As much as I like some of the Marvel comics tables in Pinball FX 2, I hope the developers at Zen Studios are done with men in tights. We don’t need another superhero.
So after the jump are five ideas Zen should steal
5) Gunfight at the OK Corral
A Western table. Duh. I don’t really care what it’s named, but it has to have cowboys, Indians, a six-shooter, saloon doors, a prostitute, a stampede, a lawman’s badge, and a train robbery. Those are non-negotiable. Also, to fit into the Zen tradition, it should have awful voice acting in which the narrator says, “Nice shootin’, padner!” whenever you make a skill shot.
4) Lake Splatter
We have some “scary” tables. Haunted House and Paranormal, for instance. But what about a serious horror theme, with an R-rated gore sensibility? I’m not sure about the mechanics of sticking an M-rated table into an E-rated game, but if there’s a Playboy table in the real world, by golly, I want a slasher movie table my Pinball FX 2.
3) Star Wars
Okay, Zen, you guys are big enough now that you should pony up for a ridiculously high-profile license. Head on over to Lucasarts with your hats in your hands and get the rights for a Star Wars table. Original Star Wars only, please. I don’t want any Roger Roger droids, midichlorians, or Jedis with rattails. And if you can’t afford Star Wars, then see about an Indiana Jones table. I know both of these have been done in the real world, but it’s time for them to move over and make room for the more relevant world of virtual pinball. Yeah, I went there.
Okay, so maybe Lucas isn’t going to loose their grip on Star Wars. What about 2K Games and Irrational? Zen collaborated with a small indie developer for Ms. Spolsion Man. It’s time to run with the big dogs. So I demand a Bioshock table. Just picture any Bioshock level. Imagine that aesthetic built into a pinball table. See how perfect it is? The conceit is that you’re a Little Sister harvesting Adam from splicers. You collect plasmids for your Big Daddy. You have Big Sister battles for multiball modes. Play missions for characters like Andrew Ryan, Sophie Lamb, Topside Johnny, Atlas, Grace Holloway, Sander Cohen, Tenenbaum, and Porter. As much as I’m sick of having action figures standing around my tables, I’d love a Big Daddy and Big Sister perched at the edges of the table.
1) The Cold War
I really groove on Toy Soldiers: Cold War. I’ve seen Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy three times. I’ve played a fair amount of a board game called Twilight Struggle. I think Dr. Strangelove is Kubrick’s best movie. I know what BRDMs, Hinds, and Flankers are, and not from playing some silly action game. I grew up during the Cold War. Can you tell? If Call of Duty can have Robert McFarlane as a playable characters in Black Ops, Zen Pinball can have a Cold War table. The table should feature a map with the domino effect, a Vietnam quagmire, the Berlin airlift, defectors, a missile gap bonus, the space race, and a Cuban missile crisis. The center of the table will display an ascending list of US Presidents, much like the superheroes in the X-Men table. You start with Truman and work your way up to Reagan to win the table. Since Zen loves putting action figures on their tables, Kissinger and Kruschev (weidling a shoe, natch) can stand on either side of the table. I am as serious as a preemptive nuclear strike about this one.