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Thread: Williams Classic Arcade flipper physics and ball weight and physics

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    Senior Member Cloda's Avatar
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    Williams Classic Arcade flipper physics and ball weight and physics

    Considering the Classic Arcade physics to date, from my understanding (and the tables I have played);

    - Vol 1 - 2 has the same physics. Flipper tricks are very inconsistent and tip passes are missing. The Party Zone has completely different physics with e.g. the nudging way too strong and the ball speed slowed down. Black Rose is apparently the same as The Party Zone but I haven't played it yet.

    - Vol 3 has similar physics, but they slowed the ball speed down. Flipper tricks, especially on Theatre of Magic, is much easier to do, but still not all that consistent. Still can't do tip passes.

    - Vol 4, they introduced rubber and movement to the flippers so especially tip passes became possible, and deadflipper bounces are more realistic. Flipper tricks are still not that consistent to pull off, so not really useful in practice to use in a game.

    - Universal Monsters - they refined the Vol 4 flipper physics, slowed the ball down considerably, and the ball is now more weighted (after a demonstration by Spacies arcade comparing a marble to Vol 4 ball physics). Flipper tricks are much more consistent now, backhand shots are possible, and tip passes works well so I'm using it a whole lot more in my gameplay.

    I feel they slowed the ball down a little bit too much in Universal Monsters, but the rest of the physics feels amazing. It is still tough to play, but you lost that feeling of never being fully in control of the ball that you had with especially Vol 1 - 2 on tables such as Medieval Madness and Attack from Mars. Looking at real table footage e.g. the PAPA tutorials, that is what I expect it to be like.

    Zen indicated that they will at some point update the physics in the previous volumes but they need to test it some more and it will be accompanied by archiving the existing leaderboards and starting new leaderboards. I personally feel that they are first going to refine it with future packs until they feel they have it spot on before they'll implement it in the previous volumes because it make sense that they'll only want to do it once. They might feel they have it spot on now with the Universal Monsters physics. I'd like them to increase the ball speed a bit back to say Vol 3 levels but other than that it feels great.

    How do you feel about it? For the guys that have the opportunity to play and compare to real tables, which Volume / Pack and / or which aspects feel similar? What would you like Zen to change/tweak about the flipper physics / ball physics and weight?
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    Senior Member kimkom's Avatar
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    I think Deep has pretty much nailed it with the Universal Monsters Pack. I would be very happy for those physics to be applied to Vols 1-4 and all future releases.

    i.e. Please make those the 'Universal' Physics

    The sooner the better please Deep!

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    Thanks Sorry it took this long to finally get there with the physics. I will try to implement it sooner rather than later to previous packs. The problem is the leaderboard question. Many users wouldn't be happy if we erase the scores but the gameplay would change considerably. We will try to come up with a solution.

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    Senior Member Cloda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deep View Post
    Thanks Sorry it took this long to finally get there with the physics. I will try to implement it sooner rather than later to previous packs. The problem is the leaderboard question. Many users wouldn't be happy if we erase the scores but the gameplay would change considerably. We will try to come up with a solution.
    Thanks Deep, from my perspective it plays beautifully with just the small question if the ball speed is maybe a bit too slow now? Either way, I'll be very happy if this is the physics going forward and that you will implement in the first Volumes. Yeah... the leaderboard thing seems a bit scary due to people's potentially bad reaction. In the end though, I feel that the sooner you do it the better because the tables will just be so much nicer to play. The reality is that the top players (Tarek, VanAlphen etc.) will anyways take the top positions quickly again. On another post on the forum the general concensus was that people won't mind if the leaderboards get reset because they know the new physics is amazing and will make the tables so much nicer to play. One big advantage of erasing the Classic Arcade / Tournament leaderboards on the Williams tables compared to many of the Zen originals e.g. Paranormal, is that a top scoring game takes less than an hour (except if you are Tarek ;-)) and it is really a fun challenge to try again. On Paranormal it took me 16 hours to get my top score on FX2 so there is no way that I'll do that ever again.
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    Senior Member Cloda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deep View Post
    Thanks Sorry it took this long to finally get there with the physics. I will try to implement it sooner rather than later to previous packs. The problem is the leaderboard question. Many users wouldn't be happy if we erase the scores but the gameplay would change considerably. We will try to come up with a solution.
    Deep, a good suggestion was made on the Steam forum and that is that an open/closed would be sensible to do a few weeks before committing to changing the previous volumes. That would also give you peace of mind that you did your best to ensure that everybody is happy with the physics before the leaderboards are reset.
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    Give the simulation leaderboards a year..then lock em at end of season and on new years is your window to make changes for the next years leaderboards

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    I play mostly on the Zen physics because it's generally more forgiving and I like the powerups, but I agree the classic physics on the Universal pack feels pretty A+ in terms of realism. Comparing to ex. PAPA tutorial videos, the ball movement seems easily the most accurate it's been so far compared to the previous packs. I think as long as you give people warning and archive the previous leaderboards, people shouldn't have a problem! I think particularly the people who play primarily on the classic physics would much rather have the better physics applied to the earlier packs in exchange for a leaderboard reset. You've done an awesome job Deep!

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    Senior Member shogun00's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deep View Post
    I will try to implement it sooner rather than later to previous packs. The problem is the leaderboard question. Many users wouldn't be happy if we erase the scores but the gameplay would change considerably. We will try to come up with a solution.
    If you are just resetting the classic single player boards, then there shouldn't be much of a problem. The casual crowd that would be up in arms mostly just play the Zen physics version from what I can tell.

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    Senior Member Hinph's Avatar
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    The new physics really are fantastic. I think a periodic reset of the leaderboard scores is just fine. Gameplay is much more important than bragging rights... and if you're actually that good at a table, then prove it by getting a high score again.

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    Senior Member Cloda's Avatar
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    Spacies Arcade did a new video where he considers the physics and compare it to previous volumes.



    He seems to be happy with it overall and the speed (one or two other physics things that he still think can be improved). Zen basically changed the weightiness of the ball in part based on his previous video (as said in their pre release thursday stream) and he has always said that the ball is too fast in previous volumes.

    Here is what I commented on his video.

    Thanks, good insight. The flipper physics, and ball physics and weightiness is beautiful! I love that backhands into e.g. KISS and Creature is now realistic to do and for the first time flipper tricks are consistent enough so that I can practically make use of it in my gameplay. Well done Zen!

    I feel though that they slowed down the ball maybe a little too much. The ball speed was really good on a table such as Theatre of Magic. What is missing now from the gameplay, is that feeling of barely having the ball under control that I see when I look at e.g. the PAPA tutorials or Deadflips streams, where it takes considerable effort to bring the ball under control. The ball bounce and movement is too predictable now similar to Zen's own physics. On e.g. Medieval Madness, I often loose balls slipping of the tip of the flipper by looking away at e.g. the DMD, when I assumed the ball was already under control. That seems right to me.

    A suggestion was made that Zen should do an open beta period like they did before Fish Tales before they implement the physics into the previous Volumes. That will give them the assurance that the community is 100% happy with the physics before they take the major step of resetting the leaderboards like they are planning to do.

    The enhancements on MB is the first time that I prefer to play with it on permanently because it is unobtrusive (all the action is at the top) and it actually enhances and improves the gameplay by illuminating the lit rollover lanes. Makes it so much easier to see what is going on for e.g. skillshots and I wish that Zen will have that as an enhancement for all Williams tables and also that they actually have it as a separate toggle so that you can have it on, without having the rest of the enhancements on. CftBL I for instance don't play with it on because of the Creature walking around right in front of the flippers during multiball. CftBL will benefit greatly from having the rollover lanes illuminated like in MB because they are key to the gameplay and are really hard to see because of the ramp layout etc.

    P.S. Reading between the lines on some of the comments he made and with him being a Beta tester and all, it seems very likely that we'll get another pack before the end of the year ;-)
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    Senior Member Rayder's Avatar
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    Make resetting the scoreboards a yearly thing regardless of physics updates. So like January 1 (or whatever date you decide), everyone gets a new chance to be the top score. That way everyone KNOWS that the scores will be reset every year, no surprises. And then, you could have a section for yearly highscores to make the high scores year by year. Could reduce the butthurt and death-threats if people expect it to happen.

    Just posting ideas.

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    Senior Member kimkom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cloda View Post
    Spacies Arcade did a new video where he considers the physics and compare it to previous volumes.



    He seems to be happy with it overall and the speed (one or two other physics things that he still think can be improved). Zen basically changed the weightiness of the ball in part based on his previous video (as said in their pre release thursday stream) and he has always said that the ball is too fast in previous volumes.

    A suggestion was made that Zen should do an open beta period like they did before Fish Tales before they implement the physics into the previous Volumes. That will give them the assurance that the community is 100% happy with the physics before they take the major step of resetting the leaderboards like they are planning to do.
    Good video from Spacie as always.

    I'm glad that he came to the same conclusion as myself, in that Deep has pretty much nailed it with this latest physics iteration and this should be applied to Vols 1-4.

    Cloda, whilst you may have a point regarding ball speed (and I don't necessarily agree), as Spacie said in his video we are getting into the realms of diminishing returns. We are never going to get to a point where 'the community is 100% happy with the physics'. It's just not going to happen. You'll never please all of the people all of the time.

    What we have how though, thanks to Zen listening and acting on our feedback, is a physics model that 'feels' good and is very enjoyable to play.

    I'm just looking forward to when Deep gets his wish and is able to apply the Universal physics model to all of the WMS tables.

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    Senior Member kimkom's Avatar
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    One thing I have to pick up on with Spacies video is his criticism of the lighting model.

    Better and more consistent lighting is something I have spoken about since Vol 1 when I felt that the lighting on Fish Tales was much better than the other WMS tables at the time. Some improvements have been made though. For example, I think White Water looks really nice.

    The problem is that Spacie is comparing the Zen lighting model, which is running in real-time 3d, to that of VPX which is pre-rendered with some fake 'lighting' overlays etc. This can produce very good results but it's not comparable to Zen's 3d graphic engine. It's a bit like comparing apples and oranges.

    I'm sure Zen will improve their lighting over time but it's by no means bad (far from it!) and it's certainly a huge improvement over what Farsight were doing.

    I just don't think we'll see any major changes to the lighting system within the PFX3 platform but I would still like Zen to be striving for better and more consistently well lit tables to the level of Fish Tales, if not better. And as much as Spacie can dream (along with the rest of us!), I think we'll just have to wait for PFX4 to get that bit closer to perfection.

    In the meantime, let's play some pinball and enjoy the ride

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    Senior Member Cloda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kimkom View Post
    Good video from Spacie as always.

    I'm glad that he came to the same conclusion as myself, in that Deep has pretty much nailed it with this latest physics iteration and this should be applied to Vols 1-4.

    Cloda, whilst you may have a point regarding ball speed (and I don't necessarily agree), as Spacie said in his video we are getting into the realms of diminishing returns. We are never going to get to a point where 'the community is 100% happy with the physics'. It's just not going to happen. You'll never please all of the people all of the time.

    What we have how though, thanks to Zen listening and acting on our feedback, is a physics model that 'feels' good and is very enjoyable to play.

    I'm just looking forward to when Deep gets his wish and is able to apply the Universal physics model to all of the WMS tables.
    Thanks, I do accept the point about diminishing returns. I'm just posing the question as it was something that immediately caught my attention when I started playing the pack. I'm also not the only one that feels that way, there are some other guys on the Steam forum that are also of the opinion that they slowed it down a bit too much. The suggestion was made there that the Universal Monsters tournament physics should become the standard Classic Arcade physics and the Tournament ball speed should then be ramped up by 20%.

    Either way, I'm enjoying the game and a Top 10 game on Classic Arcade still takes less than an hour to complete, so I won't complain further if Deep keeps the physics as it is now with Universal Monsters.
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    As someone who loves real life and video game pinball (I was addicted to TPA until they clearly showed they had little interest in fixing the major PS4 bugs), my deep thanks goes out to Zen for staying on top of these issues. I will buy the latest pack right now because of the endorsements above regarding its improved physics.

    With that said, some of my all time favorite Williams tables are Attack from Mars, Medieval Madness and Theater of Magic. I bought the tables awhile ago, but no longer play them as I wait for the better physics. I'm happy to hear they'll be added sooner than later!

    My solution for the score preservation issue is to have an all-time Hall of Fame leader board, but focus on yearly season leader boards as a way of having them reset. Everyone should be happy with that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kimkom View Post
    One thing I have to pick up on with Spacies video is his criticism of the lighting model.

    Better and more consistent lighting is something I have spoken about since Vol 1 when I felt that the lighting on Fish Tales was much better than the other WMS tables at the time. Some improvements have been made though. For example, I think White Water looks really nice.

    The problem is that Spacie is comparing the Zen lighting model, which is running in real-time 3d, to that of VPX which is pre-rendered with some fake 'lighting' overlays etc. This can produce very good results but it's not comparable to Zen's 3d graphic engine. It's a bit like comparing apples and oranges.

    I'm sure Zen will improve their lighting over time but it's by no means bad (far from it!) and it's certainly a huge improvement over what Farsight were doing.

    I just don't think we'll see any major changes to the lighting system within the PFX3 platform but I would still like Zen to be striving for better and more consistently well lit tables to the level of Fish Tales, if not better. And as much as Spacie can dream (along with the rest of us!), I think we'll just have to wait for PFX4 to get that bit closer to perfection.

    In the meantime, let's play some pinball and enjoy the ride
    Agree about the lighting, would so love an update. And Fish Tales does look nicer than all the other tables to me.


    New physics are brilliant, the flippers have a little "give" in them which just feels right. A few air balls would add to the realism too 😉

    Small points I would love to see implemented:

    Add a controller vibration when the knocker sounds.
    Have an option to have just the blade artwork on and not full Zen effects.

    I really hope Zen can update all the previous tables, I'm finding it hard to go back now we have these physics...
    Deep, my taste buds have been spoilt! 😁

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    MB is the first Zen table I've bought--the lighting is nice and dark and not so bad for my slight photosensitivity, unlike the other tables : )--so I'm coming to this kind of fresh, and the physics seem pretty spot-on. I can't agree that the ball speed is slow; playing on tournament settings, the ball can get pinging off those flippers and roaring down those ramps like crazy. But I haven't so much as seen a real pinball table in some time so I guess I could be way off by now. =p Edit: And come to think of it, I've never played a real table on tournament settings. So I guess you have a point! I'd agree that Tournament feels about right, speed/angle wise, for a regular table, and Arcade feels a bit slow.

    Anyway, MB feels great, looks great (not so much for Creature, they seemed to have had trouble with the lighting on that one) and I love the tournament setting with the super bouncy flippers and steeper table angle. (I do wish it disabled the match sequence (and extra balls? haven't done well enough yet to check that haha).)

    As for resetting the leaderboards...well I guess I don't care at the moment, because MB is the only one of the tables released so far that I'm playing. ^_^ But if even better physics come along *later*, I know I would want the table updated ASAP, old high scores be damned--they're obsolete! I would just be annoyed to keep playing the un-updated table, knowing it didn't have the latest and greatest feel; like, what would be the point?
    Last edited by smbhax; 11-09-2019 at 11:57 PM.

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    Senior Member Pinballwiz45b's Avatar
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    Extra balls are indeed turned off in tournament settings.

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    Senior Member smbhax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinballwiz45b View Post
    Extra balls are indeed turned off in tournament settings.
    Hallelujah! PW, I could kiss you! ^D^ No more tilting off extra balls like I did for years in TPA (where the pro table setting to disable them didn't save on PS4... ;|). : DD

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    I’m all for deleting the scores. As a player it would be crazy to have a less refined game because they were holding on to a past high score.
    Sometimes machines get unplugged.
    Is there any issues updating old tables on PS4? I know farsight had trouble but maybe that was the PS3 giving the issue.

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    Senior Member smbhax's Avatar
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    (For actual PAPA-style tournament settings, Match sequences should be turned off, and flipper rubbers should be red; currently the rubbers are black in both Arcade and Tournament difficulties, even though they're much bouncier in Tournament difficulty--which is correct in terms of physics, but if they were also correctly colored red that would let the player and viewers tell at a glance which difficulty was in play; currently there's no way to tell visually, which is bad for streaming, video recording, etc.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by deep View Post
    Thanks Sorry it took this long to finally get there with the physics. I will try to implement it sooner rather than later to previous packs. The problem is the leaderboard question. Many users wouldn't be happy if we erase the scores but the gameplay would change considerably. We will try to come up with a solution.
    You have my blessing to reset the scores!

    Perhaps a solution is announce like a yearly leaderboard reset, but work something so we can see our best score each year. Numbers might be different for first three pack if doing some comparison year to year. Just an idea.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayder View Post
    Make resetting the scoreboards a yearly thing regardless of physics updates. So like January 1 (or whatever date you decide), everyone gets a new chance to be the top score. That way everyone KNOWS that the scores will be reset every year, no surprises. And then, you could have a section for yearly highscores to make the high scores year by year. Could reduce the butthurt and death-threats if people expect it to happen.

    Just posting ideas.
    Hmm should have read all post before posting mine just before, exact same thing i said lol.

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    Moderator shutyertrap's Avatar
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    @deep I know the leaderboards might seem like a concern, but if you asked any player "would you rather have leaderboards in favor of the better physics", nobody is going to pick leaderboards. Or if they do, they aren't fans of pinball, they are just fans of being atop leaderboards. No pinball machine on location has high scores for life, neither should digital. Reset the boards, make it a regular thing, that way the game can continually be tweaked and improved without a holy uproar over "how unfair it is" that certain scores are no longer as easy to achieve as when first released. This will also help in case Zen ever gets the Stern license, since patches to code are a common thing and would also require a leaderboard reset.
    I'm just sayin'

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    Senior Member Cloda's Avatar
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    I use the triggers on my Xbox One controller and I think because it is analogue, you can get those fine shots in as you can see in both these videos in Classic Arcade. I'll try again with my shoulder buttons, but I remember it was one of my big frustrations when I was still playing on Mac and used a joy to key app and only had digital input.

    Tip passes are only really possible on Volume 4 (especially Hurricane) and Universal Monsters and the flick to stop the balls momentum that is rolling up a flipper, I can't recall that I got it right as good on Volume 4 as I can now. It really makes a massive difference.

    I am still of the opinion that they slowed the ball down a bit too much and that the ball movement is now much more predictable compared to Volume 4 (more like Zen's physics modes predictability). As such it is much easier to control the ball.


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