IAAPA 2023: Pinball (Stern, Jersey Jack, American, Chicago Gaming)

arcadehero November 23, 2023 0
IAAPA 2023: Pinball (Stern, Jersey Jack, American, Chicago Gaming)

It’s been a week since I left IAAPA 2023 and almost a week since the show closed but don’t worry, I have plenty to cover from the event. It just takes a bit to get through it all with the video side. For this post, I’m taking a look at pinball – which has become more collector focused, but is still a viable product for operators. Let’s see what Stern, Jersey Jack, American, and Chicago Gaming had on hand for the latter.

As a note, it’s unheard of for “boutique pinball” companies like Spooky to come to a show like this. That isn’t a surprise, given that those companies target collectors before operators. One of these days I’ll have to attend one of these collector-focused shows to check out some of those pins.

Anyways, here’s the IAAPA line-up. I’m going to include Retro Arcade Remakes here as they do have a pinball-adjacent game in Ice Cold Beer – and one additional video game.

Stern Pinball

Located next to Betson/Raw Thrills, Stern’s booth was lined with their latest games – excepting the Stranger Things reprint that they recently announced, and Godzilla that they’ve still been promoting. That said, they had a few Venoms, Jurassic Park, Deadpool, Foo Fighters, James Bond 007, Avengers Infinity Quest, and a Guardians of the Galaxy.

For a little more focus on Venom, plus some gameplay from Josh Sharpe, check this out:

Jersey Jack Pinball

Over by LAI Games’ booth (which was about a show block north of Stern above) you found Jersey Jack, where they were also highlighting their latest releases and a couple of older titles: Elton John, The Godfather, Toy Story 4, and Guns ‘N Roses:

The Godfather was released earlier this year but I had not had the pleasure of coming across one until now.

American Pinball

American was located along the south east wall in a small booth, right across from Apple Industries (photo booths). While the had the smallest booth of the bunch, they were promoting Galactic Tank Force along with Legends of Valhalla. From what their sales guy said, Valhalla won’t be around for much longer but as a company they are looking at focusing on bringing prices down. Given where I’ve seen pinball performance, that is welcome news. All of these super expensive pins are all non-starters for me…no matter how feature packed or nice that they look.

Chicago Gaming

Chicago Gaming was there with the highly anticipated Pulp Fiction, which I finally got the chance to play. It’s interesting in that it’s designed like an 80s pin, but feels more modern (high quality voice work, several sculpted toys). I’m curious to see how it earns but I also imagine it will be a hot item among collectors. I was told that this should begin shipping any time, but there was no concrete date shared.

Retro Arcade Remakes

This company was absent from Amusement Expo but back at IAAPA with production units for Ice Cold Beer. The models look fantastic in person and they have playfields ready for the Zeke’s Peak remake. They also had a new near-production models for their Atari cocktail cabinet. The first game it will feature is Warlords but they once again spoke about a remake of Food Fight that would support 4-players simultaneously. There’s no release date on that yet but judging by the look of the cabs, I’d guess sometime next year.

That covers it for pinball – stay tuned for more news and games that debuted at the show.

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