Date: 8th January, 2019

Stern Pinball today revealed their latest title and their first of 2019, the much-anticipated John Borg design, The Munsters.

The Munsters, from Stern Pinball
The Munsters, from Stern Pinball

Based on the mid-’60s TV series of the same name, The Munsters has been known about for many months, with the only doubt being about the timing of the release – whether it would debut in 2018 before The Beatles: Beatlemania Pinball, or after it.  As it transpired, The Beatles was seen as the better prospect for holiday sales and took precedence.

The Munsters is being debuted at the CES 2019 consumer electronics show in Las Vegas where Stern Pinball have a large presence and are presenting this latest release alongside their other recent title The Beatles on their stand.

As usual, the game arrives in three variants – Pro, Premium and a 500-machine Limited Edition.  However, unlike the last few Stern releases, there are significant playfield differences between the Pro and the upper two models.

Starting with the Pro, the cabinet, backbox and translite all feature very colourful depictions of the Munster family, even though the TV series on which this is based was shot in black-and-white.

The Pro model
The Pro model

That black-and-white nature of the original TV series is mirrored in the Premium model which is largely monochromatic both on the exterior and interior.

The Premium model
The Premium model

It was thought for a while that the Limited Edition model would get the monochrome treatment, but it’s back to full colour for the LE, albeit with a rather more classy coffin-style art package along with gold backbox trim and legs.

The Limited Edition model
The Limited Edition model

 

Let’s start our look at the playfield with the Pro model before seeing what the upper models add to the mix.

The model plaque for the Pro
The model plaque for the Pro
The Pro playfield
The Pro playfield

So this is a two-flipper, two-ramp, six-ball game, with a central Herman Munster bash toy featuring a magnet in front, all-metal ramps, Grandpa’s Laboratory scoop, two Eddie orbit lanes, a side Dragway kicker lane, two long standup targets on the left and right, two inlanes on the left side, and an illuminated ‘Zap’ button on the lock bar.

The pro model's two flippers, feature grid and central playfield area
The pro model’s two flippers, feature grid and central playfield area
The two inlanes and one outlane on the left
The two inlanes and one outlane on the left
The Dragula taraget and drag race lane behind
The Dragula target and dragway lane behind
The left Eddie orbit lane
The left Eddie orbit lane
The left Eddie orbit lane
The left Eddie orbit lane
The left ramp and Herman bash toy
The left ramp and Herman bash toy

The left ramp hides Spot, who pops up to block shots.

The left ramp has a trap door at the entrance
The left ramp has a trap door at the entrance
Here's Spot
Here’s Spot
The top rollover lanes and pop bumpers
The top rollover lanes and pop bumpers – there is an up-post to stop the ball and send it into the bumpers
Grandpa's Laboratory scoop and the Kitty standup target lane to the left
Grandpa’s Laboratory scoop and the Kitty standup target lane to the left
The right Marilyn ramp
The right Marilyn ramp with standup targets either side of the entrance
The right Eddie orbit lane
The right Eddie orbit lane
The right Lily target
The right Lily target
The right inlane and outlane
The right inlane and outlane

There are a couple of not-so-hidden characters in Christopher Franchi’s artwork.

This looks like game designer John Borg
This looks like game designer John Borg
And this has more than a passing resemblance to be lead programmer Dwight Sullivan
And this has more than a passing resemblance to be lead programmer Dwight Sullivan
The centre of the playfield
The centre of the playfield

The Pro’s playfield has a rather sparse central area, and that’s because the Premium and Limited Edition models add a lower playfield below a Persepx window which occupies this section.

Let’s look at the LE version first of the game before turning to the Premium.

The Limited Edition's numbered plaque
The Limited Edition’s numbered plaque
The LE features an uprated sound system with Kenwood speakers
The LE features an uprated sound system with Kenwood speakers
The Limited Edition playfield
The Limited Edition playfield

The game designer’s signature is on the bottom apron these days, rather than under the playfield’s clearcoat.

The signed apron
The signed apron

So, let’s look at that lower playfield.

The lower playfield in the LE model
The lower playfield in the LE model

This Grandpa’s Laboratory mini-playfield uses a smaller diameter ball and smaller flippers to match, much like the Stewie Pinball playfield on Family Guy. The flippers have their own dedicated buttons on the cabinet sides, allowing the upper and lower playfields to be flipper independently.

There are five shots – two orbits, a left upkicker which feeds a wireform, a right clear plastic ramp, and a central The Machine target.  There are no slingshots but there is a two-digit LED counter to show the time remaining.  There are two balls installed beneath the Perspex, giving Grandpa’s Laboratory the unusual ability to play multiball modes.

The lower playfield is the main addition to the Limited Edition and Premium models.  The LE also includes inner-cabinet art.

Interior cabinet artwork
Interior cabinet artwork
The right-side inner artwork
The right-side inner artwork

The LE and Premium also gain illuminated signs on the left and right ramps.

The LE's upper orbit, top rollovers and pop bumpers
The LE’s upper orbit, top rollovers and pop bumpers
The Limited Edition cabinet art
The Limited Edition cabinet art

The Limited Edition model also comes with a shaker motor, anti-reflection glass, a mirrored backglass and laser-cut spider web metal cabinet armour.

The Premium model sports the Centaur-like black-and-white art package with spot colour accents on the cabinet, backbox and playfield.

The Premium cabinet art
The Premium cabinet art
The monochrome Premium playfield
The monochrome Premium playfield

Although the artwork is black-and-white, all the inserts are the same colour as the Limited Edition model.

Coloured inserts
Coloured inserts
The left Dragula target bank decal is also full colour
The left Dragula target bank decal is also full colour
The Dragway lane
The Dragway lane
Rather less colourful ramp sign artwork on the Premium
Rather less colourful ramp sign artwork on the Premium
The upper part of the Premium playfield
The upper part of the Premium playfield
The pop bumpers
The pop bumpers
The lower-left playfield area
The lower-left playfield area
The lower-right
The lower-right
The whole Premium playfield
The whole Premium playfield

There have been several videos posted showing gameplay at the CES show, but Jack Danger was there for the launch, so it’s probably best to check out his Dead Flip stream to catch up on how the game plays.

Jack Danger's Dead Flip stream of The Munsters
Jack Danger’s Dead Flip stream of The Munsters

Here’s a list of all the features and the differences between the models.

The Munsters' feature matrix
The Munsters’ feature matrix

We’ll be back with much more on Stern Pinball’s The Munsters, but here’s how the company announced its latest arrival, along with the recommended prices for the three models.

Stern Pinball Announces New Munsters Pinball Machines

CHICAGO, IL – January 8, 2019 – Stern Pinball, Inc., a global lifestyle brand based on the iconic and outrageously fun modern American game of pinball, proudly announced today the availability of a new line of pinball machines celebrating the iconic American TV hit sitcom, The Munsters.

Players will be transported to 1313 Mockingbird Lane, joining the entire Munsters family on this haunted pinball adventure. Featuring Herman, Raven, Lily, Spot and Grandpa, players will work their way towards Munster Madness in this frightfully funny and action-packed pinball world under glass. The Munsters pinball machines will be available in Pro, Premium, and Limited Edition models.

The Munsters are iconic and timeless, and it was time to create a pinball experience around this freaky-fun family. With beautiful artwork inspired by the supernatural family, this theme is perfect for a pinball machine,” said Gary Stern, Chairman and CEO of Stern Pinball, Inc.

Stern’s The Munsters Pro, Premium, and Limited Edition models feature stunning and distinctive hand-drawn art. Each game features a custom sculpted Herman bash toy with magnetized ball catch, highlighting Herman multiball. In addition, all models include a pop-up Spot bash toy hidden under the left ramp, a custom sculpted Drag-U-La toy car featured near a left shooter lane kicker, as well as a metal turn-around, flip-up ramp.

The Premium and Limited Edition models both feature Grandpa’s laboratory, a lower playfield that features 2 mini flippers, 2 ramps, a Grandpa bash target, a digital number display, and a multiball feature. The Premium model features an exclusive black and white custom art package in homage to classic black and white TV.

The Limited Edition – only 500 units globally – includes additional unique features such as an exclusive mirrored backglass, anti-reflection pinball glass, shaker motor, exclusive custom art blades, a custom autographed bottom arch, a sequentially numbered plaque, and exclusive custom casket-themed cabinet artwork.

Complementing the immersive theme and exciting gameplay experience, Stern Pinball’s powerful SPIKETM electronics hardware system enables high-definition graphics and innovative animations on the high-definition video display. SPIKETM reduces system complexity and energy usage resulting in enhanced reliability and simplified servicing. The state-of-the-art electronic system also powers a high-fidelity 3-channel audio system that is three times more powerful than audio systems of previous generations.

Pricing and Availability:

Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price:
MSRP for sales to USA end-users, before any VAT, GST, Sales Tax, Duties, or other taxes.

  • Pro Model: $US 5,999
  • Premium Model: $US 7,599
  • Limited Edition Model: $US 8,999

The Munsters pinball is available through authorized Stern Pinball distributors and dealers around the world.

About Stern Pinball, Inc.

Stern Pinball, Inc. is a global lifestyle brand based on the iconic and outrageously fun modern American game of pinball. Headquartered minutes from Chicago’s O’Hare  International Airport in the heart of North America, the company creates, designs, engineers, manufactures, markets, and distributes a full line of technologically advanced terrestrial and digital pinball games, parts, accessories, and merchandise. Stern Pinball serves digital, consumer, commercial, and corporate markets around the globe.

Recent Stern Pinball titles include The Beatles, Deadpool, Iron Maiden, Guardians of the Galaxy, Star Wars, Aerosmith, Ghostbusters, KISS, Metallica, Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, Star Trek, AC/DC, Batman, and Spider-Man. A broad range of players enjoy Stern Pinball’s games from professional pinball players who compete in high-stakes international competitions around the globe to novice players who are discovering the allure of the silver ball for the first time. To join the fun and learn more, please visit www.sternpinball.com.

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All trademarks and product names are the property of their respective companies.

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4 Comments

  1. Ben

    January 9, 2019 at 3:01 am

    Great coverage as usual. Thanks!

    Reply

    • Pinball News

      January 9, 2019 at 4:21 pm

      Thanks Ben. Another late night at the office getting this article out. 🙂

      Reply

  2. Night Mutilator

    January 12, 2019 at 7:10 pm

    This game looks like a spooky, scary, freaky, fun-filled winner! Thanks for the in-depth look!

    Reply

  3. Corey

    January 13, 2019 at 8:31 pm

    I’m curious how popular the premium will be. I can’t decide what I think about the black and white scheme.

    Reply

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