Stern Stars Preferred Setup: 100k Special once, or open ended?

Just curious how other people were setting up their Stern Stars games. I like the 100k award for the 5 star special (versus a replay or EB) but I have the choice of once per ball in play (SW30 on) or open ended (SW30 off). Seems like open ended could lead to some very lopsided league games but then also leave the possibility of a big catch up on the table. Is there a generally accepted preferred setting for this game? FWIW, I’ll have it set to 5 balls. At .50/play I feel like 3 is just too mean to the casual players.

Agree completely with Kevin. They are death shots and if made repeatedly should be rewarded. Not how I play it, but it’s viable for some. It’s how I have mine set.


Most importantly labeled so there are no surprises. I’m looking at you classics 3.

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Personally I’ve never set it up with unlimited specials, because I’ve never wanted the special strategy to dominate how people play the game. At 100K, you have to think if its worthwhile compared to say drops and left spinner. At multiple 100Ks there’s no discussion. (Many would even say that at only a single special there’s no discussion but I’d disagree personally.)

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Lets not forget the left spinner can be solid points as well.


How are you getting the spinner scoring 80k? I yanked the flipper alignment guide to drop my flippers down a bit and still I’m getting maybe 30k at best on a clean hit. This is with the spinner polished out, aligned and oiled up. The right spinner shot just seems too far out of the sweet spot for the left flipper to ever score those kinds of points.

I’ve been playing the game today for left spinners and then going for the remaining stars if I managed to collect a few along the way but honestly, my scores seem about the same as the stars all the time strategy I was trying yesterday. I think I’m gonna go with 100k unlimited for the location… more incentive for people to go for that high score and possibly drop a few more quarters.

Open ended special, but with the 100k turned off. I forget if that’s even a factory option but I definitely added it to mine.

I don’t like games that have ONE clear cut strategy to go for big points. I’d rather the mix of the spinners and the drops.


What is the point of having it open-ended if the 100K is turned off?

You don’t like to win free games??

I know replays and specials are useless in a free play setup in my house… but I still shoot for them.

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Open ended 100Ks is way cooler but I can live just one 100k special like PAPA has it.

Played one recently that didn’t have a special 100K shot. Not a huge fan. I don’t really play for 100K on that game but it’s nice that it’s always hanging out there. Getting rid of it makes the game less fun and turns it into spinner only which I don’t think suits it well.

Unlimited. What makes Stars an interesting game to play is having to take those risky shots to score well. Just one collect as mentioned makes it too hard to catch up. I also agree with making it 5 balls rather than 3; I’ve seen a heck of a lot of tournament Stars games at 3 balls that lasted less than 2 minutes - - not something that’s fun for casual players.