New Theatre Of Magic custom competition ROM

The patch has been removed.


Honestly this would be awesome if it just completely removed THEATRE letters from bonus calculation.

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Wait, what does the top lane completion award now? Nothing?

Top lane completion was:


Now, with the game saying “5M” on the DMD and with bonus being significant on TOM, this adjustement is:


Top lanes also awards 300K per switch. Except 500K on completion.

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I’m going to preface this comment by first saying: Thank you, Soren, for contributing to the pinball community. It’s obvious that you’re putting in a lot of work to try to improve the competitive pinball environment, and that’s certainly a Good Thing.

However, I definitely find myself of mixed mind about “competition ROMs” that significantly change the rules of a game beyond blatant bug fixes and de-randomization. I can definitely see a slippery slope where other people do something similar to what you’ve done, but they have a different vision of what rule changes are appropriate… so I go to tournament A with your ToM ROM, then I go to tournament B with a different ToM ROM where combos are capped at 20M instead of 8M, and BTW, the multiball jackpot can be raised to 200M. Then tournament C has a ToM with some yet different set of rules. It’s hard to say that any of those variations are “better”; for example, with your change to the bonus X advance rule… well, if I can properly control the ball to shoot ~8 left orbits to maximize my bonus X, I can probably do so for ~14 left orbits. Is it really “better” for either competitor or spectator to make me chop that wood a few extra times?

I think this could become a significant source of confusion and frustration for both competitors as well as the (increasingly growing) spectator scene, when people think they understand a machine but it’s actually morphed radically. Personally, I think I’d rather see a consensus in the community that competition/tournament ROM’s, where used, conform to a fairly tight set of guidelines that can be quickly and easily explained; e.g. random awards are de-randomized and bugs that are widely considered to be debilitating are fixed. Other stuff is left as-is, for better or for worse: if a tournament director doesn’t feel a particular title is fair or fun, they can use another machine, or just allow all players equal opportunity to do the unbalanced thing on the machine they have… that’s still a demonstration of skill.


I totally agree with Joe here, where I would consider the impact of seeding oddball roms out there. it is absolutely frustrating to encounter games with varied rules.

I appreciate you trying stuff out and think its really interesting.

Though, some of these fixes seem a little odd…

The trunk error fix is certainly nice (but note, there is an awesome hardware fix available now that just straight up solves the problem).

But whats with the combo value “fix”??? To me that makes no sense. The 2x combo skill shot was one of the few things that could compete with other strategies in a few specific situations.

and the rollover fix doesn’t really seem to change much and is arbitrary, as joe said. If you can hit 100 left orbits, you can hit 200.


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Your comment are totally fine with me. Seriously. I certainly have not hold back on certain occations at certain places to share an opinion or two.

And I have ask myself a lot, what is clever, what is fair and what is over the top.

Note, the combo on TOM does not stop at 20M. It’s open ended. Open ended progressing features in pinball - can be fun - but also risky.

Note 2, admitted. I overlooked the 2x combo skill shot and agree it is pretty much of no relevance with this. Even worse - I will have to pull the mod for the time being.

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I agree with Joe and Cayle. A competition ROM (which is a fantastic idea) needs to be very limited in what it changes. I would keep it limited to glaring imbalances and exploits, and something that can be fully explained in 1-3 bullet points on a piece of paper taped to the backglass.

In TOM’s case:

  • Sadly, no amount of left orbit nerfing will make that shot more difficult to hit, so this could be a lost cause for high level competition. Lightning flippers, perhaps?
  • THEATRE letters removed from bonus (credit to KCB)
  • Cap the BonusX at something low such as 2x or 3x.
  • If that’s still not enough to balance the THEATRE hurry-up scoring wood chopping, then have the hurry-up begin at a lower value. Or is it possible to limit THEATRE hurry-ups to only earning 1 per ball? 2 per ball?

THEATRE letters on right orbit only - now that would be ballsy.

Well, it is a pitch. Perhaps a curve ball - if I understand that phrase correctly. Maybe it can be distilled further. A lot of things are possible per say.

Would it make more sense to collect these all within one thread rather than making a new one for each game?

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TOM patch is updated and available again.

Please discard any previous download and use the one of today.

I completely agree, and I’ll renew my opinion that tournaments should be publishing machine code versions somewhere so everyone knows what’s being played. This is less of an issue on older machines, but with modern machines iterating code versions as much as some do, it’s becoming increasingly necessary to ask the question rather than assume the game is always on latest code.

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