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Thread: Williams' Collection Volume 5 impressions

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    Member skyway73's Avatar
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    Williams' Collection Volume 5 impressions

    Played all 3 tables from the new pack, my initial thoughts:

    NGG: Much more fun than I was expecting, at first look the table looks a bit boring but there's some satisfying shots.

    ToTAN: Feels a bit easy to me, looks quite nice although it's never been one of my favourites.

    CV: A treat for the eyes 😁 Easily the best lighting Zen have produced so far. Love that we can choose our colour scheme at the start. Only thing I'd say is it feels a bit slower than the other 2 tables?

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    Senior Member MadScience2006's Avatar
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    Great release with two of my favorite Popadiuk tables...I spent the $10 to unlock the tables to 2 stars because of this (although it's still a rip-off compared to the other platforms).

    Playing on the iOS mobile version so far (Zen Pinball 2 on macOS will be later) and will also chime in that all three tables look great...CV looks fantastic but has some performance issues/stuttering (iOS 12.4.1) This is on an iPad mini 4...not the newest/latest but not really a slouch either. This is the first time I've noticed performance issues and I've disabled the Zen animations before playing the table to see if it helps...not really. Maybe it has to do with the rendering of two DMDs despite the fact that you can only see one on some of camera angles. In other words, rendering what isn't necessarily being shown on-screen.
    Last edited by MadScience2006; 12-10-2019 at 09:31 AM.

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    Senior Member Gorgias32's Avatar
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    First impressions on Android - I am playing these in the time-limited challenge

    CV: so much nicer and more realistic than TPA version. The shots feel good, and the outlanes are not horribly unfair. It seems like the Sideshow is not randomized, it has always started with "popcorn mania" - this is probably due to the the same ROM-reset behavior we've seen on other tables like Champion Pub.

    TotAN: beautiful, and the super-narrow railroad shots (specifically the Harem loop shot on the left, and any of the loop shots on the right) from TPA are now aimable and hittable. On the other hand, the main ramp is now fairly hard to get all the way up, it's like the jackpot on Creature - you have to hit it perfectly and then it JUST ekes up to the fireball ring. It's entirely possible this is how the real table plays, I have not seen this one in real life. I've had SDTM drains from the Genie magnet area a few times, possibly nudging would help, and once again this may also be real-table behavior.

    I have had a lot of trouble so far (this morning) getting through the "score limits" challenge; at the start of a game there are just not that many high-scoring things to do that you can get going in less than 60 seconds. My strategy (after probably an hour of banging away and not being able to get past 3 or 4 star level) is now to try to light the "Make a Wish" and then pick "3x Lamp Scoring" - a few good hits on the lamp (which is way harder to accomplish in Zen than it is in TPA) can close out the challenge pretty quickly.

    NGG: still having trouble getting the feel for this. It seems like on Android it's not possible to get up the ramp from the plunger - too weak. This may be okay since you should be going for the skill shot anyway, but it's something that may be tweaked. I can't seem to get dialed in on the side flipper shot. Speed of the table is good. I need to spend more time with it.

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    Is anyone else having trouble on iOS? I see the splash screen for the challenges but when I click on them nothing happens.

  5. #5
    Senior Member francis247uk's Avatar
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    Just played each table on 5 min challenge on Xbox One:

    CV: Wow, regular table looks and plays perfectly! 10/10 Zen - Maybe best digital pinball simulation ever made (so far!)
    However highlights even more the fact that there really needs to be a setting to dim or remove the room lighting though, give the table a better chance to shine. Not a massive fan of the enhanced table effects personally, ringmaster face on the lower part of the table looks a little garish and the ringmaster on the left doesn't add much for me.

    NGG: Was looking forward to this one but didn't quite click for me first time around - colours looked a little washed out (compared to TPA) and the lighting seemed a little dim, also couldn't find a camera angle I got on with - perhaps just need to play it more, so used to the TPA version maybe.

    TOTAN: Another cracker - Genie in enhanced mode is great, along with the gems - nice touch. Plays great, looks great!

    Thanks Zen, best Williams pack yet I reckon! (Please can we get some room lighting options in the future?)
    Last edited by francis247uk; 12-10-2019 at 10:26 AM.

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    Senior Member MadScience2006's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by francis247uk View Post
    Not a massive fan of the enhanced table effects personally, ringmaster face on the lower part of the table looks a little garish and the ringmaster on the left doesn't add much for me.
    Same here. While some of the stuff is humorous for a bit, much of it is just overdone. I end up playing the Classic version of all of the Zen Tables after the novelty wears off and the effects start to get annoying. I'm grateful that Zen provides the classic version of these tables.

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    Senior Member Cloda's Avatar
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    I've only played TotAN so far on Classic Arcade. It looks beautiful and plays very nicely but too easily. I did struggle initially to time my shots as the flipper felt very sluggish but quickly adjusted. My fear that my concerns from Universal Monsters physics would also be realised with this Volume (I can only judge for TotAN for now) came true. The ball speed has been slowed down too much and in combination with a lack of randomness in bounce etc. (relative to previous Volumes), and the ball now being too heavy i.e. it gets bogged down, the gameplay doesn't have that zip or edge to it anymore that is so obvious when you look at gameplay footage of real arcade setup pinball tables. It is basically now a slightly faster version of Zen physics with nicer flippers.

    Last edited by Cloda; 12-10-2019 at 12:49 PM.
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    Senior Member GAH1068's Avatar
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    I haven't had time to really play the tables but is the different camera views intentional on Circus Voltaire? All the other tables you can get that full screen cabinet type feel with camera view 2. With CV
    you get the big chunk of the backglass. I thought View 3 would work but then you get the partial table scrolling which is even more distracting.

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    I figured it out. Apparently it didn’t download the tables. It was showing they were there but it had to manually do an update. Working now.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Scared Stiff's Avatar
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    On iOS version I had the ball get stuck in the sprial on TOTAN. The sound on that tables seems a little overwhelmed too. It gets choppy and cut off sometimes. Only issues I have noticed so far. I wish the playfield itself was lit a bit better on NGG. It looks kind of plain the way it is. So far I haven’t seen any issues with CV. Seems pretty perfect to me, but will need to play more to be sure.

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    I won't comment on the AAA production and the overall work throughout the year which are astonishing, but instead stay on the physics as well. Coming straight from Vol.4 without having tested the waters of MB and CftBL previously, I also have to say that Vol.5 feels a completely other game, in fact it feels exactly like a game and not like a simulation anymore.
    What has happened is that the arcade physics became Zen physics only heavier, meaning the experience became absolutely predictable, very rounded and streamlined. I'm saying that after just having played CV with the tournament setup and doing 8-10 consecutive shots from the left flipper to the right loop and the same from the right flipper to the left ramp, things that were only possible with the surreal Zen physics and don't correspond to reality/real conditions.
    The lost unpredictability since the Universal Pack as I've read (together with the constant nerfing of the ball speed after Vol.3 and the unnatural control of the ball) has watered down the simulation experience so much, that the game became from a lovely and challenging wild horse tame (tournament setup) to a oversweet, polished strawberry lollipop for the masses even on that particular setup!

    While one could say that Volumes 1 & 2 were a bit too fast sometimes (mostly because of the physics regarding impact and not because of the preset table angle responsible for the speed) and Vol.4 was an excellent addition regarding the flipper physics -which imo need to be just a little more stiff, as really loose flippers were a thing of the 70-80's and not of late 90's tables- the amount of nerf since Vol.3 was just too much. I strongly believe this was the case because casual players don't play the Zen physics at all, being the tables real replicas and not fantasy tables by Zen, so Zen made arcade the "easy-default" mode for everyone, and tournament a very slightly faster version of it with the same predictability, total ball control and with a total loss of non-linearity that was prevalent in Volumes 1-4, so I hope they will listen to the simulation fans as well and revert some very aggressive decisions they made. Or create a new category called "Steroid setup". My personal suggestion as a compromise to please everyone -which shouldn't happen as there are 2 distinct player groups in Zen's universe- would be to revert to Vol.4 ball speed and unpredictability, as seen in WH2O. WH2O was incredibly well brought to the virtual world.

    cc: @deep, see also suggestion thread here: http://www.digitalpinballfans.com/sh...l=1#post291854
    Last edited by pinfan7; 12-12-2019 at 08:06 AM.

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    Crazy this thread remind me it was out today! Gave it a first try and first impressions

    TOTAN: As good as i expected, one of my favorite table, very happy to play that on Switch!
    CV: Was not a big fan of it in TPA, and Zen make me really start digging this table. I think its the one i will play first mostly atm!
    NGG: Well, same as TPA, not a fan again, and dont feel for the first games iv played it change. I guess i will remain a Teed Off! sucker, which i think its the better of the two theme game! ( raising flame shield here )

    And thank god, camera rewind bug for Road Show is now fixed, and gamma bug for MM and Gateway is also fixed!

  13. #13
    Senior Member Scared Stiff's Avatar
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    Eh....just had a ball disappear on NGG and the machine never recovered and my challenge timer counted down to zero.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Pete's Avatar
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    oh man i got the got to wait till pay day to buy this pack blues. just spent all my loot on christmas presents bus tickets groceries and rent. damn you timing!!! you guys are making me so happy and sad talking about how great this is. sucks you had your ball fly away, ive seen that one on other zen tables 4 or 5 times but its super rare.

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    Have bought every pack except this one. The tables look great but the physics is the key for me. Like the challenge and feel of the earlier volumes. I hope they add option to bring back realistic physics not Zen physics feel.

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    Regarding the unrealistic extreme flipper recoil please take a look at a real table @ 1:23, 1:28, 1:50, 1:55 , etc here:

    https://youtu.be/N5TtYf0jcT8?t=81 .

    the same can be observed in PAPA's real table video as well 1:23, 2:01

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iicd...=youtu.be&t=82

    I understand they were made in Vol.4 and the later packs this way as a workaround for making tip & flick passes easier, but this had the consequence of hurting drop & live catches and dead bounce on lower speed, plus it makes an unpleasant contrast of shiny good looking table and broken,rickety flippers. It's just too much in Zen's arcade/tournament flipper physics, they need to be more stiff. The physics model must be improved on how a flipper responds to impact, which will automatically "cover " all techniques if it is physically correct modeled, not masquerading it like this. It's not easy at all I know, but it needs further tweaking and improvement.

    These videos also demonstrate very clearly the points I've made in my post above (saying that the new tables play like Zen 1.5 mode rather than the real thing) like:

    - no clean-on-a-rail ramp/loop shots like in Zen's artificial newest physics (arcade/tournament) iteration
    - hard to shoot ball in ramps despite the preparation
    - ball almost always touches the ramp/loop's walls
    - struggle of ball controlling (from an expert playing it!)
    - ball bouncing & ball speed similar to Volumes 1,2,3.

    All these must be tweaked (if not reverted) before being applied to the previous Volumes!
    Last edited by pinfan7; 12-11-2019 at 04:51 AM.

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    Senior Member Pantah010's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GAH1068 View Post
    I haven't had time to really play the tables but is the different camera views intentional on Circus Voltaire? All the other tables you can get that full screen cabinet type feel with camera view 2. With CV
    you get the big chunk of the backglass. I thought View 3 would work but then you get the partial table scrolling which is even more distracting.
    Having same issue on the cab
    Cam 5 looks ok, but it scrolling (is there a way to lock the cam from scrolling?)
    Also the plunger view in cab mode.. please make it stop scrolling Zen
    Last edited by Pantah010; 12-11-2019 at 02:43 AM.
    Channels: Twitch / YouTube

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    Member curtis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pantah010 View Post
    Having same issue on the cab
    Cam 5 looks ok, but it scrolling (is there a way to lock the cam from scrolling?)
    Also the plunger view in cab mode.. please make it stop scrolling Zen
    Same here, too, with my cabinet. There's no good (and stationary) camera view for Cirqus Voltaire.

  19. #19
    Senior Member kimkom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinfan7 View Post
    Regarding the unrealistic extreme flipper recoil please take a look at a real table @ 1:23, 1:28, 1:50, 1:55 , etc here:

    https://youtu.be/N5TtYf0jcT8?t=81 .

    the same can be observed in PAPA's real table video as well 1:23, 2:01

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iicd...=youtu.be&t=82

    I understand they were made in Vol.4 and the later packs this way as a workaround for making tip & flick passes easier, but this had the consequence of hurting drop & live catches and dead bounce on lower speed, plus it makes an unpleasant contrast of shiny good looking table and broken,rickety flippers. It's just too much in Zen's arcade/tournament flipper physics, they need to be more stiff. The physics model must be improved on how a flipper responds to impact, which will automatically "cover " all techniques if it is physically correct modeled, not masquerading it like this. It's not easy at all I know, but it needs further tweaking and improvement.

    These videos also demonstrate very clearly the points I've made in my post above (saying that the new tables play like Zen 1.5 mode rather than the real thing) like:

    - no clean-on-a-rail ramp/loop shots like in Zen's artificial newest physics (arcade/tournament) iteration
    - hard to shoot ball in ramps despite the preparation
    - ball almost always touches the ramp/loop's walls
    - struggle of ball controlling (from an expert playing it!)
    - ball bouncing & ball speed similar to Volumes 1,2,3.

    All these must be tweaked (if not reverted) before being applied to the previous Volumes!
    The flipper recoil was something I personally spoke to Deep about during a recent visit to Zen Studios, as my feeling after the launch of Vol 4 was that it was a little extreme.

    He assured me that the physics modelling was based on video footage taken at 960fps that they had done in the studio, so I am happy with that.

    Going forward, I think it would be 'nice to have' different flipper settings within the sim mode but that again opens up the whole leaderboard thing.

    Therefore, at this point in time I would just like to see the Universal physics applied to all WMS tables, so that we at least have some level of consistency across all tables before any further changes might be made in future.

    That way, any updates can be applied globally.

    Otherwise, the whole 'different physics' thing is just going to snowball into a whole heap of pain.

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    I'm blown away by this release. I can't wait to get home from work and play it more. I don't care that they are re-releases of TPA tables (of which I own every single table). These make TPA's versions look like a joke. I've never wanted to play TOTAN and CV so much since the 90s arcade days.

    The only thing that bothers me with all of the Williams releases is having 2 separate physics engines (and even more including the differences between packs). It makes it hard to get your muscle memory right if you want to get the stars, compete in tournaments etc. I would prefer just having the latest version of the Deep physics across the board.
    Last edited by r0g3r; 12-11-2019 at 08:47 AM.

  21. #21
    Senior Member kimkom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by r0g3r View Post
    I'm blown away by this release. I can't wait to get home from work and play it more. I don't care that they are re-releases of TPA tables (of which I own every single table). These make TPA's versions look like a joke. I've never wanted to play TOTAN and CV so much since the 90s arcade days.
    Excellent! Glad you are enjoying Zen's WMS tables.

    Welcome to the forum.

    P.S. you joined in Jul 2012 but have only posted now?
    Last edited by kimkom; 12-11-2019 at 08:50 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kimkom View Post
    Excellent! Glad you are enjoying Zen's WMS tables.

    Welcome to the forum.

    P.S. you joined in Jul 2012 but have only posted now?
    I lurk regularly. This particular release got me excited enough to post

  23. #23
    Senior Member kimkom's Avatar
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    Wow! That's a long time lurking

    Welcome anyway.
    Last edited by kimkom; 12-11-2019 at 08:59 AM.

  24. #24
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    Had a quick go last night of TOTAN since it's the only one I've actually played IRL. Great table, got to the genie battle on my first attempt but I didn't realize you had to plunge the extra balls manually and lost it LOL. A bit easy compared to others but that's fine with me since I'm not a great player.

    Can't wait to try the others, especially CV since it looks spectacular and people seem particularly jazzed about that one!

  25. #25
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    I just don’t feel right about doing business with this company. As good as their tables are I don’t want to play them. I still haven’t touched the tables I bought in The Great Halloween IOS Deception or any of the other ones either. I know this sounds petty and that I am missing out on loads of fun but I’m just not feeling it. Maybe someday I will feel better and buy more tables but not now. After all the complaints, they made no effort to appease us. I can’t let it go. I wish I could.

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