PDQ live at 12:30AM tonight!

Join Steve Bowden (2015 IFPA player of the year), Jack Danger (host of dead_flip) and myself, Joe Said (pinballjoe) for the closing finale of Awesome Games Done Quick.

We’ll be speed-running two Stern’s Star Trek for the best time to the Kobayashi wizard mode.

Tune in at 12:30AM tonight!


First 250 subscribers to the channel also receive a free copy of the launch pack of the pinball arcade by Farsight and a chance to win several SIGNED Stern Translites.

All money raised goes to the Prevent Cancer Foundation 501©3

See you tonight!


Closer to 3am now… We’re at the mercy of the main event…

Eastern time zone?

EST … Yes … See you there!

time to get in here, it’s happening!!!

I had to sleep so I missed all the gameplay. Caught some of Jack’s normal soliloquy style broadcast before breakfast. 11,000 viewers when he wasn’t really doing anything. How many viewers did you have at your peak @pinballjoe?

They apparently went for breakfast. There are 6K people watching some kid who just walked up and started playing.

It was over 22k and although we had a constant drop off we maintained 15k+ for several hours …
GG guys … Thanks for coming by

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Great job on the stream guys! I really liked the head to head stuff. That is a very cool format and hope to see more of that in the future.

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Yeah, it was pretty crazy. Glad to see a lot of the videogame people stuck around. Playing Star Trek in a race format was super fun and I hope to do it again. Thanks, Joe!

For those that missed the ST finale race, here’s the archived stream from yesterday. Skip to about the two-hour and 20 minute mark: http://www.twitch.tv/pinballjoe/v/34602519

Nice. I watched some of the head-to-head ST Kobayashi races. Glad to hear there were so many viewers!

Maybe if everyone hadn’t been so punch-drunk from lack of sleep, there would have been more play-by-play commentary of each race. There were some opportune commentary moments when players hit the Black Hole shot (adding mode time) that never got a requisite “Oh, too bad he just screwed himself with more mode time.” If it was mentioned, sorry. I didn’t catch it on the 4 or so races that I watched.

Good commentary though on explaining the concepts, and specifically why players were tilting out there balls to end modes prematurely.

Overall, bravo!! Cool stuff and great exposure for pinball.

Funny enough in our discussions with IMG (the company that filmed the Walking Dead tournament at Expo 2 years ago), this head-to-head style play based on both players going for the same thing at the same time was exactly what they were pitching as a “preferred format” on their end to make the game more exciting/palatable to networks.

There is something easy to understand about getting to Kobiyashi for example, and watching those inserts fill up as a player makes progress. The excitement of being able to see both players going after it Survivor challenge style was definitely fresh compared to the serial playing that we always deal with in competitive play.

THE FUTURE OF PINBALL YA’LL :slightly_smiling:


Only problem with a race format of trying to get to a specific goal like Kobayashi is, plenty of times no one succeeds, or at least not in a reasonable amount of time. The excitement for a casual viewer will drop off quickly if they realize that player A failed to make the goal before running out of balls, so they have to restart the game from scratch, and chop wood through the modes again hoping their opponent also runs out of balls if they’re going to have any chance.

For some race goals, this could be mitigated by allowing 5 or 10 or whatever balls per game, reducing the chance of totally failing. For the specific case of a Kobayashi race, that solution doesn’t work well, since then the optimal strategy becomes start mode -> make shot -> make Away Team -> tilt.

I’m assuming if the tiebreaker in that case went to who completed more modes in their 3 ball game, that there’s an elegant way to still make the concept work.

The idea of serial playing was something they thought wouldn’t work particularly well.

I’m all for having side-by-side pinball action, as long as players alternate machines in between games and all matches are determined by somebody winning by 2, so that each player plays each machine the same amount of times. For instance, if Player A starts on machine 1, and player B starts on machine 2, and they finish the match 3-1, that means they both played machine 1 and machine 2 twice each and player A is the clear winner.

I thought it was awesome and would definitely watch again. I can also see how to viewers who are new to competitive pinball would have a hard time paying attention for a long enough amount of time to even understand what you actually have to do to get to KM.

I could see things getting particularly confusing when when part of the strategy is to tilt your ball out. More often than not, people who are just being introduced to pinball assume that tilting is “against the rules”, or they think tilting is the word for nudging.

I asked in the chat if they had ever considered using very low score-based goals. Jack responded that there were some factors that made that less than favorable, but didn’t get a chance to explain why (excessive animations without displaying score would be one, I’m sure). Soon after, the chat became a non-stop stream of messages (including the Arby’s thing, which is apparently a thing), and any real discussion in chat would have been very difficult. Also, nobody wants to talk about ways that their tournament could be totally different while being in the midst of trying to run said tournament.

I just think that super low score goals might be easier for casuals to enjoy for two reasons:

  1. Everyone understands the concept of accumulating points. Even if they don’t understand how a player is getting them, they can still understand that 2.5m is 50% towards a 5m goal.
  2. Very low score rounds would mean you could have extremely (relative to most pinball events) quick matches, which are easier to digest and pay attention to.

The game is Stern ST and the goal is 5m.
In each match, the first one to reach that goal gets one “point”.
First to x number of “points” wins.

Points would probably accumulate at the same speed as a tennis match or something similar. If the score goal, each player’s score display, and their points for the round could all be seen 100% of the time, it would be pretty easy to drop in at any time and understand what was going down.

Jack would have needed a whole case of 5 hour energy drinks to re-explain even the most basic aspects of achieving KM every time a new slew of viewers logged in. Being like “we’re racing to 5m points, the first person to win that race x amount of times wins the round” might be easier.

I hope my above suggestions don’t sound like I want to discount the huge amount time, ingenuity, hard work, and dedication it takes to make something like PDQ happen like it did. I have a lot of respect for those dudes! Please keep up the good work!

Racing to points, in my opinion, would be more difficult to explain than racing to a goal clearly defined by big, glowing inserts on the playfield. Where do the points come from? That can get rather complex, versus, “OK, each mode lasts 30 seconds, then the player has to quickly start the next mode either here (show left saucer) or here (show Away Team shot)”. That’s much more cut-and-dry than explaining the values of everything on the playfield, how the combos work, how building the spinner value works, etc., etc. It’s simple and the viewer doesn’t really need to understand it to enjoy it–all they need to realize is, “Oh man, he’s got four lights lit and this is faster than the last time he did it! What a rush!”.

That’s easy to explain once, but there was a steady flow of newcomers that didn’t hear that explanation, and so had no idea what was happening. On top of that, the modes are 30 seconds as long as you don’t accidentally hit black hole, or start Away Team (which is bad, unless you’re playing Space Jump, which is it’s own explanation). On top of that, there are the multiballs, purposeful tilts, both at the same time… It’s also hard to explain those intricacies while two players are playing simultaneously.

With a low enough score goal, the need to explain complex scoring rules would reduce quite a bit. I’m not going to even try to claim that I’d figure out the fastest path, but I bet after awhile it would become clear that there were only a few reliable paths to success for players to attempt. Would everyone start with a super-skill? Start Nero and try and get Vengeance going as fast as possible? Right into DtD? Either way, it wouldn’t be too hard to discern that the player was either “shooting the flashing lights”, or spamming the Vengeance and then continuing to do so once the multiball started.

Certainly it was a rush for those playing and for those with enough knowledge of the games to understand how those lights were lighting up faster than last time. For a newbie though, I can see how it would actually be a little harder to understand why at times the players weren’t concerned with shooting flashing lights at all.

The fact is, speedrunning is handled in a very specific way and its goal has never been to shoot for a specific score. The nature of speedrunning is to use specialized tricks (and in the case of videogames sometimes, glitches and exploits) to finish the game as fast as possible. I’m not sure if you saw the main AGDQ stream, but they had upwards of 180,000 people watching at one time. Videogame speedrunning is highly complex, and while the runners attempt to explain it, it’s doubtful more than a tiny percentage of the viewer base even have an ounce of an idea how or why things are being achieved the way they are. That’s just something that comes with the territory. We can do what we can to explain the goals as the stream happens, and we will repeat ourselves as much as needed (that is also something that comes with interacting with chat on Twitch, regardless whether you are speedrunning or not).

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