Thursday, September 4, 2014

Stern Pinball's Star Trek Version 1.5

For a few weeks Stern Pinball was hinting that their massive "Power Pack Update" for Star Trek was nearly finished. Designer Steve Ritchie even had a video saying he loved what the team did with the newest update and that players where going to love it. This update has been a long time coming. A few months after the LE's and Premium versions of Star Trek shipped Stern Pinball released a video on their YouTube channel with star, Karl Urban playing the game and closing off the video saying, "Look for my custom speech in the power pack coming soon!" That was over nine months ago... So needless to say pinball fans everywhere have been looking forward to this update.

While there is some bugs and things that need to be fleshed out I'm happy to say that Stern and Karl Urban deliver! Star Trek 1.5 is a massive improvement over the previous versions. They really listened to the fans and added a lot of new ways to rack up the points. I had thought that Karl Urban would only record a few lines but he went above and beyond recording over 100 custom lines of dialog for the game! In previous versions I noticed some voices that didn't sound right, in the Prime Directive mode you hear a random crew member say, "Captain! Behind you run!" and I kinda knew that was a space saver until the pack came in because all of the lines are now either a line ripped from one of the two films or Karl Urban recorded something for the game.

When the game came out a lot of people jokingly called the game "Time Out Trek" since the first level modes can be timed out. So people would time out the modes to get the special, Super Ramp, Super Spinner or Super Pops and advance into the Kobiyashi Maru Multiball. Now they made it so you want to complete the shots. After making four shots you'll hear the game's announcer say "Galactic Away Team is ready!" if you make the Away Team scoop shot you'll get a Galactic Scoring award for one of six features. The Warp Ramp has also been improved. In the previous version if you get to Warp 9.9 you got a two ball multiball, now the two ball multiball rewards you with double scoring for 40 seconds.

Somethings I'd like to see added in. They need to add text to the screen for the new Away Team awards. As of now you only hear the in-game announcer say it. If you're playing in a crowded arcade/bar or the sound isn't turned up on the game you're not going to know what you're reward is. There's also some problems with the mode stacking, you can't see how much time is left on a mode while multiball or a Vengeance feature is on, hopefully they can put something in to make it clear for players.

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