswell just dont over do it thats what boris mean i think
    Exactly, i like all the tables, Mars, etc.. only if it wasn't for the really unnecessary stuff like flying ships, jumping robots etc.. that's all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by swprozee1 View Post
    I would be very disappointed with a new table that has no special features.
    Especially after there have been very nice tables with all the extra's that we were hoping for.

    I personally think people will not buy 'plain simple' tables without the extra effects. (That includes me)
    Zen Pinball is the best in this area, for plain pinball gamefun there are enough alternatives.

    Keep up the effects, that is what we want.

    Maybe Zen Pinball should start a 'poll' here so people can choose what they like better.... Plain machines, or special effects machines.

    Kind regards,
    SWProzee1.
    hehe so if you dont want to buy a realistic table then you assume that nobody wants it? Dont forget there are still people out there that like to play pinball thats why most people bought this game in the first place. With flying spaceships in it it doesnt give you the feeling off playing a pinball table more a feeling of playing a online flashgame.And ofcourse that can be fun too but not for long.
    Last edited by chivato; 10-10-2010 at 12:27 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chivato View Post
    hehe so if you dont want to buy a realistic table then you assume that nobody wants it? Dont forget there are still people out there that like to play pinball thats why most people bought this game in the first place. With flying spaceships in it it doesnt give you the feeling off playing a pinball table more a feeling of playing a online flashgame.And ofcourse that can be fun too but not for long.
    No I do not assume nobody wants it, don't know how you came to that conclusion. I merely said that more people like the special effects tables than the plain tables. Even Zen Studios Rep Solitude confirms that !

    And I will not go into any discussion with you when you start comparing the best Pinball game ever with simple flash games........

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    [QUOTE=swprozee1;4761]No I do not assume nobody wants it, don't know how you came to that conclusion. I merely said that more people like the special effects tables than the plain tables. Even Zen Studios Rep Solitude confirms that !

    And I will not go into any discussion with you when you start comparing the best Pinball game ever with simple flash games........[/QUOTe

    your are really missing the point here.
    Only thing that Zen say is that a lot of people gave positive reactions about the special tables so saying that people like the special effects tables more than plain tables is just an assumption. All we ask here is not to much special effects cause it takes away the feeling of playing pinball.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chivato View Post
    your are really missing the point here.
    Only thing that Zen say is that a lot of people gave positive reactions about the special tables so saying that people like the special effects tables more than plain tables is just an assumption. All we ask here is not to much special effects cause it takes away the feeling of playing pinball.
    Really ? Let me express my side of the story a little bit better in that aspect.
    My opinion is that it IS a video game. It offers so much more than simple real-life effects. Why not use it while you can, the PS3 is powerful enough.
    You will never get the real feeling of a pinball table because it remains a video game.
    Want to feel the machine, smell the machine, shake the machine en feel the warmth of the lights of the machine, then play real pinball machines.

    I think it is a waste of opportunity and fun to not use the best of a video game possibilities. Again, for simple tables there are enough alternatives.

    Fact is that these features will probably remain in the tables as more people want these features after they have seen how great it is with these extra's.
    And if more people want the features, then it will be really dumb to release a new 'plain table' and see that less and less people buy the game.
    Who will buy a game that is a total disappointment compared to the previous release.

    Zen should start a poll and they probably do research anyway to see what the majority wants. Don't forget that is requires 6x more energy to gain new customers than to keep them happy !

    Kind regards,
    SWProzee1.

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    ok you are right
    have fun playing

    adios

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    Quote Originally Posted by chivato View Post
    ok you are right
    have fun playing

    adios
    I guess swprozee1 is just a kid.. he just doesn't get it..

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    Let's keep it civil, please!

    There are plenty of good arguments to be made for either side, as we've discovered in our office debates.

    On one hand, the tables need to be appealing in video game terms. We're on a video game platform, selling to an audience that plays video games. Therefore, our game has to be a good game, not just a good simulation.

    On the other hand, we need to keep the essential qualities of pinball, in order to attract pinball enthusiasts. If it departs too far from reality, then to pinball purists, it's just another video game, not a real pinball game (Odama and Flipnic come to mind).

    We try to make tables that will please both audiences, but a few will lean more to one side than the other. After all, variety is one of the most appealing aspects of pinball.

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    Realistic or not, you guys have a fine product, and a great idea of how to make pinball fun. It's actually the tables that lean to one side of the argument the most that I'm not a big fan of. I'm talking about both the SF2 and the MARS tables, which I consider the extremes... I don't know why, but it feels like they both lack that 'Zen Pinball feel' that keeps me playing the game.

    Im seriously considering purchasing an XBOX 360, and believe it or not, Pinball FX2 is one of the biggest reasons for it... So in my oppinion, you guys have it just right

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris Lozac View Post
    I guess swprozee1 is just a kid.. he just doesn't get it..
    I am open to a normal and good discussion. And having more than 12 years of professional work in the ICT industry dealing with large customers with Enterprise equipment I find it very insulting to be called a 'kid'.

    I will not lower myself to that kind of useless conversation.

    But getting personal and insulting is totally uncalled for !!!

    If a product is unique in its kind where there is a market wide open because the competition is far behind, then it is commercially wise to stay on that path.
    Weakening your own product would be not smart at all as that is in my opinion 'a step back' getting back into the competition area.

    I hope Boris understands that there is a commercial side to games and that it is not just based on what some gamers like or don't like.

    Forums are for open discussion and debate, so if you cannot participate in a way of not getting personal because somebody disagrees with what you say, then maybe you should not participate.

    If you are open to a more grown up debate that involves game industry targets, marketing/sales, gameplay and feedback from users to improve the product than I am willing to 'debate' on a higher level. All you seem to do is to repeat how 'it kills the buzz for you'. I do not see how that contributes to this thread after saying that more than 2 times.

    Games are not just about user experience, however, feedback is always important to understand if a product needs change.
    And so far I think that Zen has chosen the correct route with the Pinball machines. (but again, that is only my opinion)

    Kind regards,
    SWProzee1.
    Last edited by swprozee1; 10-11-2010 at 08:32 AM. Reason: corrected a typo

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    Quote Originally Posted by swprozee1 View Post
    If a product is unique in its kind where there is a market wide open because the competition is far behind, then it is commercially wise to stay on that path.
    Weakening your own product would be not smart at all as that is in my opinion 'a step back' getting back into the competition area.

    I hope Boris understands that there is a commercial side to games and that it is not just based on what some gamers like or don't like.

    Forums are for open discussion and debate, so if you cannot participate in a way of not getting personal because somebody disagrees with what you say, then maybe you should not participate.

    If you are open to a more grown up debate that involves game industry targets, marketing/sales, gameplay and feedback from users to improve the product than I am willing to 'debate' on a higher level. All you seem to do is to repeat how 'it kills the buzz for you'. I do not see how that contributes to this thread after saying that more than 2 times.

    Games are not just about user experience, however, feedback is always important to understand if a product needs change.
    And so far I think that Zen has chosen the correct route with the Pinball machines. (but again, that is only my opinion)

    Kind regards,
    SWProzee1.
    You are right that we have to sell units to stay in business and continue to make tables. A lot of our sales come from casual pinball players who aren't as interested in a realistic simulation as they are in the action, discovery, and presentation elements of the game.

    However, we also need the hardcore pinball fans to succeed. Although they may not account for the majority of sales, they do have a disproportionately large influence on reviews and word of mouth, which are both huge in terms of generating awareness and getting casual players to pick up the game.

    In the end, though, it's not players' responsibilty to understand the issues we have to deal with as a business; instead, it is our responsibility to deliver a pinball game that is suited to their individual tastes.

    We are lucky in that the PSN system and audience allow us to make tables to suit many different tastes long after the game's release. Not every table will appeal to every player, but with new tables being added regularly, there should be enough variety that each person can find enough tables they like to make the game worthwhile for them.

    We value individual opinions very highly, even if they differ from the majority's or if they don't agree with what we are doing. Sure, sometimes business considerations will prevent us from fulfilling some requests, but a lot of the time it helps us make better games.

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    Ok, i hope you take my apology SWProzee1, i honestly thought, by some of your responses that you are a young'in Given that you didn't seem to understand what makes pinball so popular. It's not like it's some newly found game... it's one of the first 'games' ever, so i don't see the reason why it should be acomolated to this new internet generation.
    All i was asking was no flying things and levitating balls etc.. i know it's a game and i do want a more extreme aproach to some things that maybe couldn't be replicated in real pinball, but WITHIN the pinball filosophy, and i'm sorry but it's not pinball filosofy to have things flying above your table etc..
    Best regards.

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    I understand clearly what you want Boris, no need to repeat it again.
    But you have to understand that people know what pinball is and that this 'next generation video pinball game' is very popular and good in what it has evolved into.

    I even wish for more things in the machines that are totally impossible in real machines.
    It is super cool that there are fighting and jumping ninja's, slice balls into halves actions, laser shooting, teleportation holes showing up, flying balls, flying space shuttles/probes, robots that shoot/hold the ball, fighting knights, shooting canons/catapults, castles falling apart etc.
    These extra's make the tables excellent as they are possible in video games and complete the theme of the tables very well.
    Real pinball machines would wish these things were possible, they have evolved into matrix displays and screenplay mini games too.

    Real pinball philosophy is not granted with video games, stick to real machines instead if you don't like the change of 'next gen pinball'.
    There is really no need to just stick to 'real pinball physics' with powerful video game consoles...
    Last edited by swprozee1; 10-11-2010 at 10:08 PM. Reason: typo

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    I'll have to say I agree with Boris to a point, the 4 original tables and SF2 are my favs. With each subsequent DLC the tables seem to be getting more and more video game-like, where as I prefer a balance between sim and game. Mars was my least favourite and yeah that spaceship is just plain annoying as were the random events. I'd be happier if the DLC alternated between V12-like tables and video game tables so everyone gets something they like

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    Quote Originally Posted by Solitude View Post
    Let's keep it civil, please!

    There are plenty of good arguments to be made for either side, as we've discovered in our office debates.

    On one hand, the tables need to be appealing in video game terms. We're on a video game platform, selling to an audience that plays video games. Therefore, our game has to be a good game, not just a good simulation.

    On the other hand, we need to keep the essential qualities of pinball, in order to attract pinball enthusiasts. If it departs too far from reality, then to pinball purists, it's just another video game, not a real pinball game (Odama and Flipnic come to mind).

    We try to make tables that will please both audiences, but a few will lean more to one side than the other. After all, variety is one of the most appealing aspects of pinball.
    This has to be the most interesting thread I've read here for quite some time.

    We are all fans of pinball and video pinball.

    Zen Pinball and Pinball FX are games that are based upon their real world counterpart. Pinball is a physical game based in the real world and as such, must obey the laws of physics.

    Without real pinball there would be no video pinball.

    The issue of 'realism' is one of the factors that determines how we each evaluate how much a game that is based upon pinball appeals to us.

    How realistic does video pinball have to be?

    For me personally, if the actual physics and mechanics of pinball are not portrayed accurately then it is not video pinball - it's a video game. The appeal would be lost for me.

    Solitude, you say that your game 'has to be a good game, not just a good simulation'. I would say that pinball ITSELF is a good game. Therefore, if you can accurately simulate pinball in EVERY regard possible on a video game platform, you'll have yourself the foundations for not just a good game but a GREAT game. For me, that should be the primary focus when taking ZP and PFX forward.

    Yes, some pinball tables are better than others but real pinball remains a good game WITHOUT the enhancements that video games can bring.

    Having said that, I am not against enhancing the game with video effects - as long as these effects are not overly distracting (as is the concern) and they do not detract from the underlying simulation of REAL PINBALL.
    Last edited by kimkom; 10-12-2010 at 10:39 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Solitude View Post
    Let's keep it civil, please!

    There are plenty of good arguments to be made for either side, as we've discovered in our office debates.

    On one hand, the tables need to be appealing in video game terms. We're on a video game platform, selling to an audience that plays video games. Therefore, our game has to be a good game, not just a good simulation.

    On the other hand, we need to keep the essential qualities of pinball, in order to attract pinball enthusiasts. If it departs too far from reality, then to pinball purists, it's just another video game, not a real pinball game (Odama and Flipnic come to mind).

    We try to make tables that will please both audiences, but a few will lean more to one side than the other. After all, variety is one of the most appealing aspects of pinball.
    Just found a video for the game flipnic on Ps2


    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UXsCrdi0wtQ


    Unless the ball changes in Sonic the Hedgehog it cant get any worser than this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chivato View Post
    Just found a video for the game flipnic on Ps2


    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UXsCrdi0wtQ


    Unless the ball changes in Sonic the Hedgehog it cant get any worser than this.
    I agree, that flipnic game I defenately don't like. Too much that has hardly anything to do with pinball. The in between videos and interruptions are really annoying.
    Zen Pinball should not go into extremes like that.

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    Honestly this doesn't seem like much of a valid debate to me. Why reinvent the wheel? Pinball is awesome and you can find lots of these machines in the arcade. If you're not too interested in leaving your living room, then stop complaining about a few special effects on the table. Frankly the ps3 is capable of so much more, so I think ZEN did a great job of finding a happy medium.

    And for the record... most of these effects could be achieved via hologram technology on real tables (although that would be costly).

    In the end, it's impossible to make everyone happy (and I'm sure ZEN knows this), so to stay profitable they have to appeal to the masses... and that's not the small group of pinball purists. I was never really into pinball when I was younger, I would just hit the ball randomly hoping to make cool things happen. It wasn't until I started playing ZEN that I discovered the intricacies of a well designed pinball table. I think they've done a great job and there ARE some realistic tables, so they really are trying to make everyone happy... let's not forget that!

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    Quote Originally Posted by kimkom View Post
    This has to be the most interesting thread I've read here for quite some time.

    We are all fans of pinball and video pinball.

    Zen Pinball and Pinball FX are games that are based upon their real world counterpart. Pinball is a physical game based in the real world and as such, must obey the laws of physics.

    Without real pinball there would be no video pinball.

    The issue of 'realism' is one of the factors that determines how we each evaluate how much a game that is based upon pinball appeals to us.

    How realistic does video pinball have to be?

    For me personally, if the actual physics and mechanics of pinball are not portrayed accurately then it is not video pinball - it's a video game. The appeal would be lost for me.

    Solitude, you say that your game 'has to be a good game, not just a good simulation'. I would say that pinball ITSELF is a good game. Therefore, if you can accurately simulate pinball in EVERY regard possible on a video game platform, you'll have yourself the foundations for not just a good game but a GREAT game. For me, that should be the primary focus when taking ZP and PFX forward.

    Yes, some pinball tables are better than others but real pinball remains a good game WITHOUT the enhancements that video games can bring.

    Having said that, I am not against enhancing the game with video effects - as long as these effects are not overly distracting (as is the concern) and they do not detract from the underlying simulation of REAL PINBALL.
    Couldn't have said it better myself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by skippycue View Post
    Honestly this doesn't seem like much of a valid debate to me. Why reinvent the wheel? Pinball is awesome and you can find lots of these machines in the arcade. If you're not too interested in leaving your living room, then stop complaining about a few special effects on the table. Frankly the ps3 is capable of so much more, so I think ZEN did a great job of finding a happy medium.

    And for the record... most of these effects could be achieved via hologram technology on real tables (although that would be costly).

    In the end, it's impossible to make everyone happy (and I'm sure ZEN knows this), so to stay profitable they have to appeal to the masses... and that's not the small group of pinball purists. I was never really into pinball when I was younger, I would just hit the ball randomly hoping to make cool things happen. It wasn't until I started playing ZEN that I discovered the intricacies of a well designed pinball table. I think they've done a great job and there ARE some realistic tables, so they really are trying to make everyone happy... let's not forget that!
    I totally agree with skippycue.
    It is up to Zen Pinball what they choose to release...

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    Quote Originally Posted by skippycue View Post
    Honestly this doesn't seem like much of a valid debate to me. Why reinvent the wheel? Pinball is awesome and you can find lots of these machines in the arcade. If you're not too interested in leaving your living room, then stop complaining about a few special effects on the table.
    We don't have so many Arcades here.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oskari14 View Post
    We don't have so many Arcades here.
    That sucks... although I don't really use them myself. They aren't very popular anymore I guess.

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    Quote Originally Posted by swprozee1 View Post
    I totally agree with skippycue.
    It is up to Zen Pinball what they choose to release...
    And also up to their customers to give them feedback and opinions on what they rellease, hence one of the reasons for having a Zen Pinball forum.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen220378 View Post
    And also up to their customers to give them feedback and opinions on what they rellease, hence one of the reasons for having a Zen Pinball forum.
    I agree

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen220378 View Post
    And also up to their customers to give them feedback and opinions on what they rellease, hence one of the reasons for having a Zen Pinball forum.
    Feedback is overrated.

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    You're certainly not alone, Boris! BTW I registered just to make this post.

    I'm more of a traditionalist when it comes to pinball. Like you, I also prefer realistic pinball tables than 'video-gamey' pinball. I don't hate video-gamey pinball, but to me, and this is just my opinion, they don't really capture the true essence of pinball. Anything that goes outside a real pinball table (like as Boris says, ships flying around blasting the board) kind of ruins the whole pinball experience. I'd still play them though, so don't start saying I hate them totally.

    Zen Pinball seems to have a mixture of both types, but like they said, their most recent ones tend to be more video-gamey.

    I think what most people fail to understand is that just because a PS3 has a lot of power running under its hood doesn't mean video game developers have to add fancy stuff to their games just because they can. It's optional, not mandatory.

    The Pro Pinball! series on the PC have garnered much praise and awards, as well as the Williams Hall of Fame collection on the various consoles and handhelds and guess what? They're pure pinball simulations. So you see, us pure pinball fans aren't extinct or about to die anytime soon. We're still kicking so don't leave us out of the loop.

    I just hope the developers at Zen realize there's still people out there who want to experience pure pinball sims without all the flashy special effects, and to all of you who say "Just play a real pinball machine,' do you know how bloody rare these things are nowadays? Arcades are so few now and we no longer have the privilege to even play a real machine, let alone see one.
    Last edited by Freelance; 10-23-2010 at 03:05 PM.

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    I prefer the physics and mechanics to be as real as possible for the most part, but I really don't mind a few gimmicks here and there. It's not like I could ever be under the illusion that I was actually playing a real machine, so the special effects don't bother me.

    Things affecting the physics like shaking tables and floating balls are a different story though. The fun factor depends on the traditional pinball feel which is determined by how real the ball behaves. Don't mess with this, there's nothing worse in a pinball game than unnatural behaviour of the ball, because the whole gameplay revolves around this.

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    I don't agree. In opinion Zen's design is perfect as it is now. It's not like the physic of the tables is affected all the time. Things like floating ball or shaking table are only special effects that make each table unique and fun.

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    Imagine:
    You are playing MARS as a real pinball. You got a multiball and the balls are flying in the air. When the gravitation gets back to normal, 2 of the 3 balls gets stuck. You catch the remainig ball and you wait 5-10 seconds. The 2 balls were stuck, but suddenly they disappear and the launcher launches the same balls back to play! You lose 2 balls and the normal game will continue. You shoot the ball into the ramp and a Space Shuttle will fly inside the cabinet! Then You hit the upkicker and the flying satellite will appear! You shoot the upkicker again and the satellite starts scanning the playfield!

    I don't say, that MARS is a worse pinball machine, I say that Some of us hope, that the tables are as realistic as they can. I know, that the SF2 and V12 tables are more realistic than the other tables.
    But V12 has an outlane problems and SF2... well I bored with it.
    Like swprozee1 said, that It is up to Zen what they choose to release.

    Skippycue: In the end, it's impossible to make everyone happy (and I'm sure ZEN knows this), so to stay profitable they have to appeal to the masses... and that's not the small group of pinball purists. I was never really into pinball when I was younger, I would just hit the ball randomly hoping to make cool things happen. It wasn't until I started playing ZEN that I discovered the intricacies of a well designed pinball table. I think they've done a great job and there ARE some realistic tables, so they really are trying to make everyone happy... let's not forget that!
    I agree with you skippycue!

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    Just to reiterate my comment in another thread, the licensing we are doing is for table themes, not for real pinball machines.

    However, we are mindful that many players prefer completely realistic tables and will be putting out this type of DLC in the future, too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Solitude View Post
    Just to reiterate my comment in another thread, the licensing we are doing is for table themes, not for real pinball machines.

    However, we are mindful that many players prefer completely realistic tables and will be putting out this type of DLC in the future, too.
    Thanks Solitude. I thought that you are going to release real machines...
    I'm hoping that in the future, you will release a western themed table.
    (And realistic too)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Solitude View Post
    Just to reiterate my comment in another thread, the licensing we are doing is for table themes, not for real pinball machines.

    However, we are mindful that many players prefer completely realistic tables and will be putting out this type of DLC in the future, too.
    Glad to hear this, Solitude. I was beginning to worry that given recent releases, the balance was shifting in favour of unrealistic tables.

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    Just wanted to point out that compared to ZEN, most people think the Pinball Hall of Fame Williams Collection is a joke... I don't think you can compare the two, they are not in the same league!

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    Good thread,

    I tend to agree with Boris. However I think there is a place for some more of the freaky ideas. I read a post somewhere about the idea of an underwater table...perhaps whoever put the love into V12 and Tesla could play about with some Jules Vern type ideas...(also he's been dead ages so you won't need to bother with any licence

    Anyway, I digress. I'm happy to see the Zen person jump in with the assurance of 'Pure' pinball DLC in the future. I will be buying any electro-mechanical pinball sim I see in a heartbeat.

  49. #49

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    Quote Originally Posted by skippycue View Post
    Just wanted to point out that compared to ZEN, most people think the Pinball Hall of Fame Williams Collection is a joke... I don't think you can compare the two, they are not in the same league!
    Huh? Care to provide any evidence to back that statement up? Williams HOF is FAR from a joke. In fact, its a better pinball sim than Zen. They are very much "in the same league" except that WPHOF is actually presenting digital versions of real tables - some of the best ones ever. The ball physics and the overall feel of the various tables in WPHOF is superb and the visual presentation of those tables is also excellent. I like ZP ok, but often I find it both annoying and a bit boring (in spite of all the whiz bang special fx) - many of the tables feel too claustrophic to me and the amped up ball speed makes it hard to even follow whats going on.

    Anyone who loves pinball would be well-advised to find a copy of The Williams game becuase it is far from a "joke."

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    Old but just found this (very interesting) thread.

    "The ball physics and the overall feel of the various tables in WPHOF is superb and the visual presentation of those tables is also excellent."

    OK, I love WPHOF, but...

    1) Back some years, the physics of WPHOF stacked up favourably against the early Zen and PBFX tables. But, Zen's work has improved considerably since then, and IMO has surpassed WPHOF.

    An example: the physics of WPHOF's Medieval Madness bears little relation to the real thing. The ball is incredibly "floaty", using an unearthly gravity constant. Compare it to any YouTube video of a real MM; even with shallow pitched tables, the PHOF version's ball mechanics don't match up. With a fast machine (e.g. a tournament game) the difference is stark.

    Zen appear to have spent more time on their materials properties in their latest games, and have reduced some (but not all!) of the insubstantial "ping pong" feel to the ball mechanics. (Improved audio has helped in this regard. Half of what makes a pinball feel real is sound!)

    2) By Zen's current standards, the visual presentation of WPHOF looks dated. The camera angles are very good (and IMO, superior to Zen's defaults) but the textures are often low resolution, and the filtering is sub-standard. (Objects and textures at a distance are reduced to blurry blobs.) The lighting models and overall use of shaders don't even come close, with Zen the clear winner. I can only imagine how good Zen versions of classic tables could look. (Not holding my breath though, for obvious reasons.)

    And then there's WPHOF's earlier console heritage, showing through with the low-poly, badly textured, badly lit "arcade" environment/UI, loading screens and awkward navigation.

    BUT! WPHOF does have great little "How To" animated tutorials, which (at the risk of harping on about it) is a big win.

    It will be interesting to see if Gottlieb PHOF for PSN/XBLA will bring anything new to the party, technology wise. (Alas, given the lack of updates for PHOF, or even public comment by the developers, I wouldn't bank on it.)
    Last edited by Womble; 02-22-2011 at 08:09 AM.

  51. #51

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    Yes well, its a little hard to compare the behaviour of Zen's tables to their real world counterparts since...you know, there aren't any real world counterparts. But I'm not suggesting PHOF is perfect. I'm just countering the notion that PHOF is a "joke" of any sort. It remains a very good pinball game...

    And while Zen's tables look fantastic, I still think PBHOF is a great looking pinball sim and quite accurately captures the original tables. Although some are better than others - I think Gorgar and Firepower (which I played quite a bit back in the day) look uncanny...
    Last edited by Zevious Zoquis; 03-05-2011 at 02:55 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kimkom View Post
    I would say that pinball ITSELF is a good game. Therefore, if you can accurately simulate pinball in EVERY regard possible on a video game platform, you'll have yourself the foundations for not just a good game but a GREAT game. For me, that should be the primary focus when taking ZP and PFX forward.

    Yes, some pinball tables are better than others but real pinball remains a good game WITHOUT the enhancements that video games can bring.
    I don't think this is enough, not in the modern gaming marketplace.

    Yes, there are pinball purists who will give Zen points for producing a super-accurate version of, say, the 1979 version of Star Trek. Or some random '60s EM table. But I think such a table would die a very quick commercial death on PSN and XBL.

    e.g. Jive Time is (probably) quite well emulated and re-created in Williams PHOF. But that doesn't mean I want to play it more than once or twice. There's too many products out there (pinball or otherwise) competing for my time to warrant an investment of my time on an old table just because it's pinball.

    I think Zen is straddling the divide of old and new reasonably well. I completely agree with them that pinball lovers are a strong driving force towards the promotion of their products. But, fans/traditionalists/purists alone are not enough to make a PC/Console-based pinball platform successful. For that, Zen has to bring modern video-game level action and sensibilities to the (umm) table.

    That's not to say that purism and broad appeal must be mixed in to one product. Solitude has implied as much. It may well be that we will continue to see more FX-heavy tables like Mars or Marvel, but also "purer" simulations of tables (i.e. ones without flying space ships, floating balls, or balls on fire). That would seem to satisfy the needs of fans and casuals alike, IMO.

    Solitude, feel free to comment on Zen's plans at length, and in fine detail. ;-)

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    I like Jive Time and think its a nice inclusion in PBHOF. I mean part of PBHOF's appeal is the look back at history and those early tables are part of that history. But I think the table itself is a fun challenge - extremely tough and bare-bones...for me theres a certain appeal to a table like JT or Firepower.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Womble View Post

    e.g. Jive Time is (probably) quite well emulated and re-created in Williams PHOF. But that doesn't mean I want to play it more than once or twice. There's too many products out there (pinball or otherwise) competing for my time to warrant an investment of my time on an old table just because it's pinball.

    ;-)
    I totally agree with your view on PHOF, but Jive Time is the joke here...the ball flies around like crazy and it's difficult just to cradle it with a flipper bat. Then again, in MM everything goes slo-mo. TOTAN is incredibly easy, and Funhouse has a multiball glitch, where you can achieve really high scores if you have the patience.

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    I want vintage tables.

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    I strongly disagree with the TS, I like the "unrealistic" touch that Zen brings, as long as it's done in a playful and not over the top way and this is where I think gets it right. The spaceship in Mars is a nice example, the first time I experienced it I was really taken away. Things that happen in the marvel tables that could not happen on a real table makes me smile, as long as you are within some sort of boundaries when you add these things it's positive for me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by swprozee1 View Post
    Keep up the effects, that is what we want.
    Actually, if Zen continues to put out 'super-effects' tables where the actual pinball play keeps getting minimized, they'll have lost my money, which will go to the Williams or Stern collections instead.

    I've got super-hero fighting games, tomb-raider games, alien attack games, and the like. Why is it so odd to you that if I want to play some pinball, that I want to simply play pinball?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaynz View Post
    Actually, if Zen continues to put out 'super-effects' tables where the actual pinball play keeps getting minimized, they'll have lost my money, which will go to the Williams or Stern collections instead?
    Well, it's worth getting the Williams PHOF collection, and the Gottlieb collection (if possible) anyway.

    But I can't see any of these "super-effects tables" cutting down on the actual pinball you're playing. Yeah, there are a couple of nuisance modes (e.g. Iron Man missions) but then many Williams games had extended video modes as well.

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    It all comes down to personal preference. I don't think we should be crucifying someone because their opinion is different to yours. On Pinball FX on the 360, there is a bigger variety of tables, with many of them being less gimmicky. As the selection on the PS3 is lower, there will be less 'realish' tables to choose from.

    For those who have access to a 360, give the demo a shot of pinball FX, and you might be pleasantly surprised

    For what its worth (not much :P), I like some of the tables on the PS3 alot (El Dorado, Shaman & Tesla), but cannot get over the dual shock controller, and it's cramp inducing thumbstick layout.

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    Cool wow

    ..I never use thumbsticks for pinball, sounds like quite the controller setup.

    I am quite curious what Boris and others think of the whole dot matrix display gameplay with pinball, thats a sorta special effect to the max. They certainly were not always part of pinball.......

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    Quote Originally Posted by jockhotty View Post
    ..I never use thumbsticks for pinball, sounds like quite the controller setup.
    haha, you got me there mate... I got my arguments mixed up for 'why I prefer the tables on Pinball FX' with 'why I don't play the PS3'

    I really should get that controller adapter, so I can use the 360 controller on the PS3, and go back to the rarely played PS3 game library.

  62. #62

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris Lozac View Post
    lol, "boring pinball tables" It would be boring for you if there wasn't a space ship flying across the table? That's all i'm asking for.. I will play Wipeout if i wan't flying space ships. From a pinball game i'm expecting great physics (which it pretty much has), great table designs (which it also has), but i'm not expecting flying things and robots shooting laser beams on the table... it kills the buzz.
    I'm old enough to relate.. When there was just pinball machines.. Zen pinball is geared more towards the arcade gamer getting into pinball, & not the hardcore or traditional pinball player. I can appreciate both.. The Williams collection is more realistic, with more accurate ball physics. The tables are nice replica's of the original machines. Far from boring. Zen pinball is more entertaining & dazzling. The ball physics are slightly on the fun side with their velocity, etc. Zen didn't intend to make a 100%, faithful, representation of pinball. Zen is a mix of both, & I like the extra bells & whistles, & over the top effects. I play more Zen then Williams, even though the Williams series is more correct.

  63. #63

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scotty Canuck View Post
    It all comes down to personal preference. I don't think we should be crucifying someone because their opinion is different to yours. On Pinball FX on the 360, there is a bigger variety of tables, with many of them being less gimmicky. As the selection on the PS3 is lower, there will be less 'realish' tables to choose from.
    See, my entire argument is based on "You've already GOT a bunch of SFX tables. Let's get some more Pinball tables to balance it out for a bit." I'm not saying that Zen shouldn't make tables like Mars (though I actually didn't like it), but instead give us some more conventional tables as well. A $10 pack of four 'classics-based' tables would be awesome for me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris Lozac View Post
    I agree that design is great, the only thing stopping me from byuing those tables are those unrealistic things, like stuff flying over the table, Laser beams, etc.. i couldn't be the only one that doesn't like that?
    I agree about the unrealistic tables. I must say though, Earth Defense and Mars are still my favorites despite their impossibliity in the real world, though I like all the tables I've played so far.

    I have the original four tables, as well as Earth Defense, SFII, Excalibur, and Mars.

    Out of these I'd say the most realistic (ala possible on a real machine) are:

    El Dorado
    V12
    Tesla
    Shaman
    SFII
    Excalibur

    Particularly of those, Excalibur and El Dorado have great design asthetic in my opinion, and are excellent tables.

    Aside from the glowy ball, ship, etc, Mars is mostly realistic (ok, glowing, spacship, robot spider, zero-grav...maybe not). Tesla is debatable with the upper right section, but I'd say it could probably be done with magnets.

    All said, these are great tables. If you're interested in more realism, you can turn off the arcade effects in the options, which removes a lot of the unrealistic stuff (ball sparking on tesla, glowy ball on ramps in mars, etc).

    I did avoid the paranormal, NGS2, and the newest table due to the lack of realsim, IMO. They were just a bit too unrealistic for me, I still like to believe it'd be mostly possible in real life, and those tables were just too much for me to stretch my suspension of disbelief.
    Last edited by tomkatt; 06-24-2011 at 02:07 AM.

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