STERN OF THE UNION ADDRESS – OCTOBER 2020
The Stern of the Union Address will be presented on the first Tuesday of every month (holiday and vacation excepted). Without further ado my fellow pinheads:
Avengers: Infinity Quest:
Missed out on any of the live stream events of Avengers: Infinity Quest? Not to worry, check out replays of the Dead Flip reveal stream with the entire game team on the Premium/LE model here, the official reveal stream of the Pro model on the official Marvel Twitch channel here, and a deep dive with lead game engineer Harrison Drake on the MarcoTV stream here!
Stern Insider Pinball Podcast – The Raymond Files:
Available to All-Access Insiders, listen to several episodes of the Raymond Files! Software Engineer and current #1 ranked pinball player in the world, Raymond Davidson, dives deep into the rules behind Avengers: Infinity Quest. These episodes explore several topics such as SUPER MODES, THE GRID, THOR AND IRON MAN MULTIBALLS, and GEM QUESTS on these bonus episodes of the Stern Insider Pinball Podcast!
All episodes can be found here after logging into your Insider account –https://sternpinball.com/account/
Avengers: Infinity Quest Behind the Scenes:
Available to All-Access Insiders, take a look at some development pictures and videos of Avengers: Infinity Quest here!
Avengers: Infinity Quest Rulesheet:
Will you have what it takes to save the universe? Check out the official Avengers: Infinity Quest rulesheet here to learn how to battle Thanos and defeat the Black Order!
TMNT Stern Heads-Up Pinball Invitational:
Missed it live? Watch a replay of the inaugural Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Stern Heads-Up Pinball Invitational. This action-packed competition took place solely on the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (TMNT) pinball machines as players raced against the clock and each other in objective-based challenges with the ultimate winner bringing home a brand new TMNT pinball machine! Who won? Watch now!
Heavy Metal Stream:
Black Knight Last Chance:
Featuring a custom sculpted, interactive, and multi-functional Black Knight bash toy, players go to battle directly against the Black Knight while rocking to a legacy sound package composed and performed by Scott Ian of Anthrax with Brendon Small, adrenalizing the audio experience for players on their pinball quest. Includes custom speech by Ed Robertson of Barenaked Ladies.
For pricing, more information, or to find an authorized Stern dealer near you, visit – https://sternpinball.com/buy-a-game/!
Do you have a PlayStrongTM pinball story to share with the world? Send your inspirational message and pictures to Insider@sternpinball.com for a chance to be featured across Stern’s social media channels in addition to winning exclusive Stern swag and merchandise! Check out these incredible #PlayStrong stories featuring Aquaman himself, Jason Momoa, and Kevin Bacon!
Stranger Things Gameroom of the Month:
Congrats to Bradley Dietrich of Washington, IL for winning the Stranger Things Gameroom of the Month! Submit your best Stranger Things related gameroom pic as a photo comment on this Facebook post or share your Stranger Things experience with Insider@sternpinball.com for a chance to be featured across Stern’s social media channels in addition to winning exclusive Stern swag and merchandise!
Dead Flip Pinball Streaming:
Gameroom of the Month:
Congrats to James Ranieri of Jacksonville, Florida on being named the recipient of Gameroom of the Month! Do you have a special home gameroom you want to share with the world? Leave a photo comment on this Facebook post and you may be our next winner! Not on social media? Not a problem! You can submit your incredible gameroom directly to Insider@sternpinball.com for your chance to win an exclusive Stern Swag Pack!
Pinball Rental Program:
Stay entertained by staying inside with the latest Stern Pinball machines! Even if your local bar or arcade is temporarily unavailable, there are plenty of opportunities to play the newest Stern games. Contact your local authorized Stern dealer for more information on renting your very own Stern pinball machine where available! https://sternpinball.com/find-a-dealer/
Stern Army Updates:
The Stern Army continues to grow with members spreading the gospel of pinball across the globe.
Congratulations to the following Stern Army members on their promotion from Specialist to Corporal:
- Corporal Neil Shelton of Colorado (Wonderland Brewing Company)
- Corporal Josh Noble of Missouri (Silverball)
- Corporal Brian Dye of West Virginia (Starport Arcade and Pub)
Congratulations to the following Stern Army members on their promotion from Private to Private First Class:
- Private First Class David Bushea of Ohio (The Basement)
- Private First Class Doug Lee of Michigan (Fricks Bar)
- Private First Class Eric Clay of Oregon (Quackers Last Stop)
- Private First Class Emily Lapatra of Oregon (Quarterworld Arcade)
- Private First Class Simon Wisbey of Australia (Amusement Worx Australia)
- Private First Class Sam Bean of Michigan (M-Brew)
For more information and to join the Stern Army, please reach out to SternArmy@sternpinball.com
Stern Insider All-Access:
Congrats to Ken from Kentucky, September’s Stern Insider All-Access winner! Ken received an Avengers: Infinity Quest playfield autographed by lead game designer, Keith Elwin, lead game programmer, Rick Naegele, lead mechanical engineer, Harrison Drake, and software engineer, Raymond Davidson! Do you have All-Access? To register and become a Stern Insider, please visit https://sternpinball.com/stern-insider/
IFPA Challenge Rankings (ICR):
In order to provide a competitive alternative in the current climate, the International Flipper Pinball Association (IFPA) announced the implementation of the IFPA Challenge Rankings (ICR) for all players leading to the inaugural IFPA Challenge Rankings Championship! For full details, standings and prize information, please click here to learn more and connect with other players around the world!
Status of Code:
We are continuously working to update and improve software for our machines. There are always code updates and bug fixes in various stages of development; we will release them upon update completion. Here are some of the latest updates and the status of things in the works. If you would like to join our mailing list for code updates, please send an e-mail to Code.Updates@sternpinball.com. If you do encounter any bugs please feel free to provide information to email@example.com
- TMNT – For all TMNT owners, please make sure you are up to date with the most current code version (v1.22.0).
- Avengers: Infinity Quest– For all AIQ owners, please make sure you are up to date with the most current code version (v0.91.0).
- Elvira – For all Elvira owners, please make sure you have updated your game to the most current code version (v0.99.0). Be on the lookout for a new code update soon.
- Stranger Things – For all Stranger Things owners, please make sure you have updated your game to the most current code version (v0.98.0). Be on the lookout for a new code update soon.
Virtual Chicago Pinball Expo:
Mark your calendars for the Virtual Pinball Expo! More details and schedule of events are still to come, but this year the show will be brought directly to you here! https://www.twitch.tv/pinballexpo
Check out our Stern Shop for all accessories, collectibles, clothing and more including this month’s featured items, our new fall merchandise line! Free domestic shipping on orders of $50 or more on all Stern merchandise and accessories.
All Stern Pinball accessories are also available to purchase from your local authorized dealer – https://sternpinball.com/find-a-dealer/
George Gomez on SPIKE:
Stern Pinball’s EVP and Chief Creative Officer, George Gomez, takes us on a behind the scenes look into the SPIKE™ electronics hardware system! Complementing the immersive themes and exciting gameplay experiences of Stern Pinball machines, Stern Pinball’s powerful SPIKE™ electronics hardware system enables high-definition graphics and innovative animations. SPIKE™ reduces system complexity and energy usage, resulting in enhanced reliability and simplified servicing.
Stern Spotlight – Mark Galvez:
“Hello! My name is Mark Galvez and I’m a Lead Animator at Stern Pinball. It’s my job is to make stuff look cool and pretty on the LCD.
My college years were spent at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. It was around this time when pinball piqued my interest. Between my afternoon classes, I would swing by the Illini Union, where they had a couple of machines, and play a game or two. Quite often I would end up losing the ball from looking up at the cool dot animations on the display (I still do). After graduating with a BA degree in painting, I attended the Illinois Institute of Art at Schaumburg and took courses in Computer Animation. After completing the program in 2000, I started working at Stern Pinball and have been here ever since.
My very first game was Sharkey’s Shootout. I was working alone for the most part. I used an MS-DOS program called Deluxe Paint using a palette consisting of 4 colors – 2 shades, black, and white – on a pixel resolution of 128×32. This was my primary program for 10+ years. Today, the animation department has a total of 7 full-time animators plus another 3 or so contractors. Our display is now a colorful LCD screen with a pixel resolution of 1360×768 – plenty of pixels to work with! Currently, we typically use 3D and video effects software and sometimes a couple more depending on what the project demands. In the last 5 years, I’ve been playing catch-up learning all the latest programs. While it has been certainly overwhelming, it does make things less stressful to have a very talented crew to help you out.
When I’m not working, I’m out in the factory playing pinball. I also enjoy playing video games on my PS4, watching sci-fi and animated movies, and listening to all kinds of music, especially 80s synth.
After several months of working in relative isolation, we’ve finished up a new game and were able to see it built. Seeing all the parts come together into one complete machine is so rewarding. That feeling never gets old. There are a lot of super creative and passionate people here at the company. Every project is unique and comes with its challenges. I’m grateful to work at Stern Pinball and I hope to see the company and the community thrive for another 20+ years.
Stay safe and healthy! Play pinball!”