UPDATE: More details + pictures released! The game is actually in production now.
Two big announcements today for some major media franchises. First Duck Dynasty comes to the video arcade game market and now Star Trek returns to pinball. I heard rumors about this before Stern announced Metallica pinball but it must have been pushed back until now.
The video below contains the announcement and the first look at the playfield, which interestingly enough seems to be more hand-drawn than the typical CG/Photoshop mixture that is generally used. Elements from the two Star Trek reboot movies that began with Star Trek in 2009 and followed up with Star Trek Into Darkness (which was released as digital only a short time ago and is available now on Blu-Ray/DVD) are found in the game – on the playfield one sees a model of the USS Vengeance and the new Enterprise; there is no Narada ship shown (from the first movie) but that could be present in the Premium or Limited edition models. Either way that would be offered in the software portion of it. They are still sticking with the LED-based monochromatic displays part of the rumor I had originally heard suggested otherwise but I am guessing at this point that any talk of an LCD monitor being used will remain rumor for the time being. They have changed the backbox though, particularly the speaker grills. At the end of the video we also see that Steve Ritchie is the main designer of this game; he was responsible for the Star Trek: The Next Generation pinball machine by Williams, which is still among some of the highest rated pinball machines out there (currently ranked #2 at ipdb.org).
Being a Trekkie myself (or Trekker, depends on who you ask I guess) I am interested in seeing more. It looks like there will be 3 different models available if I judge the video correctly; the Pro model and then the beefed up limited edition models. I imagine the pricing will be similar to Metallica but we will have to wait for a little bit to find out the differences between those. Generally speaking, I like to tell people that the limited edition units have consistently been a better/more fun game to play than the Pro models as they give you more to do for the extra couple thousand you have to spend on those units. This is not the first time Star Trek and pinball have enjoyed each others company, the original series and Next Generation both had some very popular pinball treatments so Stern has some history to try and live up to there. But with Mr. Ritchie on the case I am sure that will alleviate any fears pinball fans might have about the game.