Date: 7th March, 2023

After teasing their latest release last week, Jersey Jack Pinball today officially unveiled their new The Godfather 50th Anniversary game.

The Godfather has two variants; the top-end Collector’s Edition which is limited to 1,000 units and costs $15,000, and the Limited Edition which will have a maximum of 5,000 games produced at a price of $12,000.

Both feature a rich red and gold art package. The Collector’s Edition focuses on Don Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando), while the the Limited Edition is more about Michael Corleone (Al Pacino).

The Collector’s Edition includes an animated topper, laser-cut gold side rails, magnetic lion bust sculptures on the front legs and around the action button, a gold lock bar, burgundy legs and backbox hinges, and a horse’s head shooter rod. The cabinet artwork is printed on JJP’s Rad-Cals, their extra glossy decals.

The left side of the Collector's Edition
The left side of the Collector’s Edition
The right side of the Collector's Edition
The right side of the Collector’s Edition
The moulded housing for the action button on the Collector's Edition
The moulded housing for the action button on the Collector’s Edition

The topper on the Collector’s Edition features two animated thugs wielding tommy guns behind crates and barrels who rotate and fire, with an extra knocker solenoid in the backbox to synchronise with the gun shots.

The topper on the Collector's Edition
The topper on the Collector’s Edition

The car is a hand-painted sculpt with its own headlights illumination, while the whole topper includes more than thirty dedicated RGB LEDs.

The topper viewed from the left side
The topper viewed from the left side

As usual, the backbox contains a 27-inch HD monitor, which in the Collector’s Edition is framed in a gold mirror-effect backglass.

The gold-mirrored backglass from the Collector's Edition of The Godfather
The gold-mirrored backglass from the Collector’s Edition of The Godfather

The CE also includes exterior cabinet lighting using more than 260 RGB LEDs as well as interior cabinet art blades

The Limited Edition forsakes many of the cosmetic enhancements of the Collector’s Edition such as the topper, mouldings and gold trim, but offers a similar art package and colour scheme.

The left side of the Limited Edition model
The left side of the Limited Edition model
The right side of the Limited Edition model
The right side of the Limited Edition model

Like the CE model, the LE’s backglass image is by Christopher Franchi. However, the LE version doesn’t appear to be mirrored in the same way. Curiously, the CE edition has a copyright date of 2022, while the LE is dated 2023.

The backglass from the Limited Edition of The Godfather
The backglass from the Limited Edition of The Godfather

Both models include a shaker motor, Invisglass anti-reflective glass and an individually-numbered plaque, as well as standard JJP features such as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity as well as Scorbit integration and a player high-score camera built into the backbox.

So, what’s on the playfield? A huge amount.

As you would expect from game designer, Eric Meunier, there are masses of shot options from the three flippers, with some unusual new mechanisms and familiar devices used in unusual ways.

The Collector's Edition playfield
The Collector’s Edition playfield
Don Vito Corleone heads up the Collector's Edition
Don Vito Corleone heads up the Collector’s Edition

The game features three ramp entrances with the left-most ramp having a moving entrance to allow shots beneath. The ramps also appear to be shootable in either direction. As with many of the playfield features though, their operation will only become clear once we see some gameplay.

The player-controlled bad guy bash toy at the top of the playfield rotates and has an illuminated gun muzzle.

The animating, shooting bad guy bash toy
The animating, shooting bad guy bash toy

Beneath him is a spinning disc which cannons the ball into the bad guy’s pivot to score hits on him.

The ball is spun around by a player controlled disc
The ball is spun around by a player controlled disc

While the bad guy is “Big Mike” on the Collector’s Edition’s playfield, the character changes to “Furious Floyd” on the Limited Edition’s.

The Limited Edition's playfield
The Limited Edition’s playfield

Both editions have similar playfields and include RGB LED HotRails lighting strips down both sides and a Bad Guy ‘Health Meter’ at the bottom left. There are a few more differences though. The CE includes a sculpted model of the Statue of Liberty with an RGB illuminated torch at the top-left of the playfield, whereas the LE has a flat plastic instead.

The back of both models has a laser-cut skyline of New York in front of the back panel.

The back panel skyline
The back panel skyline
The Collector's Edition and Limited Edition playfields
The Collector’s Edition and Limited Edition playfields

There are several discrete areas of the playfield dedicated to specific rules features.

A key objective of the storyline is to take over each of the boroughs of New York. These are represented by an illuminated map which lights up as you progress.

The Ney York map
The Ney York map

There are assorted modes and features you can start along your journey, including four multiball modes (5 Families, Compound, Turf War, Sicily). These are shown with red inserts on a ‘rose’ progress window.

The rose progress wheel
The rose progress window

You can also shoot the game’s two optical spinners to build up a playfield multiplier to be deployed with the action button at the appropriate time to maximise scoring. Each level earns a new weapon and advances the multiplier from 1.5x all the way up to a maximum of 10x.

The playfield multiplier feature
The playfield multiplier feature

There are curious design features all over the playfield. There are multiple skill shot options, for instance. In fact, according to JJP, there are 2 regular (seen below), 10 super, 1 hidden skill shots in the game.

The Compound ball lock area with several skill shot options from the shooter lane
The Compound ball lock area with several skill shot options from the shooter lane

There is only room for one pop bumper, but it is designed like a fountain and positioned on the lower-mid right with a target in front, a lane around it including three 1-2-3 standup targets.

The fountain pop bumper
The fountain pop bumper

There is another lane behind which looks as though it can only be made with a kick from the bumper.

The game's sole pop bumper and associated shots
The game’s sole pop bumper and associated shots

There’s also a drop target guarding an exit back into the shooter lane called L’Hai Scampata (which translates to ‘lucky escape’ or ‘you dodged a bullet’).

Jersey Jack Pinball claim there are twenty-nine individual shots on the game. With so many options and accompany rules available, there are quite a few instructions printed on the playfield or on plastics to help explain how various features work.

It’s pretty packed under the playfield too, with a subway system featuring three entrances. There’s also a grab magnet at the top of the left orbit lane to drop the ball into one of the entrances.

The animating, shooting bad guy bash toy
The grab magnet top left and The Hideout subway entrance top right

A little further down is a feature seen recently in Stern’s Foo Fighters game – a standup target in the inlane. This one is a little different though as it is hit by a ball coming down the long left ramp ball return wireform which runs nearly the full length of the playfield.

The standup target in the right inlane
The standup target in the right inlane

The Godfather is able to draw from assets from all three movies and includes two different versions of the main theme (Speak Softly Love). One is an instrumental performed by Slash while the other is a vocal version sung by Mark Tremonti of Creed and Alter Bridge fame.

There are flyers for both models of the game plus a joint version which list the many features included. Here they are. As with all the images in this report, click on any of them for a larger version.

The front of the flyer for the Collector's Edition
The front of the flyer for the Collector’s Edition
The back of the flyer for the Collector's Edition
The back of the flyer for the Collector’s Edition
The front of the flyer for the Limited Edition
The front of the flyer for the Limited Edition
The back of the flyer for the Limited Edition
The back of the flyer for the Limited Edition
The front of the joint flyer
The front of the joint flyer
The back of the joint flyer
The back of the joint flyer

The main team credits for The Godfather are:

  • Game Design & Direction: Eric Meunier
  • Rules Design: Keith Johnson & Eric Meunier
  • Software: Keith Johnson, Ted Estes, Joe Katz, JT Harney, Bill Grupp & Duncan Brown
  • Art: Jesper Abels & Christopher Franchi
  • Art Direction: JP De Win
  • Animations: JP De Win & Mark Molitor
  • 3D Sculptures: Evolution Studios
  • Sound: Unlock Audio
  • Mechanical Engineering: Eric Meunier
  • Electrical Engineering: Tony Tumminaro

Here are the game rules in visual form:

The Godfather's rules
The Godfather’s rules

Here’s how Jersey Jack Pinball announced their new The Godfather game.

JERSEY JACK PINBALL ANNOUNCES
 
THE GODFATHER 50TH ANNIVERSARY PINBALL MACHINE
 
A pinball experience that you can’t refuse
 
CHICAGO, IL (March 7th 2023) – Jersey Jack Pinball (JJP), in partnership with Paramount Consumer Products, is proud to announce The Godfather 50th Anniversary pinball machine. Collector’s and Limited Editions are now available to order for your home game room or arcade.
 
Do you have what it takes to rule New York City? Build your power by spreading your control to new territories, gaining influence with political notables, recruiting soldiers to run jobs, and taking out your enemies amongst the Five Families.
 
The Godfather is a cinematic masterpiece that has held it’s place in movie history for over half a century. The Godfather pinball machine captures the essence of the films and offers a unique gameplay experience,” said Jack Guarnieri, Founder, Jersey Jack Pinball. “This game is the ultimate collector’s item.”
 
“Capturing the universe of The Godfather in pinball was an exciting experience. Our team pulled out all the stops to get a world-under-glass experience in every way. Unique mechs and shots, immersive programming, iconic video and audio from the most recognizable movie scenes and actors, and stellar animations and artwork wrapped with an excellent sound package all meld together to create a truly unique pinball experience. “ – Game Designer Eric Meunier
 
Build your family, control the boroughs and rule New York City
Begin your journey by selecting from the Corleone, Tattaglia, Barzini, Cuneo, or Stracci families. Each family offers unique abilities to aid in your progression in ruling NYC. The game features full integration of audio and video components of iconic scenes and memorable characters, including Don Vito Corleone, Michael Corleone, Sonny Corleone, and more. A custom soundtrack has been created for the game, including an electric guitar version of the highly acclaimed theme song “Speak Softly Love,”
performed by Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Slash, as well as a vocal version sung by Grammy Award Winning musician Mark Tremonti.
 
Award-Winning Designs
Get ready for fast-shooting pinball gameplay that begins as soon as you hit the start button. JJP Designer, Eric Meunier (Pirates of the Caribbean, Guns N’ Roses ‘Not In This Lifetime’), introduces an exciting gameplay experience, bringing The Godfather universe under glass for the first time. The machine features hand-drawn artwork packages from artists Christopher Franchi and Jesper Abels with art direction and animations from industry leading animator Jean-Paul DeWin. Rules programming was
lead by industry veteran Keith Johnson (Wizard of Oz, The Hobbit, Pirates of the Caribbean), bringing innovation to the gameplay experience.
 
The playfield design boasts 29 unique ball paths, a 3-ball lock capable of feeding all three flippers, “The Compound” active newton-ball lock, four custom sculpts (an interactive Caporegime, Statue of Liberty, LED animated water fountain, bust of Vito Corleone), an under-playfield subway system, exclusive JJP HotRail lighting, and more.
 
Collect soldiers and enter the Don’s office to take on new jobs. Shoot the ball into The Compound active newton-ball area to defend your family stronghold from incursions by the enemy families. Need to make a quick getaway from the upper flipper? Shoot the ball into The Hideout or take the laser-cut steel CityScape loop ramp to outrun your enemies. Rip the opto-spinners to upgrade your weapons and start flinging 10x playfield multiplier Molotov cocktails for major points. Bash the interactive Caporegime toy to clear a path to the Heads of the opposing families and get ready for an interactive pinball playthrough of the most iconic scene in movie history, the Baptism.
 
Industry-Leading Innovation
JJP’s interactive gameplay camera is an industry first that truly brings the player into the game. Your photo can be taken and displayed on the industry-leading 27” color LCD monitor during or at the conclusion of each game. Tweeting your high scores have never been easier with the use of on-screen QR technology. Audiophiles can rejoice with integrated Bluetooth technology (perfect for those wireless headphones or earbuds). Wi-Fi connectivity allows for effortless software updates.
 
Collector’s and Limited Editions
Only 1,000 Collector’s Edition and 5,000 Limited Edition pinball machines will be made.
Limited Edition version includes black powder-coated armor, exclusive cabinet and playfield artwork, an interactive shaker motor providing haptic feedback, Invisiglass, and individually numbered edition plaques. The price is $12,000 USD.
 
The highly anticipated Collector’s Edition version includes a dual-motorized-mobster with interactive car topper, 2nd ‘tommy-gun knocker’, horse head shooter knob, golden leg covers, golden action button sculpt, inner-art cabinet decals, exclusive sparkle playfield artwork, RadCal cabinet art package, laser-cut golden armor, gold-mirrored backglass, external cabinet lighting, game-designer signature, and more. This version has historically sold out within minutes of release and is priced at $15,000 USD.
 
The Godfather 50th Anniversary pinball machine is available for purchase through authorized distributors and JerseyJackPinball.com.
 
The Godfather Film
The Godfather film tells the story of the Corleone family and their rise to power in the complicated underworld of New York City. Released in 1972, The Godfather has been praised for its timeless themes, memorable characters, and masterful storytelling. The winner of three Academy Awards including Best Picture, it is widely heralded as one of the single greatest films of all time.
 
About Paramount Consumer Products
Paramount Consumer Products oversees all licensing and merchandising for Paramount (Nasdaq: PARA, PARAA), a leading global media and entertainment company that creates premium content and experiences for audiences worldwide. Driven by iconic consumer brands, Paramount Consumer Products’ portfolio includes a diverse slate of brands and content from BET, CBS, (including CBS Television Studios and CBS Television Distribution), Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount Pictures, and Showtime. With properties spanning animation, live-action, preschool, youth and adult, Paramount Consumer Products is committed to creating the highest quality product for some of the world’s most beloved, iconic franchises. Additionally, Paramount Consumer Products oversees the online direct-to-customer business for CBS and Showtime programming merchandise, as well as standalone branded ecommerce websites for Star Trek, SpongeBob, South Park and MTV.
 
About Jersey Jack Pinball
From its founding in 2011, Jersey Jack Pinball (JJP) has earned its reputation as the industry leader in collectable pinball machines, creating the most desirable titles in the modern pinball era. Designed and manufactured in the USA at its Chicago headquarters, JJP is led by an award-winning design team. Easy to play, difficult to master — JJP’s games both honor the rich history of pinball and lead it into the future, with uncompromising standards of design and engineering that are certain to entertain players both old and new.
 
JJP introduced several industry firsts, including the use of LCD screens, LED lighting, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity, camera integration, and other innovative technology. From its first offering, The Wizard of Oz, JJP has continued to revolutionize the pinball experience with ground-breaking releases, including: The Hobbit, Dialed In!, Pirates of the Caribbean, Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, Guns N’ Roses: Not In This Lifetime, Toy Story 4, and now The Godfather 50th Anniversary.
 
Learn more about Jersey Jack Pinball at jerseyjackpinball.com.
 
SOCIAL MEDIA
Twitter: @JJPinball
Facebook: @JerseyJackPinball
Instagram: @jerseyjackpinball
YouTube: @JerseyJackPinball

Orders for both versions are now being taken by JJP’s authorised distributors, or they can be purchased directly through the JJP website.

Meanwhile, JJP have released this promotional trailer for the game:

JJP’s The Godfather trailer

There is now a longer ‘featurette’ about the game’s development, with game designer Eric Meunier and lead programmer, Keith Johnson:

We’ll be updating this article with more media as it published and as soon as gameplay videos are available, so check back here at Pinball News.

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One Comment

  1. Larry Rosenthal

    7th March, 2023 at 10:12pm

    Who manufactured your playfields?

    Reply

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