There’s no doubt that this was the biggest and most successful Texas Pinball Festival to date. The move of the tournaments into their own room released additional space in the main hall for more machines and vendors.
This extra space was needed due to the two The Munsters cars and the autograph desks which clearly themed the show around the show and Stern Pinball’s latest release.
The move of the tournaments did give them their own (somewhat limited) space in which they could keep their own hours, but the side-effect of that was to remove the competitive events from the eyes of the general public, making tournament play less inclusive than before.
The seminars schedule featured all the major players from the big manufacturers as well as a few more esoteric talks. The number of seminars felt about right – covering the latest news without being too exhausting.
With the lead time to secure special guests this was always going to be a The Munsters-themed show, and it did an exceptional job at that. But there was one elephant in the room which simultaneously felt inevitable and yet remained a little odd.
That was Stern Pinball’s announcement of their next title just hours after the Texas Pinball Festival closed on Sunday. The designer and other members of the design team were at the show, but couldn’t talk about the game everyone knew they had been working on. That said, the fact that all the The Munsters machines at the show were pre-sold and the length of the lines which formed at the VIP meet-and-greet showed there was still huge enthusiasm for the residents of 1313 Mockingbird Lane.