(Thanks to IcePagoda for the tip!)
Stern’s latest pinball game, and first title for 2011 is Rolling Stones Pinball. Stern had recently ran some teaser ads for the game in different trade magazines but this is the first time the game has been seen publicly at a pinball event in Germany. It’s certainly a game that will appeal to Rolling Stones fans but I really don’t get why this license right now – the band hasn’t released any new material in five years and there is nothing coming along right now that I can find by doing an online search. I suppose the counter-argument would be that a band like this is “timeless” and you don’t need a new album to come along to justify a pinball release, much like Elvis Pinball a few years ago(there were arguments like that regarding the choice of Wizard of Oz for the upcoming pinball machine by Jersey Jack Pinball). I’ll save any counter-counter-arguments for that until I get a chance to actually play it as there have been instances of a license coming out of nowhere and it doing well, such as with Twilight Zone pinball.
Pinballnews.com has several pictures and plenty of details on the game. From Stern’s Facebook page, they have been posting links to many Rolling Stones songs which in one post they say “more songs from the game to come.” It does have a “toy” that moves across the playfield that the player hits for notes – a flat plastic cut out of Mick Jagger – which the target itself is a cool idea, similar to what they did recently with Big Buck Hunter Pro Pinball. But at least BBH has a sturdier 3D toy to hit. I wonder if this is a prototype filler toy though as honestly I could see the pinball smacking that target too hard in the wrong place and snapping it – I’ve seen pinballs do some crazy things in the machines I own, such as hitting the top glass quite hard. Pinballnews also points out some typographical errors on the playfield artwork such as with the Australian and US flags (Really? How do you get that wrong?). No word yet on whether a limited edition machine will be produced at some point with some actual 3D models of the band members instead of cut-outs.
Rolling Stones pinball will be at the EAG show in London next week where we can expect more pictures and video of the game in action.