Date: 17th - 19th January, 2017 Location: ExCel London, Western Gateway, Royal Victoria Dock, London, UK The first major trade show of the year is traditionally held in London and now goes by the name EAG International. It is held at the ExCel London Exhibition Centre which is in the Docklands area of East London. The ExCel London Exhibition Centre The exhibition last three days – Tuesday to Thursday – with a welcome party held on the Wednesday evening. We visited for just the first day, getting there around 10:30am at which point hall N2 was still relatively quiet. The empty aisles at the show on Tuesday morning Things certainly got busier as the day wore on, but the show did seem noticeably quieter than previous years. That may have changed on the second and third days, and the number of exhibitors seemed consistent with last year. The EAG International 2017 show Despite the plethora of amusement machines on display, we were at EAG International for the pinballs, and the show was a good opportunity to play the latest titles. We’ll start at the Electrocoin stand where Stern Pinball – represented by Gary Stern and Dave Peterson – were showing three machines. The Electrocoin stand The Stern Pinball distributor had three pinballs The newest of the three was Aerosmith which was having its European premiere at the show. Stern Pinball’s Aerosmith Pro model We have several high-resolution pictures of the game below, plus we have a five minute video of the game being played, showing you the shots, the basic rules and the new LCD animations. The Aerosmith translite The display and speaker panel The opening song selection screen The back of the playfield The lower part of the playfield The long right ramp Visitors from across Europe were enjoying the games Next door to Aerosmith was a Premium Batman 66. From talking to players, they unanimously preferred the Aerosmith to the Batman 66, with the latter feeling more like a Pro-level game than a Premium model. Batman 66 Premium The Batman 66 did have a number of nice touches to it though, especially in the display animations. If a player gets a high score, the information is shown as a newspaper front page. Player two gets a high score Once the name is entered The match sequence is then shown on the Bat Computer, using old-style Nixie tubes for the digits. The match sequence Batman seems to be an enduring theme, with the Caped Crusader popping up in all kinds of places at the show, including on slot machines. Batman slot machines The third machine was a Ghostbusters Pro. Ghostbusters Pro Before we move on though, Gary Stern took time out to show us what’s inside the new backbox of Stern Pinball’s games. We see the new Spike 2 board, the LCD panel design, the backbox lighting and much more. At the front of the hall was the Heighway Pinball stand, where they had two Alien games and three Full Throttle machines. Full Throttles on the Heighway Pinball stand The two Alien games The Alien machines were not playable while we were there, although they could be played later on the second day and then on the third day too. However, we did take some pictures of the playfield. The Xenomorph head and third monitor The pop bumpers area The mid-left area The upper part of the playfield The central part of the playfield The lower part of the playfield The whole playfield Heighway and Stern were the only companies exhibiting real full-size pinball machines. As usual though, there were several pinball-like games on display at vendor stands around the hall. Here’s our round-up of them. Mini-pinball games Mini-pinball games Mini-pinball games Mini-pinball games Then there were the larger games with flipper bats. UFO Ice Hockey, with flippers Yours for a just £1,995 plus tax This Rockin’ and Rollin’s game also had large flipper bats The Hazel Electronics stand next to Heighway Pinball also had a pinball reference, along with a few couple of ideas which might be useful on a pinball. Get yourself a pinball sign for the game room Although intended for slot machines, this USB charger would be good on a pinball too These LED buttons could be good for pinballs with launch buttons The overall theme of the show seemed to be ‘bigger is better’ – an attempt to provide the kind of large-scale entertainment which game players can’t easily enjoy at home. Giant Galaga and Space Invaders Big screens turned up everywhere, even on photo booths Big multi-player driving games are always popular here The classic Daytona racer is back with an updated version The prize for the biggest product goes to this inflatable go-kart track Even the ice creams were oversize Finally, what are the chances of two guys wearing the same Pac-Man suits at the same show on the same day at the same stand? Pac-Men That concludes our look at the EAG International show for 2017, but you can take a detailed look around for yourself with our exclusive Pinball News Twenty-Three Minute Tour video of the show.