When I hear of the annual Consumer Electronics Show, I think of the line from TRON: “If you’ve seen one consumer electronics show, you’ve seen them all”. I am sure that they can be fun or fascinating if you know what to look for but it always helps when something new or unexpected makes an appearance at any trade show, say something like pinball. There usually isn’t a large arcade entertainment presence to be found at the show anymore but this year there is one exception to that, where Stern Pinball had a booth for the first time. Stern has been pretty good at keeping a strong trade show presence going, as in addition to various pinball-only type events and amusement industry shows they also have been appearing at places like Comic Con and now CES 2013.
Interestingly enough they did not take their standard commercial pins but their new home design which removes the DMD display in favor of the older kinds of red LED number displays, like you saw with pins from the 80s. This was introduced not long ago with Transformers and this also happens to be the first time I have seen this model in regards to Avengers, so I guess this will be their way of targeting the home market now for those looking to get pinball on a smaller budget. Here is a glimpse of their CES 2013 booth, as seen on their Facebook page:
In regards to the commercial market, they released this video about the making of Avengers pinball just two days ago, check it out:
I’m curious as to how big the market is for stripped down home pins @$2,500 each?
Obviously someone’s buying them. I guess rich people that aren’t necessarily pinheads, that want a pinball for themselves, or to give to their kids for Christmas, but don’t want to drop $5,000 on a pin.
But it’s great to see Stern expanding, let alone into home territory. Ten years ago pinball was all but dead, now there’s three new manufacturers, and apparently more on the way.